“Videogames are bad for you? That’s what they said about rock-n-roll.” – Shigeru Miyamoto
I’ve professed my love for videogames as a medium before. It’s got endless possibilities for telling stories, engaging our minds and its potential to actually change our world. Also, it’s just a great way to spend some time while listening to audiobooks or hanging out with friends and loved ones.
Here are some games that had an impact on me during the past year!
10. “Octodad: Dadliest Catch” – You take control (and I use that word very loosely) of an average suburban dad who also happens to be an octopus. Just pure stupid fun, especially if you share “control” over his limbs with a friend. If you want to cry either out laughter or frustration, this one’s for you!
9. “Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare” – A tower defence/third person shooter featuring the cast of Plants vs. Zombies! Once again, much fun to be had with friends. Since they pulled the servers on “Dungeon Defenders” (atleast on PS3) this became a good way to get over the withdrawal symptoms.
8. “South Park: The Stick of Truth” – Look, it’s a South Park game, you create your own character and it’s an RPG. Why wouldn’t you want to step into that world?
7. “Football Manager 2015” – Instead of taking control of the player you manage the team. I see some of you yawning already. Trust me, it’s a good time! It gets bigger and better with every iteration. Though I have to admit I miss sending the reserves and youth squad to play some completely unknown team halfway around the world just to get 15K per match. Ah, the sweet old exploits!
6. “Pier Solar and the Great Architects” – This game actually came out for the Sega MegaDrive (Genesis to some of you) as late as 2010. It’s what you call a “homebrew” game. I didn’t get that version but I was glad to see the “HD”-version come out this year for other systems! The story is great and I love the fact that a game of this calibre came from people who are truly passionate about the 16-bit era RPG’s. Good work guys!
5. “Rollers of the Realm” – So, you made a game that combines pinball, puzzle and RPG elements? I’m sold. Just the idea of something like this makes me go: “Shut up and take my money”. The pinball genre has basically been dead for the past decade if not more. Hopefully this will reinvigorate the community. This game was in no way perfect, the voice acting could’ve been better. The design was flawed in places but all in all the concept made it interesting enough to warrant spending money and time on it!
4, “Destiny” – Double edged sword here. Overly hyped it couldn’t possibly live up to expectations. First person shooter/RPG/sci-fi. This is basically a more “serious” version of “Borderlands” (a series I enjoy oh, so very much!) for me. The story wasn’t all that compelling to me, but they’ve built this thing to grow into its own. With the first expansion released just a little while back this one still looks promising. I still enjoyed playing it but gun to my head? I’d pick Borderlands.
Time for a well deserved break! Here are a few notable events and games from the past year in gaming!
Watch Dogs. Wow, that game really over promised and under delivered. I was super hyped about this after seeing the trailer but alas it was not to be. They pulled back the graphics, the mechanics weren’t up to snuff and disappointment, disappointment for everyone! Ubisoft needs to get it together, this does not bode well.
The whole Gamergate controversy. Yes, sexism and misogyny IS a problem in the industry and the world at large. It’s really sad to see so many great characters and stories go to waste just because we choose to exclude women from participating either knowingly or unknowingly. We need to step it up. Now!
Goat Simulator. What? Yes. Goat Simulator may have started out as a joke during a game jam, but once it ended up on YouTube it took an unexpected turn. Apparently enough people wanted to play it, so… It got made. Remember kids, they’re not bugs, they’re FEATURES!
Shovel Knight came in and made us feel like “Mega Man” had a baby with “DuckTales” (don’t visualize that)! Oh, man I just traveled back to the late 80’s/early 90’s so hard right now. As an added bonus we got yet another great soundtrack from Jake Kaufman (Double Dragon Neon, Retro City Rampage, DuckTales: Remastered) who did an awesome job!
3. “The Wolf Among Us” – Yay! Happy to join the Telltale-fanclub! An episodic adventure game. Check out this post for more. Technically the first episode was released in 2013 but with most of the episodes, and its conclusion, released in 2014 I still count it as a game of 2014. Plus, I didn’t get into it before this year so, there’s that! Had a fantastic time playing this. Now i’m left hoping for a remake of LucasArts’ “Full Throttle” from these guys!
2. “Tales from the Borderlands” – Yup, another entry from Telltale Games! This time we step into the wonderful world of Borderlands. Old friends come back (In my book Handsome Jack is the BEST villain ever!) and new characters take shape on this garbageland of sand and sandness called Pandora. I loved the first part “Zer0 Sum” and can’t wait until the second part is released in January 2015!
1. “Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel!” – No surprise there, this HAD to be my pick for the numero uno spot. Run, gun and have fun! Also, you can play as Claptrap. How awesome is that?! Pretty awesome. I also like how they tied together the events between “Borderlands” and “Borderlands 2”, there were some holes left but I have no doubt that they’ll fill in the blanks with some great DLC!
Who would’ve thought 5 years ago that a game that combines FPS, RPG, looting and comedy (funny as hell!) was going to be this big? I do think that this is exactly what the industry needs. The more the lines blur between genres and the more great ideas are allowed to mesh the better!
Tales from the Borderlands – Trailer: