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The Best & Worst Games of 2016

by William Schwartz

Best Game of 2016

game-of-the-year-2016-uncharted-4-a-theifs-end

Game of the Year 2016

Winner: Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End

Honorable Mentions: Overwatch, Dishonored 2, Hitman

If you take every critic’s score of every game released in 2016 Uncharted 4 comes up as the game of the year.  There’s a pretty explicit reason for this.  No game released this year matched Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End as a total package.  A Thief’s End delivered the most impressive console visuals we’ve seen this generation.  We got a chance to see the more human side of treasure hunter Nathan Drake, and weren’t just thrust into another adventure for lost artifacts.  It touched on numerous subjects that resonate with players  —  Drake’s relationships with his significant other, his friends, his family, and his enemies.   Great story, great action, great gameplay, and of course great visuals — Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End was the whole package.

There just wasn’t a single game we could point to that did it better than Naughty Dog did in Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End.

Each in its own right is subjective of course, and there may have been a game here or there that did things better in some places.  Though looking down the list there just wasn’t a single game we could point to that did it better than Naughty Dog did in Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End.

This entry in the Uncharted series didn’t exactly break the mold compared to previous games.  At its core, it’s still a cover shooter.  It’s still the video game equivalent of Indiana Jones without Harrison Ford.  It still relies on a lot of climbing mechanics, gunfights and puzzle solving to fill in the gaps between story exposition and bombastic sequences.  But that formula works.  The big moments are memorable and unrivaled.  The characters are believable, likeable and villainous.

Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End is a classic, a generational benchmark.

Read on for our Staff EOY lists

AOTF Staff GOTY of the Year Lists

game-of-the-year-2016-staff-picks

Staff Game of the Year Top-10 Lists

William’s Top Games of 2016

I might not be in aggreance with everyone here when I say that 2016 was a pretty solid year for gaming.  I think this is especially true when you look at the incredible slate of AAA titles released this year.  We saw some of the best franchises in gaming bring their absolute A-game to old franchises.  Uncharted, Watch Dogs, Dishonored, Hitman, Dark Souls, Deus Ex… each of these games is arguably the best we’ve ever seen from the series’.

2016 saw some of the best games we’ve seen for established franchises

Then on the other hand, we saw brand new ideas brought to life.  Blizzard’s Overwatch brought fun multiplayer to the masses, with team-based shooting that wasn’t the same old tired formulas that we’ve been seeing from the likes of Call of Duty, Battlefield, and others.

We saw indies stay strong with entries like The Witness, Inside, Darkest Dungeon, Enter the Gungeon, Hyper Light Drifter and others.  We saw Virtual Reality take a step towards the mass market and with that more polished experiences.

And while this is a top-ten for games that were released this year, we saw older games get new life.  Companies like Ubisoft and Microsoft incessantly updated popular games like Halo and Rainbow Six Siege.

We saw controversial risks taken with games like Hitman, which delivered an episodic AAA title that worked.  The games industry took some chances this year, that mostly paid off.  We’ll probably never get rid of the bullshit that surrounds marketing and games, but this year seemed better than others when it came to what was actually delivered at the point of purchase.  That said, the industry also moved ever so slightly away from the remasters that arrived en masse at the beginning of this generation.

The cherry on top?  Games actually worked at launch this year.  A revelation compared to previous years, but not exactly an accomplishment.  Hopefully the trends of developers taking fan feedback into consideration, extending the life of their games, and delivering working products continues in 2017.

As the EIC of Attack of the Fanboy, I want to thank anyone who reads this for visiting our little site.  Without further ado, here are my Top-10 games of 2016.

10) Darkest Dungeon
9) Deus Ex: Mankind Divided
8) Enter The Gungeon
7) Dark Souls 3
6) DOOM
5) Watch Dogs 2
4) Hitman
3) Dishonored 2
2) Overwatch
1) Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End

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