Flickering Myth’s writing team pick their favourite video games of 2015…
There’s no doubt about it, 2015 has been a pretty incredible year for games. In the past 12 months we’ve returned to the wasteland in Fallout 4, saved Gotham one last time with The Dark Knight in Batman: Arkham Knight, Snake returned for one last epic under the watchful eye of Hideo Kojima in MGSV : The Phantom Pain, we’ve blasted our way through some epic battles in a galaxy, far, far away in Star Wars Battlefront, and embarked on epic adventures in The Witcher 3. The big three all released their own heavy hitting exclusives with Microsoft dropping Halo 5: Guardians, Sony unleashing the nightmarish Bloodborne, and Nintendo wading in with the wildly chaotic Smash Bros Wii U.
On top of all that goodness, we’ve also had some genuinely excellent surprises in the likes of Dying Light, Until Dawn and Mad Max. Away from the AAA limelight, smaller scale games also shined big and bright in 2015, with games like Life is Strange and Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture pulling our heartstrings and engaging our minds, while Rocket League came out of nowhere to assault our senses with its riotous fusion of acrobatic cars and football, which really shouldn’t work but absolutely did. To say we’ve been spoiled for choice this year would be a bit of an understatement.
We here at Flickering Myth love video games, they’re why we love doing what we do on this site. So without further ado, here is the Flickering Myth team’s top games of 2015.
Villordsutch, Senior Games Writer
10. Final Fantasy 7 (Re-Release)
9. Sublevel Zero
8. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
6. Call of Duty: Black Ops 3
5. Prison Architect
4. Life is Strange
3. Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture
2. Borderlands: The Handsome Collection
1. Rocket League
It’s been an extremely tough challenge for myself to pick a “Game of the Year!” for there have been numerous standout moments along this pixelated path, passing fantastic tranquil releases that grabbed my soul like Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture and Life is Strange, and we’ve also seen major AAA titles like Fallout 4 and MGSV. However my number one game – that I’ve returned to frequently – is Rocket League!
Bizarrely for me – as anyone that slightly knows me – I can’t abide football, yet Rocket League with its metal-twisting, car-mangling mayhem, plus the added bonus of looking exceptionally cool by sheer fluke has won a permanent place on my Dashboard; along with the constant updates from the developers, this game continues to pull me back weekly. Rocket League has gone on to grab 8 million followers across the PlayStation and Steam networks and with the Xbox system set in its sights come 2016 it is only going to grow stronger – Villordsutch
Kris Wall, Senior Games Writer
5. Fallout 4
4. Until Dawn
3. Dying Light
2. Star Wars Battlefront
1. Batman: Arkham Knight
I couldn’t really nail down a solid 10 this year as my time to play games fluctuated wildly, and with titles like MGSV and Fallout 4 offering hundreds of hours of gameplay, I had to pick and choose my games carefully. One game that absolutely didn’t lose out on my attention this year was Arkham Knight, I’d planned for its release well in advance by booking a week off work just to play it………and what an incredibly thrilling and breathtaking week in Gotham that turned out to be.
To date, Arkham Knight is one of only a handful of games that I’ve ever given a perfect score, and I stand by it. From the moment I took control of The Dark Knight, crouched high above Gotham, the city sprawled out in all directions around you, it had me completely and utterly hooked. The twists and turns of the story up until the reveal of the Arkham Knight himself, right up to the final moments of the game had me completely engrossed. The game looked absolutely gorgeous, the combat hit harder than ever before and I fell completely in love with the power of the Batmobile, even if it did annoyingly start to lean more towards tank heavy combat, the way Rocksteady had incorporated it into Batman’s arsenal along with the sheer thrill of tearing around Gotham at speed was just incredible.
I’ve easily sank over 50+ hours into Arkham Knight, exploring every nook and cranny of Gotham, discovering its secrets, hunting down every single Riddler trophy, completing all it’s challenges and finishing it to 100%. I can’t praise Arkham Knight enough, I knew and expected it to be good but it completely leveled all my expectations at every turn and blew me away from start to finish. An absolutely superb conclusion to a brilliant series, raising the bar into stratosphere for whoever dares to take on the license next. Well played, Rocksteady, well played.
Tom Powter, Staff Writer
10.Rainbow Six: Siege
9. Assassins Creed: Syndicate
8. Rocket League
6. Super Mario Maker
5. Halo 5: Guardians
4. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
3. Gears Of War: Ultimate Edition
2. Star Wars Battlefront
At the start of Bloodborne’s expansion, a mysterious character named Simon notices that you still have your sanity, and therefore logically assumes that, by entering this twisted world, you must have simply taken a wrong turn. However, the world of Yharnam is nothing if not enticing, and as a hunter, you must take to its streets. You must cleanse the beastly scourge. Strangely, you find yourself compelled to, as though an unearthly chattering in your ear demands you do so.
You see, Bloodborne has a peculiar way of sticking in your mind. I found myself obsessively thinking about the game when I wasn’t playing it, detailing a previous boss fight that I had been crushed by over and over only to pinpoint the exact strategy that would eventually work for me. Bloodborne masterfully fuses repetition, risk and reward, leading to one of the most gratifying games I have ever played. Being squashed by a terrifying boss can be frustrating – but rising above it and defeating it thanks to your own pure skill is a thrill no game matches. No other game this year has so completely enthralled and absorbed me in its lore either. The gruesome, gothic city of Yharnam and its deranged surroundings paint an inescapable story, one that burrows deep into your mind and forces you into the depths of depravity.
Bloodborne is so much more than Dark Souls with a Victorian skin and a faster combat system. It’s a commitment, to a deep and lovingly-crafted game. Every inch of the world drips with atmosphere, every insane character oozes personality and very soon, you’ll find yourself questioning the world, the characters and whether or not any other game will make you feel quite the same again. If you choose to enter Yharnam, you’re in for the greatest gaming experience of the year – Tom Powter
James Garcia, Staff Writer
5. Mad Max
4. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
3. Batman: Arkham Knight
2. Fallout 4
1. Star Wars Battlefront
Star Wars Battlefront is a flawed game, and perhaps not the “best” game of 2015. It is, however, one hell of a fun time, especially since it arrived at the peak of the Star Wars nostalgia wave that rocked 2015 to its core. As a lifelong Star Wars fan, and one who’s spent countless hours playing other games set in that galaxy far, far away (many of those devoted to Battlefront’s two predecessors), I can say that Battlefront succeeds in capturing the fun and magic of the Star Wars universe, and in creating a completely immersive experience.
Despite its lack of a campaign mode and EA’s greedy insistence on saving more content for future DLCs, Battlefront is a game I’ll return to time and time again, for that exciting chance at defeating the Empire in the snowy mountains of Hoth, or crushing the Rebel scum’s attempts to win the Battle of Jakku. As great as other games like Fallout 4 or Batman Arkham Knight may be, they just can’t compete with how fun it is killing Stormtroopers – James Garcia
Tom Roach, Staff Writer
10. The Order 1886
9. Call of Duty: Black Ops 3
8. Star Wars Battlefront
6. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
5. Fallout 4
3. Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection
2. Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain
Bloodborne provided me with a brand new take on what it meant to be a gamer. For all the years I have been gaming nothing has been as challenging as Bloodborne, nor has anything been as rewarding. My first experience was frustration but when I trained myself and began to beat boss after boss I felt a great sense of achievement. Too many games are too easy and are just a way to spend your free time, Bloodborne on the other hand is an experience that every gamer should try. With a unique setting and interesting lore, Bloodborne has just been a great deal of fun to play and changed the way I play and view games. I struggle to comprehend a game this year that came close to providing a greater experience – Tom Roach
Ben Rayner, Staff Writer
10. Rainbow Six: Siege
9. Super Smash Bros : Wii U
8. Metal Gear Solid V : The Phantom Pain
7. Shovel Knight
6. Her Story
5. JoJos Bizarre Adventure : Eyes of Heaven
3. Fallout 4
2. Rise of the Tomb Raider
1. The Witcher 3 : Wild Hunt
One of the few games this year that actually managed to climb the lofty peaks of it’s hype machine and deliver exactly what it set out to. The perfect RPG, that let me live out my Game of Thrones dreams.
I could talk for hours about everything I enjoyed with The Witcher 3. Every story is free and open to be nudged in different directions, with endless landscapes to explore and characters to entertain. It’s an absolute joy to watch how your choices cause ripples across the land in ways you may not expect. No fists slam on the table and scupper your plans, instead winds change direction and new friends or enemies may not rear their head until you’ve long forgotten them.
Battles are great fun and puzzles within themselves, while quests send you to every corner of the world to discover each and every depth of humanity. CD Projekt Red took on a mammoth task in creating an open world that isn’t just filled with characters but actual life and The Witcher 3 is proof of their success. We’ll be enjoying this one and remembering its fine details for years to come – Ben Rayner
Scott Watson, Staff Writer
5. Star Wars Battlefront
4. FIFA 16
3. Borderlands: The Handsome Collection
2. Batman: Arkham Knight
1. Destiny: The Taken King
This has to take pride of place for my best game of the year. It’s had its problems, it’s had its haters, but you cannot deny that Bungie fixed a huge amount of things wrong with the original game with this release, plus its gun play is still some of the finest to date in any FPS that I know of. I was one of those that bought into the original and was left very disappointed, to the point that I almost overlooked The Taken King.
Now with 275 hours invested to date I can say it’s definitely been fixed. No longer does it feel like a relentless grind, no longer does it feel like you’re on a persistent quest to farm materials across the same four locations, no longer does it feel like a small world. The introduction of the Dreadnought and all of its secrets including the Court of Oryx was inspired, as was the recent addition of the Sparrow Racing League (for all it was limited to just two tracks). It’s a stunningly beautiful game to look at and more importantly an incredibly immersive and rewarding experience (now) to boot! – Scott Watson
And that’s it from us for 2015. Now it’s time to look ahead to 2016 and the return of Nathan Drake in Uncharted 4, Microsoft’s enigmatic Quantum Break, the bio-augmentated thrills of Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, the post-apocalyptic squad shooter, The Division, and Square Enix offering up another magnum opus in Final Fantasy XV, as well as many, many,many more. I think you’ll agree it’s a very exciting time to be a gamer.
Anyhow, enough from us. What stood out for you this year? What got you hunting down those trophies and achievements and leveling up until the early hours? Let us know in the comments below.