Erron’s Favourite Games of 2016

Erron’s Favourite Games of 2016

2016 was not a great year for me. I didn’t have ready access to any consoles, or a television, or a modern computer. My current computer is old, with faulty RAM, and cannot play very many new releases. I don’t have a modern phone, and don’t have a dataplan of any kind, so if a game needs to go outside of WiFi range, I can’t play it.

I do, however, have a few friends, and over the course of the year I managed to play through a handful of games. These are the best of what I saw, over 2016, in four quick blurbs and one longer story.


5) Far Cry Primal

I loved Far Cry 3. Far Cry 3 had good (if grindy) gameplay, and an excellent story. Far Cry Primal had very, very similar gameplay, and almost no story. But for some reason, I could not stop playing it once I had started. I took over every bonfire, conquered every outpost, and solved Far Cry Primal in a single extended sitting, and I would do it again in a heartbeat.


4) Deus Ex: Mankind Divided

The story of the new Deus Ex was not exactly stellar, but I’m an absolute sucker for games that let you sneak around like a total badass. In Human Revolution I attempted to beat the game with no murdering, and no alarms triggered. After beating that game, I got one of those two achievements, and the other one did not trigger. I was quite angry, and I’ve never touched Human Revolution since. With limited time, I played Mankind Divided in a fairly critical path, and overall enjoyed my time with it. I would cut my arms off for Jensen’s robot arms if I could.



It’s one of the most innovative shooters I’ve played in years. Seriously. I don’t think this one would be half as cool as it is without it replaying each level in real time, but.. it does. And it’s awesome every single time.


2) Overwatch

I adore Overwatch. For anyone who followed me on twitter during the first competitive season, you probably saw a lot of rage posting as I placed in the high 40s, fell drastically, and then climbed my way back up to rank 50. I’m sure I seemed angry while it happened, but I thrive on that kind of thing. Overwatch’s competitive drove me in a way few games can manage, and I’m sure I’ll play it off and on for the next decade.


1) Stardew Valley

I am not a happy man. That’s just sort of a fact of my life. Almost all of my time spent awake is spent in a very neutral state, for lack of a more descriptive phrase. I also have almost no sense of time. I’m mostly down with the passing of time in any given day, but I sort of drift through weeks, months, and years barely aware of the grander scale. As ridiculous as it sounds, that sort of progression through life is almost — not QUITE — almost abstract, to me.

Stardew Valley’s strict adherence to schedule can hardly be considered a noteworthy mechanic. Certainly it frames the gameplay, limiting your ability to do everything, all the time, every day, but it’s not unique. Harvest Moon style games have it. Dead Rising plays with time limits. Even something minor, like needing to take your malaria medication in Far Cry 2, or getting addicted to drugs and needing a fix in Fallout games, even those fall under that same umbrella.

In general, it kind of fascinates me, and scratches an itch of needing to optimize my time that I otherwise don’t really have. Which is fun, but alone, wouldn’t be very noteworthy.

With Stardew Valley, it’s not alone, though. Fixing the Community Center, exploring the mines, trying to grow every crop and catch every fish. Finding all the artifacts for the museum. Fixing the bus to the desert. Each of these were things I felt entirely compelled to do — and I did. I have no idea how long it took me. I couldn’t even give you a rough guess. Dozens of hours, presumably. Hundreds, maybe.

What I can say is that I felt happy when I was playing Stardew Valley. That alone nabs it my personal #1 spot.