2016 was an interesting year for gaming. No less than two games that had been in development for around a decade were finally released, Nintendo’s current gen system Wii U production was stopped as the company announced their new console, and despite several major delays there were plenty of top tier games to be found. Here is a list of the 5 best games we played during the last year.
Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End
A fantastic finale to the beloved Uncharted franchise. Naughty Dog once again surpasses expectations with unbelievable visuals, amazing cutscenes that show every nuance and expression of the characters, fun gameplay and impressive set pieces. The game mechanics are expanded upon with new tools and a ‘wide-linear’ style of gameplay. It’s arguably the best Uncharted game and a great way to end the series, making this the best game of 2016.
The Last Guardian
Fumito Ueda’s third game may forever be remembered for its decade long development time, but the game itself is an experience to be cherished. It is an extremely impressive game both for its audiovisual aspects and for its moving story. Trico is without a doubt the most believable digital creature ever in a game, and the bond between the beast and the boy that develops during the course of the game feels as real as any. A game that is as beautiful as it is unique.
Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE
One of the last big releases for Wii U and sort of a sleeper hit; this RPG combines Fire Emblem with Persona and Japanese pop culture and somehow makes it work. Stylish, fun and a joy to look at. Battles are flashy but also strategic, which make them remain interesting even after playing dozens of them. Meaningful side quests that add both to the story as well as the gameplay by giving you powerful special moves add to the game’s length and depth. One of the top RPGs of 2016, despite flying under the radar.
Gears of War 4
The latest installment in the Gears of War franchise takes place 25 years after the conclusion of the Xbox 360 trilogy, as we take on the role as Marcus Fenix’ son James and his friends. The squad faces a new threat (that is awfully similar to the Locust) and must call in the help of Marcus to take them on. The Coalition did a great job in bringing the smooth gameplay mechanics Gears fans came to love to the Xbox One, while expanding on the addictive cover based gameplay and adding new weapons and set pieces.
Final Fantasy XV
Another game that finally came out years after its first announcement. The game makes use of a real-time combat system and puts you in the role of prince Noctis, who goes on a road-trip like adventure with his three friends. Exploration is at the heart of this game as you travel the world discovering caves, completing quests and finding places to spend the night. A great looking game that plays very well, set in an imaginative and believable world.
Honorable mentions: Ratchet & Clank, Quantum Break