Crystal Dreams

On Game of the Year, Nintendo Switch, and Other Ramblings

One of the things I had been asked recently was what my game of the year was last year. I didn’t really mention anything at all, but thinking about it, I don’t know if I had one. That doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy any games this year, but it means there wasn’t really anything that really stood out to me for me to be like “Oh, yeah, that is definitely my game of the year”.

In general, I felt most games I played this year went under one of the following:
-Beta/Early Access/Alpha – I feel like so many games are doing the “hey, pay to actually test out our game” which is something I’ve always had mixed feelings on. Beta Testing is an actual job and requires so much time to properly do. I think this is a good way to help fund a game, but at the same time just don’t really know how to feel about it. I suppose most people who do pay don’t actually do much beta testing though so… Regardless, it’s hard to really rate a game no matter how much fun I’m having before I know how much may change in the future. I also generally don’t want to put too much time into something if my saved data could be reset.
-Came out last year for everywhere but here. – Not too many games go under it this year, but one big one is Style Savvy: Fashion Forward which also goes under the next section…
-It’s a Sequel. But better. Or a very nice update. – I really enjoyed Fashion Forward–it did a great job improving on the last 3DS game in the series, Trendsetters, but it also removed several things I really enjoyed and still suffered a bit on pacing due to how certain things in the game worked. I think in general, unless they want Style Savvy to be a game with tons of waiting, it is a game that works better without a real time clock. The reason it didn’t work in Trendsetters is because the month never changed/there was no real progress beyond a day/night cycle so even though it may be a “new day”, you could end up with the same wardrobe the entire time you played no matter how much you played because it’s still only items you’d find in November.

Disney Magical World 2 is great in a lot of ways, but so much of it is really the same from the first game so it almost feels like it’s just an overhaul with some new things.

And then we have Animal Crossing: New Leaf which while it really energized me again and even helped lessen the problems with the moving mechanic (7-10 days is a huge improvement over 5 days notice), it still didn’t fix the core of the problem. I’m not sure if they could be fixed with a patch, but at least it feels like some kind of attempt was there.

I don’t really care for the Campsite’s placing, but I still really enjoy it and everything added. Having so many great new items (though, the names switching between New Leaf and Happy Home Designer is incredibly confusing) gave me a lot of ideas of what to do with my rooms. Right now though, I’m debating on just setting my date back and forgetting about ever catching up. There doesn’t seem to be anything special for hitting your anniversary once more and I’d really like to re-upload my Dream Suite, honestly. With the proper flowers. All watered (which takes hours).
-Adoptable Sites, Visual Novels, and Dress-up games. Popping in and out of them mostly…
-Mobile Games – Unfortunately, with the weather being the way it is lately, I’ve been a sick mess and it’s been hard to find many things I can play in short bursts and keep my attention to. It sucks as there’s a lot more I’d like to play and just can’t.

I would say the ones I played the most were Miitomo and Pokemon GO. I also had fun with Abyssrium, Neko Atsume, and Spoon Pets and then tried out various other games randomly.
-Online Games. Overwatch mostly which while I enjoy when I play, is mixed because people can be jerks. Star Stable Online is also interesting, but… very strange. And it’s kind of lonely to play by myself.

The only games I can think of that I played a lot that do not fall under those are:
1. Pokemon Sun and Moon and well, it’s still a Pokemon game. While there is a lot I loved and enjoyed while playing Moon, a lot of its mechanics were also killing the game for me a lot. I’ve never had a Pokemon game where my favorite feature was ruined for me and I just felt so lost. The last time I felt as discouraged as this with a Pokemon Game was shortly before the Elite 4 in B/W. I don’t even recall why specifically.

2. ABZU – ABZU would probably be the closest to me for the year. I loved every moment of the game and it surpassed so much of what I expected. It was like a more relaxing Endless Ocean for me (speaking of which, please make a third game, Nintendo). Diving is something I personally can’t do, but am generally really curious about and just think looks like such a great experience. I loved the colors and all the fish and getting to look around and the places you could explore… I just wish there was a more concrete story to it.

And that’s the thing, most games didn’t really make me think OMGBESTGAMEEVER. It’s like I enjoyed it, but it just didn’t leave an everlasting effect on me and I can’t think of anything this year that really did. As mentioned, ABZU would easily be the closest to what I’d call my Game of the Year. And many games that people adored (such as Fire Emblem Fates) were just… not interesting to me at all. I feel it was kind of a weird year for games.

That said, I’m really hyped up for a lot of games this year already and with the Switch presentation tonight (22 hours to go!), I am incredibly excited to see what they bring. I wasn’t really interested in the trailer at all (the split controller looks too small to me which… says a lot considering I have tiny hands) as I just… don’t usually care to play anything out and about so the console being able to be brought is mostly just me feeling like it’ll be easier to pack places, so for the system itself, nothing really impressed me. I don’t care about specs and it’s really about the games and what else the system may have that will catch my attention. I LOVE the Mii Plaza. StreetPass Mii Plaza will always be one of my favorite things on the 3DS. I wholeheartedly enjoyed the channels like Check Mii Out and the voting thing on the Wii and stuff like that I’d love to see back on the Switch.

I’m doing my best to stay hopeful for it and I’m excited either way. I won’t be going to see it at the Nintendo Store though–I’d rather just watch from home, but I am looking forward to trying it on Saturday :) We’ll be taking pictures and recording so I look forward to writing stuff up and uploading some footage of it all! While I did have the opportunity to go the 13th, I chose the 14th so we can have a better idea to prepare after the late conference, enjoy the Treehouse Live stuff, and get a better idea of what we want to do.

I’m really hoping to get a lot more done this year. I just… didn’t feel like I did much of anything. Either in writing, videos… just getting things done. And maybe it’s because I just didn’t feel like I had a lot to do, but hopefully I can do a better job this year and find more time to stream as well.

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