The Games Brian Shea Finished In 2016

about X hours ago from
The Games Brian Shea Finished In 2016

I love playing through as many games as possible each year. Though I know I'll never get through every big or worthy release in any given year, I feel like it's part of my responsibility as a game critic to play through as many games in my wheelhouse (and some that aren't) as I can. This year, I went in wanting to keep pace with my fellow editor Andrew Reiner in his yearly quest to complete as many games as possible, but I got somewhat sidetracked.

I'm usually a single-player console/handheld gamer. In fact, I'd say that holds true for me 90 percent of the time. Occasionally, I'll get sucked into a multiplayer game for a few weeks, but it's not the norm. 2016 not only saw a dramatic shift in how much time I spent online competing against other players, but also a huge jump in how much time I spent gaming on my phone.

Developers From Naughty Dog, id, Square Enix, And More Share Their Top Games Of 2016

about X hours ago from
Developers From Naughty Dog, id, Square Enix, And More Share Their Top Games Of 2016

This may come as a surprise, but the people who make video games? They play and like them us much as us regular ol' non-developers. As we wave goodbye to 2016, we decided to reach out to developers and find out what their favorite five games of 2016 were. We asked for an ordered list with a sentence or two explaining each choice, with the qualifier that rules are made to be broken. This is why some lists might read more like 'games I played this year,' as opposed to 'games that came out this year,' feature extra honorable mention entries, or be just a list with no explanations. You can find the lists, presented in alphabetical order by last name, below.

You can look out for Game Informer's favorite games of the year lists in the January issue which will be in the wild soon.

Ian Dallas (Giant Sparrow / The Unfinished Swan)

Extended Intervew: Nathan Fillion Talks Destiny, Halo, And His Passion For Gaming

about X hours ago from
Extended Intervew: Nathan Fillion Talks Destiny, Halo, And His Passion For Gaming

Nathan Fillion is best known for his work on beloved TV shows such as Castle and Firefly, but he's also voiced some memorable characters in gaming, such as Halo's Buck and Destiny's Cayde-6. Fillion is an avid fan of video games, especially the FPS genre. We recently chatted with him about how he got into games, if he'd ever want to play Nathan Drake, and his favorite games of all time.

[Editor's Note: This is an extended version of an interview that ran in issue #283]

What's your history with video games?

Five Narrative Directions For The Last Of Us Part II

about X hours ago from
Five Narrative Directions For The Last Of Us Part II

Warning: Major spoilers for The Last of Us and the Left Behind DLC.

The Last of Us is a well-crafted adventure that many believe doesn’t need a sequel. Could a continuation of this narrative diminish the impact of the original’s tense ending? Will revisiting these beloved characters, in a drastically different tone than the last game, be satisfying? It’s hard to say, but if anyone is equipped to deliver a promising storyline, it’s Naughty Dog.

At PlayStation Experience 2016, we were treated to The Last of Us Part II’s two-minute reveal. Ellie takes center stage as the protagonist, and a foreboding sense invades the teaser as piles of bodies lie in her wake. Joel stands in the doorway, but the emotional connection between the two seems to stutter. It’s clear that much is different this time around.

The Games Andrew Reiner Finished In 2016

about X hours ago from
The Games Andrew Reiner Finished In 2016

Something remarkable happened in 2016: My four-year-old daughter became engrossed in console games. Thanks to her growing interesting in my favorite entertainment medium, I saw a number games through to the end that I normally wouldn't have, but I'm glad I did. The two good games she had me play were Unravel, the yarn-based platformer, and Lumo, an isometic puzzle-platformer that she ended up calling "Witch Game" since the protagonist looks like an adorable little magic caster. She also made me play one terrible game: Snoopy's Grand Adventure, which may be one of the most uninspired things to ever use Charles Schulz's character.

Video Game Trends That Haven't Gone Away

about X hours ago from
Video Game Trends That Haven't Gone Away

With 2016 officially gone and 2017 upon us, it's natural to look at where we are and what got us here. The past is prologue as they say, and that applies to video games. Taking a look back at some of the summations in our year-end issues of Game Informer reminds me that the past is all around us.

Combing through the last six or so years of Game Informer Magazine's year-end awards, I was not only reminded of how many great games we've been spoiled with in that time, but some of the events that were important at the time, and which are still big issues today.

Japanese Development – "Floundering Japanese Development" was number 6 on our Disappointments list for this year, highlighted by Keiji Inafune's broadside against the stagnant Japanese development industry and the ascendency of the West. Inafune was right on the mark at the time, and sadly, it's a situation that still largely persists.

The Best Achievements And Trophies Of 2016

about X hours ago from
The Best Achievements And Trophies Of 2016

Whether you love them, hate them, or forget they exist until they pop on your screen and interrupt your game, achievements and trophies are (literally) a required feature of all PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Steam games. I fall into the love camp, and these are some of my favorites from 2015.

The achievements and trophies I find most interesting aren't the ones that mark your progress in a storyline or reward you for attaining a certain number of headshots. I like the ones that force you to think outside of the normal functions of the game or reward you for doing something weird.

Follow the links to see 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015 best achievements and trophies.

Game Informer's Top Scoring Game Reviews Of 2016

about X hours ago from
Game Informer's Top Scoring Game Reviews Of 2016

Game Informer reviews tons of games every year, but only a select few are able to obtain special commendations reserved for the highest scoring titles. Games that earn an 8.5 or 8.75 obtain a Game Informer Silver award, while a score ranging from 9 to 9.5 earns that game a Game Informer Gold award. While most of the best games of the year fall into that range, the most elite titles ascend to the next level to earn a Game Informer Platinum award (9.75 or 10 score).

To help you keep track of the best of the best, we've compiled all of the top scoring games of 2016 here. Check out the games we've thought are the best of the year so far, and if you want to learn more, you can read the full review with a simple click-through. Also, be sure to save this page so you can check back each month to see which new games we think should be added to your "must-play" list.

For more of our favorite games from recent years, head to the links below.

Game Informer's Seventh Annual Glitchie Awards

about X hours ago from
Game Informer's Seventh Annual Glitchie Awards

With rising budgets and team sizes, creating video games continues to get more expensive and difficult. Rarely does a game release without a significant day one patch that features critical, last-second changes. But every once and a while we encounter a glitch or bug that puts a smile instead of a scowl on our faces. 

We celebrate these hilarious, immersion shattering mistakes each year with The Glitchies. As with every year, it's tough to beat the animation and physics fails from EA Sports' FIFA franchise, which has already been inducted in the hall of fame. FIFA once again put forth an impressive effort, but we found several other great bugs worth sharing as well. Enjoy!

Warning: Game Informer is not responsible for content on YouTube links. Language may be unsuitable for minors.

Why Dishonored 2’s Selectable Protagonists Are Secretly Its Greatest Asset

about X hours ago from
Why Dishonored 2’s Selectable Protagonists Are Secretly Its Greatest Asset

Heads up, friends: spoilers for the original Dishonored (but no major spoilers for Dishonored 2) lie ahead.

Dishonored 2 has been out for almost two months now and in that time received a great deal of (earned) praise for its gameplay systems, story, and dark world. However, one quality of the game I’ve noticed not get its due is developer Arkane’s decision to let you choose to play as either Corvo, the protagonist from the original Dishonored, or his daughter, Empress Emily Kaldwin. And so I wanted to spend some words talking about why I think letting players have that choice between these characters isn’t just a “oh neat” but instead a brilliant design decision that feels like an integral evolution of the series’ choice-oriented design. But to get there, we need to talk about how and why the original Dishonored works so well. Let's dive into it.