After two weeks of waiting, it’s time to talk about my #1 game of 2016. By now, you should have been able to figure it out if you’ve paid attention to the site and YouTube channel over the years, but here we go.
Once again for these lists, my top two games were between a newcomer and a refinement on design. Dark Souls 3 and Darkest Dungeon were neck and neck as the #1 pick. What tilted the scales was the sheer originality of a game like Darkest Dungeon coming out this year.
Darkest Dungeon has had an almost flawless development plan. The successful kickstarter led into a great early access which has positioned the game for a console release and upcoming expansion. I always talk about harmonizing game design and the challenge of getting everything working on the same page.
Darkest Dungeon is a brilliant example of game design, story and aesthetics all working together. Just like Renowned Explorers, this is a world and characters that I want to see more of. I want to drive Chris Bourassa crazy by having to come up with and draw more monsters and locales. The narrator voiced by Wayne June fits perfectly within the world and taught us all about Tides and turning.
Good aesthetic design is about telling a lot about a character or locale without saying a word, and Darkest Dungeon has this in spades. You can read a lot into each character simply by looking at them or viewing the text-less comic strips Redhook put out.
The tactical combat and class synergies were well done along with the enemies you fight. Both sides had access to unique options and abilities; forcing you to figure out the best party compositions for any given area.
Just like with Dark Souls 3, I’ve spent so much time talking and playing Darkest Dungeon that I’m out of words to say anymore. To wrap up this post, here’s to Redhook Games for being able to carry their success all the way to a console release and their next expansion. While they’ve already said their next game will not be a Darkest Dungeon 2, I can’t wait to see more from the studio.
And with that, 2016 is finished. Thanks for reading these posts and we’ll get back to regular posts real soon.
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