December 2014


2014 was, for me, a time of endless bounty. With innovative multiplayer indies, engrossing RPGs, cool translated titles from days past and the sort of charming quirk that can only come from Nintendo, this crop of titles gave me great fun this year — and will continue to do so in the years to come.

HM: Puyo Puyo Tetris, Nintendo Pocket Football Club

I’ve restricted my top ten to games with North American releases, but two import titles grabbed me and wouldn’t let go. The first, Puyo Puyo Tetris, meshes two great puzzle games and has a slate of fun multiplayer modes for lots of fun with friends. The second, Nintendo Pocket Football Club, takes a Kairosoft-style management framework and fleshes it out with long-term goals and a heck of a lot of personality. Both would be great to see on American systems, and easy enough to bring over.  READ MORE


10. Wolfenstein: The New Order

I usually play a lot more shooters in a given year, but in 2014 I only played one. Thankfully, it was Wolfenstein: The New Order. This unexpected gem gave me a fascinating backdrop (the Nazis had won World War II) and put me back in the shoes of BJ Blazkowicz. You get the usual shooter gameplay, but a most unusual group of compelling characters, weapon upgrades, game-changing decisions, insane enemies and fantastic cutscenes. This is the complete package and, to top it all off, it has a great ending. It’s one of the few first-person shooters I wanted to replay as soon as I was done. READ MORE


We continue our special staff categories with Best Enhanced Port, Best Add-On and Most Emotional Scene awards. READ MORE


Honorable mention: Tomodachi Life

This game definitely tapped into the child within me that liked taking care of Tamagotchi. Being able to see what kind of crazy antics Miis get into when you decide to put them all in a room together was interesting. This was a game I was able to play alongside other games without much interruption, something I can’t really say about many other games on this list. It was definitely a nice change of pace to play something not incredibly serious alongside something I wanted to dedicate a lot of time into. I just wish I had more than two married couples… I have no idea how my friends managed to have over ten. READ MORE


10. Dead Man’s Draw

It is immensely fun to examine your opponent’s traits, choose two that completely nullify them and then win a game in a landslide victory. With 18 traits and the eventual ability to use two of them simultaneously, there is always a way to win a tournament and always a new strategy to try out. Parry and Beastmaster synergize well offensively, while Captain’s Hook and Miser work well together defensively. Dead Man’s Draw is a great press-your-luck card game, and I can’t wait for my physical copy to arrive so I can play with friends when I’m not at the PC. READ MORE