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December looms heavily on the horizon and another year is about to be in the books. There are still a few major games set to be released in 2015, but most of the damage has been done and the heavyweights have all been released, leaving us to reflect on what kind of a year we’ve had thus far. In retrospect, the past few years haven’t been great when it comes to major game releases. Two years ago was the release of the Xbox One and PlayStation 4, neither one launching with anything that great exclusively and one of the few “must haves” for launch being Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag. Think about that. Last year was a bit better, but nothing really sticks out as a game that will go down as one of my all-time favorites. Maybe it’s just that this year has been so good that is making me dismissive of 2014, but rightfully so.

Fallout 4

There are going to be discussions about which of this year’s titles deserves the “game of the year” title and there are going to be dissenting opinions. The reason for that is that there have been so many quality games released and that each one appeals to different kinds of players. Off of the top of my head I can list a good deal of games that I’d consider for game of the year; The Witcher 3, Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture, Tales from the Borderlands, Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain and Fallout 4 are what I’m thinking of right now. That is an interesting list by any standards, running the gambit from artistic, fun, open-world, insane and rich storytelling. All of those traits are represented and honestly, I’m probably missing a few games that I either haven’t played yet or don’t intend to play that others are going crazy over. Like, the new Assassin’s Creed was actually pretty good! Bloodborne kept masochists happy!

Bloodborne

The big three for most will obviously be The Witcher 3, Fallout 4 and Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain. For me, personally, The Witcher 3 takes the cake here. Released back in May of this year, which in game terms is a very long time ago, the trials and tribulations of Geralt of Rivia are still etched into my memory. Stuff like the Bloody Baron quest line provided depth and emotion into a game that I am not sure that I’ve seen in a very long time, at least not in a major AAA title. The world was lush and interesting, with every new town feeling unique and like it was actually populated by people who were doing stuff outside of giving the player quests or items. This was also the first game that felt “next generation.” Load times were marginal, the game looked and ran beautiful on every system and it was more than just an incremental step from the previous game.

Regardless of what your jam was in 2015, there is a good chance that you are walking away from this year with a healthy backlog of super, high-quality games that you still need to play.

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Dave Walsh is a writer residing in Albuquerque, New Mexico who is best known for his work as a Kickboxing and Mixed Martial Arts journalist. His work has been featured on a number of publications, including Uproxx.com, BloodyElbow.com, MiddleEasy.com, CageSideSeats.com, Heavy.com as well as his own site, LiverKick.com. Dave grew up in Warwick, Rhode Island before moving to the Southwest where he has been working as an editor. Released works include Godslayer and Terminus Cycle.

Twitter: @dvewlsh

Facebook: /dvewalsh

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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