In the first chapter of The Order: 1886, Galahad — the player character — slowly walks through a beautiful and meticulously crafted environment. You can see smoke plumes billowing off nearby roofs and dried paint cracking under the sun. Galahad moves through an attic, complete with a beautiful white wooden horse and a plush 19th century couch stuffed in the corner; a mannequin stands in the corner wrapped in a corset and a mirror casually reflects the room.
Welcome to Polarity Shift, where an editor chooses a game they love and tries their damndest to give it a negative review. Only by seeing how the other half lives can we truly reach a sort of opinionated paradise.
We’ve all said it at one point or another, but it bears repeating: 2014 was pretty much ass. Purely focusing on the games-side of things, there were far more disappointing and broken games that released this year than any of us would have expected. Still, even in this most ass-y of years, there were still games that came out that were worth rewarding. But before we get to those games, let’s start off with a category that’s pretty representative of 2014 as a whole.
Here is the definitive Top 10 list for 2014, unless you have a different one, which is probably the actual definitive list.
I have spent a lot of time living from April 11th, 2011 to March 20th, 2012. I’ve lived it once, twice, three times. I’ve turned over the events in my head, and I’ve filled in the gaps. I’ve watched other people live that year, and I’ve read about other people living that year. I’ve thought about going back and living it again.
Persona Q: Shadow of the Labyrinth thinks I should move on.
Dragon Age: Origins was one of the best RPGs of the last generation. Bioware looked back to its Baulder’s Gate roots and crafted a new world. Dragon Age 2 is often considered a misstep for the series, an incredibly rushed product that reuses environments too often and fails to consider the breadth and depth of the world. Dragon Age: Inquisition is a direct answer to the complaints of Dragon Age 2 meshed with some of the design sensibilities of Origins. Bioware excels at telling character-focused stories in rich and detailed worlds and Dragon Age: Inquisition is no different. It’s a game of immense scope that still manages to be incredibly engaging and personal.