Games I Have Played In 2015

This is the seventh list of this kind that I've kept here on Giant Bomb. Started in 2009, the Games I Have Played lists have become an invaluable tool for keeping track of the games that I've played through in any given year.

As always, for a game to qualify for this list, I need to beat it between January 1st and December 31st 2015. For a game to count as 'beaten', I need to have seen the end of its single-player campaign. Games with no discernible end are still eligible for the list if I spend a substantial amount of time with them through the year.

Alongside each game you'll find a wealth of information, including the following:

  • Platform - Unsurprisingly, this reveals the platform on which I played the game, as well as whether it's a standard physical purchase, or if I picked it up from a digital store.
  • Started - The date I began playing the game.
  • Finished - The date I reached the 'end' of the game's campaign, or the date I stopped playing it if it's a game with no discernible conclusion. For certain games, I might also document certain important milestones under this heading.
  • In Brief - A short summary of my time with the game, typically outlining why I chose to play it, what I liked and didn't like about it, and any notable moments I ended up having with it during my play-time.

Last year I beat a total of twenty-seven games, my worst total since 2009 and nowhere near my personal best of thirty-five in 2013. How will I fare this year? Let's find out.

Previous Lists

2009 -- 2010 -- 2011 -- 2012 -- 2013 -- 2014

List items

  • Platform - PlayStation 3 (PSone Classic release)

    Started - December 29th 2014

    Finished - January 4th 2015

    In Brief - Tomb Raider: Chronicles is by far the weakest of the original CORE-developed games on the original PlayStation. It's a clear product of contractual obligation, a mish-mash of half-baked ideas assimilated into a disjointed experience to meet an annual release deadline. The end result is a game that plays like formulaic Tomb Raider-by-numbers in spots and nothing like the series in others. It has some high points (the first and third scenarios are great in spots), but they aren't enough to salvage the overall experience. Even as a long-time fan of the series, I'd find it hard to recommend Chronicles to anyone.

  • Platform - Xbox 360 (Xbox Live Marketplace release)

    Started - January 5th 2015

    Finished - January 13th 2015

    In Brief - Skate is the skateboarding game that I didn't even know I wanted until after I played it. In a post-Tony Hawk world, it manages to breathe new life into the concept thanks to its more grounded nature. I loved the fact the emphasis was placed less on racking up huge point scores and more on finding prospective lines and nailing short strings of impressive tricks. When you throw in the open-world game design, the result emulates skateboarding for real, encouraging the player to explore San Vanelona at their leisure in search of exciting new places to skate. It's got its fair share of flaws, the most notable being the frustrating imprecision of the Flickit trick stick and the lack of a clearly defined end to the career mode, but on balance Skate is easily the most fun I've had with a skateboarding game since Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 4. Let's put it this way - if a video game can encourage you to actually pick up a skateboard in real life and try to bust out some tricks, then it must be pretty damn good.

  • Platform - PlayStation 3 (Kingdom Hearts HD I.5 ReMIX release)

    Started - January 15th 2015

    Finished - February 18th 2015

    Started Second Playthrough - March 5th 2015

    Finished Second Playthrough - March 30th 2015

    In Brief - The original Kingdom Hearts was one of my favourite games when it came out all the way back in 2002, largely due to its premise crossing over between the worlds of Disney and Final Fantasy so successfully. Going back to it over a decade later for what I'm pretty sure is my fourth go around, the action RPG gameplay, colourful visuals and memorable characters are just as much fun as they were back in the day. Its kid-friendly aesthetics belie a surprising amount of depth, especially in the intricacies of its combat and item synthesis systems. It's got a handful of flaws, the most glaring of which is the ridiculous item requirements for some of the synthesis in this Final Mix. However, I can't let those minor complaints, most of which only pertain to the game's side content, detract from the overall experience. I had an absolute blast with Kingdom Hearts, and I'm looking forward to experiencing more of the series in preparation for the eventual release of KHIII.

  • Platform - Xbox 360

    Started - February 22nd 2015

    Finished - March 3rd 2015

    In Brief - Alpha Protocol was a very divisive experience for me. I loved the game's premise and its RPG trappings - I ended up pumping a lot of my skill points into the Assault Rifles, Stealth and Sabotage tech trees, turning my Thorton into a sneaky, tech-savvy spy who could still handle himself in a gunfight. As a result I loved the stealth portions of the game, making use of various gadgets to subversively bust my way through enemy defences. I also really admired the game's efforts to make its character interaction and moral choices matter. While I started out enjoying the game's gunplay, some of the late-game combat situations really put a downer on the whole experience, enough to seriously sour my overall opinion of the game by its end. It's a shame, because I really like a lot of what Alpha Protocol does. I just wish there were more opportunities to avoid combat in favour of a stealthy or diplomatic solution.

  • Platform - PC (Steam release)

    Started - March 28th 2015

    Finished - April 1st 2015

    In Brief - I played through The Wolf Among Us over five consecutive nights, sitting down to each episode the way one might sit down to a movie. Over the course of those five evenings, I got caught up in one of the most gripping and enjoyable interactive narratives I've experienced to date. The combination of established fairytale characters with the gritty noir detective-fiction narrative made for a captivating story, and the character at its heart, Sheriff Bigby Wolf, is one of my favourite video game protagonists in recent memory. It was a little light on action but the characters and events more than made up for that, putting The Wolf Among Us pretty much on par with its predecessor, The Walking Dead, in my eyes. The end of the final episode seemed to hint at a potential second series, and I really hope that happens.

  • Platform - PlayStation Portable (PlayStation Store release)

    Started - March 4th 2015

    Finished - April 5th 2015

    In Brief - I've owned Monster Hunter Freedom Unite since around 2010, when I bought it on a whim for my PSP through the PlayStation Store. The hubbub surrounding the release of Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate at the start of this year prompted me to finally give the series a try. I was initially put off by the wealth of information the game bombarded me with at the start (I'm still a bit perplexed how Snow, Ice and Cold are all independent things), and the learning curve is pretty steep, but once I made it over that initial hump I started having a lot of fun with it. I mained the greatsword, and ended up crafting about a dozen different ones over the course of my playthrough, each with a different element, sharpness or other advantage. I decided to put the game down after defeating Tigrex at the end of the four-star quests, since it seemed like the most logical place to finish off story-wise (finally taking down the monster that had terrorised me since the game's opening was immensely rewarding). My in-game clock read a little over sixty hours, and while I know there's still a ton of content left to explore, I feel like I'm done with Freedom Unite, at least for the time being. This was my first Monster Hunter game, but I'm pretty certain it won't be my last.

  • Platform - PlayStation 3 (PlayStation Store release)

    Started - April 18th 2015

    Finished - April 21st 2015

    In Brief - I picked up Papo & Yo for free as one of March's PlayStation Plus bonuses. Determined not to give it enough time to gather any dust on my Pile of Shame, I got stuck into the game in mid-April and beat it in just two sittings. It's a really nice puzzle-platformer, with a premise and gameplay conceits that could have been pulled straight out of a Team ICO game. The puzzles were never frustratingly difficult, instead relying on environmental exploration to happen upon solutions, which made for a pretty relaxing play experience. I found the visuals stunning, juxtaposing realistic favela environments with more fantastical elements to create something pretty unique. The narrative was a bit more heavy-handed about its allegory than I was expecting, but I found it very satisfying to follow.

  • Platform - Wii (Virtual Console release)

    Started - April 18th 2014

    Finished - April 24th 2014

    In Brief - Having never played Super Mario 64 before, I picked up the Wii Virtual Console version with a view to finally experiencing this piece of esteemed gaming history. Several hours, coins and stars later, here I am with one of the industry's biggest ever releases finally under my belt. And do you know what? I bloody loved it. The fact I was able to go into SM64 almost twenty years after its original release, with no previous experience of the 3D Mario games, and still have a great time with it is a fantastic testament to just how great the game is. Its gameplay mechanics and the stucture of its levels and puzzles exhibit a level of creativity and innovation that even modern games struggle to compete with. The visuals haven't aged brilliantly but remain functional, there's quite a bit of asset recycling (particularly with the music) and the camera control is pretty terrible by the current standard, but by and large the core experience is great enough to let those quibbles slide. I thoroughly enjoyed my first ever playthrough of SM64, and right now I'm thinking about diving right back in in pursuit of some more stars.

  • Platform - Xbox 360 (Xbox Live Marketplace release)

    Started - April 25th 2015

    Finished - May 2nd 2015

    In Brief - It took quite a while for Far Cry to 'click' for me. I played Far Cry 2 on Xbox 360 way back in 2010 and loved it, but struggled to get into its PC predecessor. Something fell into place when I shifted to the downloadable 'Classic' version of the game on the 360, and I was able to blast my way past the troublesome early stages and finally get caught up in its campaign. I did enjoy Far Cry, but it felt a little more restrictive and guided than the memories I have of its predecessor. The story, characters and voice acting are all pretty abysmal, with a distinct B-movie feel that I'm not entirely sure is deliberate. Thankfully, the most important thing - the combat - checks all the right boxes. The shooting feels good, and the impressive enemy AI makes for some pretty challenging gunfights with a more emergent feel than the corridor-shooters it competes with. There was no 'Quarbani Singh moment' (and to be honest, I wasn't expecting one), but I still had fun with Far Cry. Hopefully I'll get around to checking out the series' third game soon.

  • Platform - Xbox 360

    Started - May 3rd 2015

    Finished - May 23rd 2015

    In Brief - In preparation for diving into Lightning Returns, I decided to replay Final Fantasy XIII and XIII-2 first. I was a bit skeptical about returning to this incredibly divisive instalment in the long-running franchise, but those doubts turned out to be unfounded. Final Fantasy XIII remains an enjoyable experience, and much more satisfying as both a game and a story when played the second time round. The combat remains as thrilling and demanding as ever, and I had a lot of fun crafting strategies for taking on the game's challenging boss battles. Even the story sat better with me this time, as I wasn't constantly perusing the datalog to bust the confusing jargon. It took me just under three weeks to complete the forty-hour journey, after which I dove straight back in to tackle some of the side-quests and post-game content, something I never thought I'd do with this game.

  • Platform - PlayStation 3 (Kingdom Hearts HD I.5 ReMIX release)

    Started - March 30th 2015

    Finished - Finished Sora's story on May 30th 2015, finished Riku's 'Reverse/Rebirth' story on June 9th 2015

    In Brief - Coming into it straight off the back of the first Kingdom Hearts, Re:Chain of Memories was a bit of a disappointment. The recycling of assets and environments wasn't unexpected, given the game's premise and story, but it was nonetheless a bit of a grind going back through all the places I'd literally just been through - and that's even before the Reverse/Rebirth stuff! The card-based gameplay might have worked well in a 2D game, but it doesn't translate properly into 3D space, leaving combat feeling sluggish and unsatisfying. I enjoyed the game's story, but it felt very fragmented due to the way it was told. I'm glad I played Re:Chain of Memories for the experience, but I'm not sure it's a game I'll be returning to.

  • Platform - Xbox 360

    Started - June 19th 2015

    Finished - Finished main story June 27th 2015, finished Harley Quinn's Revenge on July 12th 2015

    In Brief - I'd been meaning to come back to the Batman Arkham series for a while now, having finished the original Arkham Asylum all the way back in 2012. Turns out I probably shouldn't have left it so long, as I really enjoyed the sequel too. The new gadgets serve to mix up the tried-and-tested gameplay of the original a little, and the return of that incredible combat system is very welcome, even with only minor refinements and tweaks. Although the gameplay definitely holds up throughout, I wasn't overly sold on the open-world gimmick that City introduces, as while it opens the gameplay up for more air traversal, it also seems to sacrifice some of the focus that made Asylum such a great experience. I wasn't particularly sold on the story, either, but that may just be because I'm not invested in the Batman universe to begin with. Regardless, I had a fantastic time with Arkham City, and I definitely won't be leaving it this long before I check out Arkham Origins.

  • Platform - PlayStation Portable (Complete Collection release)

    Started - July 1st 2015

    Finished - July 17th 2015

    In Brief - I've been meaning to replay Final Fantasy IV for quite some time, mainly because of a desire to see its story through again before I check out The After Years. This is my third playthrough of FFIV in total, and my first on PSP as part of the Complete Collection package. It's definitely a marked improvement over the PS1 port of the original SNES version that I'd played previously, which suffered from confusing item naming and horrendous initial load times. The PSP version of FFIV looks nicer thanks to its updated sprite art, sounds better thanks to its rearranged soundtrack, and is easier to both play and follow thanks to the renamed items and brand new translation (which thankfully doesn't sacrifice any iconic moments - the 'spoony bard' line is still intact). On balance it's probably still my least favourite of the SNES-era Final Fantasies, but that doesn't mean I don't love the game in its own right. Now that I'm all caught up on Cecil's adventures, I'll soon be moving onto The After Years.

  • Platform - PlayStation 3

    Started - July 20th 2015

    Finished - July 26th 2015

    In Brief - Having replayed the first two God of War games last year, I decided to take a little break from the series before launching into Kratos' final adventure. With the benefit of that break, I feel comfortable saying that, while GoWIII is definitely more God of War, that isn't why I struggled to enjoy this instalment in the franchise. The things that matter are still there in abundance - visceral, responsive combat mechanics, epic scope and scale, and light Metroidvania and RPG elements that encourage exploration and experimentation. In fact, I'd go as far as to say that God of War III does these things better than any other game in the series. Where it fell apart for me was in both its story and its pacing - the former disappointed me because it surrendered every last iota of Kratos' likability, and the latter was hurt by a dearth of the grand environmental puzzles that broke up the action so well in the first two games. It's not a game without merit - I thought the ending of the game was pretty fantastic, and it's unarguably the game in terms of how it feels to play - but there's no denying it's my least favourite of the three main-line God of War games.

  • Platform - Nintendo 3DS (Virtual Console release)

    Started - July 28th 2015

    Finished - August 17th 2015

    In Brief - Having spent three weeks of my summer with Oracle of Seasons, I feel confident saying it's one of the best 2D Zelda titles I've played to date. It expands upon the foundations of predecessor Link's Awakening in some great ways, thanks to its varied item design and the unique quality of the season-changing mechanics. I did find most of its puzzles and dungeon design to be a bit on the easy side (understandable, as Oracle of Ages is supposedly the more puzzle-oriented of the two games), but overall Seasons was a great experience and a top-notch Zelda adventure. I plan to link with Ages and play through that before the year is out.

  • Platform - Xbox 360

    Started - May 30th 2015

    Finished - August 24th 2015

    In Brief - I have a weird, off-and-on relationship with GRID, having owned and parted with the game twice before finally settling into it on the third go round. Even then, I didn't so much settle into GRID as I did gravitate towards and away from it at various intervals, alternately falling in love with its arcade-like mechanics and thrilling driving engine, then being repelled by its unforgiving street circuits and all that drifting... so much damn drifting... I ended up making amends with the game, getting far enough through all the disciplines to unlock every event and licence. I may end up returning to GRID to see a bit more of what it has to offer, but for now I'm happy to consider my time with it over.

  • Platform - PlayStation 3 (PlayStation Store release)

    Started - August 29th 2015

    Finished - August 29th 2015

    In Brief - In preparation for the upcoming release of The Phantom Pain, I figured I'd play through Ground Zeroes again to refamiliarise myself with the new controls and gameplay mechanics. I played through on Hard this time to give myself a bit more of a challenge, and deliberately tried to go about the mission differently to see just how flexible and emergent the game can get. I had a blast experimenting with different tactics, both stealthy and not-so-stealthy, and ultimately ended up completing the main Ground Zeroes mission in a single two-and-a-half-hour sitting. It's got me even more stoked for the final chapter in the Metal Gear saga, which I plan to dive straight into when it releases on September 1st.

  • Platform - Xbox 360 (Xbox Live Marketplace release)

    Started - October 1st 2015

    Finished - October 1st 2015

    In Brief - Coming soon...

  • Platform - Wii (Virtual Console release)

    Started - October 2nd 2015

    Finished - October 3rd 2015

    In Brief - Coming soon...

  • Platform - Xbox 360

    Started - October 4th 2015

    Finished - October 7th 2015

    In Brief - Coming soon...

  • Platform - PC (Steam release)

    Started - October 9th 2015

    Finished - October 9th 2015

    In Brief - Coming soon...

  • Platform - Windows Phone

    Started - October 10th 2015

    Finished - October 12th 2015

    In Brief - Coming soon...

  • Platform - Xbox 360 (Xbox Live Marketplace release)

    Started - October 9th 2015

    Finished - October 13th 2015

    In Brief - Coming soon...

  • Platform - PC (Steam release)

    Started - October 13th 2015

    Finished - October 17th 2015

    In Brief - Coming soon...

  • Platform - PlayStation 3

    Started - September 1st 2015

    Finished - Finished Chapter One on October 5th 2015, Unlocked True Ending on October 18th 2015

    In Brief - Coming soon...

  • Platform - Xbox 360 (Xbox Live Marketplace release)

    Started - October 18th 2015

    Finished - October 21st 2015

    In Brief - Coming soon...

  • Platform - PC (Steam release)

    Started - October 22nd 2015

    Finished - October 24th 2015

    In Brief - Coming soon...

  • Platform - PlayStation 3

    Started - October 25th 2015

    Finished - October 27th 2015

    In Brief - Coming soon...

  • Platform - Xbox 360

    Started - October 29th 2015

    Finished - Finished Burial at Sea: Episode One on October 31st 2015, finished Burial at Sea: Episode Two on November 1st 2015

    In Brief - Coming soon...

  • Platform - PlayStation 4

    Started - November 2nd 2015

    Finished - November 10th 2015

    Extra Info - Coming soon...

  • (Alpha Sapphire version)

    Platform - Nintendo 3DS (eShop release)

    Started - August 3rd 2015

    Finished - December 22nd 2015

    Extra Info - Coming soon...

  • Platform - PlayStation 3 (HD Collection release)

    Started - December 23rd 2015

    Finished - December 31st 2015

    In Brief - Coming soon...