2015 Top Ten
Rocket League and 9 other games.
Rocket League and 9 other games.
You knew Rocket League was my GOTY before you got here (well, if you know me). What started off as intrigue from a gif of someone making an incredible save (around the time the game came out) led to me putting in over 150 hours into the game.
Rocket League is a special game for how easy it is to get into but how incredibly high of a ceiling there is for skill level. It's a game that brought out my ever illusive competitive side. I just always want to be better at this game but still enjoy it so much even in loss (winning feels so much better though). I wonder and worry how much time I will end up putting in this game.
I want to preface this by saying that I don't think this game would be nearly as enjoyable without the New Nintendo 3DS' little C-nub for camera controls. The only other time I tried Monster Hunter, I immediately didn't like it because of the shoddy camera controls.
Look, you need to know the satisfaction of taking down the large intimidating monsters in MH4U. You need to experience learning your weapon of choice, and see what you first thought as sluggish controls is actually an intricate micro-game of finesse, planning, and exploitation. You need to experience jumping off a ledge, hitting a monster mid-air, they fall over, the animation for you jumping on them happens, and then you proceed to stab the shit out of them while pausing to hold on for dear life whilst they try to shake you off. And if you manage to fill up the "stab the shit out of them" bar, they topple over and you get to run up and hit them with your biggest hits while their down. You need to experience what was an intimidating monster go limping away, signaling that your epic battle with it is close to being over.
I've only played this game single player and have loved it. Most people swear by the multiplayer in this game which I shied away from given that there's so much I needed to learn. I've put 40 hours into the game and I'm on Rank 5 quests. There are 8 numbered ranks and then G-Rank. There's so much in this game I've done and yet I feel I barely scratched the surface.
I'm just starting to sink my teeth into this game but I'm loving almost every bit of it (screw the affinity mission The Repair Job). The music is incredible and lively, the resource/class/skill/weapon/armor management are enjoyable, the armor sets look great, the voice actors and translation is well done, and eventually I'll get a huge ass mobile suit (called a skell) that I will get to pilot, and manage as well!
The world in Xenoblade Chronicles X, named Mira, is beautiful. There's so much detail and color in the world. The scope of the world is set to be so much larger than you so that when you do finally jump into a skell, you still won't be larger than most things. Which reviews mention that you don't get a skell until about 35 hours into the game. The creators did make a good decision on how fast you can run, how far you can jump, and how far you can fall. Which is to say, they are all ridiculous but feel good for how big everything is.
The monsters that populate the world are nothing short of jaw dropping. 15 minutes into the game and your walking by monsters so large, you arent even as tall as it's hoof. There's also a Dodo bird looking monster with 2 large balls on it's neck that can't be mistook for anything except large testicles.
Another thing I really appreciate about this game is that it's an open-world game that doesn't have a main story line that you feel you should be doing all the time. It's nice not feeling like I'm dicking over all of planet Earth because I need to go do this side mission real quick (Mass Effect 3).
I got really invested into the Witcher lore before the release of this game. What started off as me checking out the first book because my friend lent it to me, turned into me reading 5 of the 7 books (The games are based off the books but are suppose to take place after them). I was happy getting to read about Ciri before her first actual appearance in a Witcher game. It felt great starting up the game and seeing Geralt training her at Kaer Morhen, which is based off the very beginning of the book Blood of Elves. This intrigue into Ciri didn't really help me enjoy the new open world aspect of the game though.
What I've enjoyed so much about the Witcher series, constantly combated with the new open-world, do anything/everything approach. This new approach is done very well though. The world available to you in Wild Hunt is huge, alive, and constantly trying to kick your ass. Witcher contracts are one of the best new additions to the series. Having Geralt listen to hysterical people (rightfully so if you saw a giant cockatrice tear someone up) to gather factual information on what he should be hunting, investigating the location where the monster was encountered, and eventually dealing with the monster... is nothing short of bad ass. And while that is great, and almost all side missions are super involved with interesting people, dialogue, and story telling, I still wanted to find Ciri already.
Geralt and Ciri have been to hell and back. Geralt thought he was never going to see Ciri again. He then is being told that Ciri is back, but hold on, let me go see what this lady wants me to do in random poor village number 7. Reading the books got me so much more involved with the reoccurring characters (Yo, Dandelion is actually hilarious in the books), and seeing how well they did on Ciri, Crach, Mousesack, the Wild Hunt, Keira, Emhyr (minus the whole part where he says he's Duny) just made me love the whole series even more, but god damn I wasn't ready for the rest of the game to be enjoyable. I had to stop playing the game for awhile, walk away from it because I wasn't enjoying a game I knew I should be enjoying.
I eventually made my way back and just started up a whole new game. This 2nd time around (never actually beat it the first time) is going so much better. I'm taking my time to enjoy things (even playing Gwent this time) while knowing that Geralt does eventually find Ciri.
I honestly just picked this game up a day ago. I had heard good things about it and for $1 I figured I'd finally check it out. This is what mobile/tablet games should be: fun and full of gameplay that isn't behind pay walls.
Lara Croft Go is grid based puzzle game where you go about moving one square at a time trying to make it from Point A to Point B while also clicking on some semi-hidden items on the maps. Like Rocket League though the game is so much more fun than the description leads on. On top of that, this game and it's music is beautiful. I haven't put nearly as much time in this game compared to most games on this list but a mobile game that grabs my attention are so few and far between that the good ones should be recognized.
The 6th Etrian Odyssey release, and 3rd for the 3DS, is a remake of the 2nd game that originally came out on the DS. EO games are dungeon crawler, turn based RPGs, that are known for their brutal difficulty (well, they added new easier difficulties so it doesn't have to be as brutal anymore), and map drawing. No, seriously, you make your own map in EO games and it's a big reason why I love the series.
EO2U features better map drawing utilities, 5 new characters and unique classes, a new force boost mechanic which can help save your ass in dire situations (thank you), and a new confirmation prompt before you attack (omg, thank you). It's still more of making my way up or down (up this time) a dungeon, drawing the map, staying the hell away from FOEs, hoping that I don't get that random battle where I just get destroyed and I haven't saved in an hour, and facing bosses that I feel like should have died 10 minutes ago and how the hell am I suppose to have enough SP to finish this asshole off when he keeps using his "screw you, you don't get to have fun" attack at sub 30% health. And that's what made me fall in love with the series in the first place.
The game I took a week off for and didn't even play for 20 hours. Wasn't because of the game mind you, I'm just a crazy person who spends a lot time looking at computer parts. Anyway.... Fallout 4!
This is my first Fallout game, and Skyrim was my first Elder Scrolls game! Fallout 4 feels so much like Skyrim for me and that's a very good thing. I so much enjoy the huge open world in the first person perspective, where monsters and humans are littered throughout the world but most of it is spent alone (or with a companion) taking in the sounds and sights around you. One of my favorite things in this game is the gunshots that are just far enough away where you can mistake them for just ambient noise to make the game feel alive. But no, something is getting shot at and you can totally go interfere.
While I've enjoyed what I've played of this game, it still kind of feels incomplete to me. It doesn't really bother me that the game doesn't look that much different from Skyrim, but it does bother me that I can't get a solid stable framerate for a game that looks like it came out 4 years ago. Also, fuck getting stuck at terminals.
JRPGs coming to PC is pretty much all that was left to happen for me to not need a console anymore. Tales of Zestiria is like the 100th Tales game to come out but the first one for PC. I was excited for the release of this game given the reason that it's the first Tales on PC, plus Tales of Xillia, which I had beat in 2014, is one of the best JRPGs I've played.
Zestiria continues the Tales formula of keeping the combat action-based but refining and changing how they play. The combat starts off feeling somewhat awkward (especially if you are coming from Xillia 1&2) but as the systems are explained, and the Shepard transformations become available, it becomes a hell of a lot of fun.
I haven't got far enough into the game to base judgement on the characters and story. So far both seem sort of shallow but honestly that's just me comparing it to Xillia.
The game first released on PC being locked at 30fps. I'd prefer it wasn't that way but given the fact that's the only way i've experienced Tales game, I was ok with it (also I still got to play the game at 1440p). Then someone went and made an unofficial patch that made the game playable at 60fps, and holy crap what a difference it makes. Yeah sure the game is just lot smoother, but the biggest benefit from the game running at 60fps is the combat, which is a big reason you're playing a Tales game anyways. It's a night and day difference that makes this game so much more enjoyable.
It's a non grid-based Metroidvania that's very pretty, and lulls you into a false sense of "this game seems pretty easy", before your little puppy thing is jumping through mazes that would remind you of the underwater stage in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. At least you can save before attempting the horror jumps, if you remember to...
2D XCOM minus the base building, where you are steampunk robots, and rather than having a god awful chance of shooting the enemy that's standing right in front of you, your chance of hitting the enemy is entirely based on your ability to aim. Oh, and you can totally ricochet bullets as well. This game is a hell of a lot of fun and definitely worth the full price of $18. Also hats.
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