Even though 2017 was a pretty poor year for blog output (especially the second half of the year) it was an absolute stormer in terms of me playing games! Unfortunately for me and my Game of the Year, most (if not all) of these games were released too early to be considered for the title!
When I look back at those games that have stuck in my head, there is a real variety in genres, tones and content! It really is an embarrassment of riches at the moment, gaming feels like it is going through a golden era; I am confident that in a few years we’ll all look back at 2017 with the same love that we do 2007!
Here’s the games that stick out in my mind, the games that made my 2017 absolutely amazing!
Sly Cooper and the Thievius Raccoonus
I played this way back in April and I bloody loved it! It has really stuck with me this year! It was a great game. I’ve already written an appreciation of this title, so for more detail please, go read that!
Watch_Dogs 2 is a superb game; easily one of the best I played this year! I literally completed it last week after being hooked on it for the last month!
Here we have a title that took every single piece of criticism that was thrown in the original’s direction and used it to inform design decisions – and it paid off dividends!
Gone is the dull, one-dimensional protagonist and in Pearce’s place is Marcus ‘Wrench’ Holloway; a charismatic lead with a penchant for most things nerd.
The gameplay has been expanded too, the amount of player freedom has been ramped up as well as tools at your disposal, all of a sudden the player has a vast amount of options on how to complete objectives! Sure, the original had options but compared to this they were severely limited.
Everything has been improved; from story to graphics and it means that Watch_Dogs 2 is a great game and it is currently less than the price of 4 pints down your local!
WipEout Omega Collection
WipEout is back and in absolutely phenomenal style! Here we have a package that is ridiculously generous (rivalling even the N.Sane trilogy pack) that includes 3 amazing racing games that have been brought into the 4K era in beautiful fashion!
Containing WipEout HD, 2048 and Fury means that this is undoubtedly THE racer of 2017! It truly is a thing of beauty – everything about this game is refined to ‘all time great’ levels;
- The controls are precise and nuanced enough to allow skill to rule the roost.
- The tracks are brilliantly designed and create tight, exciting races as well as allowing player experimentation.
- Perfectly balanced weaponry and ship configurations mean that every vehicle handles differently and that there is one for every type of racer in every different event.
- It is heaving with content!
For my money, this is the best value game I bought this year and I was hideously addicted to it around August,. September and October!
Resident Evil VII
Let’s just get this out-of-the-way right now; playing REVII in VR was not just a great experience, it was a generation defining one!
This game gripped me from the very beginning, set the tone amazingly well and kept me on the edge of my seat the whole way through. In VR everything was much more frightening – I’ll never forget standing outside a doorway for the best part of a quarter-hour because I was too frightened to walk through. To me VR is not optional here; it IS the game!
A real return to form for the franchise; it brings back everything you remember and loved from the original trilogy, tweaks them and adds QoL to the experience then sets you free in a brilliantly realised world of horror by yourself. In my opinion, REVII may have just saved the franchise from becoming irrelevant.
Amazing game! (read my thoughts of the game as I played it)
Another amazing game from Mike Bithell (the creator of ‘Thomas was Alone’), ‘Volume’ gripped me from the very beginning and refused to let go until I had beaten it…
This game was so good that I did something that I usually never do; I took to twitter and thanked Mike for making it!
Volume is ridiculously simple, it has a handful of mechanics that are all perfectly implemented and compliment each other perfectly; it is a pure skill challenge that demands that you learn every mechanic and use them appropriately throughout the game – you WILL NOT be able to complete this game using only one or two of the tools given to you; often you’ll have to use a combination of them to progress.
I genuinely consider this game to be a masterpiece! It’s not even brilliant, its nearly flawless!
Friday the 13th: The Game
From a virtually perfect game to the exact opposite!
Friday the 13th: the Game is extremely rough around the edges; a true “work in progress” that has bugs and needs optimised something fierce! Somehow though, these things didn’t seem to matter to me. The concept here is so strong and the gameplay is riveting, addictive and borderline genius at times!
There is no larger feeling of panic in gaming than trying to gas up your car as Jason walks directly towards you (complete with theme song), every escape from him is hard-earned and requires teamwork!
When you get killed by him you can assess your performance and genuinely pick out where the mistakes were made, it’s extremely easy to master the mechanics here but the fact that Jason is a random player makes predicting him impossible – hell every variation of the iconic killer has different abilities that change the game.
How do you find out what Jason you’re up against? You need to see him!
How do you communicate with other players? By being within earshot of them – but beware Jason can hear you too!
It is genius!
I waited out the initial teething issues with the game and downloaded it in October and played it religiously; it is a truly fantastic game that deserves your attention and money (it’s bloody cheap atm on PSN) – it is a truly fantastic game!
What games dominated your playtime this year?
Tell me in the comments/Facebook/Twitter!
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