5.- Odin Sphere: Leifthrasir (PS4/PS3/PS Vita)
I came into Odin Sphere a little late, playing it for the first time when it was re-released on the PlayStation Network. With nothing but a recommendation from Youtuber Totalbiscuit and memories of me as a child looking at the cover art of the game wondering what it was, I went into it not knowing what to expect. After a few hours, I started to regret how much I was missing out all these years.
With the remake of the aforementioned title coming soon to North America, I was so excited that I just had to download the Japanese demo and try it out, and I am very happy to say that the game plays, sounds and (believe it or not) looks a lot better than it’s PlayStation 2 predecessor. Along with brand new modes and difficulty levels, this looks like it’ll be a delight to go through again. Could not expect anything less from Vanillaware and Atlus.
4.- Ratchet & Clank (PS4)
If anyone has followed me on my Youtube channel, they’ll know that I’m a big fan of the Ratchet & Clank games and pretty much grew up on them. I’ve played all of the PS2 games and currently doing really good progress on the PS3 “Future” titles. Now that we are far in to the next generation of consoles with the PS4, we will very soon get a reimagining of the original Ratchet & Clank which is also highly connected to the feature film with the same premise.
I’ve seen many gameplay videos of the new title and am highly impressed with the result of the similar environments envisioned through the eyes of a PlayStation 4, even though the writing and comedy of the game seems like something I have begun to dislike or simply grew out of. Either way, I look forward to getting that game in my hands and reliving some of those childhood memories in full 1080p resolution.
3.- Cuphead (Xbox One/PC)
Every single time I see a video game try to successfully emulate something old like black & white film, classic cartoons and even old comic books, I always believe that it can’t get any better than this; that there is no way people can make these aesthetics any better or appealing before they outstay their welcome. Remembering that, I want to say that Cuphead has brought the “old things running on new things” look to the next level, bringing hand-drawn animations in the 1940s style to the forefront.
Very reminiscent of old Mickey Mouse cartoons, Cuphead relies heavily on making its enemy design, soundtrack and atmosphere as authentic as possible, while traversing the game’s many boss battles and light platforming elements. Even taking all of this out of the equation, I’m simply excited for a new IP in a world plagued with sequels, remakes, and empty free-to-play mobile games.
2.- Shin Megami Tensei X Fire Emblem (Genei Ibun Roku ♯FE) (Wii U)
I get sad when I think about this crossover game, not because I think it’ll be a bad game; it wouldn’t be in this list otherwise. I’m upset due to the massive amounts of negativity and borderline hostility that the game has received from the North American audience due to it’s J-Pop aesthetic and the general public’s arbitrary and fabricated expectations of what the game was suppose to be. Regardless of those comments, early gameplay footage and people’s first impressions of the Japanese version have stated quite the opposite on the game’s quality, saying that it is actually a really fun title that is worth looking at.
Though the main characters and the setting of the game are not necessarily derived from either Shin Megami Tensei or Fire Emblem, all the combat aspects, side characters, enemies, weapons, summons and many more things surrounding this world do come from these well known properties in some shape, way or form. They don’t simply copy-paste characters from one game and put them in this one, but rather recreate them in a different way that works well within the confines of this world and story.
All I’ll say is this: Most, if not all the people that hate this game haven’t played it at all, and all the ones that have actually tried it think that it is, at the very least, a solid JRPG that is worth taking a look at, regardless of how invested one is in the two properties being crossed over, and that excites me.
1.- No Man’s Sky (PS4/PC)
Another game that has been plagued by unreasonable assumptions and becoming the jaded, angry Internet person’s punching bag, No Man’s Sky is the game I have been incredibly excited for ever since it was first announced. As soon as I saw that spaceship fly off into outer space without a single loading screen, and go into hyper space after selecting one of the billions and billions of star systems waiting to be explored, I knew this is a game that I would spend an enormous amount of time with. In the same way that Minecraft completely conquered my life for a long while, I feel No Man’s Sky will do a similar thing. If you want to explore, fight, steal stuff or trade in space stations, all of that is valid.
The creators of the game at Hello Games have been understandably quiet about the smaller details, since most of the game revolves around discovery and figuring everything out on your own as you venture towards the center of the universe, which should contain some sort of incentive to continue on playing beyond that point. I personally don’t feel like I’ll need an incentive, since I am perfectly okay with just having a game where you can explore an infinite amount of planets and deciding what to do with your puny existence in this enormous, procedural universe.
I’m keeping my expectations realistic, but based on the gameplay videos and enormous amount of information I’ve read on the game, it’s pretty safe to say that everything that I desire out of this game, I will most definitely get and enjoy as I leave everyone else that snidely asks, “Sure, it’s nice and all, but what is it?“ out into the wayside.