It’s that wonderful time of the year again when you finally can put your controller, mouse or joystick down, breathe a sigh of relief, and marvel at the past twelve glorious months of gaming. With an ever increasing catalogue of games on physical and digital shelves, we’ve waded through them all to give you the lowdown on our highlights (and what you might have missed) for 2019.
Be blown away by one of the best A-list casts in gaming you’ve ever seen and get lost in the baffling near-future world from Metal Gear Solid creator Hideo Kojima. If you boil it down to its basics, it may well be a delivery quest game, but the stunning visuals, sublime soundtrack and decent mechanics all make it a worthwhile trek.
Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order
While it may be getting praise for being the first single player Star Wars game in what feels like an eternity, this latest Lucasfilm entry is pretty impressive as a standalone game itself. It takes Dark-Souls/Sekiro-esque combat and campfire save spots coupled with Uncharted climbing and jumps and stirs in extra Star Wars to brilliant effect.
The Other Worlds
Finally, the dream team behind classic RPGs Fallout 1 and 2, Leonard Boyarsky and Tim Cain return to create a stunning sci-fi adventure game, which also draws from the Western-influenced Fallout: New Vegas. A compelling story, with great characters and with lots of choices and consequences is just the icing on the cake.
Playing a drunk, washed-up and rather bonkers detective in a murder mystery which philosophises about everything from gender to communism may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it sure as hell one us over. An incredibly written script, with so much freedom to role play and take different routes, may have topped this game to being our favourite of 2019.
Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice
From Software (of Dark Souls and Bloodbourne fame) returns with a superb adventure game retaining the tactical complexity of its previous games, but adding a swift, more playful movement style with greater scope for exploration. Its difficulty may be a shock to the system at first, but learn the tactics and moves and you’ll be cutting through 16th century Japan’s soldiers and monsters in no time.
Untitled Goose Game
JUST BUY THIS GAME! Ok, that’s not a great description, but any words won’t be able to do justice to the great white-winged social menace that is the goose and star of this game. The simple premise is you play a happy-go-lucky goose who has to make the lives of a small English village a nightmare whether its stealing from markets, making kids cry or breaking everything in sight. The breakout indie hit of 2019.
Fire Emblem Three Houses
The long-awaited Fire Emblem series finally arrives on the Nintendo Switch, and boy, it does not disappoint. It’s new emphasis on exploring the school is a welcome addition, and the relationship building is better than ever, with you finding yourself really caring for your scrappy bunch of students as they progress from novices to experts. The tactical battles are compelling and challenging, while the ability to play essentially three different houses dramatically adds to the replayability.
The studio who brought us the incredible NieR:Automata continues to impress with the sci-fi battle/adventure experience that is Astral Chain. The vivid character and environment art and pumping soundtrack perfectly complements the mind blowing action, which is no surprise considering the creators’ past work on NieR and Bayonetta.
Devil May Cry 5
After the controversial Devil May Cry (DmC) reboot, many had reservations about the future of Capcom’s slash em’ up, but never fear, all our worries were vanquished with the release of Devil May Cry 5. Taking place in a post apocalyptic London-esque setting, the ability to play as three different characters, each with markedly different styles, mixes up the fun and makes for rather enjoyable journey to hell and back.