By Jonathan Higgins / December 13th, 2013
Before beginning to think about my most anticipated games of 2014, I looked at my list from last year. Fire Emblem: Awakening most certainly lived up to the hype I had for it. I’m still making my way through Two Brothers, wholly impressed by the world(s) Ackk Studios has created. I suppose you can consider the console version(s) of Two Brothers to be on my list of honorable mentions for 2014, even—and I can’t wait to hear about Project Y2K when I’m at PAX East next year. The Cave went a little south of my expectations to be honest. Mutant Mudds 2’s development has gone into 2014 (but you won’t find it on my list, because goodness knows I’ve said enough about Renegade Kid ‘til Treasurenauts comes out). And…and…this one’s really difficult for me…Phantasy Star Online 2’s fate in the West is…is uncertain. Man…
I kind of don’t want my list to include the more obvious choices this time around. If you’ve listened to The Downpour Podcast, you know how much I’m on the Bravely Default hype train. And you don’t have to look too hard to figure out how eagerly I await more information on “X”. I’ll leave those two as simple honorable mentions this time, because it kind of goes without saying that they’d take up the number one/two spots on my list. Other nods I’d like to give before moving on to my main five games: Kirby: Triple Deluxe is probably coming in March, a little while after Bravely Default. Do want—for a lot of the same reasons another game made the cut, which I’ll talk about later. Including Super Smash Bros for 3DS/Wii U is about as much of a no-brainer as Bravely Default or “X”. I’m highly anticipating Kingdom Hearts HD 2.5 ReMIX, of course, but many already know I have a love-hate relationship with the franchise. Last but not least—I’m really looking forward to the indie flood coming to PlayStation 4 next year, with Transistor chief among the list of games I’m most interested to try. Anyway—I’ve dawdled long enough. Time to focus on three main games I’m looking forward to the most-ish next year, with two more thrown in for shock value (not really). Without ado:
5) Golden Sun 4
That’s right. You heard me! If A Link Between Worlds can have a seven month turn-around between its initial announcement and the release date, I can damn well dream of a surprise twist in the form of a follow-up to Dark Dawn. If Iwata says 2014 is “the year of the advanced gamer”, I assume X, Bravely Default, SMT X Fire Emblem and other games we’ve known about for a while can’t be the only tricks up their sleeves. Why am I looking forward to the next entry in the Golden Sun franchise? It’s best to check here and here for a more in-depth look at my history with the series. I realize this is a rather unrealistic expectation to open up my thoughts on, but damn if it comes true, I’ll just have this goofy smile on my face when I look back on this next year.
4) Dragon Quest VII
This one’s a little more grounded. But only a little. Dragon Quest games are something of an oddity with me. I’ll buy them Day 1, and I’ll put a pretty big dent in them, but to this day, Dragon Quest VI and IX are the only two I’ve managed to beat. I’m not sure why I lost interest in IV or V, and I never got around to playing VIII, but I’m really optimistic about the fate of Dragon Quest VII in the West. I’d imagine we’ll get an E3 reveal, for many of the same reasons I’m hoping so strongly for Golden Sun 4. After all the crazy stuff we got in 2013, I highly doubt the only RPGs coming West are ones we know about already. Hope still springs eternal. I can…you know, keep on dreaming. Maybe I’ll visit Nintendo of America’s headquarters on a flying bed, or something.
All right, all right. It’s time for these—the games we know for sure are coming not named Bravely Default or “X”.
3) Yoshi Yarn
Good Feel, I love you dearly. Kirby’s Epic Yarn may have been a little too simple for most gamers’ tastes, but I absolutely adored everything about how that game was presented. The visuals, the (mostly) jazzy soundtrack filled with allusions to games throughout Kirby’s history…since a game like that is mostly focused on presentation, I am fully confident that everyone involved in development can indeed capture Epic Yarn’s lightning twice. I fully expect (thanks to glorious high-definition, and using the breath-taking visuals of Super Mario 3D World as evidence) the ambiance that Yoshi Yarn provides to (far) exceed Kirby’s adventure. I’ve always been a Yoshi guy—I’m even partial to Yoshi’s Story thanks to my girlfriend of over eight years being enamored with it. She seems just as excited as I am—it’s the only imminent Wii U game she’s brought up in conversation, after all.
2) Radio the Universe
Talk about a project that came out of nowhere for me. I recall browsing the Twitter-verse for breaking news and other mindless meanderings to help time dwindle by when Tyrone Rodriguez from Nicalis pointed his followers (and me) towards this psychedelic journey. Both the project itself and developer 6e6e6e…absolutely terrify me. And I think it’s because of that fear that I am totally enthralled with what’s to come. It certainly seems to play like a mix between Zelda and Crack Down (yes, I’m using an obscure Sega Genesis game as an example—I guess that’s the kind of person I am), but…I just love a game that messes with my head and makes me feel completely unsettled. It seems like Radio the Universe is all that and more. For more, check out our Crowdfunding Spotlight.
1) Aban Hawkins & the 1001 Spikes
There are two things long-time readers of the site know very well about me. Thing one: I love Nicalis. (Have I not mentioned them once already in this very article?) Ye who bringeth Cave Story to the masses—you’re alright with me. Thing two: I seek out platformers that are so difficult, they make me want to pull my hair out. Chief among said difficult platformers, in my opinion, is LA-MULANA, one of the first games I ever reviewed for oprainfall. 1001 Spikes, coming to almost every platform imaginable either…very close to now, or sometime in 2014…promises to ”hurt so good”, for lack of a better phrase. Everything about this game seems very polished. I’ve been on the edge of my seat for this one since Nicalis initially announced it; I just wish I knew when it was coming, exactly. For all I know, my most anticipated game on this list of five could come before 2014 even gets here! Imagine that.
So it goes: a list of five games that avoids my rather obvious choices. I think the real question is whether you all think I’m anticipating “X” or Bravely Default more, despite them not being in my “top five”. I’ll let you know if you’re right!
Seriously, though. Golden Sun 4. It’s happening, you guys.
What games are you anticipating the most? Were there any I forgot? Be sure to clue me in.
1001 Spikes20146e6e6eDragon QuestDragon Quest VIIGolden SunGolden Sun 4Good FeelJonathan HigginsKirby's Epic YarnMost Anticipated Games of 2014Nicalisoprainfall StaffRadio the Universestaff picksYoshi Yarn