2015 has been a year filled with new things for me and my family. I got a new job that has allowed me to spend more time at home and subsequently more time playing games. I also picked up a PS4 which is new as I’ve always waited till a system was “on it’s way out” to pick it up on the cheap and have an extensive library of games to play. As the year has drawn to a close and I’ve spent weeks thinking over the good times, you are about to read the list of the best times. These are my top ten games of two thousand fifteen.
Before 2015, I hadn’t played a Guitar Hero game since Guitar Hero 2 on my PS2. I was a late adopter of the PS3 and plastic instrument games were on their way out of the market. Guitar Hero Live has been a great surprise to me though by adding a new button layout and old school MTV like service that keeps me interested every time I pick up the new guitar.
Like most people, I was completely blind sighted by this game when it was added to PS+ over the summer. I mean, c’mon…car soccer? Let’s just say this is a game that you have to play for yourself, it’s super addictive and easy to play in short or incredibly long play sessions making it great for any day I wanted to play it.
Short Peace is a collection of short films from some astounding Japanese animators and Ranko Tsukigime’s Longest Day was Suda 51’s addition to the bunch. As with the films that accompany this game, it is short in length but exploding with content. It starts as a side scrolling platformer but takes twists and turns that not even the most demented of minds will see coming. It was truly one of the best things I placed myself in front of this year!
I love Japanese rhythm games and this has to be one of the best I’ve played. Super cute chibi art style, fantastic soundtrack, touch and button modes for each song, built in chip tune synthesizer, choreography studio for making dances, a FULL PuyoPuyo game…there is an INSANE amount of great content in here to enjoy!
It took Doctor Who to suck me into a ‘toys to life’ game and holy cow, this game is fantastic! From the very start, playing as Batman fighting the Wicked Witch of The West in the world of Oz, my son and I were glued to the TV. We’ve since traveled to Springfield with Homer Simpson, Aperture Labs with Chell, Back to the Future with Marty McFly and across time and space with The Doctor! Countless hours have been logged in here and we still have tons more to go.
This is the first adventure game I’ve played in a long while and it showed it’s age with puzzles that didn’t make much sense in the beginning. However, after finding my groove and getting fully into the amazing world, I found myself struggling to put my Vita down! This is the first game I have ever successfully achieved a Platinum Trophy in and to me that says a lot about how much fun I had playing and replaying it as I sucked down everything it had to offer.
4. Taiko no Tatsujin: V Vesion (PS Vita)
So, I imported another Japanese rhythm game on the Vita… Taiko no Tatsujin: V Version is the most addictive and easy to play rhythm game I’ve played all year. With tons of songs and costumes to unlock and even a full featured RPG that I tediously worked my way through using Google Translate on my iPhone, I have enjoyed every second playing this game.
3. Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate (3DS)
This is the first game I’ve ever played in the Monster Hunter series and I was pleasantly surprised to find out that they’re amazing. From my original outside perspective, I saw this game as an endless button masher with tons of random loot drops in the same vein of Diablo II. However, I stand before you as someone who’s spent over 150hrs (mostly with Ethan, Jason and Stewart) learning attack patterns, weapon styles and building myself to be the best hunter I can be all the while with a smile on my face!
2. Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance (PS3)
Prior to Revengeance, the only Metal Gear game I’d played was Ac!d…this is WAY different. Super fast action filled fights with larger than life enemies and some killer metal to keep the adrenaline flowing is about the best way for me to describe this game. The story is also nuts and there are nods to pop culture that made me squeal like a little kid. Platinum games really knocked this out of the park and I had a blast!
1. Yakuza 4 & 5 (PS3)
Yes, I’m cheating and giving my number one slot to two games at the same time! I played through Yakuza 4 in October and was immediately sucked into the heartfelt story all wile being overcome by the Japanese simulator it came bundled with. I spend like 20+ hours working on my Pachinko skills and countless hours just simply admiring the amount of care put into recreating the cities I explored. Yakuza 4 also had the amazing ‘reminisce’ feature that made it the perfect entry point for the series by allowing me to go back and watch almost two hours of story from Yakuza 1, 2 & 3 leaving no break as I started my journey. I laughed, I cried, my wife got sucked in and we hugged it out as the story drew to a close! Nothing else compared to the time I spent here until Yakuza 5 came out.
Yakuza 5 picks up right where things left off in 4 and from what I’ve played so far, has TONS more to offer than it’s predecessors ever could have! Even though I’ve barely scratched the surface of what this game has to offer, I’ve enjoyed every moment. There are LOADS of side missions to do apart from the main story and I’m spending my time on every one of them. The cities are even larger more detailed than they were in 4 with tons of interesting things to do. I’ve played Taiko no Tatsujin in a simulated Club SEGA as well as a faithfully updated Virtua Fighter 2 with ONLINE PLAY! I’ve also spent time in virtual restaurants looking at beautiful dishes of food while I read their descriptions getting ideas for things to cook at home, and hunted animals in the snowy mountains in a mini game that could rival anything Cabela has ever created. I can’t even begin to describe the pure joy I have every time I sit down in front of this game!!!