This year – 2015 – has been one of the finest years for games ever. The new console really hit their strides, and we saw some superb games really start to leverage the power that they offered. At the same time, the independent developers really started to break out and produce games that are creative and artistic, but every bit as refined as the finest of the AAA-titles.
Every year we run a series of awards, celebrating the finest games that we’ve seen across each platform, and a number of key categories (art, narrative, sound, and so forth). Each day we’ll unveil the winner, as well as the key runner’s up, one category per day.
What were your favourite games of the year in each category? Be sure to let us know in the comments!
In 2015 we saw a trend for more Japanese developers and publishers to begin dropping their games on the PC platform. The openness of Steam has helped to make titles that were previously console-only available to whole other legion of fans, and that’s a good thing in our opinion.
Life is Strange
Without a doubt one of the finest narrative games ever created, Life is Strange is a breathtakingly intense teenage narrative, wrapped within some time-bending fantasy tropes. The two come together to leave us with a game filled with moral challenge and consequence, but also a deeply personal coming of age story, that is told with a deftness and maturity that left us all with great hope for the development of games as a storytelling device.
We liked Fairy Fencer F when it first landed on the PlayStation 3. But it’s been a game that has grown with us more with each time we replay it. And now it’s on PC, so hopefully its fanbase grows even further. Coming to us from Compile Heart, the team behind Hyperdimension Neptunia, it’s a somewhat more serious JRPG that its better-known satirical stablemate, but is every bit as charming, and has the same deeply enjoyable combat system that has kept us playing Compile Heart games for years now.
For years we have been worrying that Koei Tecmo had given up localising its Romance of the Three Kingdoms and Nobunaga’s Ambition titles, with release after release staying firmly in Japan. But then the best news in some time happened; Koei took a risk and released Nobunaga’s Ambition: Sphere of Influence. And what a game it is, with deep, deep strategy and hundreds of hours worth. We can only hope it’s a success to reward Koei’s willingness to take a risk on it.