Sunday, January 1, 2017

Games I Finished in 2016

I tried hard to clear my game backlog in 2016. And I even succeeded at it for few months. Thanks to that, I beat a handful more titles than in 2015 -- 27 in total if I am counting them right. Sales have brought the backlog back a bit again but such is life.

I started using last summer and set its default sale alert to 75% off or more. With Steam's flash deals gone, games do not seem go that low very often. In fact, none of the 19 games on my Steam wishlist had a higher than 67% off discount during the Winter Sale. But I can wait; I am patient.

There are quite a few potentially really good games I look forward to finally getting to play in 2017 if/when their prices drop low enough. Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, Dishonored 2, Divinity: Original Sin, Dragon Age: Inquisition, Pillars of Eternity, and The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt to name the ones I am most excited about. Mass Effect Andromeda is also getting released in spring. I might be buying that on release. It would also be sweet if I could find a 50% off deluxe edition pre-order like I did with Mass Effect 3.

Anyway, I again divided the games I finished into 4 tiers (alphabetical order within). The division may be somewhat arbitrary but the general idea is that the more I enjoyed a title, the higher tier it is in. The names can be clicked for each individual post.


Borderlands 2

First person looter shooter. A huge improvement from the first game, though still designed around co-op. Especially environment variety and writing became a lot better in this sequel.

Darksiders II
Third person ARPG. Fewer puzzles and more loot compared to the first game. Absolutely wonderful soundtrack by Jesper Kyd.


Alien: Isolation
First person survival horror stealth game. Very authentic atmosphere in line with the first Alien movie. Suffers from a limited save system.

Blades of Time
Third person hack and slash. A very entertaining 10-hour experience.

Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel
First person looter shooter. Not quite on the level of the second game but enjoyable nonetheless.

Dark Messiah of Might and Magic
First person action/stealth game. Dishonored's predecessor -- gameplay quite dynamic. Limited by the clunky Source engine.

Fallout: New Vegas
Post-apocalyptic RPG. Obsidian's largely successful attempt to improve from Bethesda's Fallout 3.

Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon
FPS. '80s VHS vision of the future. Entertaining enough for its short duration.

Hunted: The Demon's Forge
Third person hack and slash/shooter. A co-op game that works with an AI companion too. Quite enjoyable.

The Lord of the Rings: War in the North
ARPG. A fine little meant-for-co-op game. Faithful to the setting.

Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor
Third person action-adventure. High production values and easy to play, but ultimately a shallow open world experience.

Post-apocalyptic FPS with lots of racing. Fun action and slight on story. PC port quality questionable.

FPS with time-manipulations mechanics. Not very deep an experience but still enjoyable.

Styx: Master of Shadows
Third person stealth game. Poor writing but solid mechanics. Bit more depth in terms of items and abilities would have made this one a great title.

Victor Vran
Isometric ARPG. An all right experience. Not very memorable apart from Doug Cockle's voice.


Aarklash: Legacy
A squad-based RTS sold as RPG. Real-time with active pause. Quite tactical but not much else.

Alpha Protocol
Third person shooter/stealth/RPG. A somewhat unpolished spy game. A lot of choices to affect the story -- allegedly.

Blood Knights
Third person hack and slash. Meant for co-op but works in single player. Unforgivably short.

First person looter shooter. A lot of rough edges. Single player enjoyment suffers from the game being heavily designed around co-op. Distinct visuals.

The Bureau: XCOM Declassified
Third person shooter. A poor man's Mass Effect.

Third person hack and slash. A spectacle fighter inspired by Zelda's design philosophy. All right though the PC port was a lazy one.

Just Cause 3
Third person action shooter. Barely improves from Just Cause 2. Many technical issues.

Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II - Chaos Rising
RTS. Small improvements over Dawn of War II's campaign. Interesting corruption mechanic. Some mysterious technical issues that may hamper one's enjoyment.

Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II - Retribution
RTS. Different kind of technical issues. Campaign not as good as in Chaos Rising.


Third person vampire stealth game. A tedious and monotonous experience in the long run. Another Doug Cockle protagonist.

First person stealth game. Probably my worst game purchase in 2016. A school project level game that oversells itself and tries to pay homage to System Shock 2.

Velvet Assassin
Third person stealth game. Very bare bones, especially on game mechanics.

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