D.M.’s Picks, #5 – #2
5. Destiny 2
Sometimes I play games to have fun. Like Overwatch last year, Destiny 2 might be thin on content relative to the genre, but it possesses the same butter-smooth controls and dynamic, fun combat. The enemies are varied and interesting, and I’m able to switch being classes and characters to switch up my play style. It’s an epic, cinematic experience, and one that lends itself well to being enjoyed with friends. I love Destiny 2, and still find myself getting lost in it for hours.
4. Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice
Hellblade is a difficult, flawed game. The underlying vision, however, is so beautiful, so heart-wrenching, so necessary, that it remains one of the most powerful games I’ve ever experienced. I’m unpacking it months later. One of my most significant personal criteria for judging a work of art is how long the experience stays with me when it’s finished, how deeply it moves me and worms its way into my creative being. Senua’s Sacrifice is an imperfect title, but it hit me like a right hook to the jaw, and it deserves its place on this list.
3. Divinity: Original Sin 2
True freedom in an RPG is rare, but Divinity 2 captured the playground feel of the tabletop games I used to play with my friends in my schoolboy days. I could solve problems more or less as I chose, customize my party to an absurd degree, and enjoy a story of tremendous scope and fun. This is made possible by the underlying mechanics, fantastically balanced even with the abundance of options. Playing around in Rivelon is an experience every RPG fan, whether you normally play in front of a screen or a table, should treat themselves to.
2. Horizon: Zero Dawn
Truly brilliant setting development and intimate scripting can elevate any experience, and this is exactly what Horizon did so well. The world it created was the true star of the game, with its stunning landscapes, towering machine creatures, and wonders to explore and discover. The tale that weaved through this post-apocalyptic future, and the land in which it unfolded, kept me diving in, determined to explore every last nook and cranny. Any game that compels such joyful discovery and such momentum deserves the highest praise.