2015 was a great year for video games. We got Fallout 4, for crying out loud. It’s not in my Best of 2015 list, but it’s still pretty decent.
2016, though, is shaping up to be even better, if you can believe that. We’ve got about a half dozen games that seems to be completely original and not able to be developed for PS3 or Xbox 360. So, by this point, you’ve seen Chris’s (Heazie’s) top 10 list for 2016. Well, if you read it, you’ll recall that Chris said “I can guarantee Austin’s most wanted are different. I’m not saying he’s going to put together his own list, but in general.” I don’t usually fancy lists, but hey, there are good games that deserve the spotlight.
First, though, let’s mention some of the games that aren’t on my Top 10, but still deserve a shoutout.
The Witness is not the type of video game I’d usually play. It’s equal parts Myst and The Unfinished Swan, well at least in the exploration bits. Puzzles seem to be a bit of nuisance whenever I encounter them, even in a game like Uncharted: Golden Abyss, which you should all play. Oh, you don’t have a Vita? Well, you’re part of the problem.
Anyways, when I first saw the reveal of The Witness, even in first descriptions, I was astonished that the mind behind Braid, a 2D side-scrolling platformer that messed with time, could make a 3D open-world puzzle game. These types of games are a dime a dozen these days, but it always kind of grabbed me in a weird way, and I can’t wait to see what Jonathan Blow has to offer on January 19th.
Hitman: Absolution grabbed my immediate attention when it was free in the Xbox 360’s Games with Gold selection. I’d had exposure to Hitman before, I just never had the interest to play it until Absolution. What Absolution did right is provide what Splinter Cell Blacklist never could, a seamless flow between stealth and gunplay.
So, when Hitman came onto the scene during E3 2015, with an open world to boot, IO Interactive really grabbed me and it occasionally lets me go. Either way, I can’t wait to see what Agent 47 is up to next on March 11th.
Mirror’s Edge Catalyst is an odd game. I can’t really place it. It’s set before Mirror’s Edge, but Faith looks the same. In fact, the game pretty much is the same game, for all intents and purposes. I really loved the original, but I can’t quite see what loyal fans see in this game.
Deus Ex: Human Revolution was a total surprise for me, when it released on Xbox 360, PC, and PS3 in 2011. It blended RPG mechanics with first-person as well as third-person shooting mechanics. Furthermore, every area you went into felt alive, which made the choices you made within it that much more impactful.
While I have some complaints about the story and the way in which boss battles were handled, it was still an excellent proof that this new team knew what Deus Ex was and how that would be represented in modern gaming culture.
I can’t wait for Mankind Divided, not just because Eidos has really proven themselves, but because I’m interested to see how far this team can evolved on those mechanics, while still maintaining that Deus Ex feel.
I’ll ask for this game on August 23rd, and any fan of any game should pick this up too. It’ll be good…I hope.
While we don’t know much about Bound, I’m already flabbergasted at the concept of Sony Santa Monica making a platformer after such games as God of War, a stupid game about a stupid Greek man swing two stupid blades. #sorrynotsorry.
Given that, I’m excited to see Santa Monica’s artistic side shine with Bound, which hopefully comes out this year.
I never beat Dishonored. I was tempted to start for the 3rd time with Definitive Edition last August, but as more and more games released, I pushed myself away from buying Definitive Edition to prioritize what I do here.
As Dishonored II looms, I can’t wait to travel back to Dunwall, even if my time there wasn’t so luxurious or ever-present. So whenever this game comes out, I’ll be ready, just not right away.
I loved Homefront, even if my PC was constantly struggling to run it. The concept behind a Korean army invading the United States and taking up residency is really intriguing to me, and The Revolution seems to continue that trend, while also playing up its Red Dawn comparisions a bit too much.
Go see this game in action. No, scratch that. Buy this game on May 17th or you’re part of the problem.
When Mafia III was revealed at Gamescom 2015, I was beyond hyped. An African-American Vietnam war veteran taking down the mob? ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME RIGHT NOW?! This is perfect!
Just don’t watch any gameplay before it comes out later this year. Seriously, don’t ruin this game for yourself.
Tacoma is a really weird game to follow up Gone Home. One’s in a creepy house, and the other one is in this Ridley Scott-esque space station. It’s just bonkers.
Nevertheless, I can’t wait to see what Steve Gaynor and the team at Fullbright have to tell us, or even warn us about.
Horizon: Zero Dawn is already shaping up to make Guerilla Games the studio that sets itself apart from any other Sony-owned studio. Coming off Killzone, I expected something like Ready at Dawn did with The Order: 1886: another dumb game from a studio that makes dumb games. That’s not to say there isn’t brilliant moments in either franchise, but they’re still not too cerebral enough for me to take seriously.
Horizon seems to change all that. It’s not dumb, it’s a cool Western Sci-Fi RPG that takes the best parts of Monster Hunter and mixes them with this lore that I find fascinating and I can’t wait to play it whenever it releases.
It’s no secret that I love Mass Effect, as long as you don’t bring up those other two games that don’t exist. Renegade all the way, baby!
When I heard BioWare was working on a new entry in the Mass Effect universe, I felt complete apprehension. After all, there were two, totally non-existent games, where all you did is shoot at things.
Andromeda is thankfully favoring exploration this time around, and I couldn’t be happier to finally be able to play this game sometime this year.
Finally, a new idea for console. While I have some reservations about the randomly generated universe, I can’t wait to get lost in No Man’s Sky when it releases alongside PlayStation VR in June of this year. It’s a sure bet, right?
Quantum Break better fucking come out this year, Sam Lake. I’m sorry, but I’m sick of seeing this game at Gamescom every year since 2013, all while knowing it’s not going to be in my hands.
This is the game that made me want an Xbox One, so this game better deliver. Oh, and the TV show, I guess.
This is another game that better come out this year. The Last Guardian began development in 2007 for the PlayStation 3, for crying out loud. Your move, Sony. Your move.
Firewatch is going to be my Game of the Month for February, I know it. You can take Far Cry Primal (and a few other games I don’t care to mention) and shove them up your ass. I wanna be a big fat man parading around the Wyoming forestland, radioing the girl I’m trying to bang, all while solving a mystery.
Needless to say, I can’t fucking wait for this game.
Crackdown 3 is a bit of a mixed bag for me. While I enjoy the technical marvel of using Microsoft Azure to make fully-destructible multiplayer environments, I also can’t wait to just play around as an Agent again.
If you don’t own an Xbox One by now, this is definitely the reason to get one.
Uncharted is one of my favorite franchises to ever be created on the PS3 (and Vita, you bastards!). Now, with A Thief’s End, I can’t help but feel bittersweet about seeing Nate fade into the sunset one last time.
Don’t kill Sully, Naughty Dog. Don’t.
Like it or not, Adr1ft is going to be the killer app for VR headsets. It’s coming to Oculus Rift, PlayStation VR (unconfirmed), and probably the HTC Vive. This is the space exploration game I’ve always wanted to play, but didn’t know how to explain it.
Thank you, Adam Orth. Thank you.
There is no way ReCore is coming out this year. No way. With Mighty No. 9 and Red Ash: The Indeligible Legend, there’s just no time. Sure, one’s coming out in February and the other isn’t releasing until 2017, but we have seen no gameplay at all. We don’t know how this will actually plays, how it performs on Xbox One, anything.
I’m excited to see what Inafune-san will create, but I think I can wait another year.