Author Topic: What are you playing? - 2017 4K or Bust Edition  (Read 3088 times)

Sam the Cinema Snob

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What are you playing? - 2017 4K or Bust Edition
« on: January 01, 2017, 10:39:11 AM »
New year, new thread. I'm knee deep in MGSV and just got to the child soldier stuff. Wow. What a crazy game.

Sam the Cinema Snob

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Re: What are you playing? - 2017 4K or Bust Edition
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2017, 01:38:24 PM »
My Top 15 Games of 2016

What a great year for games. As the industry grows, so does the breadth of experiences games deliver. From the big budget titans to the games made in a garage, these games have a lot of love and care put into them. After taking a couple of months off from the medium in the fall, I found myself overwhelmed by a slew of amazing, excellent titles and these are my favorites.

1. Obduction

Myst was a formative part of my childhood, so when I heard Cyan was returning to the first person adventure game genre, I was on board. The result is magnificent. It captures that undefinable mood and magic of the original and adds a healthy sense of awe and scale that could only be done with modern technology. My jaw dropped several times playing this game and no other title elicited the sense of magic and wonder that this game did.

2. Dishonored 2

Take Thief, mix in Deus Ex style emergent gameplay and you get Dishonored 2. The original Dishonored is a superb game with a few nagging issues. Dishonored 2 smooths out those rough edges and crafts some of the finest levels in this type of game. These tightly designed, highly interactive spaces made for a game experience was was constantly exciting, surprising, and mentally stimulating.

3. Hitman

While news of episodic delivery was met with lots of ire, the result is an absolute masterpiece. The title will run you the price of a regular game, but the amount of detail and replayability in this game is mind-boggling. Itís a simulation loverís dream. Iíve always held that Hitman is more of a puzzle game than a stealth game and here solving a puzzle for the first time is just one of dozens, if not more, ways to complete your objective.

4. Quadrilateral Cowboy

Yes, itís short. Yes, it doesnít take its concept as far as it could, but damn, every moment in this game is fresh and engaging. You are a hacker in a retropunk world and must use coding logic and principles to hack your way through various heists. Just about the time you get the grip of one idea, youíre whisked on to the next. Add on that a charming aesthetic and a beautifully told story and this game is magnificent.

5. That Dragon, Cancer

Yes, I cried. Itís hard to not be moved by a fatherís account of his son dying of cancer. What could have been a straightforward, ethnographic tale turns into this visually fascinating experience where imagery convey just as much as the spoken world. Add in a moving struggle with religious belief in the face of death and this is a masterful use of the medium.

6. Doom

The new Doom is good. Whoída thought? For a game based on such an iconic property, it somehow manages to be fresh and original while still capturing that old spirit of Doom. It feels fast and loose, but creates this tight gameplay loop that encourages aggressive play. Itís the kind of game that getís the blood pumping and it doesnít let up until the final, gory conclusion.

7. Orwell

Some people will complain thereís not much of a game here, mostly just clicking and dragging things to unlock more bits of story, but thatís missing all the rich thematic depth here. The game places you in the role of Big Brother, an entity that invades the privacy of others and digs out all the dirty secrets. All of a sudden you understand the allure of power and the ease of violation that this kind of surveillance allows. You have good aims, but boy do you do a lot of evil, evil you might actually enjoy, to try to fulfill them. Name me another game that pulls off that moral conflict as well as Orwell.

8. 1979 Revolution: Black Friday

The real world Iranian Revolution is a pivotal moment in the history of the country and this game attempts to capture that historical event. But more than just a history lesson, the game lets you express yourself in this moment of history. Are you a violent revolutionary or peaceful bystander? Itís an exciting, gripping story and one of the best of this style of game.

9. Everybodyís Gone to the Rapture

Where Gone Home and Dear Esther failed, this game succeeds. You walk through an abandoned town and try to discover what happened. But more than that, you get a glimpse into the everyday lives of people and their complicated and messy relationships. Itís a relaxing, pensive experience with a fascinating story throughout.

10. Lara Croft Go

What a masterfully designed puzzle game. It introduces each concept in a controlled space but then quickly asks the player to take the concept to its limit before throwing it in with all the other concepts youíve learned until the game is a network of interconnected pieces. Itís the kind of game where you have to sit back and think things over for a while before executing a solution, failing, figuring out where you went wrong, and trying something new. Bit by bit you get farther and farther until reaching the solution.

11. Superhot

SUPER
HOT
SUPER
HOT
SUPER
HOT

12. Duelyst

I always like the idea of collectable card games, but most of the times they donít work well. Random chance seems to be too much of a factor and having certain cards can win the day. This game mitigates a lot of that with a couple of systems as well as making the game play on a grid with pieces instead of simply cards attacking and blocking. This makes for a lot more control over your play and a tactical gamerís dream.

13. Dark Souls III

While this certainly shows that Dark Souls overstayed its welcome, itís still a solid game. The problem is Demon Souls, Dark Souls, and Bloodborne did this so much better. Iím glad From Software is moving on to other IPs, but Iím glad we got a solid swan song after the abysmal Dark Souls II.

14. Overwatch

I have a hard time getting into multiplayer shooters. Many of them are built around super competitive play or maps so big and out of control that I find the experience too overwhelming. Overwatch is a lot easier, smoother experience with characters that let you find your specific niche of play. Sure, lots of shooters have classes, but not nearly this many and customized to this level of balance and playstyle. Just about any shooter fan will find a class to love and thatís quite the feat.

15. Firewatch

A magnificent work of tone and character, Firewatch is a lovely tale about an atypical videogame protagonist. A middle-aged, balding man runs away from his problems only to get caught up in some nefarious events during his summer as a national forest fire lookout. Yes, the story is not particularly satisfying, but itís not meant to be. This is a character piece, akin to an arthouse film, and, in that regard, it works magnificently.

Melvil

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Re: What are you playing? - 2017 4K or Bust Edition
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2017, 08:52:01 PM »
Did some buying during the steam sale plus one or two others, so I probably have a good chunk of my gaming for 2017 laid out already. Those games are Axiom Verge, Doom 2016, Obduction, Shovel Knight, and not quite ready yet but, Divinity Original Sin 2 (4 player co-op!). Overwatch will keep me entertained in the online competitive arena for a while yet, I think.

The only games that really mattered in 2016 were The Witness and Stephen's Sausage Roll. Everything else was trash. ;D

Solid Blake

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Re: What are you playing? - 2017 4K or Bust Edition
« Reply #3 on: January 03, 2017, 08:14:29 AM »
Haven't played much lately due to the New Years/crazy work schedule; however, I did try to dust off DOOM again and I just cannot get into this game. I know it's superbly designed and the 60FPS combat is great--but I literally have no motivation to be in that "world." The story is pretty much non-existent, outside of codex entries, and the whole dumb silent protagonist guy is funny--but so shallow. I need something to keep me wanting to rip and tear until its done, but it's just not there. I get why this is on a lot of people's top 10 lists, but I can't even fake the enthusiasm for this one.

Otherwise, I've kind of fizzled out on Watch_Dogs 2, so I doubt I'll complete the main story thread--as much as I've enjoyed it thus far. I'll pop in for a match or two of Titanfall 2, but that's about all I can do. The single player campaign hasn't hooked me, either--but I'll give it another try soon. Conversely, I'll spend hours playing Battlefield 1 and lose complete track of time. The addition of Hardcore mode allows for realistic bullet damage (the type of Battlefield I like) and segments the player base to give me more of a challenge (I still finish first most matches, anyways). The new free DLC map is pretty awesome. I'm excited to see what else they have planned for their annual DLC drops. I really hope DICE makes a proper Battlefield 1942 sequel in this engine. It's gorgeous and runs great on the PS4 Pro. Lastly, I'm trying to make my way through Batman: The Telltale Series after my save was mysteriously deleted--which sucks, because I was about to finish episode 2. I'm just going back and picking the same choices as before, which is probably making it more boring than it should be. I do want to see how this story plays out, as it's not bad (for a Telltale game).
« Last Edit: January 03, 2017, 08:18:00 AM by Solid Blake »

Solid Blake

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Re: What are you playing? - 2017 4K or Bust Edition
« Reply #4 on: January 03, 2017, 08:29:41 AM »
I'm also thinking of importing this: http://www.game.co.uk/en/-1777529

Yay/Nay?

FLYmeatwad

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Re: What are you playing? - 2017 4K or Bust Edition
« Reply #5 on: January 03, 2017, 09:53:41 AM »
It's wired, isn't it? I would just go big and buy a Scuff if I was going to do a custom controller.

I started DOOM last night and think I feel similar, but I'm going to play more to see if it picks up for me.

Sam the Cinema Snob

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Re: What are you playing? - 2017 4K or Bust Edition
« Reply #6 on: January 03, 2017, 10:24:09 AM »
Orwell

What if you were Big Brother? What if you had access to a system that gave you every bit of personal and private information about anyone? What would you do? Orwell puts you into that position and you quickly learn that itís not quite as cut and dry as it appears to be. After all, invading peopleís privacy might be necessary to stop evil.

You are tasked with uncovering the terrorist or terrorists who have set off a bomb in a populated square. You have a few leads, and find a web of people, relationships, bits of information, all of which you have to make sense of in order to find the terrorist. It wonít be an easy job, and your actions may not always have positive consequences. Happy hunting.

The game appears to simply be a matter of finding relevant data and dragging it over into the appropriate profiles, but it quickly becomes more than this as they player discovers that some of this information is contradictory. Submit the wrong information and you might leave room for another attack or arrest the wrong person.

Itís here the biggest problem of the game emerges. Once information is submitted, it cannot be overridden. Therefore, if you find later in your research that itís more likely the information you submitted is wrong, thereís no way to fix your error. The game does give you warnings when conflicting information is present, but it doesnít tell you what the conflict is until you find the other one and itís easy to miss the warning and submit faulty information.

And thatís the game. While that doesnít sound like much of a game, itís because these simple mechanics quickly show how morally ambiguous such a system is. On the one hand, it can protect people and expose the truth, but on the other hand it can ruin lives and violate basic human rights. Is it worth the sacrifice or too high a price to pay? Do you not submit certain unsavory details of someoneís life and risk another terrorist attack? Thatís something you have to decide for yourself.

For such a small game, itís an elegant, masterful work that shows how morally complex using such a system is. The detached interface makes it easy to pry into the lives of others and ruin their lives in the process. You are the intruder, but itís not as simple as that. It never is. And, as the game is quick to remind you, the system is also tracking your actions. Big Brother is watching you.

Solid Blake

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Re: What are you playing? - 2017 4K or Bust Edition
« Reply #7 on: January 03, 2017, 06:27:51 PM »
It's wired, isn't it? I would just go big and buy a Scuff if I was going to do a custom controller.

I just did. *money flying away emoji*

Solid Blake

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Re: What are you playing? - 2017 4K or Bust Edition
« Reply #8 on: January 04, 2017, 01:35:29 PM »
I traded in my Xbox One because it was the right thing to do.

I used the trade in credit for even more PlayStation Store credit, and I preordered Mass Effect: Andromeda because: https://www.masseffect.com/news/mass-effect-andromeda-coming-in-march

I'm really looking forward to these games in 2017:

1. Red Dead Redemption 2
2. Mass Effect: Andromeda
3. Days Gone
4. Persona 5
5. Horizon: Zero Dawn
6. Resident Evil VII
7. South Park: The Fractured but Whole
8. Prey
9. Uncharted: Lost Legacy
10. Gran Turismo Sport


... I'm also pretty sure I'm missing A LOT.

Sam the Cinema Snob

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Re: What are you playing? - 2017 4K or Bust Edition
« Reply #9 on: January 04, 2017, 04:14:32 PM »
Prey is the only one on that list I'm curious about. Maybe Resident Evil VII if it ends up being good.

My list of anticipated 2017 games in no particular order:

Prey
Divinity: Original Sin II
Rising Storm 2: Vietnam
Detroit: Become Human
Vampyr
What Remains of Edith Finch
Overland
Prey for the Gods
Pyre
Rain World
Tacoma
Strafe
Star Citizen (lol)
Dreadnought
Oxygen Not Included
Sea of Thieves
Full Throttle Remastered
Outcast - Second Contact
Absolver
Nidhogg II
Yooka-Laylee
Sonic Mania
Torment: Tides Of Numenera
Subnautica