Welcome to my Five5 series, in which to celebrate the launch of 2015 in Gaming I will be posting 5 articles over 5 days, each with my top 5 games of a particular topic. I'm also giving away a Star Wars PS4 bundle to one random person who buys the AU$3 book - which you can grab by clicking the button below. Enjoy!
I managed to play a diverse range of games over the year, but there are some that I really wanted to check out but never got around to. 2015 was chock full of great games, hailing from a number of genres - several of which I wouldn’t usually dive into, but with these I’m super keen. Here’s 5 games that came out in 2015 that I definitely want to have played by the end of 2016 (which may or may not happen, but hey. A guy can dream, right?)
While I haven’t played a city builder since Sim City - no, not the 2013 failed reboot, I mean the 1989 classic version - I basically bought this game out of principle (when it was on sale of course.) SimCity was such a spectacular failure that the franchise is all but buried these days, and the studio behind the franchise, ancient dev team Maxis, has been shut down. Cities: Skylines is basically everything SimCity was not, and is most likely the number one game for fans of the genre.
One of the biggest draws for me when it comes to this game are the mods. The devs who built Skylines deliberately wanted the game to be as open as possible, allowing those that love the game to come up with their own creations to add to the already massive game. One of my favourites that I’m looking forward to is the street view mod, which basically takes you right down into the city you’ve so lovingly crafted, allowing you to watch the cars go by as you walk down the streets next to the buildings you’ve put in place. It’s like admiring your own work after a job well done - always a satisfying feeling.
Disgaea 5: Alliance of Vengeance
Basically, when I saw that combat in this game kinda resembled Fire Emblem, this game became a must buy for me. Disgaea 5 was reviewed pretty well by multiple outlets at release, and looks just like the kind of crazy but deep gameplay I could totally get into.
I’ll be honest, I still don’t even know that much about this game - which was a deliberate move on my part. I’d rather not set my expectations to some kind of standard here, just in case it turns out not as great as I’d hoped it to be. I do think that going into games without any knowledge whatsoever is the best way to play (most of the time), so when I finally get around to putting this game in the drive I’m hoping it’s going to be fantastic.
It wasn’t until Giant Bomb’s East staff raved about this game for the 3rd or 4th time that I decided to have a look at what Rebel Galaxy was all about. Turns out, this game made by only 2 guys looks super quirky and cool.
I’m generally not into full on simulations when it comes to games, whether its driving a car or flying a space ship - so when I heard Rebel Galaxy was more of a fun romp through the galaxy, my curiosity was piqued. As many space games go, you don’t have a specific goal as such, so you are able to make of the game what you want - follow a set storyline, become an explorer, start a mining or cargo hauling business and make it big. The options available along with the more humorous take this game has on the space sim genre make me really want to check it out.
Xenoblade Chronicles X
While there is certainly no way I need another 100+ hour RPG in my life, I can’t help but get excited when I see anything to do with Xenoblade Chronicles X. This game has been getting fantastic reviews across the board, and is one of the very few JRPG’s for the Wii U that is aimed at that hardcore audience.
While I’ve never played any games in the franchise before and the combat looks super complicated, X looks right up my alley. How the team behind the game are even able to create something so beautiful on the underpowered (relative to the other 2 modern consoles) machine, I’ll never know. This game is one of those that truly rations out it’s experience over time - with it being something like 30 hours before you even get your mech, with fights at 100 hours in still proving to be a real challenge. Also, the map is fricken huge. This game sounds like the kind I could lose myself in.
Ori and the Blind Forest
This little indie game intrigues me quite a lot, and is one of the titles that continues to stand out for the Xbox One over the PS4 (yes, I know it’s also on PC). I didn’t pick up an Xbox One until late October, so as of yet I haven’t had a chance to jump in to this cool little game.
Considering it was nominated for several categories in this years game awards, it’s no surprise that the praise for this game across the gaming journalism sphere is super high. With it’s interesting story and clever mechanics, Ori and the Blind Forest is one I don’t want to miss.