2015: The video game year in reviewFeaturing all the big games and news stories we experienced in 2015, GameSpot's Danny O'Dwyer takes you on a journey back through one of the greatest years in the history of video games.
2015, what an epic year for video games that deserves an equally epic year in review video. [MUSIC] In coming fat boy! [SOUND] [MUSIC] Sahelanthropus! I'm Danny O'Dwyer from gamespot.com and over the next 20 minutes, I'm gonna be running through what ended up being one of the greatest years in the history of video Hundreds of games came out this year. We won't get to all of them but we will highlight the best, the worst, the biggest talking points and the companies and legends we saw they left behind. Okay, enough chitchat. Let's get to the games. This year like so many others, began in January. January is always been a bit of a quiet time for games, everyone's broke up to the holidays and we're all too busy trying to run off all that turkey [UNKNOWN] before realizing, hey. Where video game fans are destined to a life with a pot belly. Just me? Well in any case, we did have a bunch of great games to play #iDarb hit the Xbox One and Life is Strange began it's episodic journey. We're more than used to games coming back from the dead and 2015 was no different. Saints Row Gat out of Hell graced us with its angelic presence. Grim Fandango came back from the dead remastered and Dying Light added some interesting player movement mechanics to the first person undead genre. February started with a fire sale Sony sold off Sony Online Entertainment, historic game site CVG got swallowed into GamesRadar, and Joystiq was shut down by AOL. I used to work in an AOL call center. I spent all day taking calls from people that wasted their money on a **** product which is probably what Sony's hotline was like after The Order out. [LAUGH] [NOISE] Yes sir. Yes, I know it's a glorified rail shooter but how about those HD mustaches? Telltale's Game of Thrones series picked up where it left off in 2014 with Episode 2, the Lost Lords. Ubisoft finally made good and released the best Assassin Creed game in years, Grow Home. Evolve seemed promising, but ultimately the mass market just weren't convinced. Like Turtle Rocks new take on asymmetric multiplayer. Everyone's favorite creepy moon returned in the Legend of Zelda, Majoris. 3D, and on the very same day, the new Nintendo 3DS was launched. The latest version on Nintendo's console sported an upgraded processor, more RAM, some extra buttons ,and the ability to scan your face, presumably so Nintendo can catalogue all 3DS owners. Attempt to cram a Wii U down their throats. PC fans enjoyed launch of Total War Atilla. While Mac fines finally got The Sims 4. The former a game about breaking down protective walls to kill the people inside, and the latter a game about building protective walls to kill the people inside. While in a year full off episodic games Resident Evil started its own episodic nonsense with Revelations 2. March kicked off here in downtown San Francisco in this building behind me the Muscone Center where the annual Game Developers Conference kicks off. Middle Earth Shadow of Mordor was given the GDP's best game of 2014 while in the IGF the game Outer Wilds won the grand prize while on the other side of the Bay Bridge Here in Emeryville, EA shoot down the headquarters of SimCity in Spore Creator, Maxis who used to reside in this building here [INAUDIBLE] they were unable to weather the storm in SimCity back in 2013. The City building funds and have the way it long for a new pretender. 5,311 miles West if you're in Finland, the new king of city building games was being born. Cities: Skylines, one of the most popular PC games in 2015 took all that was great about city building in Sim City. Road layout, zoning and transit and applied it to an easy to learn but vastly expandable simulation. Aah! March started with a bit of a scare. Five Nights at Freddy's had two releases in 2015 First, number three on March 2nd. And speaking of sequels, March also saw the release of Ollie Ollie 2, Hotline Miami 2, and Mario Party 10. Tales from the Borderlands made it's first appearance of 2015 with episode 2, Atlas Mugged. We saw new versions of old friends, too with Battlefield Hardline, DMC Definitive Edition, [UNKNOWN] Fast and Furious thing and Bloodborne a Playstation 4 Exclusive that involved the rough and tumble action of the Soul Series. There was code named Steam, Scream Ride, and March was also a great month for indy games. With the wonderful Ori In The Blind Forest, the outstanding Axium Verge and funtastic shooter, Hell Divers. This month also saw Nintendo Japan enter in partnership with Japanese mobile developer DNA on a brand new project. A dedicated games platform with a brand new concept. They were calling the NX. Will we see it in 2016? Not long to wait now. April was a fantastic month for fans of anthropomorphic bread and shooting innocent bystanders as GTA 5 finally came out on PC. And just in case any. Tape of 14th wasn't gory enough, it also saw the release of Mortal Kombat X. A week later Assassin's Creed Chronicles China, and a week after that, the wonderful Carville space program, a game that many of us here at Gamespot loved over the course of its early access development, was finally officially released. And on that topic, the second and final part of double five's adventure game broken mage, was also finally released. Business news, OnLive was discontinued and its assets were sold to Sony. While former Sony executive Phil Harrison left Microsoft. But the biggest news of the month came from Japan. In March, Gamespot broke a story about the possible rift between Kojima and Konami. And in April, we witnessed what seemed to be Konami taking a step back from AAA game development. Silent Hills was cancelled, the company plans to pull PT from the PlayStation store. And Konami was delisted from the New York Stock Exchange. All this mere months before the launch of the company's biggest release in half a decade, Metal Gear Solid V, The Phantom Pain. May gave us super fun stand alone Nazi Hunt Wolfenstein, The Old Blood, [UNKNOWN] racer Project CARS, a remastering of Final Fantasy X and X-2, Galactic Civilization [UNKNOWN] 3, family friendly deathmatch shooter Splatoon and the critically acclaimed Invisible Ink. In the long tradition of pre-E3 prep, May didn't have that many releases, but it did have a big one. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt from Warsaw-based Developer said that project red took the world by storm by creating one of the most engrossing and fascinating open world role playing games of all time. Heartfelt stories, miles of landscape, and a dynamic narrative combined to create what many believe to the The best game of 2015. We certainly did. Which is why we awarded it game of the year. June is also traditionally a little shy on game releases, as it's the time of year that the industry descends on Los Angeles for E3, but we did get a couple of notable releases Postal clone Hatred came out, everyone got pissed off for a day, and then it disappeared back into obscurity. Blizzard's mobile Heroes of the Storm was officially launched. And Bethesda put out a Fallout mobile game. Nintendo launched Dr. Mario Miracle Cure, and discontinued Club Nintendo in North America. There was Devil May Cry 4 Special Edition, MotoGP 15, Her Story, and Batman Arkham Knight, which was promptly pulled on PC because of substantial technical issues. Don't worry, there'll be more on that story later. [MUSIC] July was a month defined by the excitement of returning favorites and the sadness of departing legends. God of War III, Hatoful Boyfriend, The Binding of Isaac and Journey returned on new platforms. While Five Nights at Freddy's enjoyed its second release of the year. And Plus received a long awaited sequel, F1 and PGA got their annual releases and a new version of Windows was surprisingly well received. This was also the month of Assassins Creed co-creator Jay Raymond returned to AAA Development. Joining forces with Amy Hennig, on EA's upcoming Star Wars game. But while we enjoyed the company of returning friends and so many fondly remembered franchises, we were also forced to say goodbye to one of our industries most beloved creators. On July 18th, Nintendo CEO Satoru Iwata tragically passed away at the age of 55. Programmer turned CEO, he guided the direction of Nintendo during good times and bad. A vanguard for innovation, he oversaw the release of two of the most revolutionary and destructive consoles of all time. While he had the brain of a businessman and the hands of an inventor, Iwata-san was always He's quick to make us understand where exactly his heart lies. [MUSIC] July also gave us something to smile about. Sleepy head Rocket League came out for PC and for free on Playstation network to take the online multiplayer world by storm. Quite simply it's one of the best games of the year and perhaps one of the best sports games ever made. Another great sleeper hit this year was Until Dawn, the best David Cage game ever made. And it wasn't even made by David Cage. Plus all this was the same month that Disney Infinity 3.0 came out, which expanded the Disney Universe outwards into a galaxy far, far away. August also the launch of Dishonored Definitive Edition, Gears of War Ultimate Edition and Madden NFL 16 Annual Edition. Rare Replay jumped out of nowhere onto the XBox One, while everybody that's gone to The Rapture shuffled slowly towards the Playstation 4. And we enjoyed more indie hits in the form of Galak-Z, Volume and Trine 3. September usually marks the start of the Q4 rush when most of the big games come out. But even so September first was a bumper release for games. Especially fans of bearded men grunting in the desert. Avalanche Studios Mad Max was released to mixed reviews while Metal Gear Solid five the Phantom pain was heralded as an instant classic. The final chapter in this incredible franchise stepped into unfamiliar open world territory. The result, the best of game ever made. And a game you could argue straight faced As perhaps the best in the franchise. In fact, September was the month for solid sequels. Forza Motorsports 6, Pro Evolution 2016, FIFA '16, Blood Bowl 2, Skylander Supercharge and World of Warships. There was NHL '16 and the sadly disappointing Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 5. We played Lego Dimensions, the scary Soma and beloved indie hit Undertale The Taken King rounded off a year of expansion packs which greatly improved Destiny. Tearaway Unfolded made its way on to the PlayStation 4. Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime skipped over the PlayStation 4 coming out on Xbox 1 and PC. While Wii U landed another hit, Super Mario maker. Tatsumi Kimishima was appointed Satoru Iwata's successor at the helm of Nintendo and Sony [INAUDIBLE] project Morpheus to the elegantly PlayStation VR. [MUSIC] October was another fantastic month for releases. With The Nathan Drake collection, The Beginner's Guide, Mushroom 11, Downwell, Yoshi's Woolly World, and Just Dance 2016. A bunch of games came out of beta and had their official releases, including Elite Dangerous. I'm prison architect. After years of no music games at all, Rock Band 4 and Guitar Hero Live were released within a week of each other. And Tell Tale launched yet another episodic franchise with Minecraft story mode. Halo 5 Guardian's did much to make fans of the series happy on a. Street Syndicate certainly impressed a certain section of the AT fanbase. While sadly the Legend of Zelda Triforce Heroes and WW2K16 were not so well received by fans. Even those, however, couldn't compare with the eventual launch of Batman Arkham Knight on PC. The game relaunched in October still crippled with compatibility and performance issues causing Warner to throw in the towel completely and start handing out refunds. Some good business went down around this time too. Microsoft bought Havoc from Intel, presumably to add more power to their CAD processing projects. While November kicked off with a 5.9 billion acquisition of Candy Crush developer King Digital by mega-publisher Activision. And while Activision expanded, Konami were going in the other direction, closing their Los Angeles division. November 10th was easily the craziest day for new releases in 2015. Not only were Steam Machines officially launched. We also go the third chapter of Starcraft 2's long awaited trilogy, a fantastic sequel to the reboot of Tomb Raider, and 2015's most anticipated game that nobody knew was coming in 2015 until halfway through 2015, Fallout 4. [MUSIC] Like my place? Mostly made of dinner trays. And the rest of the month wasn't too bad either, as we got to battle on a rather realistic looking forest moon on Endor. Star Wars Battlefront may have been a little bit on the casual side but at the very least it looked and sounded the part. Jesus Christ. [SOUND] We saw a triple A title Call of Duty drop by for a tiny little cup of tea with the fast moving Black Ops 3. Street Racing fans enjoyed the return of Need for Speed while Yokai Watch, Deadpool, and a rather lackluster Mario Tennis UItra Smash rounded out the second last month of the year. Christmas doesn't come until the end of the month but December 1 has two wonderfully explosive gifts. Co-op shooter Rainbow Six Siege and the ridiculously high flying Just Cause 3. The game awards impressed again this year with a quality show, which evoked the passions of both gamers and developers alike. And it also announced the immediate release of Shadow Complex Remastered. So thanks for that Jeff. Buy princess adventures, and nuclear throne finally arrive. That we you had a surprise hit in den of [UNKNOWN] chronicles x. While the Devils Turn that was dropped around the rest of the world earlier this year finally plopped down on North America. Also Minecraft came in for the [UNKNOWN] month too. And the final game of 2015 came in on December 22nd. A personally favorite of mine, the re released version Of Hatoful Boyfriend holiday star. And that was the year of video games 2015. A bunch of multiplayer games battling for our attention. A pair of outstanding open world role playing games. More massive sand boxes that any of us would ever have time to complete, and a year where the PC stood tall Above the graphical limits of it's console cousins. No matter what you play it seems there was something for everyone in 2015, with games like Horizon Zero Dawn, No Mans Sky, Zelda The division and XCOM 2 mere months away, let's hope next year is equally as enjoyable. Happy new year, see you all in 2016. [MUSIC] [BLANK_AUDIO]