By Jeff Neuenschwander / January 31st, 2015
Presenting the awards for Best Xbox One/360 Game and Best PC Game are Contributor Karli Winata and Reviewer Guy Rainey
BEST XBOX ONE/360 GAME
2012 (Xbox 360): Dust: An Elysian Tail
2013: Dead Rising 3
KARLI: The Xbox One may have had a rocky start, but it ended 2014 on a somewhat high note thanks to a “temporary” price cut. But how did it do on the software end? We looked at the exclusive games for the Microsoft platforms that came out this year, which as it turns out was a rather paltry list. The following isn’t a complete list. Just ones that the oprainfall team actually played… and liked.
- D4: Dark Dreams Don’t Die
Microsoft sez “See? We do have Japanese games!”
How does one describe the insane mind of SWERY? One doesn’t have to if they’ve played his off kilter games. D4: Dark Dreams Don’t Die is really just a point-and-click, murder mystery adventure game at its heart. Throw in some time travel and some quick time events, and you get an interesting game. But add in a lady who thinks she’s a literal cat and a QTE where you play baseball on an airplane with a mannequin leg, then you get something truly special.
- Sunset Overdrive
Microsoft sez “Who’s up for some wacky fun time with guns?”
Call of Duty’s idea of weapon variety is guns with different fire rates. Insomniac Games’ idea of weapon variety is guns with different ammo. As in this one shoots lasers while this other one shoots Teddy Bears with TNT strapped to it. Sunset Overdrive’s kinetic take on shooters goes against the Xbox’s reputation for being the home of military first person shooters. By itself, it would have been enough to make this game refreshing. It’s a good thing it also turns out to be fun.
Microsoft sez “Call of Duty is fun and all, but does it have big, stompy robots?”
Given how Titanfall was made by the same guys that made Call of Duty the juggernaut that it is today, nobody would have been surprised if Titanfall ended up as just another military first person shooter except set in the future. To some extent it is just that… that is until you start double jumping and wall running trying to shake off the three-story mech that’s been on your ass for the last minute. Either one of Titanfall’s defining mechanics, the jump pack assisted parkour and Titans, would have been enough to differentiate it from Respawn Entertainment’s previous efforts, but they went the extra mile and combined the two, making it a unique and exhilarating experience unlike anything else in 2014.
AND THE WINNER IS…
D4: Dark Dreams Don’t Die
I could point out how different D4 is from just about any game that’s come out in 2014. I could point out how intriguing the story is in D4. But that really can’t do justice to the reason it won our hearts: Its innate weirdness of this game. I’d rather just show it.
BEST PC GAME
2012: FTL: Faster Than Light
2013: The Stanley Parable
GUY: In our quest to name the best games of 2014, we now venture onto the computer. PC has had a huge resurgence over the past few years, and now gets great, interesting experiences that you won’t find anywhere else. Let’s take a look at the best ones.
- Wasteland 2
It’s been a while since we’ve heard from Wasteland, a post-apocalyptic RPG from 1988. While Fallout gets all the attention, that’s only because Bethesda has been promising a Fallout 4 for the past few years with no visual evidence to show for it. Now that Brian Fargo (the original creator) has his hands back on the series, we get a new Fallout 2. And since Fallout 2 is one of the best old-school RPGs ever made, I’ll take it.
- Five Nights at Freddy’s
Who knew so that so many people have a shared fear of 80’s animal animatronics? Scott Cawthon apparently did, and perfectly captured that fear in Five Nights at Freddy’s. It has YouTube personalities screaming into their headsets, much to the enjoyment of their fans. And many of those fans found the storyline actually thought-provoking, in addition to the interesting jump scares.
Who would have thought a visual novel about pornography addiction would have made such a splash? It’s not often that free games make such an impact on the minds of gamers, but this hour long delve into the experience of one man’s struggle really touched anyone who played it.
It seems that 2014 was the Year of Kickstarter Payoff, since many good to great games funded on Kickstarter delivered in 2014. Divinity: Original Sin is another old-school RPG that took to Kickstarter for funding, and it’s the best Divinity game to date. With a highly interactive combat environment and the ability for co-op, it’s a really great journey.
The original Gabriel Knight: The Sins of the Father is a lauded adventure game, but good luck getting around its cumbersome interface. Now, 20 years later, the original designer, with the help of rising adventure game publisher Phoenix Online Studios, takes another stab at it, and the now original vision shines even brighter.
AND THE WINNER IS…
Well, if you’re going to borrow, you may as well borrow from the best. Yes, Wasteland 2 is essentially Fallout 2. But haven’t you played Fallout 2? It was terrific! Getting a new old-school RPG of that caliber is certain to please fans. And it’s got a strong enough interface that I can see new players being able to pick it up.
Akibas tripBayonetta 2Bravely DefaultConception II: Children of the Seven StarsD4: Dark Dreams Don't DieDivinity: Original SinDragon Age: InquisitionFantasy LifeFive Nights at Freddy'sGame of the YearHyperdimension Neptunia Re;Birth1Infamous: Second SonMario Kart 8Persona Q: Shadow of the Labyrinthsecret ponchosSenran Kagura: Shinovi VersusShovel KnightSunset OverdriveSuper Smash Bros. for 3DS and Wii UTales of Hearts RTales of Xillia 2Wasteland 2