Braulio’s Top-Ten Games of 2016
It’s my favorite time of the year! I get the chance to recollect my thoughts on my favorite games of the year. 2016 brought me new experiences I never thought I would enjoy and it brought even more JRPG’s to play. Sadly though, my school work took a toll on my free time this year meaning I missed out on many games I know I would enjoy like Forza Horizon 3 and Gears of War 4. Other’s I got to play partially, but never completed. For those games I offer my honorable mentions. Well, 2016 seemed like a good time to be a gamer and here’s hoping 2017 brings in the goods, especially Nintendo with their latest piece of hardware. Happy holidays!
As usual, here are my honorable mentions of 2016: Dragon Quest VII, Titanfall 2, and Batman A TellTale Games Series. Sadly, I didn’t have the opportunity to play these games anywhere near as much as I would have liked. I just know they are damn good and people should try to experience these themselves.
Worst game of the year: Mighty No. 9 is not only the worst game of 2016, but I give the honor of it being the worst game I’ve EVER played. IF you haven’t, read my review. It should at least keep you entertained longer than the actual game. Please, let Beck die a horrible gaming death. We don’t need to see him or the other forgettable characters from this awful entry. (Mighty No. 9 Review)
Overwatch shouldn’t be a game I enjoy this much. Online shooters is not my cup-of-tea yet I fell in love with the simplicity of Blizzard’s best game. Despite eventually shelving the game, I enjoyed my time with Overwatch when having a full team of friends to take on others. I plan on jumping back into the Overwatch hype train once more DLC is released, but for now I can only think of the great times I had this past summer using Winston and Phara. Read my Overwatch Review if you haven’t.
9. Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright
Fire Emblem Fates continues Intelligent System’s franchise on Nintendo’s handheld. Fates is an ambitious entry in the beloved series adding new game play mechanics to an already perfect formula. Some of these new mechanics are hit or miss, but the core gameplay is the same meaning if you’ve enjoyed any other Fire Emblem, chances are you’ll like this as well. The story and cast of characters are a bit on the weaker side, but that shouldn’t stop you from enjoying the latest entry. Read Adam’s Fire Emblem Fates Review.
8. Ratchet and Clank
This is how you make an old game feel new again. Insomniac Games succeeded in bringing back the classic Ratchet and Clank story with updated visuals, gameplay mechanics, and added a nice new blend of everything else. This is the best that Ratchet and Clank has been since Up Your Arsenal and I’m hoping we continue to receive more action platformers of this quality in the near future.
7. Street Fighter V
The game on my top-ten of 2016 that received the most flak out of anything else (well, that might go to No Man’s Sky possibly). Street Fighter V was a little light on the content, but Capcom made it up to gamers by having such an intuitive fighting mechanic that anyone can learn and a steady stream of DLC characters. Street Fighter V is easily my favorite game in Capcom’s long running franchise.
6. Pokemon Moon
Finally, we’re not stuck to a grid and we can travel in a full-on 3D world! The new Pokemon designs and animations are spectacular. My only issue with Moon is that the game never lets go of your hand. You are always being guided to the next location by an NPC. I never felt freedom in this world and it doesn’t help that the pacing of the game felt beyond rushed. Despite the negativity, Moon is easily the best in the franchise since Silver Version. It felt like a welcome addition having legitimate boss fights with an interesting story over the same-old cookie-cutter 8 gym battles and elite four story line. Now Nintendo needs to make this bigger on a home console and we are set (Pokemon Stars anyone?).
5. Zero Time Dilemma
The third entry to the Zero Escape series brings back the enticing story telling that Chunsoft does best. The way the story is told isn’t necessarily the best method compared to the past two entries, but that didn’t stop me from gluing my eyes onto the 3DS’s screen. This game is GOOD and if you completely ignored the fact that a third game in this beloved series released, go buy it now. Interesting characters and head scratching puzzles await you. Now, can you find a means to escape the inevitable?
This year’s biggest “holy hell” game is Doom, literally. Nobody thought it would be good, well some probably did, but Id Software totally nailed the look and feel of the original Doom and made it new. Shooting demons with the super shotgun has never felt better than this.
3. Hyper Light Drifter
Easily one of my favorite indie games of all time. It brings back the old Zelda formula on not telling you anything and dropping you in the middle of the map. Everything from the economy to directions must be found out by the player and it brings up one of the best experiences I’ve ever had with a video game.
2. Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE
This is where things get really difficult for me. TMS#FE came out of nowhere as well. My love for Fire Emblem had me excited for this game up to the point where I witnessed the rise of the J-pop scene in the game. Such an absurd story made me shy away from the game up to the point of release. This game is good. It’s Chrono Trigger good. TMS is a fun, hectic, funny good time to be had on the Wii U. It competes against Mario Kart 8 as the best Wii U title. Hopefully this gets ported over to the Nintendo Switch so others get the opportunity to play this new classic JRPG.
1. Final Fantasy XV
After waiting patiently for the better part of my life for Square Enix to release FFXV I felt such a bittersweet moment that I will probably never experience again. Seeing those credits roll at the end of the game made silently think about what I just played and it hit me two days later that FFXV is the Final Fantasy to dethrone FFVII as my favorite entry of the franchise. Memorable characters and locations with an intriguing storyline that spreads a film and 5 anime episodes kept me guessing on what would occur next. Final Fantasy XV has it’s wonky camera, but it was not enough to drag down this amazing experience. I give Final Fantasy XV my personal Game of the Year for 2016. Here’s to Square Enix knocking this out of the park and hopefully they further develop the combat into the inevitable Final Fantasy XVI.