Article by: Brian Toglia
Video games! Playing them is my chosen way to spend what little free time I have. I try to play as many games as I can in a given year, but I can’t get to them all. Before you start cursing me out for my Top 5 choices, remember the title of the article! It’s called the “Top 5 Games I Played this Year” list, not the “Best Games of the Year” list. Now that that’s perfectly clear, we can move on!
Every year there are a ton of great games released and this year is no different. We had well known titles like Metal Gear Solid 5, Super Smash Bros., Halo 5, Fallout 4 and Rise of the Tomb Raider drop in 2015. Not to be outdone by their AAA cousins, the Indie video game scene also had a strong showing in 2015 with games like Hotline Miami 2, Massive Chalice, Everyone’s Gone to the Rapture and Ori and the Blind Forest.
I put a lot of thought into this list and judged the games based on a few criteria. First, is it fun? This carries a lot of weight for me. Second, how does it play (technically). Third, how does it look and so on and so forth. After careful deliberation, much debate and a few beers I came up with the following 5 games as my best of the best for 2015.
From the tragic beginning to the exhilarating finale, Ori and the Blind Forest keeps you emotionally and mentally invested. If you lose focus for a second, you will die. Poorly time a jump? Dead! Get a little too close to an edge, you guessed it! Curtains! This game is breathtakingly gorgeous and tear inducingly (made that word up) difficult at the same time. It’s the best Metroidvania style game I have played in years, but don’t take my word for it, watch this video review from Brian of Monster Closet! Hey! Isn’t that….
#4: Dying Light
This was an early year surprise. When most people were finishing up their holiday game aquisitions and looking for something new to play, Dying Light dropped with something fresh. While parkour isn’t new in games (see Assassin’s Creed) traversing walls, rooftops and skipping off of car hoods all while killing zombies in first person view was! Add full online drop-in drop-out campaign co-op for up to 4 people and you have the first great social game of the year. Yes,there are issues with the game but it was one of the best social gaming experiences I had all year! Easy top 5 pick!
#3: Halo 5
I wrote a complete review of Halo 5 for MGMag, which you can read here, so there isn’t much more to say on why this game ranks as my 3rd best game of 2015. I guess the only question is if I’m still involved in playing Halo 5’s multiplayer. Absolutely! This game gets better the more time you put into it. It’s my favorite multiplayer game this year and, quite honestly, my favorite over the last 3 or 4.
#2: Rise of the Tomb Raider
Wow! This game is freaking gorgeous! I have taken more screenshots of Rise of the Tomb Raider than every other game I have played combined! The lighting, ice, snow and water effects are stellar! I can keep going on and on about tge looks of this game but there was something else i enjoyed about RotTR. What was it? Oh, it was everything else this game offers!
Lara Croft runs, jumps, swims and fires many different types of arrows and guns with ease. The story of Lara tracking the Prophet her father was so obsessed with is a really good one and helps move the game from one amazing area to the next! Any other year this game would have been my favorite, unfortunately for RotTR, it came out the EXACT SAME DAY (what a day for game fans!) as my #1 game of 2015, which in turn leads me to… drum roll please!
#1: Fallout 4
Few games are as ambitious as Fallout 4. The sheer amount of content in this game is staggering. I could easily spend 200 hours playing FO4 and not feel like a single minute of my time has been wasted. I could go on and on about all that I love in this game but since this is a year end recap and not a review I will be concise.
Tons of missions to accomplish? Check! Fun crafting and settlement building? Yep! Beautifully realized open world? You bet ya! Really good use of Boston landmarks? He’ll yea! On top of all of this, almost every person I spoke to about FO4 experienced the game in a slightly different way or found some interesting side quest that I didn’t run into.
FO4 is not perfect by any means (too many bugs for a perfect score) but for everything it does wrong it does about 99 things right. That’s damn near perfect to me! That’s why Fallout 4 is the best game that I played in 2015. Now it’s time to look forward to what 2016 is throwing my way….
2015 Honorable mention:
Batman Arkham Knight
Metal Gear Solid 5
The Witcher 3
Super Mario Maker
Super Smash Bros Wii U
Mortal Kombat X
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