2016 oprainfall Awards: Best PlayStation Exclusive

Thursday, January 26th, 2017

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Editor’s Note: This is the first year we’ve combined the PlayStation platforms into one award. As such, we have included the previous winners of the individual awards below.

2016 Oprainfall Awards

oprainfall AwardsBEST PLAYSTATION EXCLUSIVE

Previous Winners
2012: Journey (PlayStation 3) & Persona 4 Golden (PlayStation Vita)
2013: Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch (PlayStation 3) & Tearaway (PlayStation Vita)
2014: Tales of Xillia 2 (PlayStation 3), AKIBA’S TRIP (PlayStation 4) &  Senran Kagura: Shinovi Versus (PlayStation Vita)
2015: Bloodborne (
PlayStation Console) & Dungeon Travelers 2: The Royal Library & the Monster Seal (PlayStation Vita)

The PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, PlayStation TV, and PlayStation Vita are home to some of the most diverse and niche video games in today’s North American market, thanks in large part to companies being willing to give these games a chance outside of Japan. This year, we rounded up a fair variety of video games for our 2017 PlayStation Exclusive Game of the Year Award, with the distinction that all of them are either substantive re-releases of the game or were sequels.


Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization

2016 Oprainfall Award | Sword Art Online -Hollow Realization-

NA Release Date: November 11, 2016

Platform(s):PlayStation 4, PlayStation TV, PlayStation Vita

Review

Set after the anime series, you play as Kirito on Sword Art Origin, a new VRMMORPG which was created on the game’s original server. You can recruit from among over three-hundred NPCs to join your team and, depending on how you praise them during combat, their stats will change and they will use certain abilities more often as a result.

As you play, you can really tell that Bandai Namco wanted to write a love letter to Sword Art Online fans and make as realistic of an offline MMORPG as possible for them. And for the most part, they succeeded. This is a fun adventure and definitely is something worth checking out if you’re a fan of the series and you want to spend just a bit more time in this VRMMORPG world.


Senran Kagura: Estival Versus

2016 Oprainfall Award | Senran Kagura Estival VersusNA Release Date: March 15, 2016

Platform(s): PlayStation 4, PlayStation TV, PlayStation Vita

Review

The sequel to Senran Kagura: Shinovi Versus, this is a 3D action fighting game that has thirty-four total characters and a single unified story that involves all of the characters in the game. The characters, all from four different shinobi schools, are transported to a mysterious tropical island where they are told to compete in a contest to both learn secrets of shinobi lore and to have the ability to lay the souls to rest of one’s dearly departed.

When you fight as a character, you use different attacks to make combos to pummel your opponent, and the more hits you connect, the more experience points you’ll gain. However, the more damage you take, the more your chosen outfit gets damaged, and sooner or later you’ll be down to lingerie and taking more damage than before as a result.

All in all, it is a fun and quirky fighting game and that is why it landed on our list of 2017 PlayStation Exclusive Best Game of the Year.


Superdimension Neptune Vs. SEGA Hard Girls

2016 Oprainfall Award | Superdimension Neptune vs Sega Hard GirlsNA Release Date: October 18, 2016

Platform(s): PlayStation Vita, PlayStation TV

Review

A crossover title from the Hyperdimension Neptunia and SEGA Hard Girls franchises, IF and newcomer Hatsumi Sega travel across four different eras of SEGA’s console history to right the course of history and return what parts of history have been lost to the timestream.

Oh, and Nep-Nep is now a talking motorcycle.

This is a turn-based RPG, much like the main Hyperdimension Neptunia series, but in a unique twist on the franchise, each of your actions takes up a certain amount of a bar. And once that bar is depleted, that turn is over. With your team being made up of four characters, you can customize them all with different classes to suit your playstyle. Lastly, in something of a break from the classical Hyperdimension Neptunia series, there are action sequences that break up the more traditional RPG aspects of the game.

All in all, it is a welcome departure from the classic Hyperdimension Neptunia gameplay and was therefore included in this list of 2017 PlayStation Exclusive Game of the Year.


Fairy Fencer F: Advent Dark Force

2016 Oprainfall Award | Fairy Fencer F: Advent Dark Force

NA Release Date: July 26, 2016

Platform(s): PlayStation 4

Review

A re-release of the PlayStation 3 exclusive, you play as Fang who teams up with a fairy named Eryn to revive the Goddess and bring peace to the land after he pulls a sword out of the ground. The turn-based combat is fast and fun and you can have up to six people in your party to fight with. As an update to the PlayStation 3 version, there are now additional diverging storylines after a certain critical story point where the game will now become radically different (I don’t want to spoil anything).

This is not a typical HD-remake where a new label and some updated textures are slapped onto a game and it’s called a day. This is a substantial and wholly worthwhile update to Compile Heart’s 2014 North American release and therefore earned it’s spot here on the 2017 PlayStation Exclusive Game of the Year.


The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel II

2016 Oprainfall Award | Trails of Cold Steel IINA Release Date: September 6, 2016

Platform(s): PlayStation 3, PlayStation TV, PlayStation Vita

Review

Set just a month after the end of the first game in the series, the characters are scattered all over the world after that game’s events. As you slowly rebuild the team, you see the characters start to question both themselves, their families, and where their loyalties lie. It is a game that follows in the footsteps of the traditional JRPG genre, as you participate in turn-based combat and use the new link system to perform up to three different kinds of attacks a turn.


AND THE WINNER OF OUR 2017 PLAYSTATION EXCLUSIVE GAME OF THE YEAR AWARD IS…

The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel II

2016 Oprainfall Award | Trails of Cold Steel II

Congratulations to The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel II for winning 2017’s PlayStation Exclusive Game of the Year Award!

All of the elements that I’ve discussed above for this title when put together, makes for an engrossing video game that simply should not be missed, and a shining example of why the PlayStation Vita is still relevant in this day and age. As a result, it was a natural shoo-in for 2017 PlayStation Exclusive Game of the Year.

And bonus: The third game of the series, Trails of Cold Steel III, is due out in Japan in late 2017.


So, what do you think of The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel II being our 2017 PlayStation Exclusive of the Year?

Do you think The Last Guardian should have earned a spot? What did we miss out on? Let us know in the comments below!

About Quentin H.

Likes pina coladas and getting caught in the rain. And video games. Cannot forget those video games. Anime too. Should not forget that either.




  • Panpopo

    Nice, glad to see some Cold Steel recognition. The first Trails of Cold Steel was one of the best impulse buys I ever made. The 2nd game will probably be one of the more valuable PS3 games years from now when people start to collect them, as it is one of the last good, niche games on the system.

    With playing these games I wish I got into the series earlier.

    • Mr0303

      With all the praise it is getting I’m beginning to consider giving it a shot. These long JRPGs are not usually my kind of thing, but I might like it.

    • Panpopo

      Cool, you can probably find the 1st game cheap still for either vita or ps3. It doesn’t break new ground or anything but it is just a well-executed game. And if you don’t like it you can just return it.

    • Klagmar

      How much of a cliffhanger does Cold Steel II end on? Trying to decide how much I should prioritize playing it. If it’s a big one and we’ll likely have to wait 2-3 years for CSIII, I might wait a bit before starting.

    • Panpopo

      No. It is nothing like Cold Steel 1, where it just leads immediately into 2. Let’s just say there is stuff left for a new game.

      I don’t regret it, but if you want to wait that is fine.

    • Klagmar

      Thanks for the answer! Will probably get to it later this year then.

  • Mr0303

    From the games I played on the list Senran Kagura Estival Versus is my favourite. So far it is the best in the series with many awesome features. Can’t wait to see what Peach Beach Splash will offer.

    If we’re talking about third party exclusives Odin Sphere Leifthrasir is definitely my favourite.

    There were some great first party exclusives as well. The Last Guardian was awesome – I just hope the next Team Ico game won’t take so long to come out. Gravity Rush Remastered deserves a mention they managed to make it play really well on the PS4. Some of the VR games were also quite good like Until Dawn Rush of Blood and PSVR Worlds.

  • Geebun

    Don’t take this as complaining or anything but I find It surprising to see some of those nominations over World of Final fantasy, Digimon Story Cybersleuth, Dragon Quest Builder, Ratchet and Clank, Odin Sphere Leifthrasir, King of Fighters XIV and Uncharted IV.

    • Panpopo

      Yeah it was good year for video games. I don’t think I’ve bought so many games in a year before.

    • Funtime Happysnacks

      R&C and Odins Sphere were both remakes of the same games on PS2, KOFXIV appeals to people who play fighters, and DQB is Minecraft with a DQ spin on it. Cyber Sleuth is an old game and WOFF is… niche, to say the least. You have to love FF lore and also be fine with fischer price toy graphics… lots of one camp, not so much in the other. few in both.

    • Geebun

      Your point being?

      “R&C and Odins Sphere were both remakes of the same games on PS2” They were remakes, not ports, a lot of things were improved. Plus, Fairy Fencer F: Advent Dark Force is a port of a ps3 game too anyway.

      “KOFXIV appeals to people who play fighters” All games of any types only appeal to those who play this type of games…that’s how tastes work.

      “DQB is Minecraft with a DQ spin on it” I’d say it’s the other way around. It’s a RPG with a minecraft spin on it.

      “Cyber Sleuth is an old game” It’s more recent then Cold Steel 2, Fairy Fencer and nearly as old as Estival Versus.

      “WOFF is… niche, to say the least.” So are all the games on this list… Even nicher really.

      My point was, while I aknowledge that reviews don’t mean everything, all the games I listed were reviewed much more favorably than the games on this list which make them “surprising” picks.

  • For me, it’s between Cold Steel II and Dragon Quest Builders. I think I like the latter a bit more. After all, it’s one of the very very few games I continued to play after beating it.

  • MusouTensei

    Sony systems, even last gen, had an amazing line up last year and I have all games on this list, and I agree with the winner, I love this game, I’d call it a modern JRPG classic up there with FFVII, Lost Odyssey and Xenoblade Chronicles. Same for the 1st game.

  • catazxy

    This is why I read sites like this 😀