Did you know that we are 5 years into the 8th generation on consoles? That’s pretty amazing when you think about it. There have been plenty of great games (and not so great) that have crossed our consoles since, but which where the real gems? Well, I’m about to dive in and take a quick look at 5 of the top exclusive games for this generation.
When it was first announced that From Software was going to make PS4 owners have to learn to “git gud”, many people in the industry expected Bloodborne to end up being a solid, but niche title. I remember getting my review copy and playing it, only to make to the big bonfire before dying my first time and thinking “this is pretty good”. Then, as I started to talk with my peers, they all seemed in agreement. I expected to see my glowing review of the title contrast against the court of public opinion, because once the public gets the game all sorts of bug can show up. Turns out they loved it as well. Not only was Bloodborne the first truly accessible “Souls” game, but it improved upon the original formula in so many ways that I could write a solo article on how good the game is. If you haven’t played it, get on it.
I grew up on Final Fantasy games. With that being said, what we call a “Final Fantasy game” these days is quite a disgrace to the namesake. I played the Bravely Default demo and was completely overwhelmed at first. It seemed too hard, battles were too common and it just felt off. Then I got my RPG-legs back after realizing I had to play the game like a traditional RPG. When the game launched, I actually purchased the Collector’s Edition just so I could get the awesome soundtrack with it. 60-80 hours later, I had beat the game and was able to sit back and soak in just how good the story, battle system and quality of Bravely Default was. If you like RPG games and you have a 3DS, try to see if you can find it out there, also make sure you pick up the sequel, Bravely Second, this Friday.
This is one of the biggest gems of the current console generation. While it may not be the prettiest fighting game out there, it certainly slightly edges out Mortal Kombat X as the best fighter this console generation. That is saying a lot with a new Street Fighter, Guilty Gear and even my personal favorite, Blazblue out on the market. Killet Instict perfectly tapped into what made it so good on both the SNES and N64, while implementing great free to play elements into the game for those not brave enough to buy the game at full price. With ongoing support and more characters being added all the time, this is the go-to fighting game if you want a traditional fighter.
Ori and the Blind Forest
I first saw this game at E3 2014 and was immediately smitten with it. The beautiful graphics, ambient soundtrack and awesome platforming scratched an itch I didn’t really know I had. Once I was able to get some real quality time with Ori, I also realized it filled that Metroidvania void that was left in my soul ever since Konami stopped making good Castlevanias (that would after Order of Ecclesia for those keeping score). Seriously though, Ori is as beautiful of a game as it is fun. I’ve put a few days time total into the game and I am still quite a ways from 100%, I really want to go back and finish it when I have some extra time. If you haven’t given it a try yet, you’ll understand how I feel once you’ve played it.
Smash Brothers Wii U
I feel like including Smash is technically cheating. Almost every Smash has been pure gold for Nintendo and with a streamlined roster and truly balanced mechanics, this one really is the icing on the cake for the series so far. Outside of an unhealthy Amiibo addiction, Smash also has included probably some of the most unique and awesome characters from the entire series. Bayonetta, Cloud, Megaman and Ryu all guest star on Nintendo’s premiere title and look awesome while doing it. New characters like Shulk or Palutena add interesting elements into the game and the online is simply divine. Nintendo has a whole slew of great exclusives, but this is one that almost everyone can universally find enjoyment in. Also, they brought back based-Roy, that’s all that matters.
There was one more game that I wanted to include on this list, but after deliberation I don’t think it is fair to include since it was originally a PS3 title. The Last of Us was truly an amazing game and from start to finish had me on the edge of my seat. I considered adding it to the list, but I was told by several of you that you wouldn’t consider it a current gen title, fair enough. I do want to give it an honorable mention though.
With this year alone, we still have some amazing console exclusives coming down the pipe. I’m hearing amazing things about the newly released Ratchet and Clank, Gears of War 4 is shaping up to be what Halo 5 wasn’t and I’m still not 100% sure what No Man’s Sky is, but it sure looks cool.
Do you agree with my picks? Think you can choose better? I’d love to see what you think!