• Hey, guest user. Hope you're enjoying NeoGAF! Have you considered registering for an account? Come join us and add your take to the daily discourse.

GAF Games of the Year 2016 - Voting Thread [Voting closed]


Jun 6, 2014
I think there are games released late this year (Last Guardian and FF XV in particular) that I'm not playing to next year. On what I've played...

1. Inside ; Sequal to Limbo. A lesson in how simplicity is better. Nail the core gameplay!
2. Hitman ; Not a fan of the episodic release, in fact stopped playing around Episode 4 and will play complete in February. Still, as with Inside, they nailed the core gameplay
3. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End ; Oh this was a close one. The first three could almost be in any order. However as good as Uncharted 4 is...it's no Uncharted 2 or Last of Us either.
4. The Last Guardian ; I want to give this more. Trico is brilliant. But the game? It's the OG Tomb Raider with horrendous camera movements and low FPS stutter.
5. Mafia III ; Proof I should have played more in 2016? Not the greatest openworld but the best of the year I think. Play for the main mission structure, story and ending.
6. Watch Dogs 2 ; Was expecting more. The disappointment of the year! Main missions and side missions all but indistinguishable. Gameplay mostly involves driving from one side of Cisco to the other.
7. No Man's Sky ; I enjoyed this more than most it seems. Shouldn't be on this list at all, but alas I didn't really play more for this year. Okay for the first 3-4 star systems then it just got too repetitive. I'll have to give the big update a try...one day.

Edit: Edited to add in Last Guardian, then changed again to move Last Guardian's position up 2 because it's turned into a better game the longer I've been playing it.
Jul 27, 2014
Bought Hitman mostly because of this thread(Giant Bomb too) and it's fantastic. I've only done the first 3 episodes, but it's already a contender for top 3 on my list. The level design is just phenomenal.

What wins GOTY is the least interesting part of all this.


Sep 23, 2013
1. Overwatch ; Incredible characters, tight controls and amazing gameplay and the best competitive mode in any console shooter out. I've spent 400+ hours on this game so far and I still play daily.
2. Witcher 3 Blood and Wine ; New characters, new locales, new weapons and new stories. There is so much content in this expansion it felt like I was stealing from CD projekt.
3. Uncharted 4 ; Best graphics on consoles with the best controls in any naughty dog game to date. It sucks that pacing issues held this game back from the highs of Uncharted 2 and Last of Us.
4. Mortal Kombat XL ; Best current gen fighting game finally got great netcode. Nuff said.
5. Call of Duty Modern Warfare Remastered ; The remastered classic still has one of the best fps campaigns to date and it literally took 9 years for it to get matched.
Jan 31, 2011
1. INSIDE ; Maybe the most compelling stuff since the tv-show Lost. Just a fresh take on storytelling in videogames. Praise the details and craftsmanship! This game stayed in my head for weeks after finishing it. № 1 Danish product.
2. DOOM ; Solid controls, solid gameplay. Modern and retro at the same time. Plain fun from a to ö.
3. Dishonored 2 ; Near to a perfect sequel with some intriguing level design. The chic artstyle keeps on thriving.
4. Deus Ex: Mankind Divided ; There's something I enjoy about Adam Jensen's escapades in the world of the future.
5. Ori and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition ; More accessible (easier) version to the original version of the game. Adds a new area and some skills. A very well made metroidvania.
6. Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare 2 ; Not as long-lived or immune to wear as the first installment, but it does deserve a place on my list. I like the old-school tone the game is surrounded with.
7. SUPERHOT ; I'm not sure if I enjoyed SUPERHOT as much as I "should" have, but I had my times with SUPERHOT. SUPERHOT is an innovative take on FPS/puzzle games.

Honorable Mentions
x. ReCore ; A shout out for the platforming and pricepoint. Fine-ass gaming. Too bad the end-game leaves a bad taste so no points from me. It's like half a game.
x. Gears of War 4 ; The core gameplay is fine and dandy but here's something missing for this to be mentioned up there.
x. The Witcher 3: Blood and Wine ; A great add to the Witcher saga. But at this point I'm up to my ears with Witcher.


May 5, 2006
British Columbia, Canada
1. The Last Guardian ; It has its technical flaws, but my jaw hit the floor several times and felt a real connection to Trico. Some really genius game design on display, and all of it ties into the story and themes of the game. The mechanics are iron clad and the game plays by the rules, and the puzzles and encounters in the game are built around using those rules in interesting ways. One of the most cohesive, well thought out game concepts I've seen pulled off so well in a long time. An instant classic in my eyes.

2. Overwatch ; I didn't expect to like this game at all, but the hype got me curious. I'm glad I bit, because it's the best multiplayer shooter I've played in ages. Love how accessible it is too, and the option switch up playstyles.

3. The Witness ; I haven't finished this yet, because the island is a trove of secrets that keeps on giving. Masterful puzzle design, with some really clever uses of physical space.

4. Uncharted 4 ; Polished to a fine sheen, with the best bread-and-butter gameplay in the franchise. Mixed in with some amazing set pieces, low key moments and a really well executed story.

5. Titanfall 2 ; A well crafted and interesting campaign. I haven't played much multiplayer yet.

6. Tharsis ; A brilliant digital board game about managing priorities, making sacrifices and canabalism.

7. Severed ; Dungeon crawling has never been my thing, but this game really sucked me in with its creepy colourful world and interesting combat. I liked that it progresses more like a metroidvania than a traditional dungeon crawler, too. Soundtrack of the year for me too, easily.

8. Kirby: Planet Robobot ; One of the most fun and bombastic platformers I've played in years. A joy.

9. DOOM ; I have a fair bit more to play in the campaign, but I've seen enough to know it makes this list.

10. Street Fighter V ; I'm not a huge competitive gaming guy, but this grabbed my attention for a bit. Really like the core gameplay, but I'm not educated on whether it's "good" or not.

This may change as I play more 2016 releases over the next couple weeks.


Dec 24, 2007
The Hague
1. The Last Guardian ; Oh what a year this has been! There are a few titles released this year that might end up as classics. One game that is a certain classic is The Last Guardian, this game is a monumental achievement. Ueda and co might have needed a decade, but I can see where the heart and labor went into and it is greatness. I am awestruck by the presentation, the sound effects are amazing and the characters: the boy, the beast and the place, they all just resonate beyond my expectations. Standing on the bridge between two tall towers, it is dawn and the sun emits a warm glow, the wind is blowing and the trees are rustling, the birds are chirping. The dark clouds above and below give this place a dark, yet peacefull beauty. This valley, even though it is a fantasy setting, has to be one of the most real feeling and palpable places a videogame has ever brought forth. The boy has to overcome obstacles that makes Drake's and Lara's adventures look like childsplay. During the climbing segments, that mesmerizes us with dreamlike vistas, and wobbles our knees with dizzying vertigo, I haven't felt this excitement and shaky trepidation since the golden days of early Tomb Raider. Luckily the boy befriends a giant beast and together they work to reach their goal, to escape or reach their destination, whatever that might be. Trico is a sight to behold, sometimes I just think he would jump out of my screen, and give me a cute look with those big eyes. His mannerisms are not robotic, he is a beast of flesh and bone. The storytelling is the best I have seen in a videogame. Naughty Dog overloads us with detail and their style of the more the better and over the top extravaganza awes us. Ueda San has a much different approach: he awes us with simplicity. While Uncharted has to set up epic scenarios to bring us its action sequences, dive into the past and mystical to bring us amazement, and lines of spoken dialogue to flesh out its characters. The Last Guardian tells an epic story, by just being...so. Everything about the Last Guardian is epic. The valley, the beast, the boy and their fate; what happens there is contained in its logic. And it doesn't need anything more to make this game the highlight of 2016.
2. Street Fighter V ; I like watching Streetfighter V as much as playing it. The animation is the strongest Capcom has achieved and the strongest in the genre. I like how the calm demeanor of some pro players exhudes through the character on screen, and agressive ones are indeed unpredictable in their explosiveness on screen. I need to get better, so I can get even more enjoyment out of this game and maybe even forge my own fighting style.
3. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End ; Uncharted 4 as a cinematic experience is more cinematic than most of the movies I have seen this year. Yes, Naughty Dog are continuing their supreme reign as masters of this art. Uncharted 4 is the best in the series and a fitting end to Drake and his legacy.
4. Destiny: Rise of Iron ; I love my Destiny and every year since 2014, the game had a place in my goty list. Once again Bungie has delivered a raid that I have enjoyed for countless of hours.


Mar 4, 2012
1. The Last Guardian ; Everything I wanted this game to be. The developers have made a stunning achievement in bringing Trico to life. The AI, design, animation and sound all come together to make you forget that you're 'controlling' a bunch of polygons and textures. The camera isn't great - but due to the slow pace and low difficulty, that's in the noise as far as I'm concerned. A special mention must also go to the world's architecture, which I spent an awful lot of time just gawping at. Well done, Ueda and team, for delivering - well done, Sony, for supporting and funding. My game of the year, my game of the generation
so far
2. Rez Infinite ; The game I've spent most time with this year. I missed out on Rez when it came out on the DC, so have thoroughly enjoyed my time getting to grips with the original. The Area X level is the main attraction here though. Stunning and definitely has me desperate for more. The Pyramid stretch in particular really resonated with me.
3. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End ; Probably my favourite series from last gen. The sequel for me, doesn't disappoint. It plays better than it ever has and looks better than it ever did. Some may have issues with the pacing, but I had a wonderful time in ND's world and while it feels right to let the series rest now, I will miss Nate, Sully and Elena.

I've played other games this year, but only these three feel like they should be on my list.
May 21, 2013
1. Overwatch ; Not since Modern Warfare have i felt such a trend-changing refinement of the genre that will clearly dictate to others in the industry how to appeal to the competitive shooter crowd.

2. Inside ; Inside is a perfectly paced, chilling depiction of a mystery that is only resolvable through the players curiosity to imagine more than is presented on screen.

3. Firewatch ; A walking simulator that breaks free from the constraints of its peers by elevating itself with fantastic dialogue that's bound to leave an emotional impact by the end.

4. Uncharted 4 ; A fine finish to the story of Nathan Drake while titillating us with what's to come - damn fine multiplayer too.

5. Doom ; An ode to violence that looks simultaneously beautiful and gruesome, this game proves you don't have to sacrifice graphical fidelity or smooth controls to have a game run smoothly across all systems.

6. XCom 2 ; No game offers as much crushing misery as an avatar lost, but no game offers a greater sense of victory either.

7. Pokemon Moon ; This game feels like a true step forward for a franchise that has stagnating for the past few years.

8. Deus Ex: Mankind Divided ; A fantastic atmosphere coloured by refinements across the board.

9. Titanfall 2 ; A game i expected very little from and far exceeded my expectations

10: SuperHot ; The closest a game will probably get to replicationg the feel on an insane, over-the-top action movie.

Joe White

Jan 22, 2008
1. Forza Horizon 3 ; a racing game as GOTY? Well, FH3 is not just the best racing game of the year(s), it's a love song for cars and driving, an action adventure RPG with XP, loot and quests. It's also the most relaxing time waster, collectathon, a challenging MP, an excellent coop-game and quite a looker (21:9 + TX wheel + 7.1 + FH3@Ultra = <3).
2. Overwatch ; my FPS of the year, the "just one more round" -game where I keep coming back to, because it is so much fun to play. It doesn't hurt that it's also the most polished MP experience of the year with great characters and interesting maps/modes.
3. Doom ; 2nd best FPS of the year, that provided best music and incredible single player campaign.
4. Rise of the Tomb Raider ; Lara and an action adventure game at its finest.
5. Gears of War 4 ; my coop-game of the year, best Gears game in years with great campaign and the best horde mode.
6. Inside ; Beautiful and clever little game filled with intrigue and atmosphere.
7. Dark Souls III ; Like the flames of in the Kingdom of Lothric, my love (and playtime) for Souls games is dying down (DS:300h, DS2:200h, DS3:100h), but it has a place on GOTY listing as it is the 2nd best Souls experience.
8. Quantum Break ; Great game combined with interesting TV series, I like.
9. Titanfall 2 ; Fantastic singleplayer campaign.
10. Raw Data ; This was the game that sold me VR. I didn't expect the roomscale tracking to work so well or the controls to feel so right, but I was sold after shooting down the first wave of robots.

Honorable Mentions
x. Battlefield 1 ; the WW1 environment, great SP and excellent MP.
x. Ori and the Blind Forest Definitive Edition ; made me happy
x. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End ; It deserves a mention, but not a place among the GOTYs of this year.
x. Tom Clancy's The Division ; playing thru lvls 1-30 was great, but the endgame didn't feel inviting (haven't tried the latest updates or DLC).
x. Crypt of the Necrodancer ; ohh, fun sort rogue-like with great mechanics.
x. Superhot ; SUPERHOT! But not GOTYHOT. (SuperhotVR might be?)

Wish a had more time with you:
* Dragon's Dogma: Dark Arisen, Abzü, Watch Dogs 2, Shadow Warrior 2, XCOM 2, Alienation, Enter the Gungeon, Deus Ex:MD and Firewatch.


Feb 29, 2012
1. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Spirit of Justice ; I am a big fan of this series in general, but the newest entry is really great. It's more an Apollo game than the game named after him.
2. Zero Escape: Time Dilemma ; While imho the weakest entry in the ZE series, it's still an amazing game and worth the wait.
3. Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE ; People bash this game because it's not the literal mix of Fire Emblem and SMT, but I think it's awesome. Probably the best turn based battles I had in a game in years.
4. The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel ; Euro scum here and this game is amazing. While Falcom don't create big budget games I just love the world and characters. The gameplay is also great.
5. The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel II ; Second part of the trilogy. Not as strong as the first part, but a good continuation of the story.
6. SteinsGate 0 ; Same as the first game a real tearjerker, in a good way of course. Really strong VN.
7. Dark Souls III ; Great entry in the series, it's still going strong!
8. Fire Emblem Fates ; While the current FE games are somewhat controversial you just cannot deny the strong and addicting gameplay.


Oct 20, 2015
1.Final Fantasy XV ; after a long wait, Square finally released the game. Was it perfect? No. But it was as good as I was expecting, and that's really damn good. The open world formula really worked with the 4 bros dynamic creating a trip and a story in some ways unique for each player, the combat system is great and boss fights fun. And the ending, the ending is what really makes me vote it as number one game of the year.

2. Ace Attorney: Spirit of Justice ; Just a great overall Ace Attorney game, new mechanic Spirit sceance was fun and engaging, I hope it makes a return. Dlc case was also very good.

3. Digimon Cyber Sleuth ; Would be my Goty if it managed to keep my interest towards the late game as it did through the start, but still a good digimon game and a good RPG with solid mechanics, cool music too. Here's to more!

4. The Last Guardian ; Ueda goodness, once again. The wait was long, but was it worth it? Pretty much. A touching narrative on growing and loss, masterfully complemented by a great AI in the form of Trico. Maybe a tad too long, but interesting until the end.

5. Deus Ex: Mankind Divided ; Nice followup and update to Human Revolutions, it's still a joy to find your way through different locations using Jensen's augmented abilities.

6. Dragon Quest Builders ; My personal surprise. I never cared for minecraft and the like, but the way this game is presented makes it compelling to keep playing and keep builing. They realy need to build on the formula and give us another one!

7. Ratchet and Clank ; A return to form! Ratchet and Clank is (almost) always a treat and I'm just so glad that this game is still allowed to exist in this day and age by a Western Developer! More please.

8. Zero Time Dillema: ; My personal sort of disappointment of the year. Still a good game and worthy to be here though. Narrative was engaging like always, but the delivery fell short at points, very glad we got it all things considered.
Apr 12, 2011
Cleveland, OH
1. Doom ; In cynical era where it seems like a game that could birth a genre that defines an entire entertainment industry can't happen anymore, it takes paranormal effort and skill to re-visit those simpler times and re-imagine it for modern expectations and tastes. How do you go about bringing something simple and ridiculous like Doom to today's generation? How do you take a simple game like Doom and sell it to a generation raised on Call of Duty and GTA?

What makes this re-imagining of Doom even more impressive is that id Software actually did get pretty far along into developing a Call of Duty-like game in an attempt to make Doom appealing again. Instead of going forward with that, they scrapped it, realizing the right way to do it is to just acknowledge that the player knows it's all pretty dumb and not to insult the player by designing the game around the confines of standard action B-movie cutscenes and drama. The player knows that the premise of Doom is dumb, why hide from that.

Doom is a dumb game made intelligently, and that is when video games are at their best. There have been plenty of great games released this year, but just think of the name Doom and what it meant for gaming. id Software actually pulled this off.


May 1, 2013
1. Oxenfree; Everything in this game just worked so well together. The art, the voice work, the story, the music, and the characters all blend together to make an experience that stuck with me throughout the year.

2. Stardew Valley; This is probably the game I've put the most time into this year. A throwback to Harvest Moon games that manages to get every note right while sprinkling in its own magic.

3. Gundam Breaker 3; With the English Asia release I finally decided to jump into this series that I've heard so much about, and apparently I jumped in at the right time. It looks great, all the models are very well detailed, and the system of breaking parts off other models to get better parts for yours is very smart.

4. The Witness; I was so obsessed with this game that I started seeing line puzzles in the real world. A fantastic artstyle mixed with gameplay that is so smart about teaching you how to solve its puzzles. Everything on the island is expertly crafted and what we're left with is a masterpiece.

5. Dragon Quest Builders; Who would've thought that Dragon Quest and Minecraft would work so well together? There's so much charm and the gameplay is so smart that I can't help but love it.

6. Titanfall 2; I wasn't expecting much out of TF2 after hearing so many people shitting on the beta, but positive word of mouth after release lead to me picking it up and I couldn't be happier that I did. Titanfall 2 is the complete package. A great single player campaign and one of the most fun multiplayer modes that I've played in years.

7. Uncharted 4; This game feels like the first time a game has ever lived up to CG movies and cutscenes. A fitting and emotional farewell to one of my favorite video game characters.

8. Ratchet & Clank; A remake/reimagining of a game that manages to be better than most of the games in its original series. It's also one of the most gorgeous games this year.

9. DOOM; Doom is very good, which is surprisng after word that the beta was hot garbage (I'm starting to sense a pattern here...). The fast gameplay mixed with relentless enemies made this a very fun game to play through. The multiplayer is still hot garbage though.

10. Job Simulator; This game is just pure, unadulterated fun. The writing is great, there's so much stuff to mess around with and little secrets to find in each job. The only knock I have against it is that I wish there was more of it.
Aug 2, 2013
Didn't play too many games this year but these were my favourites:

1. VA-11 HALL-A ; One of my favourite visual novels in years, the character and dialogue are well written and I just can't stop listening to the soundtrack, the mixing minigame is also great at making the game not to monotonous.

2. Overwatch ; First game since Team Fortress 2 that gives me so much fun with friends, the different classes are fun and there is a character for almost any playstyle.

3. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Spirit of Justice ; Rekindled my interest in the series after a lackluster 5th entry, they really tried to shake things up and that really paid off in making this entry feel fresh.

4. Dragon Quest VII: Fragments of the Forgotten Past ; A real classic JRPG, which is why I like this series. It doesn't really do anyhting unique, but the whole thing just feels solid. I'm a big fan of every location having their own problems that you have to solve, this makes you feel more conencted to the town than in other RPGs and it just makes the world feel more real.

5. Pokémon Sun/Moon ; Just like with Ace Attorney, this series really profits from shaking things up, the new trials are fun and I feel like the region is the best designed one since Sinnoh.

6. Stardew Valley ; Absolutely absorbed me for a while, really addictive game. The graphics and gameplay are simple but they suffice. The fishing minigame is absolutely brilliant and I would totally play a game that is just that.

7. Rhythm Heaven Megamix ; Rhythm Heaven has always been one of Nintendo's secret best series and this entry in the series doesn't dissapoint. The game has an absolute ton of minigames, a lot of returning fan favourites and also new ones. The simple graphics style and the catchy tunes make this game an absolute joy to play.

These were the games that I liked and also played a decent amount of, here are some some games I also enjoyed but I don't feel like I played them enough to put them in my list:

Honourable Mentions:
x. Pocket Card Jockey ; A weird combination of Horse Racing and Solitaire but GameFreak absolutely makes it work. Also has some genius music tracks.
x. Hyper Light Drifter ; The tone of this game jsut really impressed me the moment I started the game, gorgeous visuals too. I cannot wait to fully experience this game.


Sep 17, 2016
Here's my list, subject to change over the next few weeks.

1. The Witness ; Perfectly paced level of challenge in a gorgeous open world. The fact there are no letters or numbers in this world, and everything is astounding. A game I played exclusively, for a couple of weeks and thought about in both dreams and waking moments. Superb.
2. XCOM 2 ; Tens of hours across PC and PS4. A perfect gameplay loop, unable to put down. So hard too! I’ve not even finished it.
3. Hitman ; What a surprise. Sapienza was the moment I realised how special this was. One of the best single levels of a game I’ve ever played.
4. Titanfall 2 ; An amazing campaign. The story is trash, but the relationship between the player and BT, and the variety and pace of each level elevates it.
5. Inside ; Contains moments of shock, horror and ingenuity. Stark and thoughtful, and a real ‘play in one sitting’ game.
6. Overwatch ; Incredible fun. A delight to play, whether you’re winning or not.
7. Firewatch ; Like the Witness, a beautiful aesthetic enhances a well written story of loss and doubt.
8. Quantum Break ; It may have had one foot in last generation in terms of gameplay, but a genuinely intriguing experiment with a TV show format, and flashy combat (it’s not a cover shooter folks), help make it a worthwhile playthrough.
9. Gears of War 4 ; A fun campaign. Reverts to type and doesn’t try to change too much, but there’s very little need to do so as there is not much like Gears, and the return was welcome.
10. The Last Guardian ; Just creeps into the top ten despite not quite finishing it, but it is such a unique and singular thing, and Trico is adorable.

Honorable Mentions
x. Mafia 3 ; What a barnstorming, swaggering, thrilling opening couple of hours, with a genuinely engaging bunch of characters and a killer soundtrack. It’s a shame it descends into rote open world mission repetition.
x. Deus Ex: Mankind Divided ; This sequel didn’t quite live up to my expectations, having adored the slow. Thoughtful gameplay, music and visuals of the last gen precursor.
x. Dishonored 2 ; I love how each level is an intricate warren of pathways and opportunities. Another stealth classic that might be higher on my list if I finished it.
x. Uncharted 4 ; There is so much about Naughty Dog’s game I love (character, set pieces) and so much I don’t (combat), but this time around everything felt polished and tight and the character relationships were top notch.


Oct 12, 2012
1. Final Fantasy XV ; Awesome game, did not disappoint me in any way.
2. Dark Souls 3 ; Maybe the best entry in Souls series.
3. Civilization VI ; Addicting game. I wish I was better at it.
4. Stardew Valley ; Best Harvest Moon ever.
5. Overwatch ; Really fun game with awesome art and characters. Worst thing about it is the fanbase.
6. Salt and Sanctuary ; A very well done 2D Souls game. Better than every 3D clone.
7. Darkest Dungeon ; Great art, and deep gameplay systems.
8. Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth ; Digivolving is fun as always.
9. Shantae: Half Genie Hero ; Really awesome platformer with more charm than anything released this year.
10. Overcooked ; Coop in this game is too much fun.


May 27, 2012
1. Final Fantasy XV ; I think it's not a secret this was flawed, but it delivered an experience I couldn't imagine. The road trip feeling, the vast and full of life world, the amazing band of main characters... Its highs were some of my favourite gaming moments this year.
2. Pokemon Sun/Moon ; One of the best Pokemon games, too bad the hardware limited the game.
3. Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth ; Surprisingly fun JRPG and finally a good Digimon game.
4. Gravity Rush Remastered ; Kat was cute.
5. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End ; Enjoyable game, but I found it to be one of the weaker games in the series. Certainly not as memorable as Uncharted 2 or even Uncharted 3. Still, fantastic character moments and the duo of Nate and Sam was really good.
6. Valkyria Chronicles Remastered ; Fun battles system, alright story. Really solid game and one very big surprise for me.


Jun 3, 2013

1. Overwatch ; I've been insanely busy this year and have only been able to put about 20 hours or so into it (ie: barely touching the surface), but I can see me playing this casually for years to come. I don't have any interest in competitive play in any game, Overwatch doesn't change that (especially since my favorite hero is Torbjorn and I hear he's supposed to be god awful competitively) but arcade and quick play are pretty sweet.

2. Pokemon Sun and Moon ; Not the best Pokemon game, but the only game I've sat down and beat in less than a week this year. Same formula I've loved since Red and Blue

3. Pokemon GO ; I haven't played this that much do to the fact that it's not out in the country I'm living in (Korea), but grabbing the last bus out of Seoul to Sokcho (the only city that it's playable in)with my girlfriend because we wanted to try it (then traveling to Japan a few weeks later) are some of my favorite memories from this year.

4. World of Warcraft: Legion ; Really enjoyed what I experienced, but sadly haven't had nearly enough time to really dive into it. The leveling experience was sweet though.

5. The Jackbox Party Pack 3 ; This has been a go-to series for my group of friends for awhile now, and this might be the best pack yet. We've had a lot of fun with it.

Par Score

Dec 6, 2014
1. Superhot ; Superhot might be my perfect game, the only thing wrong with it is that it ends, and even then it's the perfect length to be finished in one or two sittings. Superhot made me feel differently about games I'd played, and games I want to play. Superhot made me feel differently about the orthodoxies of the games we play. Super. Hot. SUPER. HOT. SUPER. HOT.

2. HITMAN ; Agent 47 snuck in at the 11th hour and put a hit on The Witness and the other 8 games now below it on this list. I've enjoyed endless hours watching other people play HITMAN this year, but didn't feel like I could put it on my list unless I'd actually played it. With that minor quibble rectified after an impulse buy in the Steam Sale, it's as good as I already knew it was.

3. Pokémon Go ; 500 miles later, this game has done more for my life than any other in recent memory.

4. FIFA 17 ; After having a few years off, coming back to FIFA 17 feels great. The Journey is a bit threadbare, but it's still impressively good for the story mode of a FIFA game.

5. F1 2016 ; Codemasters best F1 game, and probably the second best F1 game ever.

6. Reigns ; It's like Crusader Kings 2 meets Grindr. It's 50p on Android / iOS. Buy it.

7. World of Warcraft: Legion
8. Dirt Rally
9. Tom Clancy's The Division
10. Stellaris

Games I wish I'd played so I could put them on this list:
DOOM, Dishonored 2, Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, Rez Infinite, Final Fantasy XV

Games I played this year for 100+ hours that would be on this list if they were eligible:
Hearthstone, The Witcher 3, Rocket League, Crusader Kings 2, Kerbal Space Program.


Dec 17, 2012
In a basement
1. The Witness ; An integrated gameplay experience. Original and fresh. No narrative nonsense. No dlc. No broken day one crap. Can't wait to see what Blow does next.
2. Dark Souls III ; A pleasure.

x. Persona 5 ; Only just started playing it.


Jul 10, 2006
This is way too involved and stupid for some forums goty thing. Just throw up a poll or something. The first post is kind of embarrassing to read
Polls can have a maximum of 10 options. More than 10 games are up for consideration.

Also, the results are split various ways. I.e. by platform, genre, etc. And we get metrics based on which users voted most similarly to another, and things like that.

But thank you for your input and thread whine.


Dec 3, 2012
1.Battlefield 1: Great game, the setting came as a shock. The unique setting created game play limitations that drastically improved the BF experience.

2. Rise of the tomb raider anniversary: great looking game with great game play. The story isn't the best, but it's very fun.

3. Hitman: an awesome return to form. Each level cam be replayed hundreds of times due to contracts mode.

4. FFXV: my first JRPG ever. The exploration is so chill and the combat is very fun.

5. Titanfall 2: basically what titanfall 1 should've been. Masterfully crafted shooter mechanics.

6. Uncharted 4: another game of great storytelling with a weak, but fun story. They finally got the action game play right, but didn't have enough combat scenarios.


Sep 8, 2015

1. The Witness ; It's interesting to see all the things people praise about this game. Reading about how some things blew people's mind, how thought provoking they found the narrative or how genius they thought the game's way of teaching you things was. It's interesting because I didn't really care about any of this. I just really liked the puzzles. It's simply amazing how the game took such a simple idea - draw a line from start to finish - and then kept introducing new mechanics that kept the idea fresh for hundreds of puzzles. Sure, not all of them work - a certain section of puzzles relying on sound is completely terrible for instance - but those cases are a minority.

And it's not just the diversity of the puzzles that makes the game great. The puzzles in the game are simply among the most fun and well designed in any puzzle game I've played so far. There's so many puzzles that seem impossible when you first see them, but after spending half an hour or so on them you finally see the solution and feel like an idiot, since the solution seems so obvious in retrospect. For example, there's this one puzzle later in the game. It starts of as an incredibly easy puzzle, one similar to the ones you've solved a dozen times before. But when you solve it, the game adds new elements to it, making it harder. You repeat this couple of times, the puzzle getting harder and harder each time, progressively adding more and more complicated elements. You struggle with the penultimate solution for what feels like ages, but you eventually get it down by building on your past solutions. And then, for the final part, the game adds a single new element to the puzzle. A joke really - you've seen this element before. It's incredibly simple and shouldn't cause you much trouble compared to what's been added on before. Except it's not. None of your past solutions work anymore. None of then come even close to working. NOTHING works. You're back to square one. That single, simple element forces you to completely reevaluate your approach. It's genius really. And that's just one of the many great puzzles in the game.

And while I said i just really liked the puzzles, that's not the entire truth. The game has much more going for it - there's a lot of content, the game's way of teaching you things is great and the structure is amazing - an open world that allows you to tackle the puzzles in (mostly) any order, which means you will rarely be stuck on just this one puzzle . It also "ends" on a spectacularly high note, presenting you with a challenge that pushes you to your limit and at first seems impossible, even compared to everything that came before. When you solve that, you really feel like you've mastered the game, even if you've still got dozens of optional puzzles to get through. It's just such a great package overall.

I can't thing of much that impressed me as much as this game did, not just this year but in general. The game's simply a masterpiece.

2. Tyranny ; When Obsidian released Pillars of Eternity, I was quite disappointed. The game was supposed to be the second coming of Baldur's Gate 2, but I just couldn't stay interested in it for very long. The combat was good, but outside of that it was just too bloated with middling content which just wasn't very memorable. A year from playing the game I only remember a total of about two quests I did - one because it had a challenging combat encounter and one because the story was interesting. Well, aside from the characters Avellone wrote. Those were great, but felt rather out of place in the game. But this year Obsidian released Tyranny, which immediately fixes most of my problems with Pillars of Eternity. Right of the bat you're dropped into an interesting world and forced to define your character's backstory through a series of interesting (and meaningful) choices. This both immediately connects you to the world and gives you a reason to care about your character, as well as defining his place in the world. It's a lovely piece of exposition that means the game can start off strong right away. Several RPGs have tried similar to set up your character's backstory in a similar way (Dragon Age: Origins being a notable example), but none of them connected me to their worlds as much as Tyranny, mostly because you're making big choices that get brought up a lot through the course of the story, and because the world's actually interesting. When the game properly starts, Tyranny continues to impress with excellent world building and great characters. Instead of trying to create a massive world with thousands of years of history, like Pillars of Eternity, it focuses on a smaller, much more contained conflict. This means you're meeting important characters right of the bat, and get to devote your attention to events that actually matter, instead of doing 100 fetch quests and killing rats for the first dozen hours. The game's just really good about not wasting any time. This shows in the characters to. Instead of talking to generic inn keeps in a godforsaken village, you're talking to soul devouring gods, mind controlling singers and generals who can keep their entire army from dying, IN THE FIRST HOUR OF THE GAME. Of course, Obsidian's stellar writing is present, making dialogue with those characters consistently fun to read through.

The combat is slightly less stellar, but it's by no means bad. It's similar to Pillars of Eternity, in that it's a real time with pause tactical game, but it's simpler and more streamlined. Playing on the hardest difficulty forces you to constantly keep your positioning and ability use in mind, and crafting your own spells keeps the strategic side of things engaging. Sadly, the last third of the game is stupidly easy and combat just devolves into murdering everything. The bosses in particular are pretty sad. It's not perfect, but it's fun for most of the game, and definitely not bad enough to bring the overall package down.

3. Umineko ; This one is a bit weird. The fan translation has been available for quite a while now, but the game (well, the first half at least) got the official English release this year. As such, I suppose it should count for this year. Umineko is quite simply the best visual novel I've ever read. By a very large margin at that. Better than Stein's Gate, better than 999, better than Ace Attorney. Much better.

The first thing that sets it apart is the setting. The game begins with a yakuza family convening on their private island to discuss their future since their current leader is on the verge of death. Now, as the Yakuza series has thought us (and if you haven't played that yet, you probably should since it's great) any game featuring yakuza as its protagonists is bound to be something special. And Umineko is. It takes about two chapters to realize every character present on the island is:

a) Completely crazy
b) Itching to murder everyone else on the island

It's great. First of all - it's unusual. Generic high school kids and anime tropes (not that it's entirely without those, but they take a seat very far in the back) are replaced by an Agatha Christie style murder mystery staring crazy mafia members. Secondly, the characters are great. Most of the early chapters are dedicated to setting up the characters, but they manage not to feel boring since the characters are interesting enough. The fact that it's a murder mystery also immediately makes you pay attention to clues.

The thing is though, that's not really what makes Umineko great. In fact, it's not even what Umineko really is. It describes the first game pretty well, but there's 8 games in total, and the story gets COMPLETELY CRAZY pretty early on. The murder mystery remains central to the plot, but on top of that there's magic, several love stories, tragic tales of child abuse, more magic, witches, gun fights, magic gun fights, a meta analysis of the detective genre, several different stories occurring simultaneously, gods, personal musings from the author on various things, and so many different things. It's INSANE.

It sounds incredibly silly, but it works. Somehow, all of it works together to create an incredibly cohesive story and even the most completely insane subplots manage to tie into the central mystery. Because despite everything, Umineko actually is about the murder mystery. It's incredible.

4. Sunless Sea: Zubmariner ; It's more Sunless Sea basically. There's not really much to say here. If you enjoy great writing and incredible word building you've probably played Sunless Sea already (if you didn't, you really should), and this just adds more amazing content to the game. For those that didn't like Sunless Sea there's not much here that will change your mind.

5. Hitman ; I've tried to get into this franchise a bunch of times, but I never really could. It was always a bit to clunky for me. The new Hitman finally fixed that. The game takes all the good parts of the previous games, fixes the bad things and adds some great new gameplay mechanics. It also has some of the best level design of any game out there.

6. Dark Souls III ; Yeah, it's more of the same. Yeah, a lot of it is a retread of the first Dark Souls. But until another company makes something that can match the Souls franchise, that doesn't really matter. It's more souls and that's great.

7. Devil Daggers ; This is hands down the most surprising game of the year. I remember reading praise for it here, but I've never really liked Doom-like single player shooters. They always felt a bit to empty, mostly consisting of circle strafing enemies and shooting everything that moves, with every death feeling arbitrary (oh, enemies shooting at me slowly withered my health down. Or maybe they shot me from somewhere I didn't even see). So I dismissed the praise, which was a big mistake. This game is incredible. It's just full of amazing design ideas that add up to an incredible game.

First, there's the movement. Bunnyhopping around the arena just feels great. But that's more of an afterthought really. What makes this game work is how incredibly the enemies are designed to constantly challenge you. Every new enemy introduced forces you to reevaluate your approach to the game. The skulls keep you moving around. The squids (as the game website calls them) keep spawning new enemies forcing you to deal with them sooner or later, but you can only do so from a specific angle, since you need to hit their weak spot. Just when you get the hang of dealing with these basic enemies, the game introduces a faster skull that you can't just run away from. Suddenly you constantly have to be on the lookout for those to avoid getting killed from behind. Then there's spiders, which must be dealt with as soon as possible, before they overwhelm the arena with spider-lings that will kill you. The game keeps adding on different enemies for far longer than the wast majority of the players will ever survive.

Because of this you constantly have to think about what to do next. Should you kill the spider that just spawned, or is it better to kill the squid right in front of you? Do you have enough time to do that before a skull catches up to you? How will you ever find the time to deal with that giant centipede that just spawned? And you have to do this while jumping around the arena like crazy, constantly dodging things in front of you.

The best part for me though, is that I always know what killed me, and I know exactly where I made the mistake that got me killed. That's because every enemy is unique and has a distinct way of killing you.

8. Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun ; Another surprising game, since it released so far into the year. I've always found the concept of the Commandos games appealing. Real time, strategic, party based stealth? Sounds great. Unfortunately the games have always seemed a bit to dated for me, which is why I'm glad this game took that formula and modernized it.

The level design is my favorite thing about it. The levels are open, allowing for many different approaches and strategies. Sure, there's not a whole lot of them, but the optional challenges really push you to explore each map to its fullest.

9. Overwatch ; I was sadly quite late to this game, so I can't really rank it higher. It's definitely fun - the most fun I've had playing a multiplayer shooter since TF2 when it was still relatively new.

10. Stardew Valley ; It's Harvest Moon/Rune Factory on the PC, and it's great. Tons of different things to do and the farming's nice and relaxing. It's the kind of game you can just keep playing for hours, never really getting bored. For some reason I can't really find much to say about it though.


Mar 12, 2016
1. Uncharted 4 ; Amazingly fun game with great visuals, story and multiplayer. As good as third person shooters have gotten this gen yet to boot. The king keeps slaying.

2. The Last Guardian ; Yes, it has flaws but they are faaaar from the gamebreaking disasters some on Gaf would have you believe. TLG is a wonderful experience that everyone should at least try out. It's the kind of game that is a dying breed these days, so that just makes it all the more special.

3. Dark Souls III ; Better than DS2 but felt a bit flat coming hot off the heels of Bloodborne. Still top tier shit though, just wish it'd had a bit more polish and better bosses.

4. Ratchet and Clank ; Not the best R&C but still better than anything else Insomniac have managed since Crack in Time.

5. Oxenfree ; Bad voice work and some cringey dialogue didn't stop this from being a really gripping horror/scifi story told in a nicely done manner.

6. Titanfall 2 ; Better than the original, I guess. Not really much else to say.

7. Star Ocean 5 ; Feels a tad light on content, but it was still a lot of fun to play and looked really nice in action. Big improvement on SO4 if nothing else.

8. World of Final Fantasy ; Despite some nonsensical "Kingdom Hearts"-ing in parts of the story and some repetitive grinding, this is still an incredibly fun FF game that helped soothe the bitter ash in the throat feeling that FFXV ended up leaving.

9. Digimon Cyber Sleuth ; Not much to it, but it delivers a pretty satisfying Persona-lite experience with some enjoyable combat and a great soundtrack.

10. Valkyria Chronicles Remastered ; One of last gen's best returns in a really well done updated version.


Jan 28, 2011
1. Inside ; Not just my favourite game of the year, but one of my all time favourite games. The best animation and attention to detail I've ever seen in a game, and when combined with the intriguing narrative and unforgettable sound design and atmosphere, it really does make for a true masterpiece.

2. Dark Souls III

3. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt - Blood and Wine

4. Overwatch

5. Deus Ex: Mankind Divided

6. VA-11 Hall-A


8. The Witness


10. Dishonored 2


Nov 12, 2007
Lancaster, PA
1. Dark Souls 3 ; The only game this year that sucked 80+ hours out of my life, and I had a blast the whole time. A fantastic return to form after DS2.

2. DOOM ; The most metal video game of all time. So good!

3. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End ; Holy shit. I waited on this expecting another meh experience after 3, and boy was I wrong. Mind blowing graphics, tight and refined platforming, and a story that is ultimately not about the treasure at all, but relationships.

4. Overwatch ; Great team-based gaming that actually forces people to work together.

5. Forza Horizon 3 ; sogood.gif The base game is fantastic, add on Blizzard Mountain and you've got yourself a top-five game

6. Hatsune Miku Project DIVA X ; While limited on songs, I appreciate the attempt to actually make the Vocaloids into characters and infuse personality. Made dress-up for the characters part of the game and not just cosmetic, which was actually really fun. The add-on of a free-VR patch for the concert editor and PS4 Pro upgrade was super classy of Sega.

7. Titanfall 2 ; Fantastic single player story and frantic fun MP is a hell of a combo. So glad they improved it over the Alpha, which honestly never should have happened.

8. Senran Kagura: Estival Versus ; The Titizen Kane of fanservice weeb musou games. All the boobs, all the babes, all the fun. The characters are surprisingly deep and the fighting is a blast.

9. Tokyo Mirage Sessions ; My favorite JRPG of the year, with combat that is never boring!

10. Rez Infinity ; A true classic made relevant again in VR. Still a joy to experience!


Oct 3, 2013

1. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End ; I've waited so long. Naughty Gods made the best Uncharted ever, the level design is outstanding, visuals are incredible, sounddesign & motion capturing from an another world. This was definitely one of the best games I have ever played. Thank You ND, for this adventure.

2. The Last Guardian ; YES, fuck man damn feels. After the big dissapointment of No Mans Sky I was a litte bit nervous about the game, can it hold the expectations? IT was THE adventure of the year, I won't ever forget this title. Ueda designed with his team the best AI I have ever seen, an emotional story of two people and great art design. Thank you Yoshida-san and Ueda and the whole team, thank you for making this reality.

3. Battlefield 1 ; This time, I was very confident that BF1 will be a great shooter, I was wrong. It's maybe the best shooter I have ever played. Since I played BF4 so much even the server disaster and more, BF1 was better in any other way. The design of maps are the best they have ever done, visuals are great and sounddesign better than any other game! Story was also interesting.
DICE created their best shooter for me, and it's maybe even better than Modern Warfare 1 back in 2009 or so.

4. Firewatch ; The artdesign, actor performance and the whole story are fantastic developed, I enjoyed every single minute of it. I like indie title but enjoying AAA-titles often than indies, but this time the story between the two was so emotional and incredible. For me the best Indie game I have ever played.

5. Hitman ; I've started to play Hitman last week, I'm late I know but I thought the whole episodic-format would damage the game and I really didn't enjoy the beta. But, God, I was so wrong. iO's level design is perfect, it makes so much fun to assissnate, to think how to kill your target and to escape. There are so many ways to complete the level and the visuals are great. The technic and their engine are also impressive, hundreds of npc's can be seen, cool! Can't wait for season 2.

6. Ratchet & Clank ; Fun, great, fantastic! Insomniac developed a great Remake (?) of Ratchet & Clank. I really enjoyed the gameplay, the various of weapons art hell, the visuals are very impressive!

7. INSIDE ; Interesting, shocking, WTF. Yes, everyone should play this outstanding game, the whole story and design are astonishing, it was an intense ride to play this unique game.

8. DOOM ; I had never the chance to play the older versions of Doom, but I have started to play it early this month, and HELL YEAH - FUCKING AWESOME ! It feels so powerful and makes so much fun to kill all the demons. This is definitely one of the best shooter games this generation!

9. ABZU ; This is like Journey, interesting story with one of the best artdesign ever made. Visuals are mindblowing! It looks so colorful - great experience!

10. Batman: The Telltale Series ; dark, interesting and brutal story meets Batman. It was great to play as Batman in a Telltale game, I really liked the story, it was very dark and often you thought, this can't be for real.. The performance of Troy Baker as Batman & Bruce Wayne was so impressive, cant wait for season 2. And Telltale, pls fix. your. engine.

Honorable Mentions
x. Mafia 3 ; great story with fantastic cutscenes and well-openworld design.
x. Tom Clancy's The Division ; Ubisoft's first step into the MMO world, it was okay, had good visuals with some good ideas.
x. Bioshock: The Collection ; worth it. It's Bioshock, just play it and your mind will be blown.
x. ADR1FT ; some great visuals with an interesting idea, need a VR-version.
x. Far Cry: Primal ; For me, a great FC title, fresh concept and wonderful world.
x. Alienation ; Fun coop action and a good loot-system
x. Unravel ; wonderful character with impressive visuals.
x. Plants vs Zombies: Garden Warfare 2 ; awesome and funny third person shooter, so much content and so lovely!


Jul 17, 2014
1. Final Fantasy XV ; What a time to be alive. I finished Final Fantasy XV in 2016 and I had a blast with this game. At times you can definitely see, that the game had a difficult time during it 10 years of development, but this game shines so bright and only leaves the feeling, that with a more focused development, it could have been the best Final Fantasy. The story is a very emphatic one and it really got me. I really connected with the 4 main characters, which were challenged by a great villain. OST and graphics are definitely the best combination I have seen this year. The combat is fun and looks very stylish.

2. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
- Blood and Wine ; I already was in love with the Witcher 3, but after taking a one year break, my love for that game even got stronger. Blood and Wine looks absolutely amazing. It was so much fun to explore all the new areas and the story around the Duchess was thrilling.

3. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End
; We all know, that Uncharted is fantastic, but I always had my problems with the gameplay. It was very boring shooting bad guys, wave after wave. Uncharted 4 has fantastic dialogue, music and graphics. I think in many points it is better than a movie, but finally the gameplay was fun, too.

4. FE Tokyo Mirage Sessions ; Great art design, lovely characters and full of positive energy. It was not perfect as Persona, but I really got similar vibes. The shining star in this game is the combat system, which never got boring and the presentation was really full of great details. Don’t forget that amazing OST, some of those thongs became part of my favorite J-POP songs.

5. Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth ; To me this is the biggest surprise in 2016. I did not know anything about it, when it was released. I was reading all the praise on GAF and bought it based on the hype and my nostalgic love for Digimon. The characters are really likeable and at some point the story really gets good, but the most fun was leveling up my Digimon. We need more quality games based on anime, as Digimon Cyber Sleuth.

6. Titanfall 2 ; Titanfall 1 was the best FPS I have been playing in the last years. And as a sequel Titanfall 2 is on the same level. The maps are nice, there is non-stop action and it plays very diverse, because of the mix between Pilot and Titan gameplay. But what surprised me the most is the campaign! I never would have expected to have two main characters you actually care about and a very motivating story as a driver. The level design was absolutely amazing in combination with the unique Titanfall movement.

7. Tom Clancy's The Division ; Amazing graphics, the atmosphere in the snowy New York is wonderful and the gunplay in Co-op is one of the best fun I had in such games in the last years. But still the Division is flawed. The story was one of the weakest I have experienced this year and the end game really was messed about in the first weeks. But still it was a very unique experience to me.

8. Mirror's Edge Catalyst ; This game has many of the same strengths of the original Mirror’s Edge, but at times it feels too different in a negative way. The story and characters were garbage and at times embarrassing. But you know what? The running was still fun and the open-word city was beautiful. The art design is more futuristic, but still unique and simply stunning on PC. The OST was a little bit weaker than the original, but still really fun listening to. The level design was good, some of them were god-tier, but others could have been better. I think the game would have been better with a more focused approach. What should it be “linear levels” or “open world”? I am sure they just did the open-world because, everyone else is doing it.

9. I am Sestuna ; I love winter, I love snow, I love I am Setsuna, because it has a lot of heart and awakens this nostalgic feeling of more simple, but still amazing JRPGs. The main theme is one of the best pieces of video game history.

10. Pokémon Sun/Moon ; Finally Pokemon is catching up, it is not only a great and nostalgic concept, instead it is finally delivering what other JRPGs can do. It looks amazing for a Pokemon game and the atmosphere of those games is a definitely a lot better and you can begin to imagine how it is to travel in the Pokeworld. Also there is an actual story and it does feel very fresh and you don't get bored to quickly. The new Pokemon designs are not breathtaking, but they are good and some of them are a pleasure to have in my team.


Dec 7, 2007
1. The Witness ; One of the most memorable games i have ever played. I wish i could wipe my memory and play it again.
2. The Last Guardian ; A somewhat flawed game but a truly memorable and endearing story about a boy and his unlikely companion.
3. Dirt Rally ; Amongst my all-time favourite racing games and an impressive comeback from Codemasters.
4. Rive ; My surprise of the year. Fun, non stop action from start to finish and a great soundtrack.
5. Unravel ; Quite memorable and unique game with a great soundtrack. I can't wait for the sequel.
6. Abzû ; Beautiful and relaxing journey into the ocean. Lacks that something extra that made Journey so great but still memorable in it's own way.
7. Toki Tori 2+
8. Ratchet & Clank ; Not as good as the main PS3 games but a solid remake nonetheless. I'm ready for some new R&C games, Insomniac!
9. Inside ; Wonderful until the last twist, which i didn't like at all.
10. Oxenfree ; Great visuals, concept and soundtrack but somewhat forgettable story.

Honorable Mentions
x. A boy and his blob
x. Rise of the Tomb Raider
x. Dear Esther: Landmark Edition
x. Hue ; a fun and solid puzzle game with an interesting look and a great piano soundtrack.
x. Firewatch ; Interesting idea and concept but one of the few games where i feel that poor technical performance hurt my enjoyment considerably.
x. Art of Balance


Dec 31, 2005
I only played two games from this year, but I liked them enough that I want to give them points~

1. Stardew Valley ; the first Harvest Moon-style game that I've tried, and it made me wish I'd tried the series decades ago. It clicks for me on every level. Bless Kabbles for pointing it out to me. <3
2. Pokemon Sun/Moon ; despite the interminable and insufferably condescending start, the new perspective and competitive changes make this my favorite generation since GSC.


Dec 18, 2013
1. Titanfall 2; For the longest time, I thought DOOM was going to be my FPS of the year. But boy was I wrong after playing the campaign for Titanfall 2. It surprised me in so many ways and it ended up being one of my favourite campaigns of all time. With an excellent multiplayer mode to add on top of that (With the classic Angel City map being recently added), this is easily the game I’ve had the most fun with across the board this year.

2. DOOM; DOOM has been my go-to benchmark cards this year. I’ve purchased three GPUs this year (Because I’m an idiot) and each time I installed Doom to test out the performance. Seeing DOOM run at 165 fps on Vulkan was an absolutely feast for my eyes and for the responsive gameplay. With a no-bullshit main character narrative, great gunplay, enemy diversity and a kickass soundtrack, this is a stellar example of how to do a FPS campaign right.

3. Dishonored 2; It’s truly a shame that the PC port for this game. Because the game is easily the best stealth game I’ve played in a long time. I liked the first Dishonored quite a bit but I found the narrative and some of the powers to be rather lacking. While the voice acting is a bit iffy at parts, the story of this game builds on the conflicts of the first game in terms of lore, powers and the complexity of the various areas you go in for missions. I’m very much hoping to see another DLC story content for me to come back to.

4. Audioshield; This game is the game that made me fall in love with VR. When I impulsively bought a HTC Vive for my birthday, this was the game I wanted to try the most. The way the the notes exploded when they hit the shield made me smile from ear to ear. Now with Youtube support and two additional difficulty, it's a game I know I will be playing for years to come.

5. Thumper; This game has been slowly climbing up my top 10 the last few weeks. While I waited for the VR support for the Vive and have tried it in VR (it's pretty great), I actually have played a good majority of Thumper on a regular screen. The way this game piles on mechanics as you play more and more and the way it evoked my love for percussions and the heart thumping soundtrack made it climb into this spot.

6. Overwatch; Do I need to say anything about this game? I stopped playing for some time due to me losing the interest in *all* multiplayer games but I recently came back to Overwatch and it's been a blast. I'm very excited for the additional content coming next year and starting to play it with my wife.

7. Dark Souls III; During my short lifespan of being a Twitch streamer, I was determined to finish Dark Souls III in Japanese and offer translation as I played. The quality of Dark Souls III was definitely one of the main reasons why I streamed the entire game. The combination of the amazing art and boss design, the INCREDIBLE music and engaging gameplay,has cemented this game on my top 10.

8. Hyper Light Drifter; Admittedly, this was a game I didn’t even give a chance until the 60fps patch was made. With that being said, with the patch, it was a challenging and enjoyable game with fantastic music and pixel art so good that it made my game developing brother go “I wish I could draw pixel art like that!”

9. Uncharted 4; I actually kind of forgot about this game...good thing I bought a PS4 Pro and played a bit of the game over again with HDR! I was reminded and blown away again and again by the environmental design and the mo-capped cutscenes. With a slightly grittier tone and a main story with less supernatural elements (also pirates!), I think this is without a doubt the best Uncharted game in the series. I just hope they don't make unnecessary sequels like Uncharted 3.

10. XCOM 2; XCOM2 was in the trio of games at the beginning of the year where I was exclaiming "Man, what an amazing start to the year of games! Any one of these could be in my GOTY list". XCOM 2 ended up being the only one that made it into my list. While the performance is problematic, the nice graphics, tense strategy gameplay, extensive mod support and the joy of making highly customizable soldiers look like your friends made the 50+ hours campaign an absolute blast to play.

Honourable mentions
x. Persona 5; Easily the best game I’ve played on the PS4 this year…but since most people haven’t played yet, it will be going into next year’s top 10

x. The Witness; I had very mixed emotions about this game. It was a good combination of pure frustration and elation. While it didn’t make my top 10, I loved the aesthetics and some of the puzzle areas of this puzzle game.

x. Superhot VR; I’m one of those weirdos who thought the VR version of Superhot to be superior to the original game. The concept of “shooter that doesn’t move unless you move” translates really well into VR. Easily one of the best VR games this year, but the combination of annoyance with the Oculus exclusivity and the stacked GOTY list makes it an honourable mention instead.


Subete no aware
Sep 10, 2007
1. Titanfall 2 ; What can I say? It's one of the best multiplayer experiences of the year despite the many frustrations I have with it on a high level. Attrition matches fly by quickly, which makes the games as speedy as something like Splatoon, and the movement/gun options make the game fun to play.

2. The Division ; The best co-op experience this year, and probably the best third person shooter as well. Marred by bad ARPG design decisions because Massive didn't know if they wanted to make Destiny or Diablo, it was still fun because of just how tight the game ended up being.

3. Love Live: School Idol Festival ; 2016 was a bit of a relaunch for the game since the new anime came out, and it's a testament to how much I enjoy the game that I'm still playing it after 2 years despite the fact that the game's mechanics remain the same. The charts are still fun to play, regardless of what you think of the songs themselves, and Klab have done a good job of keeping the content fresh despite the predictability of it all.


Feb 15, 2007
Midlands, UK
1. Final Fantasy XV ; My game of 2016. Only the second Playstation game I ever got a Platinum trophy in, it's got a fabulous world with gorgeous visuals, beautiful boys and a lovely OST. It's easy to criticise it for its faults, of which is has many, but I strongly believe the experience overall catches the imagination, and it still has a lot of heart.

2. Pokémon Sun/Moon ; They were never going to screw this game up. Fresh Pokemon, new formes, a unique region and a slight shake-up to the usual formula, Sun and Moon still won't win any awards for originality but that's clearly not why we play these games. Catching them all is as fun and rewarding as ever, and there's something for every type of gamer. From the casual collector, to the shiny hunter, to the hardcore online battler there's stuff that caters for you in here. A decent little bit of post-game content too.

3. Forza Horizon 3 ; Australia makes a great setting for the Horizon format. A huge map full of interesting things to see and boards to smash, plus the ability to create your own races at every step of the way. I'd prefer a PGR5, but this is the closest thing in spirit, particularly when blasting around an oceanside city.

Honorable Mentions

x. Star Ocean 5: Integrity and Faithlessness ; Not an honorable mention "as such" but as the only other valid game on the 2016 list of eligible games that I've actually played, it gets a mention for catching my eye in a year where I've probably spent less than £100 on new videogames. But really, it's no FFXV.


Dec 30, 2011
Orlando FL
Not sure if I have time to do a full top 10 but I at least want to get my goty vote in

1. Final Fantasy 15; Final Fantasy 15 is a quirky game with some very serious flaws, but somehow it all comes together in a magical mess that has made it a game I can't stop thinking about even when I'm done playing it.

2. Game B ; Your thoughts on Game B.
3. Game C ; Your thoughts on Game C.
4. Game D ; Your thoughts on Game D.
5. Game E ; Your thoughts on Game E.
6. Game F ; Your thoughts on Game F.
7. Game G ; Your thoughts on Game G.
8. Game H ; Your thoughts on Game H.
9. Game I ; Your thoughts on Game I.
10. Game J ; Your thoughts on Game J.


Jun 26, 2005
1. DOOM ; Recognizable as a Doom game and yet fresh at the same time. Above all this game surprised me, something the other games on my list, well-crafted as they may be, didn't do.
2. Dark Souls III ;
3. Battlefield 1 ;
4. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End ;


Jan 2, 2014
1. Dark Souls 3 ; Definitely has flaws but it's still a lot of fun with some memorable bosses and weapons. One of the only games I've ever got 100% achievements on.
2. Final Fantasy XV ; Despite all of the problems and incomplete story it's just a blast to play. The combat, the bros, open world, is just really addicting. I'm still playing this one in the post-game.
3. Titanfall 2 ; Has some of the most memorable single-player levels of all time for a shooter IMO, and the multiplayer is fairly well executed. It's so fast paced that I have a really hard time playing slower FPS now.
4. Let it Die ; Really surprised me with how addicting it is. It looks like ass if you just watch some gameplay but man it really sinks its teeth in. Dark Souls + Diablo + Roguelite + progression, so much fun!
5. Street Fighter V ; Really fun core gameplay, some really great characters and character design, look how menacing M.Bison is! The online is passable and the changes in season 2 are great.
6. Final Fantasy Brave Exvius GL; I really should not like this game as is embodies all of what makes mobile gaming cancerous, but it's strangely addicting and I like that I can play it at work on an emulator. Combine that with nostalgia and some random luck and I'm enjoying it quite a bit.
7. Monster Hunter Generations ; It's Monster Hunter but it kept my attention far less than 4U did.

... I think that's all I've played that released this year. I have some 2016 releases that are in the backlog still though (Blood and Wine, World of Final Fantasy).


Oct 18, 2013
1. Let It Die; biggest surprise of the year for me, incredibly fun and addicting, the community is very active and we're all still figuring things out.

2. Overwatch; being a big fan of TF2, it's immensely satisfying to finally have a similar game with this much popularity and support.

3. Inside; a fantastically interesting game that does a superb job of merging visual storytelling with gameplay, a very beautiful game through and through.


Feb 3, 2012
1. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End ; Ever since that initial reveal (with Todd Stashwick's VO), I was hooked. I love this series so much and was really happy to see ND was doing another one. Only saw the initial teaser trailers, after that I was in a total media blackout. Got the game day one and what a ride it was. ND are truly masters at their craft. Every single part of this game is phenomenal. From superb graphics, technical presentation, controls, flow, pacing, I love it. By far my favorite game that I played this year and a really fitting end to the story. <3

2. Titanfall 2 ; Played Titanfall 1 on PC. In Europe. Yea... You can guess how long that lasted until servers were pretty much empty. I was cautious to get Titanfall 2 precisely because of my "setting" (PC), but after seeing all the reviews and GAF impressions, I got it not long after release and was completely blown away. Superb single player campaign, and sublime multiplayer experience (by far). I really wish EA didn't release it the way it did. This game deserved so much better (in terms of a better release window, not sandwiched between BF1 and CoD, uggghhh) .

3. Deus Ex: Mankind Divided ; Great gameplay experience. Hardest difficulty, no alarms, no kills, full Ghost run. Loved it! Story was weaker than DE:HR, but still an enjoyable experience well worth your time, especially if you're a stealth buff like me.

4. Doom; \m/ Doom was one my first game experiences back in the early 1994 and it defined my early gaming youth, alongside Wolf 3D. After the initial weak showing (E3, beta, ...), I was reluctant to pick it up, but it was actually Mick Gordon's OST and Danny O'Dwyer's then upcoming documentary on it that drove me over the edge. Whow! Really enjoyable ride. Even though it gets really repetitive and didn't grab me *as much* as it should, I still think it's one of the best FPS games this decade so far. Good job id. You officially got your mojo back. \m/

5. Rise of the Tomb Raider ; big improvement over Tomb Raider 2013. Excellent technical presentation on the PC. Great controls, pacing, gorgeous environments. Such a good experience all around. Story is the weakest part, though. I would like to see future games significantly improve on that aspect. Oh, and more platforming and Tomb...raiding (*ba dum tss*). :D

6. Dark Souls III ; Another year, another Soulsborne game. *sigh* Bought the Deluxe Edition, poured over 90 hours into it, but now that I look at it, it was such a "mechanical" experience. Easily the most forgettable Dark Souls game for me, even though I loved playing it. I know, it sounds weird and everything, but that's how I feel. The game is phenomenal, but I think I have a serious case of Souls fatigue.

7. Firewatch ; Best VO this year. I enjoyed my refreshing and intriguing stay in the woods of Wyoming. Really looking forward to Campo Santo's next release! They're an awesome team. Recognized so many names in the credits. :D

8. Inside ; It could have been #1. Seriously. I was JAW DROPPED the entire game. Blown away completely. Went it totally blind as recommended by everyone. Whow, whow, whow! Such a unique, harrowing experience. And then...yea, that ending. Ugh. :/ Really? That's all you got? It completely blew the wind out of my sails. *lots of speculation from everyone* *sigh*

Honorable Mentions
x. Overwatch ; *sigh* I bought it day one. I love it. It's so gorgeous and beautiful and amazing in every way. Unfortunately I don't have the time to commit myself to it. Maybe one day. But I really can't right now. I don't have a consistent team with me, and I can't chain myself to my home office desk after work to play this (PC controller support in this game is really off).

Fancy Clown

Dec 3, 2013
Gonna just go with 5 games this year. I played a lot of game this year, most of them good, but I think these five encapsulate how strong this year was, and mesh with my own personal taste of narrative games with very simple but refined mechanics for developers to make the absolute most out of.

5. Dark Souls III ; The supposed finale of this beloved series may not bring anything new to the table, but Miyazaki proves his mettle once again by offering up the expected in exactly the level of quality we expect from him and his team. It's probably the most consistent level of quality in a Souls game yet, and even though it doesn't reach the highs of Bloodborne, nor surprise as that game did, it is nevertheless another satisfyingly dark and beautiful exploration into self-punishment in a dying world. And even those jaded by the familiarity along the way will likely be singing its praises through its exemplary final levels and boss encounters, which are a high point of the series.

4. Titanfall 2 ; Titanfall takes Call of Duty-esque shooting mechanics (which is to say, polished but not particularly deep) slaps them on to some gloriously liberating movement systems, and then throws you into the tightest, most creative, and varied action campaign of the year. Each level stands on its own and builds its own little play book of rules (one might less generously call them "gimmicks") and then throws them out for the next level, all while never forgetting about your core set of abilities. It's a little bit of Half-Life, Portal, and Platinum games in Call of Duty drag, and it's exactly as fun as that sounds. There's absolutely no room for fluff here, and each sequence is tightly crafted playable action movie. The story maybe cliched, but it has an earnestness and sense of levity that was perfectly in tune with the game world.

3. INSIDE ; This game is like a child's particularly dark picture book--a purely visual narrative told seamlessly from left to right. INSIDE is a particularly brilliant, and tension filled, cinematic platformer that plumbs some very dark depths, and manages to say a hell of a lot without uttering a single word. I was transfixed the entire time, and by the time it reached its shocking conclusion I knew I had played something special. I've never wanted to spend more time in such a horrifying dystopia as I have with this game, and I'm impressed that it pulled no punches in delivering such a bizarre narrative that confidently denies players the sort of satisfying conclusion they have been led to expect by many a lesser game.

2. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End ; Naughty Dog's fourth entry in this pulp action adventure series decided to go a route that few other developers would--they stripped it down and made it more personal. This approach has obviously proven divisive with fans, and while I would be lying if I said I wasn't a little disappointed the game didn't put a little more gusto into some of its action beats, it is still a game that succeeds at exactly what it wants to be, which happens to be something a bit smarter than one might expect. More so than any of the other Uncharted games, A Thief's End really feels like an adventure. For 15 hours Naughty Dog takes you across beautiful landscapes, and mixes up one off puzzles, simple but satisfying environmental puzzles, and all punctuated by some of the best seat of your pants third person combat I've ever experienced. Of course everything you see and do is coated in Naughty Dog's patent absurd levels of polish and attention to detail; everything exotic or ancient location is jaw droppingly gorgeous, and even the tiniest movement just feels good. As a game, Uncharted 4 is fantastic, just about every piece individually is the best its ever been in the series. But all those pieces serve the story, whether it's the look and feel of your environment, or whether you're playing an action beat or a traversal section. Opinions remain devided if that dedication to narrative best served the experience, but I commend them for trying. Because A Thief's End has a harder task than just telling a story--it tells something few games do, it tells an ending. And this is an ending that's very well told indeed.

1. The Last Guardian ; It's no secret that Neil Druckmann's biggest inspiration for his particular brand of game design are the works of Ueda and Team Ico. And while he clearly studied well, Uncharted 4 isn't quite the sublime marriage of seamless gameplay and narrative elements that cohere to a perfect adventure the way that Ueda's latest masterpiece has. The Last Guardian take this to the next level, stripping down the mechanics even further (not even the controller's full set of buttons are used, and some are not used that often), yet mining even more depth out of them and integrating engaging scenarios that are in perfect harmony with the story. Trico frequently doesn't feel like an AI, but a true companion on your adventure with you that you actively learn and grow with through the gameplay systems. The fantastically done environmental puzzles are top of their class as well, in both their clever usage of the game's mechanics, and how they are seamlessly integrated into the stunningly well realized setting. It's not often that I'm genuinely surprised by games any more, but The Last Guardian was constantly pulling me into unexpected territory. Whether it was a pleasantly logical solution to a puzzle that had me working with Trico in a startlingly lifelike way, simply marveling at how the characters move through the breathtaking heights of the environments, or gasping out loud during some of the most impressive set pieces I've played (yes, shockingly even the set-pieces manage to outdo Uncharted), The Last Guardian is proof that games can still take you to unexpected places, and they don't even need very much to do it.

Here are three honorable mentions, a few games that I liked enough to stand out of the pack, but didn't quite measure up with the superlative quality of the five games above:
x. Super Mario Run
x. Oxenfree


Sep 4, 2009
1. Doom ; I was not expecting this, nor was I ready for this. Fast, violent and incredibly satisfying game play, amazing level design, DAT SOUNDTRACK. It brought me back to the first time I played Doom shareware in 1994. I had low expectation after Doom 3 and holy hell this game blew my mind. Best FPS since Modern Warfare and one of the best ever.

2. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt - Blood and Wine ; What can I say that hasn't already been said? Blood & Wine is by far the best DLC I've ever played. It closed out Geralt's story perfectly, tied up all the loose ends and was longer then most standard full priced RPG's. CDPR deserves every single accolade they have received. Truly a game for the ages.

3. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End ; Naughty Dog continually has proven themselves to be the best first party studio Sony has. Uncharted 4 might be the best looking game ever created - it has a stellar cast, amazing soundtrack and perfectly ended Nathan Drake's story. It took the best parts of the first three games and mixed them together into an amazing experience. The ending holds a special place among the upper pantheon of best video game endings ever.

4. Rise of the Tomb Raider ; Lara Croft's second outing was fantastic on the PS4. Amazing visuals, great game play and a very long story mode made Rise of the Tomb Raider extremely fun to play and enjoy.


Aug 19, 2009
1. The Last Guardian; somewhat flawed gameplay but the characterisation and relationship with the beast is amazing
2. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End; a great ending to the series - amazing art, animation and the usual gameplay ;-)
3. Pokémon Sun/Moon; so much better than the previous couple I've played!
4. XCOM 2; a solid improvement on the first of the reboots, very enjoyable and challenging

Honorable mention:

Undertale - I know it was out last year, but this game has captured the attention of my daughter and her friends this year like no other!


Apr 17, 2009
  1. Dark Souls 3 ; My first souls game. Magnificent from start to finish, one of those games I couldn't wait to get home to keep on going.
  2. The Witness ; Fantastic piece, superbly crafted, the puzzles are great (I didn't even get that into the extra puzzles). The discussions around the game when everyone was playing it is what made this game such a great experience.
  3. Overwatch ; As a big old school FPS fan, OW brings back memories of Quake Arena and twitch based shooters, updated with hero mechanics and Blizzard polish.
  4. Forza Horizon 3 ; I wasn't a big fan of racing games... until FH3. Made me shell $500 dollars in racing sim gear and now I've diverged to Dirt Rally and more serious sim racers.
  5. Uncharted 4 ; This series.. just wow. I don't think any other series gets close to the production qualities of Uncharted (well, maybe TLOU lol). A great way to end the series with one of the best epilogues in gaming (and possibly other media as well).
  6. Gravity Rush Remastered ; I played this game on a whim recently, and even though it's a port of a VITA game, the presentation of the game, the main char, the weird story and excellent floating mechanics, makes this game a solid addition to my GOTY list in 2016.
  7. Clash Royale ; I like mobile gaming. The idea of having a game or two always with me on the go no matter where I am is appealing to me. Clash Royale is masterfully designed, with exciting short battles in a game where skill can trump level.
  8. Battlefield 1 ; Not gonna lie, Battlefield 4 is still my favorite BF game, but BF1 introduces some welcomed changes and nice environments, plus story bits that are memorable. Who would've though BF could have emotive moments?
  9. Doom ; It just felt great plowing through the campaign bunny hopping my way to victory along with that fantastic soundtrack.
  10. Gears of War 4 ; A cinematic rush from start to finish. Great cheesy dialogue. Mindless fun.


Jun 27, 2005
1. The Witness ; I almost forgot about this one, this is the game of the generation for me. Nothing comes close.

2. Uncharted 4 ; The best Uncharted game yet, incredible from start to finish, a tad low replayability but everything else is top-notch,

3. Inside ; It simply blew me away, way too short but at times it's still better than anything else the last few years.

4. No Man's Sky ; Hated by so many but I've played roughly 130 hours so far and I'm still having fun, the foundation patch and base building capabilities added so much to the game that it almost feels like a different game.