It’s time to close the book on 2016’s gaming history. A big year for game releases is behind us, with several massive franchises popping up throughout the year… and a lot of pleasant little surprises too. We had some games that had been over a decade in waiting, and others that we only found out about weeks before their arrival. Games of all genres graced our consoles and computers, with sequels, expansions, reboots, and brand new titles all coming out this past year.
What amazed me this year was how few games were quite what I was expecting. Several games I expected to love I wasn’t terribly fond of, while others that I was concerned about I ended up being blown away by. Picking the games for this year’s list had a few obvious spots, but there are about 7 games fighting for those last couple slots, none of which are clear picks.
So without any further delay… let’s jump into the Best Games of 2016!
This has been a long time coming. When I started brainstorming for this list at the beginning of the year, I never would’ve imagined how difficult it would’ve been to try to recall and rank every game I’ve ever played. I spent weeks brainstorming the list, and my original first draft had around 110 games overall. I spent an agonizing month gradually narrowing the list down from those 110 to the 60 here – I used every trick I could think of to rule some of them out. Some games I went back and played again, watched footage of them, tried to see how much I could actually remember about them, and if I could write a convincing argument for why they were awesome. Afterall, if I couldn’t convince myself, then maybe they weren’t as good as nostalgia painted them, right?
These final 6 games were always on the list. While the rest of the Shadow’s Sixty changed dramatically from draft to draft, very little about the Top 6 has changed from the start. These games are the best I’ve ever played, and there was very little question in my mind about which games belonged up top. And that is why I am so pleased to reveal this list to you – the final entries in this, my Shadow’s Sixty. So let’s get to it and unveil gaming’s greatest, as I see it.
We’re in our final third, about to break into the final quarter… and getting real close to that final top 10!
Looking back at the list, we’ve got a pretty good snippet of the best gaming has to offer, don’t we? We’ve covered JRPGs such as Child of Light, Final Fantasy 9, Chrono Cross, and Legend of Dragoon… amazing platformers from Megaman to Sound Shapes… shooters like Uncharted, action games like God of War… even fighting games like Mortal Kombat and Street Fighter 2.
We’ve covered consoles from all eras, PC games both old and new. We’ve hit on some of gaming’s most recognizable figures, and obscure indy titles that you might not have even heard of before this list. But we’re not done yet. We still have games of many different genres ahead of us. To start this list off… we have what is, in my eyes, the best Western episodic game of all time.
As E3 begins to wind down, it is time to take a moment to think about the best and worst moments of this year’s gaming media bonanza. Obviously, I’m not there in person, so coverage is based off of a combination of live streams, articles, and videos from other sources.
So I wanted to take some time here today to talk about some of what I saw following coverage of E3. We’re going to talk surprises, the best and worst, and where the companies hit their highs and lows. I also wanted to touch base about the Sony E3 Experience as this was its first year visiting Winnipeg.
Over the past few months, we’ve covered the bottom half of my top 60 games of all time. Having completed the first half last week with awesome recent titles like Disgaea 5 and Uncharted 3 as well as much-revered classic Final Fantasy 9… what could we possibly have left?
We’re here today to take our first steps into the top half of this list. We’re going to investigate enigmatic and mysterious threats, explore one of the most well-known classics of all time, and save the last of humanity! Let’s visit games 30 to 25 on my Shadow’s Sixty list!