Let’s be honest, 2014 lacked a large amount of great games. There were quite a few good ones and possibly just as many “ok” ones but this wasn’t the strongest year for straight up hits. With that said, I feel like 2014 had a lot more diversity than most years.
Love, hate it, but can’t stop playing it. I have an odd relationship with this game. On one side the grind of it becomes borderline unbearable after level 20, but it is still some of the most fun I had playing coop this year. Destiny should have been more than the sum of its parts but at the end of the day, the sum of its parts is all this game has.
9. Wolfenstein: The New Order
I expected nothing from this game and it gave me a fun 1st person shooter with an interesting cinematography, simple yet profoundly human narration brought to us by B.J. Blazkowicz, and a few neat set pieces. This game really put this series back on the map in a big way.
8. South Park: Stick of Truth
This game is just as hilarious as the TV show and some bits are even funnier since they are interactive. If you are a fan of the show, I find little reason here that would make you dislike this game. It’s a solid (if not a little bit simple) RPG that nails what a South Park game could be.
7. inFamous: Second Son
Being a huge fan of the series, I was satisfied with the game…to point. Simply put, it felt way too short. If you played straight through, you can beat the game in 6 hours, and the side content isn’t all that interesting and very basic. It’s a bit of a shame that they built this beautiful world but they didn’t give you a ton of stuff to do in it. Still, the graphics, presentation, story, and combat still had me enjoying myself.
6. The Walking Dead: Season 2
You can’t quite capture lightning in a bottle twice. With that said, I still found S2 of this series to be well done despite it not being as great as the most excellent S1. It put Clementine in some precarious positions that never feel you quite she gets away from without losing a little bit of herself and some of the decisions you make are difficult and life changing to the character…in my playthrough at least.
5. Octodad: Dadliest Catch
Octodaaaaaaad, nobody suspects a thiiiing! There’s just something about this Chicken Boo simulator that I absolutely loved. They found a way to make the mechanics work in a way where they aren’t frustrating and the story is really charming. Looking forward to going back and playing the free DLC!
4. Mario Kart 8
Before this, I hadn’t played an MK game since the first in the series on SNES. This game is pure joy and fun pressed on a disc. The original amount of content felt a little lacking to me, but with the added tracks and characters that the DLC brings, it makes this a much easier choice for me to put in my top 5.
3. Sunset Overdrive
Insomniac needed this game more than Bioware needed DAI. After the disappointing Fuse, this game is a breath of fresh air with its funny dialog, kinetic traversal system, and excellent boss fights.
2. Dragon Age: Inquisition
This game is long….like Xenoblade Chronicles/Persona/Skyrim long. 50 hours in, this game is a return to form for Bioware in a time where they really needed a win. This feels like the Mass Effect 2 of this franchise. Although they made the combat more accessible, it still is fun and isn’t as brain dead as the combat in DA2.
1. Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor
The nemesis system in this game really made it stand out. It made you feel like the enemies you made were unique to you whether they were or not. It feels like this game didn’t have a lot of expectations from folks coming it but really helped make this year just that much more fun.
10 spots just isn’t enough to highlight some of my favorite games of this past year. Alien Isolation, TitanFall, and The Last of Us: Left Behind, this nod’s for you!\\
I Really Liked It Despite Itself
These are games that I enjoyed despite the games having problems that others might not be able to overlook. Even games with flaws deserved a little attention!
Murdered: Soul Suspect- It’s an adventure game that’s trying hard to be a 3rd person character action game. I had a good time playing this with my wife. I liked the gimmick of being a ghost and although the detective stuff was at times a bit too simple, it was fun. The story it told was decent too.
Halo: Master Chief Collection- We are talking strictly single player here. Having all four single player campaigns running at 1080p/60fps is really nice. Too bad they completely botched any of the network functionality.
I Coulda Been a Contender!
These are games that are all quality, but I just didn’t get to play enough of them to give it their due. Super Smash Bros Wii U, Bayonetta 2
Super Smash Bros. Wii U- Got this one for Christmas so I haven’t played a whole lot. It’s a ton of fun though, and I’m looking forward to digging even deeper into it.
Bayonetta 2- I only played through half of Bayonetta 1 on Xbox 360 so I decided to replay the entire thing on Wii U. It was a lot of fun….can’t wait to play part 2!
Tales from the Borderlands– I’m a big fan of both Tell Tale’s games and the Borderlands series so this seems like a no brainer. Too many games, not enough time to actually play them.
Most Disappointing Game of The Year (Brought to you by Prototype)
To clarify, this isn’t “worst game” necessarily, just one that I was really disappointed with.
Assassin’s Creed Unity- Destiny came close to taking this one but at the end of the day, at least I was able to actually play that game at launch. Ubisoft just patched the game to the point where I (theoretically) can play the coop now, one of the game’s biggest selling points, but I got so used to waiting until it was patched that I’ll have to give myself a pep talk in order to add it back to my rotation. The AC series is one of my favorites and I can’t help but feel like Ubisoft did the fans dirty with this one. I’m hoping the series can bounce back. This will be the last AC game that I buy sight unseen.