2014 Resolution

My resolution this year is not to lose weight, or to get more excercise. It is to make a dent in my huge backlog. For 3 years, I have been collecting PC games through Steam, Gog.com, and Origin eventhough I didn't have a computer powerful enough to play them. Now that I finally have one, my goal is to complete 1 game from my PC backlog per month all year long.

A pleasant side effect of this is that I will be able to keep track of the games I played this year. I always tend to forget what games I played at the end of the year.

List items

  • Started - November 15, 2013. Finished January 8.

    Notes:

    I loved this game throughout. The setting was unique and I have always been a fan of the film noir genre. The story was a slow start that didn't really going until late in the game. But when it did, it was worth the time invested. I also enjoyed the way the cases were structured, it really made you feel like a detective scouring the crime scene (and messing with the dead bodies) and then grilling the suspects with the clues you've uncovered.

    I would recommend it to anyone who likes a slower pace of action/adventure game. 4/5

  • Started January 9 - Finished January 9.

    The third episode of the 4 part series. This was a fun continuation of the story, but not as memorable as the first two episodes. Good, but I'd only recommend it as part of the 4 part series. 3/5

  • Started January 10. Finished January 10. Very fun, very funny and short little game. Since it's only 2-3 hours long, it doesn't require that much of a time investment. I can see why so many Giantbomb guys put this on their top game of 2014 list. Easily recommended to anyone. 5/5

  • Started Feb 12 - Finished Feb 12.

    Excellent wrap up to the Blackwell bundle. Touching and sad a times, but excellent writting and a great story. I loved it. Totally recommend these 4 games as a bundle to any adventure game fan.

    Side note: I loved how you had to solve puzzles in Deception using your in game iphone. 5/5

  • Start - Unsure.

    Finish - Feb 18

    Decent entry in the Dirt series. I wasn't too fond of all of the Extreme sport stuff with the Gymkana events. However, the game definitely satisfied my itch to Rally race.

    Note: When I played this on the PC, the games for Windows live was still active but not working. So, I was unable to finish all races. I'll come back to it in a few months... maybe.

    3/5

  • This is for Dragonfall, the first DLC to SR Returns.

    Started Feb 27 - Finish March 12

    Dragonfall combines the best parts of the original SNES and Genesis versions and Shadowrun Returns making it a near perfect Shadowrun experience.

    Great story, characters (very well written), pacing, side quests, and morality choices. This is a game that deserves a replay just so you can try alternate routes and solutions to the side quests.

    The negatives for this game are from the limited budget from the Kickstarter. I would have liked to have seen a more open world and a campaign that wasn't so linear. But that is hopefully something a sequel might be able to tackle.

    But, considering what this game was working with, they definitely made the best game they could.

    5/5: This DLC is rare in that it is worth buying the full game just to play it. If you're even remotely interested in Shadowrun, I could not give a higher recommendation.

  • Started March 18 - Finished March 19

    Simply put, I LOVED this game. All the great parts of Far Cry 3, plus the cheesey ass 80's action movie cliches make a near perfect game for me. Since I grew up in the 1980's and love all of the stupid action movies of the day, I immediately fell in love with this one.

    Blood Dragon is just fun to play with enough humor to make the 8 hours or so it took me to finish the game just fly by.

    I loved it - 5/5

  • Prepare to Die DLC: Started February - Ended March 24

    I played this game to death on the 360, but never got the DLC. When the game went on sale through Steam, I knew that I had to get it. I played the DLC mostly to see if I could do it. While the Black Dragon was a bitch, the final boss wasn't too bad.

    3/5 for the DLC - Maybe I'm burned out on DkS now, but I don't think the DLC adds that much to the game. I was plowing through the last bit just to be done with the game to be honest.

  • Started March 20 - Finished March 25

    I'll just start by saying this is the best point and click adventure game I have played in a long time. Great story, challenging but logical puzzles, and Cowboy Bebop references.

    Gemini Rue is a cyberpunk P&C adventure game that deals with the question of what really makes us who we are. If you are interested in this game I would highly recommend that you play it. However, some technical issues and a couple of annoying puzzles around the middle of the game prevent me from giving this a 5.

    But still play it, I probably will again in the years to come. It's going to be one of those games for me, I can feel it.

    4/5

  • Started March 25 - Finished March 26

    As a testament to how good this game is, I powered through it in two days. This game is the equivalent of that great book you just couldn't stop reading. Once I started, I had to see what was next in the story.

    The Original Bioshock is one of the best games I have ever played, and this game might find a spot right next to it in the top 10. Bioshock games are known for their story and innovative combat. Infinite is no exception. This game is absolutely amazing throughout, with plenty of Holy shit moments that need to be experienced.

    Play this game if ever have a chance. 5/5

  • Started April 1

    I love this game. When you need a game to spend 5-30 minutes on a time, this is the perfect time waster. Even in failure, you want to immediately restart and try again with a different configuration. I got the Gog.com edition so I can play this game on just about and PC I have access to and IMO, it's the best way to get this game. I think I'll be leaving this game installed for a long time in the future.

    5/5 - Play it, you won't be disappointed.

  • Started April 1

    Spelunky, like FTL is a rogue like. You learn from your deaths and only have the gameplay to carry you on. While I didn't spend as much time on this game as I did FTL, I still had a good time. The problem is, I don't really see myself putting too much time into this game in the future. It's hard to put my finger on it, but while I had a good time playing, nothing about this game makes me want to start it instead of something else - like FTL. I like it, but not as much as others currently installed on my computer.

    4/5 - I got the Gog.com edition. It's missing the dailies, but still a good edition of the game.

  • Started April 10

    In going with my recent trend of Rogue-likes, I started Banished. Banished is the closest a city builder can get to a survival game. You start off with a small number of families banished from another town sometime in the Dark Ages. With these few families, you have build a new self sustaining town that can supply it's own food, firewood, and clothes. It's not that easy and it took my at least 20 hours (and countless restarts) to get a town up to 100-200 people. I have a special place in my heart for city builders, and this game puts enough of a new spin in the genre that sucked me right in. You have to balance expansion with your food/clothes supply and things can go really bad really fast. It is not unusual to have one bad winter where half of your population just dies off. Like FTL and Spelunky, you learn from your failures and there's this desire to immediately restart with new ideas. Here is a list of ways my town has utterly collapsed.

    1. I forgot to build a tailor. We had a terrible winter and people started freezing to death. By the time I realized my mistake, I was down to 2 people (out of about 50). Those two dudes froze to death while building the tailor building.

    2. Ran out of food. A band of nomads wanted to settle in my town, so I let them. Unfortunately, I didn't have enough of a food supply to satisfy all the extra mouths. Everyone was dead within a year.

    After all of this, the music is really good. This is the most relaxing game I've played all year.

    5/5 Recommended. This game puts a nice take on city builders.

  • Started April 10

    I like stupid shit. And Goat Simulator is STUPID. I saw nearly all of the game in the first couple of hours. At $10, I do feel like I spent too much on a thin joke.. but live and learn.

    My kids love this game and that's the only reason why it's still installed on my computer. While this game is really a single joke stretched really thin, I will always find certain aspects of the game hilarious. At this point, it has become something of an inside joke between my and my 7 year old.

    3/5 - Not much of a game really. But if you have kids, get it. Just want for it to go on sale, $10 is a little too much.

  • Stared April 25th. Finished May 22

    I preordered this game based solely on my love for Dark Souls 1. I imposed a media blackout for myself on this game so I know next to nothing about it. After about 10 hours (two restarts) of game time , I'm sucked in. This is a Dark Souls game for sure and I'm going to play the shit out of this.

    Now that I finished the game, I have some thoughts to share. I love the Dark Souls franchise and this game lives up to but doesn't surpass the first game. This game is more focused on multiplayer and I took advantage of that by helping and getting help with the numerous bosses. I had some issues with the story (only one ending) but I enjoyed the time I spent with this title.

    Dark Souls is at it's best when it forces you to keep trying a certain boss or level until you get it. A typical boss fight might kick your ass constantly until you finally get it and beat the boss without getting hit at all. That's the feeling of accomplishment that you can only really get from a Souls game.

    I'm still unsure whether I like this game more than the first game. It's more accessible, but has more areas and bosses. The multiplayer works better, but the game is easier even without help. The PvP is fun, but the lag constantly gets in the way.

    4/5 - When I finished Dark Souls 1, I immediately started NG+ and there was incentive to do so. There's no incentive to continue in NG+ with Dark Souls 2 aside from a desire for additional challenge. Starting over with a new character doesn't have the same appeal as the first game had. All this said, this is the definitive Dark Souls experience and it's perfect for new comers to the series. Play this game first and then play Dark Souls.

  • Started Feb 20 - Finished May 29

    The fact that it took me this long to finish the game says a ton about how I feel about Strider. It's a fun game when you get going, but I never felt like starting the game. Every time I played it was a chore. Maybe I'll come back later on, but for now.. I'm done.

    2/5 - Just completely underwhelming for me.

  • Finished June.

    To be honest, I found this game a little boring. Not my speed of racing game I guess.

  • Started June 7 - Finished June 29.

    Even though it took me all month to finish this game, I actually did it in two sessions. Very solid game with great gameplay, story, and of course characters.

    The combat was very satisfying and I can see why it was copied in the games that followed. I even enjoyed the stealth sections of the game. I didn't go all the way and find every collectible but that is possible if you are obsessive that way.

    Short game, but packed with memorable experiences.

    Highly recommended 4/5

  • Started June 10 - Finished June 29

    You can't actually finish a 4X game. But I played enough of the game to put it on this list. Very solid indie 4X game in the line of Galactic Civilizations. Good graphics, deep strategy systems, and I even like the card based combat. The UI is amazing and will definitely be copied in future 4X games. Basically, this is one of those "One more turn" games and a game that I think about when I'm not playing it.

    My only gripe about this game is that it's not that big. The biggest galaxy with the most amount of AI still seems like a small experience. It's hard to continue playing this game when there are better Space 4X's out there.

    Recommended for those who like space 4X games and are maybe looking for a different experience. 3/5

  • Started July 3- Finished July 10.

    This is a very fun game. You can play the combat in the game in a variety of ways from ranged attacks to melee combat. And, every way I tried was fun to me.

    What makes this game unique is its narration, world building, and storyline. The narration is on the fly and even narrates how you play the game in some situations. The game world literally builds itself right in front of you as you walk along the world. It gives the game a feel all its own. I won't spoil the story, but it is worth the playthrough alone.

    Recommended 4/5

  • Started July 12 - Finished July 22

    This is totally an Assassin's Creed game. Pretty much Assassin's Creed 2 Brotherhood 2. I haven't played an AC game since Brotherhood came out, so I was craving the typical AC game style. If you want a game that picks up right here Brotherhood leaves off, then this is the game for you. However, it really didn't add that much more to the series. I played this mostly because I already had it in my library and I wanted to see how the story progresses.

    My main problem with Revelations is that it's a game that didn't need to be made. It was a fun game, but didn't add much to the story at all. But, if you're like me and want more Brotherhood action and would like to play as Ezio and Altair again - this is the game for you.

    3/5 I wouldn't recommend this game to anyone but hardcore AC fans.

  • Started August 8 - Will never stop playing.

    I have always been a fan of Street Fighter and fighting games in general. Pretty much on a whim, I decided to pick this game up (finally). All of the memories of playing SF with my brother back in the day came back and I became instantly obsessed. Right now, I have 70 hours on record and I don't see myself stopping soon. Sure I suck at the game, but the incremental progress you can see is addictive and makes me WANT to get better no matter how many times I lose. It's always "one more game" until it's 2am and I need to get up for work in 5 hours.

    5/5 - The best fighting game around

  • Started playing August 13 - Will never stop playing.

    There is a reason why Civ 3 is on my list of all time favorite games. The fifth edition of the series will take its place. Beautiful interface/graphics. Great and tested gameplay, and beautiful music make this game a worthy successor to the series.

    Civ V is a masterpiece in 4X gaming. When I wrote that Endless Space felt small and that there were better 4X games out there, I was referring to the Civ series. I love starting a new game and taking my chosen civ throughout history. It's always "one more turn" until it's 2am and I need to get up for work in 5 hours.

    (My August has been nothing but binge gaming apparently).

    5/5 - Best 4X game around

  • Started August 1 - Won't finish

    Nosgoth is a 4v4 Free to play arena pvp game. I am against the concept of a F2P game. I would rather pay the price for a retail game than to be nickel and dimed over every upgrade.

    Nosgoth is not like I expected. For a F2P game, they are doing everything the right way. That's why I put nearly 30 hours into the game so far.

    The game is Vampires vs Humans and both factions play differently. The humans are ranged classes and the Vampires are melee focused. The key to the game is teamwork and coordination. It works great when you have a team that works together. However, it can be frustrating when you have a team that has no clue what to do.

    Since this game is still in beta with new classes being released and balancing still in the works I give it a 3/5. It's a fun game and worth your time if you like a solid F2P pvp game.

  • Started February - Finished September 23

    I technically haven't completed the game yet. I got 30 hours into the game when it crashed on me. I haven't been able to get it working on my computer since the first crash. It was the best game I've played so far this year. But the crash seriously affected my opinion of the game.

    From what I played, 5/5. This is a great open world FPS. I love how they gave the player the tools and said "Just have fun". Good story, gameplay, graphics... - After the crash 3/5. I would recommened the game to anyone, just make sure it works on your computer.

    If I ever get this working on my computer again, I will finish the game then. Until that happens, I'll mark it as complete.

    EDIT: I FINALLY found the solution to the crash on startup problem. I only had about an hour of the story left too. Now that I am finished with the game, I can honestly say that this is still one of the best games of the year for me. I would definitely come back to replay it at a later date. 5/5 Highly recommended (You can destroy a helicopter with an arrow).

  • Started Sep 26 - Finished Oct 2

    Already the definitive Shadowrun Rpg on the market, the Directors Cut makes this game much better. They added new missions, the ability to level up your team mates, and added new spells and cyberware. The new additions make the game better by fleshing out the existing systems. Dragonfall is now a standalone expansion and I would totally recommend this to anyone who loves a turn based tactical rpg. The best part is that the game already has a number of mods available for it (including the very good Shadowrun Unlimited). This game deserves a replay of the main campaign and after that, dive into the mods for nearly unlimited replayability.

    5/5 Might just be my game of the year.

  • Started October 3 - finished October 25

    Shadow of Mordor is an open world game where you play as a ranger in Mordor literally surround by Orcs. The game itself has the standard open world tropes; main missions you can do whenever you want, side missions to unlock upgrades, and items to collect. What makes this game stand above the rest of the genre is the Nemesis system. This system is what makes the game special and is worth playing for this feature alone. I spent most of my time with this system and found myself losing hours of time just murdering orcs.

    Recommended if you're into a different open world game with a unique catch.

    4/5

  • Started Sep 20 - Finished October 28

    Trine 2 is the sequel to the amazing puzzle/platformer Trine. The complete edition includes the Goblin Menace DLC and is, in my opinion, definitely worth the purchase.

    Good Music, great graphics, and solid gameplay make this game a pleasure to play for the 12-15 hours or so it takes to finish it.

    4/5 - Recommended if you like platformers or just great 2D art.

  • Started Oct 31 - Finished Nov 10

    Shadowgate 2014 is a HD remake of a 1987 classic. It's a puzzle/adventure game where you need to interact with items on the screen to solve puzzles and beat enemies. I've always been a fan of the classic games and this is a well made remake. Sticking true to the old ways, some of the later puzzles can be a bit obtuse but that's why there's walkthroughs. The game changes a little with the difficulty so this might be a game to come back to later on. I feel that given time, most the of puzzles will feel like new again.

    4/5 - Solid remake. Recommended for those that like classic games or classic gameplay.

  • Started Oct 27 - Finished November 12. (43 hours)

    Specifically, the Definitive Edition.

    Thanks to Vinny, Sleepy Dogs is one of my all time favorite open world games. I played this game for the first time last year and promised myself that I would eventually buy all of the DLC and replay the game eventually. When the Definitive edition came out, I knew I had to get it immediately. The DE sprinkles the newly unlocked DLC throughout the story so you are not immediately over powered at the start with crazy guns/cars/money. That was a very good thing and added much to the overall gameplay. The graphic upgrade was a nice touch as well. In all, if you are thinking about buying Sleeping Dogs the DE is definitely the one to get.

    2015 Edit: After playing GTA 5, I can safely say that I enjoyed my time with this game more than Grand Theft Auto. I wish that Sleepy Dogs could have a touch more of the amazing world building that GTA has. But that's it. I S ranked this game and would STILL be willing to take another spin in the world of Sleepy Dogs.

  • Started November 21 - Finished* November 24

    While I enjoyed the beginning of the game and its different racing styles, it soon grew old on me. By the time I got to the second tier of racing, the game was nearly annoying. One thing I did like was that the game made every race exciting. It did a good job of keeping the racing close without making the rubberbanding obvious.

    Good graphics, good driving, and pretty good gameplay. But, ultimately boring.

    3/5 - there are better racing games out there. And when will there be a Forza like racing game on the PC?

  • I've put more than 500 hours into this game according to Steam. While I first started playing this last year, this is the game I always defaulted to between the games on this list. This has been my typical Saturday morning, cup of coffee kind of game. The laid back and sort of stressful (on ironman mode) gameplay kept me hooked since the very beginning.

    What makes CK2 so good is that this game is essentially about families and the little stories that comes with it. Your hotshot Genius Emperor could have an ugly homosexual son as your heir and you need to figure out what to do with him. All while trying to manage a kingdom.

    This might be one of my favorite games of all time.

    5/5 - The very best Grand Strategy game I have ever played.

  • Started December 9 - Finished December 19

    The Splinter Cell series has been one of my favorite series since the last generation. And Blacklist is the best Splinter Cell game since Chaos Theory. It improved the gameplay established in Conviction with the Mark/Execute ability and the ease of transition between stealth and action. Sam Fisher wasn't made to go toe to toe with enemies, but he can definitely handle himself in a fight if he gets spotted. This is a stealth game that gets the stealth-discovery-fight formula right. And if you're good enough, you won't ever get caught.

    5/5 Excellent Splinter Cell game.

  • Started December 3 - Finished* 24

    As a 4X game, you can't really be finished with it. However, in my Endless Space "review" I asked why would you play it when you could play Civ instead? Endless Legend is better than Civ 5. It adds much to the tired gameplay while retaining the addictive nature of the genre. Each race plays differently - like the Cultists who don't expand their empire at all. Instead, they build up a central city higher than any other race. The fighting becomes a Heroes of Might and Magic like turn based combat. The UI again, is amazing.

    I loved this game 5/5 - definitely recommended for any 4X fan.