Best of 2015
Yet another year rolls by and so it is a another year of putting together an arbitrary list of all the cool video games that I like! This is the seventh one of these, and I'm honestly just taking the piss at this point.
As I hunch over the keyboard of my gaming PC (I built one of those!) I reflect back on a year of delightful vidja games. Like pretty much every year since the turn of the decade for me, this year's batch of games was varied, with crazy new experiences coming from all directions, and some reliable ones coming from some old franchises. While nothing's perfect - with a continued slump in the quality of big budget games and the constantly worrying (not in comparison to Actual Real Terrifying Things) under performance of these expensive video game TV machines - this year gives me plenty of hope for this silly industry going into 2016. Hopefully I can keep up with most of the great stuff next year, as the march forward into dwindling free time begins to rear its ugly head. A class of cheap bubbly to this year's finest, alongside the other cool stuff which doesn't get a nifty number, but gets a dollop of love for good measure anyway.
Cities Skyline: A game which showed me I do have an interest in city-building games, except when I gave up once I had to build the actual urban city bit.
Life is Strange: This is a
strange weird one. Life is Strange has been pretty fluid in terms of how I like it. It started strong, and has plenty of elements that I greatly enjoy, but its ultimately dragged down by some stodgy decision system, clunky dialogue and a middling ending. I like what DONTNOD was going for, and I was along for the ride, but it doesn't have a place in the top 10.
MASSIVE CHALICE: In the wake of there being no XCOM 2 this year, this had to do. I held some pretty high hopes for this one (perhaps unreasonably so) so it didn't quite hit all of them, but this is a fun (albeit limited) turn-based romp.
D4 Dark Dreams Don't Die [PC version]: SWERY, you magnificent bastard, don't ever change (this would be on the list, but it did technically come out in '14).
The Beginner's Guide: This one is likely let down by the slightly weak script and performance by Davey Wreden but it is still an interesting little exercise in personal gaming stories. Those always end up being the cool indies I miss out on, but Beginner's Guide is an experience that I defiantly didn't regret, especially in the eternally lovely Source engine.
Her Story: The annual Number Eleven game (not) on the list. Like the intentions of The Beginner's Guide, Her Story is a delightful take on structure and FMV. It is more successful, in my mind, than the former game, as it really was fascinating little procedural capped off by a great performance. It is yet another entry in the "indie game that come out from nowhere" category. Bonus points for being the only video game I've ever played with a Ready, Steady, Cook reference.
- The disappointing shooty-bang and garbage PS4 port of Just Cause 3.
- The garbage PC port of Mortal Kombat X.
- The significantly more garbage PC port of Batman: Arkham Knight.
- The second part of Broken Age, which completely unsold me on the whole thing.
- And finally, my slowly evaporating opinion of Hotline Miami 2.