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The Games of 2015 Ranked

If one of us played it, then we are ranking it. Below is the list of all the games we played from 2015 ranked in order of worst to best.

164 J-Stars Victory VS+
163 Castle in the Darkness
162 Woah Dave!
161 Zotrix
160 Egg Returns Home
159 Aaru’s Awakening
158 htoL#NiQ: The Firefly Diary
157 Dream
156 Animal Crossing: amiibo Festival
155 Cibele
154 Resident Evil: Revelations 2
153 Harold
152 Time Clickers
151 Adventure Capitalist
150 Knight Squad
149 Five Nights at Freddy’s 3
148 Just Get Through
147 Robot Roller-Derby Disco Dodgeball
146 Airscape: The Fall of Gravity
145 Gunnheim
144 Plug & Play
143 Holy Potatoes! A Weapon Shop?!
142 Fatal Frame: Maiden of Black Water
141 Citizens of Earth
140 Chibi-Robo: Zip Lash
139 Tallowmere
138 Rise of Incarnates
137 Princess Evangile
136 Project CARS
135 The Magic Circle
134 XBLAZE: Lost Memories
133 HuniePop
132 Dengeki Bunko: Fighting Climax
131 Sublevel Zero
130 Audiosurf 2
129 Karmaflow: Rock Opera
128 Human Resource Machine
127 OlliOlli 2: Welcome to Olliwood
126 Tokyo Twilight Ghost Hunters
125 Saints Row: Gat Out of Hell
124 Prison Archetech
123 Senran Kagura 2: Deep Crimson
122 Read Only Memories
121 Fingered
120 Parallax
119 RONIN
118 Deathtrap
117 Guns, Gore, & Cannoli
116 Swords & Soldiers II
115 Skyshine’s: Bedlam
114 Emily is Away
113 Aviary Atorney
112 Mario Puzzles and Dragons
111 Story of Seasons
110 Chroma Squad
109 White Night
108 Operation Abyss: New Tokyo Legacy
107 Evoland II
106 The Fruit of Grisaia
105 Gunman Clive 2
104 Broken Age
103 Tales of Zestiria
102 Warhammer: Vermintide
101 Volume
100 The Executive
99 Evolve
98 Kingdom
97 Renowned Explorers: International Society
96 Kerbal Space Program
95 MonsterBag
94 Three-Fourths Home
93 Not a Hero
92 Hyperdimension Neptunia U: Action Unleashed
91 Lost Dimension
90 Mushihimesama
89 #IDARB
88 Onechanbara Z2: Chaos
87 Nuclear Throne
86 Zenzizenzic
85 Samurai Warriors 4-2
84 Hyperdevotion Noire: Goddess Black Heart
83 Mario Party 10
82 Code Name S.T.E.A.M.
81 Dragon Ball: Xenoverse
80 Contradiction: Spot the Liar!
79 Apotheon
78 Yo-Kai Watch
77 Forza Motorsport 6
76 Kirby and the Rainbow Curse
75 Five Nights at Freddy’s 4
74 Oreshika: Tainted Bloodlines
73 Act of Aggression
72 Mad Max
71 Just Cause 3
70 The Beginner’s Guide
69 Downwell
68 Stretchmo
67 Dragon Quest Heros
66 Galak-Z: The Dimensional
65 ROCKETSROCKETSROCKETS
64 Clannad
63 Crypt of the Necrodancer
62 Grey Goo
61 Hatsune Miku: Project Mirai DX
60 Titan Souls
59 Hand of Fate
58 Broforce
57 Assassin’s Creed Syndicate
56 Convoy
55 Roche Fusion
54 Jackbox 2
53 Soma
52 Duck Game
51 Affordable Space Adventures
50 Westerado: Double Barreled
49 Mortal Kombat X
48 Rock Band 4
47 Box Boy
46 The Order 1886
45 Yoshi’s Wooly World
44 Super Mario Maker
43 Flywrench
42 Massive Chalice
41 Call of Duty: Black Ops III
40 Star Wars Battlefront
39 Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number
38 The Legend of Zelda: Triforce Heroes
37 Heroes of the Storm
36 Halo 5: Guardians
35 Assault Android Cactus
34 Under Night In-Birth Exe:Late
33 Atelier Shallie: Alchemists of the Dusk Sea
32 Rebel Galaxy
31 Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes
30 Grow Home
29 Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime
28 Runbow
27 Persona 4: Dancing All Night
26 LEGO Dimensions
25 Danganronpa Another Episode: Ultra Despair Girls
24 Guitar Hero Live
23 Ori and the Blind Forest
22 Transformers Devastation
21 Splatoon
20 Dying Light
19 Inivisble Inc.
18 Rocket League
17 Everyone’s Gone to the Rapture
16 Final Fantasy Type-0
15 Her Story
14 Yakuza 5
13 Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate
12 Rise of the Tomb Raider
11 Until Dawn
10 Helldivers
9 Life is Strange
8 Xenoblade Chronicles X
7 Tales of the Borderlands
6 Undertale
5 Batman: Arkham Knight
4 Fallout 4
3 Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain
2 Bloodborne
1 The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt
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Game of the Year 2015: Special Categories

Another year has quickly gone by. There were some games that came out in that time, and here are our thoughts on which were the standouts in our special brand of categories.

Best Non-2015 Gaming Experience (Personal)

We begin today with our personal categories, the “Best Non-2015 Category” encapsulates all games released prior to 2015, Early-Access games that have not yet been released, and episodic games that have yet to release their final episode.

destiny-thetakenking-screen-04-us-15jun15

Isaiah B – Payday 2

Brock – Destiny: The Taken King

Derek – King’s Quest

Zach – Destiny: The Taken King

Alex – Dreamfall: Chapters

Drew – Destiny: The Taken King

Thomas – Persona 3 Portable

Most Surprisingly Good Game (Personal)

We expect a lot out of our games, but some more than others. These are the games that surprised us the most in 2015.

8-PS4-HELLDIVERS-Mech-Bug-Desert

Derek – Helldivers

Isaiah B – Helldivers

Zach – Undertale

Brock – Life is Strange

Thomas – Rocket League

Drew – Rocket League

Alex – Runbow

Biggest Disappointment (Personal)

In direct opposition to our “Most Surprisingly Good” we have, “Biggest Disappointment.” Games that bummed us out, did not meet the hype, or were at all disappointing.

star-wars-battlefront-100591774-orig

Derek – Star Wars: Battlefront

Drew – Star Wars: Battlefront

Brock – Rock Band 4

Zach – Star Wars: Battlefront

Isaiah B – Evolve

Thomas – Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain

Alex – Resident Evil: Revelations 2

Most Addictive (Personal)

What games could we simply not tear ourselves away from? Some games are addictive by design, and here are our picks for “Most Addictive” game of 2015.

Fallout4_E3_CityVista

Brock – Persona 4: Dancing All Night

Thomas – Fallout 4

Isaiah B – Fallout 4

Zach – The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt

Alex – Fallout 4

Drew – Batman: Arkham Knight

Derek – Batman: Arkham Knight

Best Multiplayer

2015 might have not been quite as strong of a year for multiplayer as last year, but it was no slouch.

rocket-league-review

Winner – Rocket League

Beauty through simplicity is Rocket League’s appeal, and what it accomplishes wish so little is undoubtedly impressive proving to be an obsession for many throughout 2015.

Runners up:

Affordable Space Adventures

Helldivers

Best Voice Acting

This category examines all the voice acting in a game.

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Winner – Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture

Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture’s voice acting is critical to its success at what the game is going for. For being such an emotionally-charged experience, it is amazing what it accomplishes without characters models. The British accents certainly don’t hurt either.

Runners-up:

LEGO Dimensions

Batman Arkham Knight

Best Voice Performance

Where “Best Voice Acting” looks at the entire game, “Best Voice Performance” looks at one singular performance.

her-story-1

Winner – Viva Seifert – Her Story

In a lot of ways, Viva Seifert is Her Story. Without a solid performance, Her Story lacks the breadth necessary to make it engaging or sell the character on the screen. Viva manages to produce the ambiguity needed to confuse the player just enough to keep going to the game’s arbitrary conclusion.

Runners-up:

Oliver Dimsdale as Steven Appleton from Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture

Peter Stormare as the psychiatrist from Until Dawn

Most Original/Innovative

As time continually marches on, it gets harder and harder to feel original and innovate in an established place. This category recognizes those who dare to try to be different.

ktane_gameplay_2

Winner – Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes

Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes definitely feels different in the field of 2015 videogames. Playing more like a board game, one player (or a group) is armed with a bomb-defusal guide, and it is their objective to help the other player disarm the bomb before somebody explodes. It’s fresh, it’s original, and it’s our winner for this category.

Runners-up:

Affordable Space Adventures

Kerbal Space Program

Most Funny/Ridiculous

It is hard to master comedic timing in videogames, we also value a good dose of the absurd on occasion, thus the category of “Most Funny/Ridiculous” was born.

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Winner – Tales From the Borderlands

Tales From the Borderlands is among the most funny videogames ever made. It is continually laugh-inducing and more than suitably ridiculous. It was the easy winner of the category this year.

Runners-up:

Undertale

Plug & Play

Best Looking Game

Combining artistic and technical merit produces our “Best Looking Game” category. Which game was the most visually impressive in 2015?

the-order-1886-screen-01-ps4-us-12aug14

Winner – The Order 1886

The Order 1886 shows that consoles can still compete graphically despite aged hardware. The Order is highly directed making the visuals pop, the lighting stand out, and the character models impress. Also, just check out the game’s cloth physics.

Runners-up:

Star Wars: Battlefront

Ori and the Blind Forest

Best Music

Typically one of our more contentious categories due to the subjectivity of musical taste, but we decide which games had the best music anyway. The quality is always raising in this category from year to year.

Winner – Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture

A clear standout with its choral pieces and string arrangements, Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture, feature a soundtrack like no other. The music aids in driving home the game’s more poignant moments and always complements what is happening on screen.

Runners-up:

Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number

Undertale

Best Boss Fights

Boss fights are still relevant as a test of player’s’ skills and we always like to reward that.

UndertaleReviewSpot2

Winner – Undertale

Nearly every encounter in Undertale is unique, and the boss fights even more so. From heart-wrenching to maddeningly difficulty, Undertale always has something up its sleeve when it comes to its boss fights.

Runners-up:

Titan Souls

Bloodborne

Best Story/Writing

We combine overarching story and moment to moment writing in this category.

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Winner – Tales From the Borderlands

While having a great culmination of choices at its end, none can compete with the moment-to-moment dialogue in Tales From the Borderlands.

Runners-up:

The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt

Undertale

Best New Main Character

In what was a weaker year for new main characters, a couple rose above the rest.

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Winner – Rhys – Tales From the Borderlands

Rhys, though he may be altered by the player somewhat, is a defined character that is easy to root for. Stuck under the shadow of Handsome Jack, he attempts to fill the power vacuum created by the end of Borderlands 2. His arch throughout the five episodes is interesting and possesses a surprising amount of depth.

Runners-up:

Jenks – Contradiction

Max Caulfield – Life is Strange

Best Secondary Character

“Best Secondary Character” does not have to be new like with our “Main Character” category. This allows for a wide array of characters new and tried.

21 Joker

Winner – The Joker – Batman Arkham Knight

The Joker is what makes Batman Arkham Knight. His implementation, though lazy in concept, is executed brilliantly. His dialogue makes him unforgettable in a game that might not otherwise be the pinnacle of its series.  

Runners-up:

Gortys – Tales From the Borderlands

The Bloody Baron – The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt

Best Amiibo

Continuing the madness that is Nintendo’s supply shortages, we support amiibo here at the EXP Shared podcast.

AmiiboPalutena

Winner – Palutena

Detail was the name of the game this year, and no amiibo is as impressive as Palutena’s with her shield, staff, and translucent blue aura.

Runners-up:

Green Yarn Yoshi

Ganondorf

Most Memorable Moment (Personal)

What moments stood out as the ones that are still ingrained in our minds? Don’t worry *NO SPOILERS*

Flowey

Zach – End of Until Dawn

Brock – Flowey Fight in Undertale (neutral route)

Isaiah S – Genocide Route in Undertale

Isaiah B – Dying by Old Woman in Mortal Kombat X

Thomas – Besting the Vicar Amelia in Bloodborne

Drew – The Barbara Gordon scene in Batman Arkham Knight

Derek – Sidequesting in Batman Arkham Knight

Alex – The End of Episode 2 in Tales From the Borderlands

2015 was the year of…

What defines the year?

the-witcher-3-wild-hunt-map-640x335

Winner – Open-World Domination

The Triple-A games industry has been trending towards the open-world genre for a while now with the unprecedented commercial success of games like The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim and Grand Theft Auto V. But 2015 witnessed an absolute saturation of the genre with varying success. As someone who plays a lot of games, it was a year filled with long, satisfying experiences, and it proved difficult to get through all them (especially when two come out in December, Xenoblade Chronicles X, Yakuza 5). It says something when our Top 5 games of the year are all open-world games.

Runners-up:

Transhumanism as a narrative device

The Fall of Konami

Most Anticipated (Personal)

Now that 2015 is over what are we pumped for next?

horizon-zero-dawn-screen-01-us-15jun15

Brock – The Witness

Isaiah S – The Oculus Rift

Derek – Warhammer 40K: Eternal Crusade

Zach – Uncharted 4

Alex – Zero Time Dilemma

Isaiah B – Pokken Tournament

Drew – Final Fantasy XV

Thomas – Horizon: Zero Dawn

Paul – No Man’s Sky

 

 

Game of the Half-Year 2015

Vector 2015 Happy New Year background

Another six months have blown by us. Five of us discussed the best and worst of the year so far at length; the results of said discussion are below.

Most Surprisingly Good

We started off the day positive; looking at games that were better than we initially expected.

2558779-wiiu_splatoon_illu01_e3

Alex – Monster Bag

Isaiah B. – Splatoon

Brock – Hand of Fate

Paul – Her Story

Thomas – The Order 1886

Best Multiplayer

Always one of our more contentious categories, Best Multiplayer shows how we like to play with others.

Winner

xbox-one-exclusive-multiplayer-esports-darling-idarb-will-launch-in-february-1418320477716

#IDARB

#IDARB encapsulates what an e-sport can be. Upon initially diving in, the player can feel how deep and complex the team dynamics are in #IDARB, and oh, does it feel so good.

Runners-Up

Evolve

Splatoon

Biggest Disappointment

The first six months of 2015 have not been free of crushing disappointment. Which games bummed us out?

mayfair_1.0

Alex – Broken Age (Act II)

Isaiah B. – Life is Strange

Brock – Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate

Paul – The Order 1886

Thomas – The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt

Best Hunt

In putting together the list of categories, it was clear that a lot of games this year focused around the mechanic of hunting. Thus, this award was born. If more hunt-tastic games are released in the next six months then we will keep it on board for full year.

Winner

evolve_1_lg

Evolve

Evolve is a game all about hunting, so it felt right to give it the win. A game about hide-and-seek, trapping and escape made for an exciting hunt.

Runners-Up

Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate

Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt

Best Looking

Which game is the most visually impressive?

Winner

the-order-user-screens-4

The Order 1886

The Order may suffer from a lack of interesting gameplay, but it does not lack technical prowess and beautiful visuals.

Runners-Up

White Night

Kirby and the Rainbow Curse

Best Music

It has be a solid year for music in games so far, here are our top picks:

Winner

2599772-zone2

Crypt of the Necrodancer

Music is gameplay in Crypt of the Necrodancer. The hard hitting techno/electronica beats are undeniably awesome. Toe tapping is important as to keep the beat in the game is when one can move and attack.

Runners-Up

Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number

Under Night In-Birth Exe: Late

Best Story/Writing

It’s been a weaker year for good stories, but here’s what we have so far in 2015:

Winner

2524097-tales_rhysfiona

Tales of the Borderlands

As long as all five episodes make it out this year, Tales of the Borderlands is looking to dominate our awards proceedings. Its humor and dialogue are second to none in a video game making it a fairly easy pick this time around.

Runners-Up

The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt

Her Story

Best Games of 2015 (Jan-June)

We took our personal top 10 picks of the year, through them all together and saw what stuck to the wall:

witcher1

34. Plug ‘N’ Play

33. I Am Bread

32. J-Stars Victory Vs. Plus

31. Saints Row: Gat out of Hell

30. Mario Party 10

29. Mortal Kombat X

28. Fallout Shelter

27. Hyperdevotion Noire: Goddess Black Heart

26. The Order 1886

25. Under Night In-Birth Exe: Late

24. Dying Light

23. Grow Home

22. Heroes of the Storm

21. Helldivers

20. Splatoon

19. Box Boy

18. Axiom Verge

17. Kirby and the Rainbow Curse

16. Roche Fusion

15. Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate

14. Ori and the Blind Forest

13. Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number

12. Crypt of the Necrodancer

11. Invisible, Inc.

10. Hand of Fate

9. Evolve

8. Titan Souls

7. Her Story

6. Life is Strange

5. Batman: Arkham Knight

4. Final Fantasy: Type – 0 HD

3. Tales of the Borderlands

2. Bloodborne

  1. The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt