Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls, I welcome you to the 2016 completely arbitrary and overall pointless event that is Dave’s Top Ten Games of the Year!!!!!!
This year will be slightly different. I shall post one game a day until the first (the 31st being honorable mentions). Number ten shall be posted tonight, but to keep all of you satiated til then, I present those who couldn’t have been further from this list. The ones that missed the mark so drastically you’ll swear they were being aimed by storm troopers. I present to you…
The Dishonourable Mentions
Street fighter 5
This one has sort of managed to redeem itself in the months since its release, but at launch this game was an absolute mess. Modes were completely missing (including story mode and an actual arcade mode), net code was spotty at best, and the games you COULD play online were plagued by rage quitters as there were no punishments for leaving games early so it wouldn’t count the loss. The gameplay itself was solid, but for all of its errors, it has since been written off by long time fans of the franchise, who have since gone back to ultra street fighter 4
This is an oddity and the only mobile game on this list. Released to promote Dark Souls 3, this game is everything that the dark souls series isn’t. While it is definitely too much to expect the atmosphere and storytelling, the timing and dexterity required in the main series games are completely gone, replacing them with an endless runner where you mindlessly tap to destroy anything in your path. Mobile games have shown they can be very competent, with games like Infinity Blade being a perfect example of how to translate the Souls series combat style to a touch screen. Slashy souls stands out as a very quickly made cash in to a series that is otherwise a set of masterpieces.
Everybody’s gone to the rapture
A genre that is growing in popularity is the so called “walking simulator”, a game that doesn’t go out to offer a lot of action or high octane gameplay, but rather to tell a story as the player explores the environment. Certain titles in the genre do have puzzles, or at least have the player need to discover the storyline by looking at everything around them. Everybody’s gone to the rapture has none of this. You wander through a beautifully rendered version of a British village that is strangely abandoned, viewing visions of certain events that led to everybody disappearing. The problem is that the pacing is dreadful, your character walks so slowly, even when using the very well hidden run button. Add to this that the village is very empty and contains a lot of places where nothing happens, you spend a lot of time double backing on yourself because you’ve walked into a dead end where nothing important to the story had happened yet. This title could have had so much potential, but it was let down horrendously.
Star fox zero
Star Fox … How on earth do you mess up Star Fox? Nintendo found a way. In keeping with a lot of their current activities, Nintendo decided to try and reinvent the franchise and “innovate” the gameplay by forcing in the motion controls using the game pad. This wouldn’t be too bad if it were implemented well or optional, but it’s not. You are forced to use a control scheme that is broken, making what would otherwise be a great, fun game a nightmare to play. All Nintendo had to do was make a HD Star Fox, and they failed
No man’s sky
Sean Murray is a liar. Let’s just start off with this. He stated in no uncertain words that the game would feature multiplayer. That you could meet other players. That you could effect galactic relations between species. That the animals would react to each other and to the player just as real animals do. That the planets would orbit their star realistically. That the distance from their star would effect the ecosystem of the planets. None of these things are true. The game that was released was a glorified cut down minecraft clone that stops being enjoyable very soon after starting when you realise the gameplay cycle consists of mining ores and fuels until your oxygen and atmosphere systems need refuelling, so you go and mine the things you need for that, and then you go and fly in your ship until you run out of fuel and repeat the whole process again. Aliens are just as boring, with none of them leaving their ships, and being represented by a single image when you interact with said ship, where they only act as a glorified shop. Essentially, this game could have been great, but it was a let down that was sold as something else, with some of the boxes of the game even having a multiplayer icon that was covered by a sticker. No man’s sky was sullied by one man’s lie, and in my eyes and the eyes of a good many other people, that will forever mark it as a disaster that can never be reclaimed.
This is more of a disappointment of what could have been. With a trailer released at the same time as the Call of Duty Infinite Warfare trailer, it seemed to be a huge break from the norm. In an era of modern military shooters, releasing a game set in World War One was a massive step, as no AAA games have put people into the shoes of those who took part in one of the greatest tragedies in human history. Sadly, when it was released, it turned out that a lot of this was set dressing, with the game playing like every other shooter on the market, featuring nothing mechanically that makes the game noticeably different from games set in world war 2 or in modern settings, which was missing a huge chance of making a truly unique experience. Instead, we ended up with another iterative instalment of the series.
Rollercoaster tycoon world
The mighty have fallen. Rollercoaster Tycoon was a groundbreaking series that has won a lot of awards throughout its life for its innovative mechanics, changing how people approached management games. Even when they changed up the style of the game with the third instalment, it was still a great management game in a whole new way. The trouble started with the badly handled, fee to pay Rollercoaster tycoon 4 on mobile devices, and now with world they’ve shown that the talent behind the previous games has completely left the company. There is a clear lack of passion behind the title. The graphics are terribly done to a point where they distract, the way buildings interact with eachother is broken, the patching system is a mess, and the whole thing is filled with glitches. You constantly find yourself fighting with the interface to get anything done. This is a sad fate for a classic series. Happily, the minds behind the third instalment went on to create a TRUE successor, but that’s a story for another day (hint)
Mighty no. 9
After Capcom decided that they were going to quietly kill off the mega man franchise, many fans of the blue bomber were crying out for their favourite games to come back in some form. Keiji Inafune stepped up and said that he was going to bring the fans exactly what they wanted by making a new franchise with all of the aspects from his old games that the fans craved. He took it to Kickstarter, and it was crowd funded in mere minutes, ending up making the amount he wanted many MANY times over. The problems started when it became clear the project was changing from what was originally promised to the people who backed it. Then it started getting delayed many times, and more people got worried. The final straw was when Keiji Inafune attempted to crowdfund another TWO projects, a spinoff from the still not finished Mighty No. 9 called Red Ash, that was supposed to be a return to the mega man legends style of gameplay, as mighty no. 9 was supposed to be to classic mega man. People were nervous about this one, as he was asking for more money before his first project was complete, which isn’t really the done thing. Then it was revealed that Red Ash was already funded by an outside publisher, and that the backing on Kickstarter was to unlock stretch goals, many of which were things that people felt should be in the base game anyway, and most of which weren’t even revealed, moving to a lot of people to take back their money. Then the game was released, and it was amazingly sub par. Missing the mark of the original pitch completely, backers were given a game that played almost nothing like mega man, and that clearly didn’t show any benefit from the extra time spent developing it.
And these are, in my opinion, the worst or most disappointing games of this year. Join me later when I will start the top ten BEST games of the year.