It’s that time of the year when we start dishing out awards for the best games released in the past 12 months. Rather than pick one winner for the whole of PowerUp! or take a vote, we’re simply going to give you our own personal best games of 2016.
First cab off the rank is Luke with his (very) PC-centric list.
Battlefield 1 – PC
World War I has never been presented in such a beautiful and brutal way in gaming. Graphically stunning, BF1 moves the series back towards its historical roots and away from the slightly too spammy modern weapons of the last few instalments. Gameplay is solid and satisfying ,as are the maps. The server browser being reintegrated back into the game is also another great move. I’m really looking forward to the implementation of server rental and customisation for some good old fashioned rifles only matches.
Starbound – PC
Starting off as a successfully crowd funded game in 2012, Starbound entered early access on Steam in 2013 as a very early beta. With regular and often bountiful updates, the 2D exploration and crafting game flourished and was finally released in July this year. Starbound is a procedurally generated universe filled with all sorts of biomes and races on various planets. NPCa abound with quests and the main storyline is pretty fun. There is an overarching story line with a good sense of humour and backstories for the various playable races. I personally enjoy the base building and finding new crafting recipes for items to add to my ridiculous home castle.
Overwatch – PC
Overwatch is a lighthearted, easy to learn, but hard to master team shooter that I have been waiting for since Team Fortress 2 became the hat mad, free-to-play cesspit it is today. With a decent sized cast of fantastically designed and (usually) balanced characters, Overwatch provides both a great competitive and or casual shooter experience for just about anyone who is remotely interested in the genre. It’s great to find a game where team play is key and going out of your way to just get kills never results in as good a score as helping to achieve the objective.
Final Fantasy IX – PC
A favourite of mine on Playstation 1, Final Fantasy IX was re-released this year for PC. A classic late PS1 era JRPG, the re-release sees some graphical upgrades, mainly on character textures. As well as the questionable inclusion of a cheat menu. Bonus points for playing well with a PS4 controller on PC for ultimate nostalgia.
Magic: The Gathering – “Kaladesh” Expansion
Kaladesh brings a long needed flavour refresh to MtG after what seems like years of the dreary Gothic/Horror theme of Innistrad and the almost immediate return to that plane. Kaladesh has a more optimistic steampunk inspired theme with an emphasis on artifacts and brings with it some interesting and possibly game changing new mechanics. Energy and Vehicles seem to have great potential and Vehicles in particular already seem to be taking over the standard format. I’m greatly looking forward to the next expansion in the block, “Aether Revolt” to continue the themes and expand on the mechanics introduced in “Kaladesh.”
Fortnite beta – PC
Fortnite is a base defence game mashed together with exploration and base building. I spent a fair bit of time playing a couple of the alpha tests and though I can’t write much about it, I can say that I really enjoyed the game and can’t wait for a release.
There you have it. Luke’s top picks for 2016. Are yours similar? DO you disagree vehemently? Let us know in the comments below and keep an eye out for the rest of our picks for GOTY 2016.