Game Of The Year 2016: What A Ride!

Gaming was great in 2015 as there were many great titles like MGSV, Fallout 4, Rise of Tomb Raider, and others. It was a tough call, but The Phantom Pain was my favorite release of that year and perhaps my favorite Metal Gear Solid in the series.

This past year, 2016, did not have as many heavy hitters but there were solid games. Like the previous post, I had a tough time picking my Game of the Year.

There are two games that are very enjoyable. One of these came out during the summer while the other released late November.

A Very Close Second Place

uncharted-4

I will just go with the runner-up first. Uncharted 4 is a masterpiece and wonderful looking game.

If you are a fan of the franchise, then you need to play this game. For newcomers, you don’t need to play the older games, but there are some character threads that might be worthwhile exploring.

I am just say Nathan Drake is a baffon and he is well aware of his flaws. It’s actually why his character is only of most endearing aspects of the series. You seem him mature a bit, but falls into older habits which will ultimately haunt him later.

Gameplay is similar to the PS3 entries, but blends some mechanics from The Last of Us, another excellent Naughty Dog Sony exclusive. Stealth kills are possible and Drake can run in a straight ride and jump better without falling into a precipice. I won’t spoil plot details but there’s a pretty awesome yet frustrating fight at towards the end.

The Winner: Final Fantasy XV

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Admittedly, I have a bias because I am a huge fan of Final Fantasy. It’s not why it is my Game of the Year.

I have yet to finish this game, but the ending draws near. The road trip between Noctis and his pals has been a fun ride.

The boys in black are on a trip to see the Prince’s bride-to-be while an militaristic empire invades their homeland. Torn over his duties and own desires, Noctis seeks out an ancient power to reclaim his kingdom while looking for his fiance.

15443069_10102422217483930_5937583710742483285_oSome of the narrative is a bit convoluted, and it is better explained through the Brotherhood anime on YouTube and Kingsglaive movie. Although I have not completed the story missions, I have a better understanding of the overall plot and it is a decent story.

With that said, there are some holes in the narrative. If you didn’t watch the extra media prior to Final Fantasy XV’s launch, then you might be lost.

Despite that, I am able to grasp the main story, but I am still wondering a few things like the Empire’s intentions, why they want the Crystal aside from being a source of power, and does Noctis actually love Lunafreya.

Those are a few questions, but I feel the plot is similar to quality of the SNES era FF games. Rest easy in knowing it is leaps and bounds better than the mess in Final Fantasy XIII and its spinoffs.15259405_10102401298385970_1040456577925797878_o

Gameplay is pretty good and a step forward. Kingdom Hearts fans will find FFXV approachable because of the combat.

I can go on and on about this game that most reviews have covered. I will put my two cents in.

Final Fantasy XV, while flawed in some ways (especially the glitches), is what the series needs right now. The story is fine, but there is enough content and combat from keeping it boring.

I am 64 hours into it and still have numerous hunts and side-quest yet to be unlocked. This might be the longest Final Fantasy game yet.

15252521_10102397013123670_5353952262437231001_oThe relationship that Noctis and “his bros” feels genuine and their camaraderie is strong. Most Final Fantasy games centered around a “love story” but this one is more platonic than romantic. I wouldn’t be surprised if someone hasn’t made comparisons between Noctis & Friends with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

It took Square-Enix 10 years to make this game and it was well worth the wait. By 2016, the series has seen underwhelming or underperforming titles.

They didn’t capture the magic that earlier games like FFVII were able to capture. This game’s magic is a calumniation of Final Fantasy’s best qualities.

There’s a little bit of every Final Fantasy game in XV. It reminds of Final Fantasy IX without the medieval/steampunk aspect.

It’s not my all time favorite Final Fantasy game, but it is definitely in the top 3. Certainly, it is my Game of the Year for 2016!

 
Also, let me leave you with this amazing glitch! Ignis is a master chef, but terrible chocobo rider.

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