We’ve spent countless hours arguing about it. Many bones have been broken. Teeth have been shattered. Friendships torn to pieces. But we finally have our Game of the Year 2016 list ready and raring to go. It’s actually our very first Game of the Year feature, too, as we’ve only been around since January 24th, 2016. Yes, we’ve got our birthday marked on the calendar and we’re expecting your birthday wishes in the form of e-cards. Don’t disappoint us…
It’s been a year full of truly great games, and perhaps a list of just ten isn’t enough. Alas, that’s the constraints we’re forced to work with, so that’s what we’re going to do. Anyway, enough babble from us, here’s our Game of the Year 2016, along with nine other contenders.
#10 – No Man’s Sky – PS4
Divisive? Definitely, but we found ourselves roaming the galaxy for hours on end. The secret to the centre of the universe (or was it galaxy? Who knows…) wasn’t that exciting if we’re being honest, but the journey there was something else. Hello Games took a leap of faith with No Man’s Sky and players took one in buying into Sean Murray’s slightly bullshit PR on the game. That being said, it’s still a cracking title that’s worth a go if you’re a wannabe space captain.
#9 – Tethered – PS4/PSVR
PSVR is still a fairly new platform yet it’s already jam-packed with greatness. Sure there are some absolute turds, but Tethered is a fine example of what can be done by a studio that cares about a) its product, b) its customer and c) the platform. We were blown away when we first got our hands on in Tethered and we’re still wowed now.
#8 – Dark Souls 3 – PS4
Who doesn’t love being punished by their own video game? Dark Souls 3 brought the franchise to a conclusion (or did it?) that fans were more than happy with. Admittedly, not everyone here at Pure PlayStation has played Dark Souls 3, but that’s just because they either don’t posses the skill the beat the game, or they’re just total wimps. It’s recommended from us, so grab it now if you can as it’s pretty darn cheap.
#7 – Titanfall 2 – PS4
Poor Titanfall 2. We genuinely enjoyed it in our review, so much so that other members of the team have since gained their pilot’s license and have joined the battle. It’s a shame it got overshadowed by the two other big-name shooters this year, but it’s still a cracking shooter by all accounts. It’s got it all, really: a solid single-player story that’s not total dog poo and a multiplayer that hasn’t caught gaming aids – microtransactions and loot boxes. We’ll see you on the battlefield, pilot. (Dang it. We said the ‘B’ word in front of Titanfall 2.)
#6 – Mafia 3 – PS4
Critics were not too kind to Hangar 13’s debut game, Mafia 3. We weren’t so harsh, though, and were able to look past the game’s obvious problems to find a genuinely thrilling tale being told during an era that’s rarely explored in video games. Racial tension, mob bosses, murder, Mafia 3 had it all, and then some more. Plus, you can slide over the hood of a car like a true hero from the 70s.
#5 – Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End – PS4
Nathan Drake is finally being put out to rest. Four home console games, one handheld prequel and a piss-poor mobile entry have had Drake outstay his welcome. It was a fitting end the series and the gameplay was top-notch, or at least it was when you weren’t being force-fed themes from the overbearing writers. We digress. Despite being a little disappointing in some aspects, Uncharted 4 still managed to make our eyes bleed with some quality visuals and the trademark set pieces. We just wish Drake and Sully had been a bit more funnier. Basically, what we’re trying to say is: “we miss you, Henning.”
#4 – RIGS: Mechanized Combat League – PS4/PSVR
PSVR has still got a lot to do to win over the general gaming crowd, but we’re happy enough with what’s on offer right now. First-person shooter fans will feel right at home with RIGS, or at least they will once they’ve overcome the initial ‘WTF?!’ that’s inherent with VR. It’s fast paced and just built for competitive play. Seriously, our Kyle lives in RIGS’ world. We’ve forgotten what the top half of his head looks like… For PSVR owners looking for some proper good shooting action, RIGS will do you well. Remember that chunder bucket, mind.
#3 – The Witcher 3: Blood & Wine (DLC) – PS4
A somewhat controversial choice at Pure PlayStation HQ, but after spending many hours beating each other to a pulp, we’ve finally conceded that The Witcher 3’s Blood & Wine DLC deserves a spot on this prestigious (ha!) list. Hold on, let us explain: it’s awesome. Explained. Seriously, it’s bigger and meatier than some actual full-priced releases. We’re pretty sure CD Projekt could have released this as a standalone disc release and we’d still be happy with it.
2# – DOOM – PS4
We’ve all played some version of DOOM by now, haven’t we? The original game can run on a pacemaker by now so it’s inexcusable for any gamer to not have at least some passing knowledge of what DOOM is. Actually… This year’s DOOM pretty much kicked everything we knew into the river and then peed on it for fun. Bethesda’s latest attempt didn’t just wow players with awesome visuals and a rock-steady performance, but it was actually massive amounts of fun. Like, you’d skip sleep, meals, family events, funerals, weddings, work, and whatever else just to see some more blood and guts fly around on your screen. Alright, it sounds pretty grim, but this is one bloody awesome game.
#1 – Watch Dogs 2 – PS4
Yep, Ubisoft dug itself into a shitty little hole with the original Watch Dogs, but the firm has crawled its way through the muck and come out cleaner on the other side. Watch Dogs 2 isn’t just a simple continuation of the slightly (massively!) dull Watch Dogs; it’s a complete reworking. Everything that dragged the first game down and had us stamping on children has been banished, much to the relief of the parents among us, while everything that worked well has been ramped up to a new level of awesome. Hacking your way around the fictionalised version of San Francisco is genuinely a pleasure, and tackling the missions and side-content proves to be a genuine workout for the brain. Despite a few technical hiccups at launch – and a few that still remain in the performance department – Watch Dogs 2 is this year’s best game by a country mile. Whatever that means…
Now we know that our list is probably going to tick a few people off, but don’t fret about it. We’ve got a lovely comments section down below (that’s monitored, before you think about using naughty words) and we invite you to tell us what your Game of the Year for 2016 is. Go on ‘en. Bugger off.
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Chris has been writing about gaming news for far too long, and now he’s doing it even more. A true PlayStation know-it-all, Chris has owned just about every Sony console that ever existed. Trophies are like crack to this fella. (Bronze trophies, that is – he only has one Platinum.)