2015 will soon be over and in the style of games journalist and Youtuber Kim Richards; I would like to share my top five video games of 2015 with you. To be clear, these games do not need to have been released this year, these are games I have played and enjoyed this year. As with all my list blog, these games are in no particular order.
- Dishonored (Originally released: 2012)
I’ve never been one for pure stealth games. While I do love to sneak and pickpocket, nothing but stealth was never really my forte. However, I had a fantastic time playing Dishonored for the first time earlier this year, You play as Corvo Attano, a disgraced royal bodyguard in the steampunk city of Dunwall who must prove his innocence after being framed for his employer’s murder and must go on a quest to clear your name. The artwork is unique, the setting is dystopian without being clichéd and you can find a stealth style appropriate to your play style. Plus, you can choose whether you want to punish those who slighted you or simply murder them, your choices throughout the game leading to one of two different endings. Once you are done with the main game, there is a two part DLC pack which offer new missions and new powers and tools. If you haven’t played Dishonored yet and are looking for a stealth game a little less intense than Metal Gear Solid, go check out this wonderful release.
- Sunless Sea (Originally released: 2015)
Keeping with the theme of dystopia, my next choice is a wonderful indie game called Sunless Sea. You play as the captain of a ship exploring a world in which London has sunk into the sea. Travel to unique and eccentric locations and build up your legacy as a zee-captain. This fantasy-horror game is akin to a top-down RPG in a steampunk setting and is highly immersive. The artwork is simple yet engaging and the game’s score is truly beautiful. This is not an easy game in the slightest but each time; you will survive for just a little longer. While the learning curve is steep, the game does give a strong sense of reward and achievement when you find a new location or, as mentioned, survive for that bit longer. Furthermore, the development team behind the game have just released their first DLC, which allows you to attach a zubmarine to your ship and explore the world that lies beneath the surface. This game may frustrate you but the more you invest into it, the more you will get out of it.
- Life is Strange (Originally released: 2015)
Telltale Games have a pretty tight grip on the episodic point and click genre (let’s ignore the subpar addition that is Minecraft: Story Mode) but that doesn’t mean to say that they are the only ones making excellent story driven point and click adventures. Dontnod Entertainment, the development team behind 2013’s Remember Me brought out Life is Strange over the course of 2015. You play as Max, a photography student who discovers she has the power to rewind time. She begins to use this as she attempts to navigate her hectic life at a boarding school in her hometown. While the final instalment of the game may leave you somewhat disappointed, the game is a well-written, well-paced adventure with genuine twists and consequences from your choices. The characters are diverse and you find yourself becoming immersed in the world that the development team has created. Most interesting is that unlike other games in the genre, you can see all possible outcomes of the choices offered to you via use of Max’s time travel powers. This adds another layer to your decision making and really makes a statement about time travel. The game is wonderful and deals with a number of adult themes and issues without becoming preachy or patronising.
- Tales from the Borderlands (Originally released: 2014-15)
Another episodic point and click adventure, Tales from the Borderlands is currently vying with The Walking Dead to be my favourite Telltale game. Set in the insane universe of Borderlands and Borderlands 2, you play as Rhys and Fiona, two people from different worlds thrust together by fate. Various sections of each episode are played as each character, both of whom having their own quirks, mentality and abilities. It was a gambit that worked perfectly for Telltale, creating one of their best ventures yet (I say yet because they announced a Batman game for release next year). The art style is the cel-shaded visuals we came to love in Borderlands and the dialogue is witty and sharp, with hardly a missed note. On top of that, there is some major talent behind the mic with Troy Baker, Laura Bailey, Patrick Warburton and Chris Hardwick all taking on major roles. If you are looking for pure insanity to tide you over till the first quarter releases next year, invest in this five episode masterpiece from Telltale.
- Fallout 4 (Originally released: 2015)
I am a huge Fallout fan. Fallout 3 was one of the first triple A titles I ever completed and so I have been waiting years for another instalment in the post-apocalyptic franchise. Fallout 4 is visually stunning and so engaging with many people (myself included) having played hours and hardly scratching the surface. Much like Fallout 3, the newest release is really about having fun and just allowing you to go off and do whatever you feel like doing (For a great example of this, go check out Rock, Paper, Shotgun’s ‘Fallout 4 diary’). I love everything about the game and I can’t wait to play more of it. It’s refreshing and it’s shiny and chrome. While there are some things I wish they’d included, I can’t fault this game for being engaging and for not pushing me along like Fallout: New Vegas did.
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