RDR2's start is slow, measured, but as the layers begin to unfold and the scope of the game's sandbox is known, you see just how impressive it all really is. This is easily a top candidate for one of the greatest open world RPGs of all time.
Crossing Souls may still be a game I revisit when I need to be comforted by the sheer joy of its characters, world, references, and music. Fourattic clearly loves the era as much as many of us do, and it shows. For all its references, the callbacks to different pop culture events never feel forced. Crossing Souls is a helluva fun ride, and a game I'd strongly recommend to anyone with a love of He-Man, coin-op arcades, and bitchin' synth tunes.
If you've been waiting since DQVIII for a Dragon Quest title to hit your PlayStation, you'll be glad it's finally here. It may not do a lot to push the genre forward, but like the game's design so clearly sets out to do, Dragon Quest XI is an homage to the JRPG and its fans. It's an immense, addictive, and joyful experience from the first moment on. I cannot recommend it enough.
Gris is not only beautiful, but it's also the perfect platformer for anyone who likes a challenge to be about more than reflexes or enemy slaughter. It's a thinking game, that also happens to have really good platforming at its core. It's neither too long nor too short, and worth every penny to experience the year's most beautiful visuals.
As you break into the second act of The Surge, the difficulty spikes but that’s expected. The first boss and the run up to it is just a taste of what’s to come. You have to learn new patterns, how to defeat new enemies, and that means you’re going to die some more. But the beauty of The Surge is that when you die you don’t ever feel like it’s the game being cheap on you. You know it’s something you did or didn’t do, and you’re eager to get back and try again. That’s what Lords of the Fallen was missing, and what The Surge gets just right. When combined with the crafting, gear, and intrigue of the story, The Surge comes into its own as not “just another Souls-like”. This is a great Action RPG and one of the best of the year so far in an already crowded 2017. If you like difficult Action RPGs, The Surge is your next addiction.
I could go on about Bloodborne, but I won't. I'll simply say that it's one of the best action RPGs I've ever played. It's brutally difficult, but never cheap, and it's one of the most atmospheric games in recent years. If you fancy hard games, if you love a good deep RPG that doesn't hold your hand, then you owe it to yourself to play this one. It's a shame it's only on the PS4, but frankly, Bloodborne is worth buying the system to play.
Tyranny is a game that must be played by any RPG fan. Some may knock its “old school” approach and style, but that’s about the only complaint that could be levied against such a wonderfully unique and deep RPG. It does everything Pillars of Eternity tried to do and it does so better. Consider Tyranny highly recommended and one of the best RPGs of the year.
I cannot wait to see where Morrowind's story ends, and where the next year of content takes us in Nirn. It's fun to think that this is just the first chapter in years of content ESO has up its sleeve. Talk about starting off with a bang.
Skyrim may be aging, but it's still easily one of the best RPGs ever made, and a pure joy to play on the Switch. Add-on support would be nice, and the PC version is still definitely the most "complete" version because of the modding, but if you've ever wished you could have Skyrim on the go - Bethesda and Nintendo just granted that wish.
When you finish Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus, you’re going to be elated. MachineGames’ sequel is probably one of the most cathartic experiences I’ve had in gaming. I’m frustrated as anyone with the rise of “White Power” in the US, and there’s no mistaking it, this game is in direct defiance of that bigoted ideal. If you find yourself on that side of the argument, you might not like this game. But if you’re not a total piece of shit, you’re going to love Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus.
Dishonored 2’s beautifully bleak world, incredibly level design, and top notch AI make for an altogether grand experience that will have fans of the classic Thief series truly enthralled. Its story is not the best narrative you’ve ever seen, and the voice acting (even of Vincent D’Onofrio and Rosario Dawson) is rough. Not Peter Dinklebot of Destiny Infamy bad, but it’s not great. That said, there’s little in Dishonored 2 that would keep me from recommending it for all fans of stealth action games. Simply put, it succeeds and surpasses where the sequel laid the groundwork.
I can’t recommend Darkest Dungeon enough. Its hallway crawling, madness suffering, darkness fighting, dungeon romping is some of the best RPG play I’ve had in recent years. The game shines on the Switch, despite a few minor setbacks in the font and controls. If you’re a veteran of the game or have never tried it, put it on your want list because Darkest Dungeon is very easily added to the Switch’s growing list of “Best Games”.
Just last week, Oxenfree was launched on the Nintendo Switch, bringing it to a whole new audience. As one of those new people, I am thrilled to have been given a chance to experience Night School Studio’s debut work. A tale of choice, friendship, communication, and what we do if we’re given a chance to alter events… Oxenfree is a narrative masterpiece.
Horizon Zero Dawn won’t be remembered for being superbly unique. It’ll be remembered because it’s so well-crafted, lovingly cared for, and downright stupendously executed. It doesn’t chart new territory in gameplay, but it charts plenty of new ground with its world, characters, and more. Guerilla took a major risk shifting IPs and genres, and with Horizon New Dawn they’ve created a universe I can’t wait to explore again. If you own a PlayStation 4, this is a game for you. And if you don’t? Maybe it’s time you bought one.
As it was in 2016, D-Pad Studios has crafted an excellent adventure that should be played by all. If you’ve already experienced Owlboy on another platform, there’s nothing here you haven’t yet seen. But if, like me, you never did play it before – now is the perfect time to experience one of the best indie adventures in modern memory.
Now, if you missed the original Splatoon, which most people did because not many really owned a Wii U, you owe it to yourself to pick up Splatoon 2. Not only is it better than its forebear in every way, it’s simply one of the best shooters released so far in 2017. It’s a must buy.