My Year In Games and GOTY 2020

In 2020 the only new releases I played that I can recall are Final Fantasy 7 Remake, Ghost of Tsushima, Sakura Wars (which I haven’t even finished), and Yakuza: Like A Dragon. That’s it, and so this post is kind of hard to even make given there’s not much to say. Instead of focusing just on 2020 releases aside obviously getting to those 4 (well, 3 really) especially for “goty”…of 3, I’ll just talk about how my time was with games overall this year. I’ll give out random awards, with random game talks inbetween them so the award only belongs to what is immediately under the heading.

Best Experience

Final Fantasy XIV

I’m still going on about this game because I can’t help it. Not only do I completely love XIV, but XIV made me fall in love with Final Fantasy a lot more as a whole. It was never one of my favorite JRPG series and so things like the music and various lore elements and such were never huge for me really, especially pre-FF7 ones. This has made me so much more appreciative of the entire franchise, taught me about all the games all the way back to the original because so much of that stuff is here in a new light yet also gives you motivation to look up the old original lore, and gave me a really strong emotional attachment to the beautiful melody that is the main Final Fantasy theme song. It’s made Final Fantasy something I can say I really love instead of “well I really love (specific ones)”. It changed the entire franchise for me and my appreciation of it, I fucking love this game and it’s made me fucking love Final Fantasy.

Beyond that stuff though, it’s just a really fantastic game. I’m still in the Stormblood expansion but I can say the story through the entire game up to this point is still really one of the very best that FF has ever had and some of the characters are up there in that regard as well. I have to reiterate too that it’s almost sad this IS an MMO (even though it does kind of add to it in a way) because just how many people will avoid it for that who would otherwise absolutely love it (even when the entire original game and first expansion, which is amazing, are totally free and with no limitations). It’s a fantastic JRPG; it’s got massive amounts of character development, endless side stories, an amazing overarching story with each bigger portion (expansion) being longer and higher quality than most FF releases on their own, stunning music that at points is the best in the franchise, beautiful settings to visit and explore, and the amount of lore and such that is intertwined from prior games and itself is phenomenal in how well its done and how nostalgic it makes you even for ones you may have never played – let alone the amazing shit they pulled off with turning the cancellation of the original game into this incredibly important story element. It’s a really great game and I’ve loved every moment I’ve spent with it since restarting it after dropping it a couple months after it originally released (ARR) and so of course it’s been my best gaming experience this year, with returning to it being one of the best decisions in regards to games that I’ve ever made. Seriously, I can’t recommend it enough – ARR is slower and a bit boring at times, but that’s why Heavensward is also part of the free version now because Heavensward is amazing and one of the best JRPG experiences I’ve ever had even if it was it’s own thing instead of part of XIV.

Also I’ve ended up totally enamored by a fantasy race for the first time; I just fucking love the Au Ra – they’re dragon people who are pseudo-mongolians and the women are just so cute and/or hot. Every single one. I almost changed to one myself but I love being one of the only players with a human character – and I wear giant demon horns all the time anyway because somehow even in an MMO I’m way late to I still accidentally manage to be unique in the crowd.

I’ve also been able to make some fun of my own just recently. Thanks to Christmas (when I wrote this, anyway) there is an event going on in the game, so I’ve been dressed up in proper themed clothes giving out (virtual) cookies and pretzels I made to new players (they have a little sprout next to their names) by the event’s main NPC – but only if they get in a snowball fight with me after I throw one at them as they pass by.

Also, the feeling of pulling a meteor down from the heavens and standing there like a God STILL has not gotten old no matter how many times I do it.

VRChat

I won’t actually get into this too deeply because I’ve had a lot more of the bad experiences I mention every time I bring up VRC – but this time some were extra painful and are still really hard for me to deal with months and months later and are things I don’t feel like bringing up here, at least not for now. Putting the bad aside – which sadly still makes up most of the real VRChat experience – I had a lot of fun on there this year as well. I made 4 more worlds all inspired by Blue Reflection all of which I’m very proud of, made a world inspired by the aesthetics of Shinra of FF7 fame, got to decorate my main Mini Manor world for Christmas again which is always really fun, and VERY recently – like just within the past month-ish – I’ve finally started trying to talk to people. The agoraphobia makes it near impossible still, but I’m pushing myself to do it little by little with a handful of selected friends I’ve known on it for a good amount of time.

I’ll never be normal, I’ll never be able to work or even get along with people, but being able to talk on the internet from time to time is something I think with enough time and effort I can manage to make ‘doable’. Albeit, all I’ve done with talking so far has gone on rants about /pol/ things that are likely to get me super fucking banned, making fart noises or burping on people, hitting on college students (with some good success), and reciting the first 7 minutes of The Dark Knight Rises including sound effects because Baneposting will never die.

The biggest thing to mention about VRChat in 2020 though is that it’s been overrun with what I call “Covid Tourists” – which are normies and other types who don’t belong there at all who have basically taken it over. Yes, it was already shit filled with nothing but sociopaths, but now it’s that mixed with people who have no understanding of games, anime, internet culture, vrchat, online friendships or relationships, etc who are being pushed into a new world for them while damaging one that was a place meant for people like me, not them. It’s really brought down the quality of people you meet and also enhanced the amount of fucking druggies, alcoholics, and manipulative types. I actually wanted to make a post about this situation and I might some day even though I know nobody but me cares. Since Christmas it has also gottne worse in the way of children now owning loads of Quest 2s which has resulted in a bunch of literal kids screaming everywhere who can’t even interact with you because the Quest 2 can’t actually play VRChat properly without being linked to a PC. Though in general being talkative in small numbers with people I’ve known awhile finally has made VRC more positive again in the last couple weeks of December and into 2021 so far.

Planet Zoo

Loved it – it’s just Planet Coaster / Rollercoaster Tycoon but running a zoo instead, and I love zoos and animals and all that. Great fun even if there are some annoying bugs – especially with things like the recurring bug I’ve had which is basically impossible to figure out is happening until everything is super fucked where the zookeepers just get stuck not able to use any of their own buildings because one of the NPC’s AI broke so ALL of them do – and some arguably over-challenging story levels. Even with the small problems (well, they were big to deal with given they made me fail missions sometimes, but still small in general) the game is great fun and a comfy time with cute animals. There are some challenging missions through the campaign as well (some I still have yet to finish – like the last 2 levels I think – because I just literally could not beat the one I’m still stuck on though I haven’t tried in awhile), but for the most part it’s not too stressful especially in sandbox mode. I’ve started playing Jurassic World recently too and I can definitely see how they took that and turned it into this with a lot of big strides from learning from that one (and planet coaster).

Most Worst Game Coverage

Giant Bomb turning into a shitty wannabe political talk show in 90% of their content (content of which barely exists, given how lazy they’ve been) just spewing retarded leftist bullshit and even REFUSING to do any content whenever there were any societal issues that had no relation to the business or the staff – even more of this than when that fat fuck mulatto Austin was there, somehow. Shut the fuck up already, you are fucking retards. You should be ashamed as people in their fucking 40s sitting there gossiping like little children with your only points being repeating whatever gets you to stay not banned on twitter that CNN said to say.

You are pathetic. You are fucking losers. Your kids are being raised by mindless soulless automaton terrorists-to-be and will be nothing but fuck-ups who should never have been born in the first place because of your parenting decisions. You are the people that make the US look and BE bad. You are the people the world is laughing at, the people who have ruined this country and the future for your own children. You should end your time here and move on to the hell you clearly wish to be in so badly and will undoubtedly end up in. Bakalar, the LITERAL Jew member of the Beastcast part of Giant Bomb, at least has the excuse of being a hand rubbing merchant and whining about Americans trying to escape the grasp of his fucking tribe – you expect it, he can’t help it. The rest? Learn to close your fucking mouth, nobody cares about you and your children will live in a hellscape for your choices if more people don’t rise up against the world you’re creating, if people like me do not save their future because you don’t care about them at all compared to the upvotes you’ll get on your twitter and reddit accounts – not that Alex will ever have children, he’s had the same girlfriend for like over a decade and can’t even manage to get married because he’s probably a cuckold who watches black “bulls” fuck her while he sits there with his somber face in the corner jerking off to it.

Not only all this shit, but these fucking morons have made basically NO content in the last couple of years, but especially 2020 wherein they somehow used the excuse of working from home equating out to not being able to do work. Their job is playing video games. They do not need to be in an office to do that. It was such great news that Abby was quitting – and then somehow the site got even worse once she did.

Most Stop Updating Every Time I Try To Fucking Play

Yakuza: Like A Dragon

I’ll talk about the actual game in a bit (and already did in my review of it) but holy shit this game has a problem with updating. I’d usually play this every day or skip 1 day and return to it, and 100% of the time I’d go to play it there would be yet another fucking 500mb update that PSN takes 4-6 minutes to download 2-3 minutes to “copy” and then another 5 or 6 minutes to actually install itself, and with very few exceptions (such as patching in an indicator for enemy weaknesses) almost none of these updates fucking matter and should not be pushed out like hotfixes every single goddamn day. This game came out on NOVEMBER 10TH and I am writing this on DECEMBER 24TH and this issue HAS NOT STOPPED. You might think this shows they care and are constantly adding things or fixing issues but, again, the things they’re doing are mostly hotfixes which are unnecessary to be pushed immediately and could wait for a once-a-week patch, this is just fucking annoying – plus whatever is it they’re doing is massive every time even when you read the patch notes that just say “I dunno we fixed a vending machine that could glitch sometimes” the patch is half a fucking gig. Absolutely horrendous to deal with this game.

Yakuza: Like A Dragon

So like I said, I’d talk about the game some. I already reviewed it but since this is an attempt at a GOTY post it’s worth bringing up. This game is pretty good for the most part but the whole ending of it is just abysmal and the last few chapters have boss fights that really ruin the fun of the game. I still recommend it for Yakuza fans and even people looking to jump in – as long as they understand this is shit in terms of writing compared to the real game AND that it is a totally different gameplay style. Really was disappointing though, so any chance it had for GOTY was completely eradicated.

Elder Scrolls Online

So, basically, it’s shit.

Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint

So, basically, it’s shit. Well, okay, I’ll actually talk about this one.

Bland as all hell; every Ghost Recon game now is just identical to the last in some attempt to shit up the franchise just like Ass Crud has done to itself. Sure, one game like that is great – same for AC – but it is now EVERY SINGLE GAME to the point I forgot I played this until I looked through a list of releases because I genuinely thought I was confusing the old one as the new one and thought I was imagining a new game. They’re that fucking identical except this one has Shane’s actor from The Walking Dead which is the only reason I was interested and is also the only good thing about it. I mean these games are totally fine but they’re so boring and empty and not worth the time or money outside of 100% turn your mind off, mute the game, turn on a tv show you’ve seen a billion times or a podcast and “play” it.

Star Wars: Jedi Fallen Order

As I said in my review, I was hugely disappointed with this one. It’s stupid, it’s not very fun or engaging, it has NOTHING to fucking do with Star Wars and you forget it’s even a related property 90% of the time, and instead of a “souls-like” it’s just Uncharted with lightsabers, and visually it is just ugly as hell. Not the worst game ever made, it’s fine – but it is JUST fine and that makes it boring and bad after spending any modest amount of time with it.

Devil May Cry 5

Then there was DMCV – another one I’ve reviewed already – and it was fantastic. Stylish as all hell in every possible way, incredibly rewarding combat that just feels damn good (most of the time – ironically especially true as V who everyone seems to hate), and just loads of fun. Absolutely loved playing through it.

Ghost of Tsushima

Absolutely fantastic new IP which I have reviewed already. This game is full of beauty in basically everything about it and that keeps it from ever getting boring or feeling monotonous even while doing the same things over and over again. I had some issues with the forced in social justice shit that also clashed with the storytelling, the characters, and the time period and views in Japan at the time – but my biggest complaints are definitely about it never wanting to end and continually dragging it out when it wasn’t necessary anymore. However, even with the issues, this was a near perfect start to what is hopefully a new franchise – though I can’t say I’m interested in really going back to this one (and I platinumed it already anyway).

Sakura Wars

I didn’t finish this one – not because it’s bad, no, in fact I love it. It is everything a Sakura Wars game should be (and how they have been, to my knowledge) and it’s really fun, cute, and very nostalgic. I really liked the anime and I never got a chance to play any of the games or anything, so this was great. The problem, and reason I didn’t finish it, clashes with my real feelings of the game though – so let’s be clear; I love that this game puts a heavy focus on characters and dialogue and put combat to the side, this is basically a 3D-gameplay visual novel with some battles thrown in. That’s absolutely what it should be and I love that it is that. I just can’t handle that much downtime with the stress I’m dealing with, walking around, talking, walking around, talking, and it’s not talking about anything serious it’s just small talk 90% of the time. I love it, but I can’t handle that right now, my mind goes crazy in all those long nothing parts and I have a panic attack. I really look forward to returning to this and finishing it down the line though and, really, it’s a good game.

Final Fantasy 7 : Crisis Core

This year I also spent a lot of time playing the hell out of Crisis Core to get myself more fully acquainted with Zack whose story I’ve known only from FF7’s bits of him and reading wiki articles about this exact game, but never having played it myself. I reviewed this already like most of the things in this post, so to keep it short this was a really good game that added a lot to the FF7 lore in meaningful and important ways and I’m really glad I got around to it finally. This made me really care even more about the new ending in FF7 Remake and the possibilities to come in the future parts, though unlike most I’d be fine seeing Genesis in it but the biggest problem is that Angeal will be there too and fuck Angeal. Would love if they had an updated Why in 7 Remake as well, what a great song. This game was great and really emotional – way more than it should have been able to be.

Game Of The Year

Final Fantasy 7 Remake

So where would my GOTY land? Well, given I barely played any new games, I’d probably go with the Final Fantasy 7 Remake based on all the reasons I went on about in my review. It has a lot of issues – mostly with padding and that godawful train ghost shit – but the overall package is fucking phenomenal and I loved basically every second of it (aside the trainyard). Seeing this world in modern graphics, seeing these characters look this great, seeing the new details they could finally put in such as the guilt of your party after the bombing and also the small little things like Shinra EMTs and Shinra firemen trying to save lives, the really fun combat, the way they turned just the Midgar portion into this incredible story within itself and made great use of the locations that they could work with within that limitation, and of course the story – new and old – being so damn good especially with all the new twists. Ghost of Tsushima was a really amazing game but it just doesn’t have the edge FF7 does over it of being what it is. FF7R is more than just a remake or, more correctly, a sequel-remake thing – I mean it’s one of the first and only things that has ever made me nostalgic and paid off on that nostalgia, I never give a shit about nostalgia and it’s just not something that I ever really experience, yet this game from the very second it launched and the start menu came up had me feeling that so fucking strongly.

It’s a special game – and no, not only because of that nostalgia – and so it is and probably would have still been my GOTY even if there was a lot of competition. I just loved it even when I was frustrated by it.

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