Most Anticipated of 2014: Best of the Best

In honour of New Years, I’m doing a special Most Anticipated of 2014 featuring the games that top my list. Or as my wife likes to put it ‘The Most Most Anticipated of 2014’. Today I’m spotlighting two games that, above any others, I am excited for that will be reaching us within the next year.

Transistor

Transistor is the next game from the fine folks at SuperGiant Games. When looking at imagery and footage of Transistor, what immediately stood out to me was the fascinating setting. Featuring a very unique cyberpunk aesthetic and an interesting palette of colours, the game has one of the most unique art styles I’ve seen in a long time.


Raw footage Courtesy of TotalBiscuit

What intrigues me most about the game, even beyond the scenery, is the way the gameplay has been described and shown off. At first it appears to be a fairly standard top-down action slasher game just like so many others that have come before… but appearances deceive! The game’s key feature is something called ‘Planning Mode’, which allows you to stop time to set up a sequence of attacks and moves to be instantly executed in sequence once you are done.

This is one of the few games that I will go out of my way to seek footage for, and the footage never disappoints. The release date hasn’t yet been defined, but we do know that the plan is for it to hit the PS4 and PC next year, with other platforms to follow – so the wait isn’t going to be long now!

Legends of Heroes: Trails in the Sky – Second Chapter

Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky is hands down one of the best JRPGs ever made. It stands up proudly next to games like Final Fantasy 6, Persona 4 The Golden, and Breath of Fire 3. But sadly, the North American release never got the attention it deserved. Still available on the PSN and compatible with both PSP and PSV, it is one game you’ve probably never played but that you really should.

LoHSC-Teaser

But that’s not what we’re here to talk about. We’re here to discuss the sequel, known fittingly as ‘Second Chapter’, to this fantastic JRPG. Picking up where the controversial ending of the first game left off, Second Chapter has taken years to be localized. XSeed, responsible for the localization, states that this is largely due to it having several times as much dialogue and conversation needing to be properly translated as the first one – which itself was a gargantuan effort.

This is great news, as one of the high points of the first game was the way that people developed over time, the different story lines and conversation arcs that each person in every town had. There were no nameless NPCs in LoH:TitS, and it sounds like that will continue to be the case in SC.

I’ve been excited for this and eagerly awaiting it finding its way to Western Shores since I finished the first game, and I can assure you that I will be devoting my full attention to this game the second it comes out. And, if you have any love for JRPGs at all, you should too. And if you haven’t purchased the first yet, what are you waiting for? Run, don’t walk, to your nearest PSN outlet and purchase it now!

 

So, at the start… I said two games, right? Well, in reality, it’s two games and an anime.

Why? Because just today, alongside a special edition broadcast, we’ve received official confirmation that there will be….

Sword Art Online Season 2

Yes, Sword Art Online, one of the best anime I’ve ever watched, the only anime whose world made it into my Shadow’s Six: Favourite Fantasy Worlds list, has been officially confirmed to be getting a second season at some point this coming year.

I’ve already said everything there is to say about my love for Sword Art Online, and I’ve heard that the third story arc is every bit as good as the first from people who have read the light novel… so to hear that the Gun Gale Online arc, named ‘Phantom Bullet’, will finally be being broadcast in this coming year is just the perfect New Year’s present.

 

Well, there you have it – my full and complete list of everything, as far as we’re currently aware, that I’m really excited for in the coming year. Now that you’ve seen my top three of all, let me know what you think? Are there any games that are on your must play list? Anything on this list that’s made you take a second look? Are you as excited as I am for a second season of Sword Art Online?

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