This year has been a huge year for sequels and more of the same, but sometimes there are developers out there that still have a creative bone in their body. Hopefully all these developers will see the light and understand that gamers want something new and never experienced before. At BagoGames we thought long and hard about what title surprised us and took us out of the common releases this year.
Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE
I’ve been a big fan of the Persona series for a while, they’re those games I love to tinker with but never seem to beat. Recently I’ve just been introduced to the Fire Emblem series, so when I heard we were getting a merged game of the two series I was excited. I had enjoyed the previous Nintendo mashup of Dynasty Warriors and Legend of Zelda and couldn’t wait to give this a shot. I know more about Persona than Fire Emblem and it is nice to learn a bit about Fire Emblem’s characters and such. I enjoyed the throwbacks to Persona, I heard the menu option chime and was awash with nostalgia, so wonderful. The game also had a very stylist look and America Idol feel, I enjoyed how “out there” the game was and it quenched my thirst for all things Persona until 5 comes out.
Runner Up: The Division
Criminal Girls 2
Perhaps unfair, but reviewers go in with expectations. Otherwise this category would not exist. So when I saw Criminal Girls 2 creep on the horizon, I admit I expected to flay it apart with the verbal equivalent of a cat-o-nine tails. It really had the makings of a fan-service title with a layer of creepiness on top.
What I didn’t expect was some of the most interesting writing this year in this package. This is as well as witnessing one of the best way I’ve seen to liven up the RPG grind in years. In the end, I gave it a glowing review. Sure there is the semi-creepy subject matter (they really do seem under-aged and in a S&M environment), but beyond that lies some startlingly excellent ideas that left me gob-smacked.
Doom defied the odds, surprising most people when it was actually a ton of fun. Understanding that a no-nonsense approach was the best way to go, the game’s fast-paced, brutal action felt like playing a Doom game in 2016. Which is a hell of a feat. By far one of my favourite aspects was its use of verticality, mixed with glory kills that created a risk/reward situation in almost any combat scenario. Doom took no prisoners, and that mentality is what pushed it beyond just being another derivative shooter.
Tokyo Mirage Sessions # FE
When FE/SMT was first announced, little was known of what kind of game it would be. A crossover game that featured Fire Emblem and Shin Megami Tensei, it seemed so incredibly ludicrous that it was hard to believe that it was in development. Ludicrous is probably the best word to describe the team up, but in an enjoyably weird way. With a world more focused in the style of Shin Megami Tensei, especially with a quirky young cast of characters, but with a numerous nods to Fire Emblem and little appearances throughout, the game was quite an adventure to say the least. One of the highlights however was the great J-pop soundtrack, with some outstanding tracks featured throughout. The Wii U never really got the library that it deserved, but will go out with some solid picks, including this JRPG that hopefully gets another chance to shine on the Switch.
Runner Up: Thumper
Those are a few of the games that surprised us this year at BagoGames. What games surprised you this year? Feel free to let us know in the comments or by tweeting at us @BagoGames!
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