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2015 Awards

  1. 1. Another year has come and gone and that means it's time for FilmGamesEtc to release their 2015 “Games of the Year” list. We have seen some major heavy hitters this year as well as wonderful indies. There has been surprise hits and major letdowns and everything in between. We saw the release of a group of new PC/console hybrids known as Steam Machines and the attempted redesign of the standard gaming controller. All in all, 2015 has been a busy year in gaming but we brave souls at FGE have attempted to take it on by giving our opinion on the best games of last year. Action Role Playing Game Winner: Bloodborne Bloodborne was a pretty clear cut winner for us here at FGE. Coming from the same folks that brought us the infamous Dark Souls and Demon Souls series' came this brutally difficult game with a captivating setting and unbelievable boss fights. The enemies are as gruesome to look at as they are satisfying to kill, and that's saying a lot because the action in this game will have you coming back for more. It's easy to see why this game was one of our favorites of the year. Fighting Game Winner: Mortal Kombat X Pulling ribs out of your opponent and then using them to stab that same opponent is a hard thing to forget. Mortal Kombat X took what was great about every game prior, especially Mortal Kombat 9, and improved on it. NetherRealm Studios completely reworked the games' movement resulting in a much more fluid game and with the power of the new hardware it was more realistic looking than ever. The brutal finishers were brought back and with the advanced visuals they are more gut wrenching than ever. A steady stream of DLC has added characters not related to the Mortal Kombat universe, such as Predator and Jason Voorhees, and continue to make this game one of our most enjoyed fighting games. First Person Shooter Winner: Halo 5: Guardians Honorable Mentions: Call of Duty: Black Ops III The last couple of years saw Call of Duty releases that performed below expectations. Treyarch turned it around with Black Ops III. A refined multiplayer played a big part but a new Zombie's mode and terrific campaign have cemented it's place as a top contender. Unfortunately, Halo 5 hit too many notes to not take the crown here. Halo 5 introduced a four player coop mode for the campaign in which you hunt down the Master Chief. Multiplayer brought Halo back to it's roots and then built upon them with new abilities, weapons and game modes. A constant stream of free updates from 343 Industries has managed to keep this one at the top of our list. Hack & Slash Winner: Dragon Quest Heroes Dragon Quest Heroes is a Hack & Slash take on the the popular Role Playing Game. Heroes gives you a good handful of characters with different abilities and throws you in stages against a variety of familiar enemies such as the infamous Slime. Dragon Quest Heroes doesn't completely
  2. 2. abandon it's RPG roots, though. Just like in the base games you can level up your party and collect and upgrade equipment. The games familiar setting and characters helped reel us in, and the hectic gameplay kept us engaged. Open World Winner: The Witcher III: Wild Hunt When CD Project RED announced The Witcher III, it quickly became one of the most anticipated games of 2015 so it was no surprise that when it released, it quickly became many gamers' favorite game. Wild Hunt was set in a huge open world and gave you the freedom to do what you pleased, whether that was trying to rescue Ciri from the Wild Hunt, taking bounties to hunt down monsters of legend, or even playing Gwent with a barkeep. The world in the Witcher III is massive and offered much to do, and that may still be an understatement. Not only is the world massive but it is gorgeous to explore and kept our team roaming Nilfgaard long after release. Platform Game Winner: Ori and the Blind Forest Ori and the Blind Forest was developed by Moon Studios and features gorgeous visuals, a heartfelt opening, and some fairly difficult platforming action. It really is the visuals that sets this game apart from so many others. The animations are terrific and it feels like a movie when you are just watching. Everything in this game is just so wonderfully crafted that the story is so easily sold. This was Moon Studios first game developed as a studio and it has been done so well that it has the FGE team waiting in anticipation for their next game. Racing Game Winner: Forza Motorsports 6 Microsoft has always had a winner with Forza Motorsports 6. Their last entry left fans a little disappointed with the lacking selection of cars and tracks and no new features but Turn 10 has redeemed themselves with the newest entry. Forza 6 adds more cars, tracks, weather to the game including rain giving each race a different feel as well as night time racing which acquires a slightly different approach than normal. Turn 10 has left off on a great note in 2015 and we look forward to seeing what else they can do. Japanese Role Playing Game Winner: Xenoblade Chronicles X Honorable Mention: Dragon Quest Heroes While Dragon Quest Heroes was already our choice for being the best hack & slash game of 2015, we also noted that it had several RPG elements to the game that tied Heroes to the base Dragon Quest games. These RPG elements existed, but weren't prominent enough to warrant awarding the it the best JRPG of 2015 but the game still deserved an honorable mention from us for it's fantastic work. Our real winner here Xenoblade Chronicles X, which offered a wide open world, beautiful
  3. 3. visuals, massive amounts of customization for your character and your Skell and an interesting combat system. An effective leveling system in this game prevents you from advancing too early and makes taking out that big enemy that much more enjoyable. Xenoblade Chronicles X has lot to it, and it's rare that you would ever get to see and do everything in it. Monolith Soft crafted a great game and have a lot to be proud of. Western Role Playing Game Winner: The Witcher III: Wild Hunt Honorable Mention: Fallout 4 Fallout 4 was a big surprise announcement at E3 2015. The rumor mill had been churning suggesting that it would be announced, but nobody expected it to release that very same year. Fallout 4 released to great critical reception and we loved the game here for so many reasons but unfortunately for Bethesda the game couldn't top CD Project RED's The Witcher III on our list for the best Western RPG. Not only did we here FilmGamesEtc think that The Witcher III: Wild Hunt was the best open world game with the most impressive game world, but we also thought that it was just hands down the best Western RPG to release in 2015. Few games of 2015 offered a story as engaging as The Witcher III and gameplay to match which is why The Witcher III: Wild Hunt has once again graced this list. Twin Stick Shooter Winner: Helldivers Arrowhead Studios and Sony came together to release Helldivers onto the Playstation 4 and PC in 2015. Helldivers prides itself on being a hardcore twin stick shooter and included more unusual features to the genre like friendly fire, no automatic reload and the ability to crouch. Including friendly fire in a genre that is typically about shooting as much as possible really changes how you play. Or, maybe it doesn't. Those team kills can be hilarious at times and frustrating at others. Abilities, unlockable equipment and a dynamic mission system lends to the replayability and the unique features kept this game fresh in our minds for this list. Stealth Game Winner: Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain The open ended nature of Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain meant that, unlike previous games in the series, you could play it in literally any way that you wanted. You could snipe your targets from afar, run in with a fully automatic assault rifle and use cover, or even drive into the enemy base with a tank. But since this is Metal Gear Solid and the roots of the game are so deep in the stealth genre it's tough not to play it as such at times. The fact that this game won this category without a challenge shows just how much stealth gameplay and Metal Gear go hand in hand. Survival Horror Winner: Until Dawn Unfortunately I didn't have much time with Until Dawn, but that didn't stop me from voting for
  4. 4. it along with every other member of FGE that voted. Until Dawn was sold as a teen horror movie in video game form, it took everything you love about classic horror movies and made it interactive and it worked out really well. The games story keeps you engaged and with so many different outcomes that hinge on the smallest choices it is one that can keep you coming back to. Third Person Shooter Winner: Splatoon Splatoon has been a massive success and it is probably one of Nintendo's best new IP's to come from this generation so far. I know it's one of my personal favorites as it's a real blast to play. Nintendo took a different approach to the arena based multiplayer with this game. Instead of the main objective being to kill the other teams, you have to control the arena by painting it your teams color. The new approach harkens back to Nintendo's old days of redefining a genre and revitalizing a player base. Best Playstation 4 Game Winner: Bloodborne Even if Sony had released double or even triple the amount of games on their system last year, Bloodborne would have always been a top contender for this category. FromSoftware does such a well job deviating Bloodborne from the Souls series just enough to maintain it's own identity while giving you that same thrill (and frustation) that those games provided. Bloodborne released in March of last year giving it nine whole months to be played to death and forgotten and the game still drums on strongly. The recent DLC, titled “The Old Hunters,” that released in November brought those who had set the game down flocking back to it's punishing gameplay. FromSoftware really knocked this one out of the park and, as such, we have deemed it the best Playstation 4 game of 2015. Best Xbox One Game Winner: Halo 5: Guardians Honorable Mentions: Rise of the Tomb Raider Rise of the Tomb Raider was released at a terrible time, I think most of us can agree with that. The game was facing an uphill battle against one of the must anticipated titles of the generation thus far. Unfortunately, it couldn't overcome the odds and was lost to the large number of releases around the same time. Even though the sales weren't strong, the game itself was, and it offered a wonderful reason for fans of Tomb Raider to step into Lara Croft's world once more. As well as Square Enix did with Rise of the Tomb Raider, in our opinions, it still fell short of 343 industries spectacular Halo 5: Guardians which, ultimately, took home our Best Xbox One Game of 2015 award. Halo 5 gave Halo fans everything, an engaging story involving an AWOL hero and a persistent pursuer, a multiplayer that brought the game back to it's roots, and regular free updates that kept the game going strong, and kept the game in FGE's staff's minds. Best PC Game Winner: Undecided
  5. 5. Our team here at FilmGamesEtc weren't able to choose what we though the best PC game of 2015 was and that's not due to our lack of games played but due to the abundance of games available. I believe our lack of unanimous vote pays testament to PC gaming in general. The PC gaming landscape has changed a lot within the last decade and it's constantly evolving, new games are being released every day and it can difficult to narrow down which ones are best. We will try again next year, and perhaps we will be able to find some common ground, but as for this year we were not able to elect a conclusive winner. Best WiiU Game Winner: Xenblade Chronicles X Of all of the games that released on the WiiU in 2015, we here at FGE named this the Best WiiU Game of 2015. The amount of content here is awe inspiring and the WiiU pulls off some amazing visuals that can have the same effect. If you are a fan of JRPG's then this is a game you should pick up. If you have a WiiU and are a fan of Eastern games in general, you should definitely give this game a whirl. Best 3DS Game Winner: Legend of Zelda: Majoras Mask 3D I spent many nights playing The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask on the Nintendo 64 after school. The dark theme and innovative gameplay and story was addicting and remains on of my favorite games to date so there was no shortage of excitement from the FGE crew when Nintendo finally announced and released the 3DS remake. The gameplay still holds up to this day, even 15 years after its initial release. 2015 Game of the Year Winner: Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain was, unfortunately, Hideo Kojima's last game at Konami and potentially his last Metal Gear game that he touches. It's good then, that he went out with such a bang. Metal Gear Solid V is the natural evolution of the series and brings it into the current generation with slick controls and all the freedom you could ask for. Hideo Kojima had clearly put so much love and care into his games and The Phantom Pain is no exception. With such a strong piece of work, it only becomes frustrating that you won't see another one like it, at least not by the same people. Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain was a strong contender for many of our awards for 2015 and it came as little surprise when I finished tallying the votes, and saw that this game shone through by quite a margin. If we had a trophy, I would like to hand it straight to Mr. Kojima himself for his fantastic work on The Phantom Pain, and on Metal Gear as a whole. Hopefully having the game figuratively crowned as The Best Game of 2015 will suffice. From all of us at FilmGamesEtc, have a wonderful 2016.

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