These are the games I played in 2016 that I liked/loved/enjoyed... what have you.
I'm a life long id Software fan. But, I will admit I was a bit worried about Doom 4 when all the rumors of the development troubles started leaking out.
But, thankfully, all those rumors and worries can be thrown away. As DOOM (2016) is beyond fantastic. It's the best game I played this year, the best shooter I've played in several... and it's just fun.
It's fast paced, gorgeous... engaging and gripping. And self aware enough to give it enough snark and black comedy to offset the copious amounts of blood and gore.
Initial PC release issues be damned, this is how you do a sequel. It builds upon everything the first game did.
The art maintains the same soft, water color painting style of the original... only with added detail and life. It looks familiar yet new.
And, then gameplay. The area were you can see the game got the most attention. Improved stealth and non-lethal combat options. Better enemy AI to make you play more carefully.
And some truly brilliant gameplay sequences that I don't want to spoil for anyone. If you like the first one... this is simply a must play.
Deus Ex: Mankind Divided
Same as with DisHonored II. An amazing sequel that builds on and improves upon the first game. Add in gorgeous visuals and the same amazing attention to detail.
Once again playing as Adam Jensen and dropped into a conspiracy theory terrorist threat. Is it better then Human Revolution? I can't say. But, I will say... if you liked DX:HR... you must experience this.
Aww Remedy. The brilliant, quirky little studio in Finland. How I look forward to your games. And they have never disappointed.
Yes, QB had it's issues at release. But, thankfully, the STEAM release is a far better product. Gorgeous visuals, amazing motion capture and voice performances.
And an engaging, sci-fi story balanced perfectly on the line or seriously dramatic... and made for TV camp.
Shadow Warrior 2
Flying Wild Hog are quickly growing into one of my favorite studios. With great original releases like Hard Reset, and fantastic new takes on classics with Shadow Warrior, they have a voice and style all their own.
And SW2 continues that growth.
I enjoyed the previous SW a bit more, but there's still a lot to love about this second outing. Lo Wang is still hilariously oblivious to the world around him.
Combat is fast, brutal and filled with chunky, heavy weapons.
It's held back slightly by a loot system that seems more occupied with quantity instead of quality drops. And, a cliff hanger ending that only annoys instead of entices.
Rise of the Tomb Raider
I was not a Tomb Raider fan originally. Didn't like any of the original games. But, the 2013 reboot really grabbed my attention, I really enjoyed it.
And, I was so happy to find that RotTR was even better.
Amazing visuals, a gripping story... great combat and exploration. And, thankfully, Lara still feels like a character and not a lazy sex object.
Those, are my top games for 2016.
But, I played a LOT more throughout the year. Titles I really, really enjoyed or liked... to possibly even loved. Games like Titanfall 2, which surprised me by being a brilliantly fun, fact paced shooter with some amazing variety.
Or, Gears of War 4. Which I've only just now started playing, and couldn't really place until I've finished it... at least once.
To Mafia III, which impressed incredibly with it's gripping, intense and mesmerizing story. But faltered slightly with it's core gameplay.
Or 3DRealms and Interceptor's latest release, Rad Rodgers, which surprised me with it's solid platforming, colorful and beautiful visuals... and good PC release.
And... to games I just didn't like.
Mirror's Edge: Catalyst. A game I was truly excited for, only to be wishing for it to end the more I played. Tedious gameplay, an empty, lifeless world. With pretentious, unlikable characters and a story so "cool" about "Taking down the MAN!" I simply could not give a shit.
A massive disappointment. And, even getting it on sale, still felt ripped off.
Also, Bombshell. Now, I know this may be a "No no" considering this is the 3DRealms forums.
But, first off, let me say... I've never been a fan of top down shooters. Never. And, while Bombshell does look fantastic. It's bright, colorful and there's a lot of effort put into it's visuals. The game itself has far too many rough edges. The combat simply didn't grab me, and the voice acting was terrible.
Add in the rough/rocky release condition... I just did not enjoy the game. But, I was so glad to play Rad Rodgers and find a much better, more polished and well made experience. RR is one I'm definitely interested in and look forward to it's future episodes.
I'm looking forward to 2017. With amazing looking releases like Resident Evil 7 or PREY and a new South Park title. I'm really hoping we get some amazing, quality titles in the coming year.
And the trend started this year, with top quality PC releases (DOOM, Titanfall 2 and Gears 4) continues with even more amazingly polished, quality PC titles.