#147: Games of the Year 2019

TODAY: Luigi’s Mansion 3 is a slow-burning success story – Netflix new The Witcher show inspires nearly 50,000 to replay Wild Hunt – Ubisoft cancels major upcoming title, reassigns 200 staff at Montreal studio

Games of the Year 2019

Honking geese, package delivery, force throws and tipsy justice

Another year in gaming is drawing to an end, and it’s time to look back at the games we played and pick the ones that made our withered gamer hearts beat just a little bit faster than usual.

  • Resident Evil 2 Remake (2019) (Capcom) – Launch Trailer – January 25, 2019 (PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One)

Ok, so it’s not strictly speaking a whole new game, but the Resident Evil 2 remake still managed to inject some fresh blood into the survival horror series. Claire and Leon’s trials and tribulations in Raccoon City have changed just enough to feel like a new story rather than a retelling, while a new third-person camera and the relentlessly stompy Mr. X makes the gameplay an entirely novel experience.

  • Kingdom Hearts III (Square Enix) – Accolades Trailer – January 29, 2019 (PlayStation 4, Xbox One)

It was a long time coming, but Kingdom Hearts III finally brought the delightful next chapter in the ridiculously convoluted saga of keyblades and Disney worlds. While both new and old fans might scratch their heads trying to remember all the finer details of the story after such a long time, it brought fans of Disney and Square Enix a thrilling action adventure packed with classic characters and places.

  • Devil May Cry 5 (Capcom) – Final Trailer – March 8, 2019 (PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One)

Dante’s epic sibling rivalry continues in Devil May Cry 5, this time offering a veritable reunion of the whole dysfunctional demon family. The world has literally gone to hell, and only Dante and his cheesy band of fiends can save it from an infernal threat that may not be exactly what it seems. If it’s blood-pumping action, spectacular combos and cheeky one-liners you want, you have come to the right place.

  • Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice (FromSoftware/Activision) – Official Launch Trailer – March 22, 2019 (PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One)

Proving that there’s still plenty of room for innovation within the Dark Souls formula, Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice brings stealth and a much more elegant and spectacular combat system to the traditional structure. Explore sumptuously realized environments, keep on your toes as you slice and dice your foes and then restart again and again as you get pounded into a fine paste by a boss. You know you love it!

  • Untitled Goose Game (House House/Panic) – Launch Trailer – September 20, 2019 (PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch)

Games are often about wish fulfillment and living out fantasies, whether it’s shooting Nazis, driving a Ferrari, winning the World Cup – or being a horrible goose. You didn’t know it, but you always wanted to wreak honking havoc on a quaint English village and Untitled Goose Game sumptuously makes this dream come true.

On the surface, Disco Elysian is a pretty traditional crime mystery: An alcoholic cop is assigned to a murder investigation in the bad part of town – and then it turns into one of the oddest and deepest RPGs ever. Turn into the policeman living inside your head, and solve crimes. Or don’t. It’s well and truly up to you!

  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (Infinity Ward/Activision) – Launch Gameplay Trailer – October 25, 2019 (PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One)

Superficially familiar, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare is a very different beast and a whole new take on the Call of Duty series. Darker, grittier and not quite as bombastically heroic as before, the reboot-slash-remake requires difficult and stomach-churning decision-making with no margin for error. Oh, and the best multiplayer in the business.

  • The Outer Worlds (Obsidian Entertainment/Private Division) – Official Launch Trailer (https://youtu.be/Oxlflrh_Pzw) – October 25, 2019 (PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One)

A colourful yet bleak satire of mankind’s corporate colonialist future, the final frontier is as crazy as it is exciting and business is basically bonkers. There’s skills, gear, companions, a deadpan ship AI, crazy weapons, quests factions and multiple solutions through most predicaments. Oh, and your very own flying rust bucket to call home.

  • Luigi’s Mansion 3 (Next Level Games/Nintendo) – Overview Trailer – October 31, 2019 (Nintendo Switch)

The world’s most heroic coward is back, along with his spooky dog Polterpup and the mad scientist E. Gadd. Luigi must bust ghosts in a haunted hotel, aided by a gooey clone of himself, and that’s just the single player mode: Luigi’s Mansion 3 also features a festive clutch of co-operative and competitive multiplayer party games.

  • Death Stranding (Kojima Productions/Sony) – Launch Trailer – November 8, 2019 (PlayStation 4)

This has been a weird year, and Hideo Kojima’s latest opus is definitely one of the weirdest things to come out of it. Death Stranding is a beautifully haunting game with a star-studded cast that’s equal part satirical postman adventure and futuristic parable about life, death and the bonds that bind us. Don’t expect to figure out what’s really going on until you have a couple of playthroughs under your belt.

  • Pokémon Sword & Shield (Game Freak/ The Pokémon Company) – Your adventure begins – November 15, 2019 (Nintendo Switch)

A whole new land full of Pokémon lies before you in the Galar region. Inspired by the United Kingdom, Galar features all-new Pokémon with a British touch. Catch your favorite pocket monsters, then proceed to train, spoil and evolve them to take down the Gym Leaders and become the number one Pokémon trainer.
Sword and Shield was a real highlight for the series, and was one of the most asked about games from DailyBits readers

  • Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order (Respawn Entertainment/EA) – Launch Trailer – November 15, 2019 (PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One)

Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order is the first single-player Star Wars adventure in a very long time, and it certainly brings the goods: A perilous journey for a young Padawan, chock-full of adrenaline-fueled lightsaber battles, force powers and planets to explore as you grow into a Jedi master. The force is definitely strong in this one.

Time For A Quick Daily Quiz?

Who has voiced Geralt in all the Witcher video games?

  • Henry Cavill
  • Jon St. John
  • Doug Cockle
  • Roger Craig Smith

The answer will be revealed at the bottom of today’s issue. Join up with our community on Twitter and Facebook to discuss what the answer could be.

News Bits

Luigi’s Mansion 3 exceeds expectations, dominates sales in UK

While Luigi’s Mansion 3 hasn’t been topping the charts, it has stayed in them for a long time now and has started rising again just before Christmas. It has outsold not only its predecessors, but New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe, Super Mario Maker 2 and The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening.

Senua’s Saga: Hellblade II is ‘exclusive’ for Xbox and PC

Ninja Theory announced a sequel to the disturbed and disturbing Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice at The Game Awards, and Aaron Greenberg confirms Senua’s Saga: Hellblade “being made exclusively” for Xbox and PC. The first game hit PC and PlayStation 4 in 2017, before making its way to Xbox One and Switch.

Nintendo teases Animal Crossing: New Horizons customisation options

The latest images from Animal Crossing: New Horizons offers a tantalising glimpse at the new character customization. Choose between skin tones, hair colours and styles, as well as mouth and nose shapes. The classic life simulator settles on Switch on March 20th.

Netflix’s The Witcher series causes surge in The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

Netflix new show based on the Witcher books has clearly reminded fans how much they love Geralt and his adventures, because The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt just reached 48,000 concurrent players, the highest since the game’s launch in 2016.

Daily Fact

Tokyo Xtreme Racer 3 and the rival showdown you literally can’t afford

Sure, you might expect to do a bit of grinding before facing off against the final boss in an RPG, but Genki’s Tokyo Xtreme Racer 3 from 2003 brings that grinding experience to the racing genre. The game tracks your progress in terms of cash earned, and you need to earn a certain amounts to earn a chance to rise your rivals.

Unfortunately, someone added an extra zero somewhere in the game’s US localization, so you literally can not afford the final confrontation, Whirlwind Fanfare.

The entry fee is a hefty 100 million, but the max amount of money you can have is 99,999,990 million! That means there is no way to clear the game 100% as you are always ten bucks short.
Join up with our community on Twitter and Facebook to discuss today’s fact.

Ubisoft cancel unannounced project ‘three years in the making’

A graphics programmer at Ubisoft Montreal has just revealed that the studio is cancelling an unnanounced project after 3 years of development:

“I just learned that the project I’ve been working on for the past 3 years has been canceled,” tweeted Ubisoft’s Louis de Carufel. “This is tough news because I’ve been working with all these people for around 7 years, during which we have shipped both Watch Dogs and Watch Dogs 2.”

There were apparently around 200 developers working on the project, and fortunately they are being reassigned to other projects rather than being downsized. The studio has as many as 15 projects in various stages of development, so there’s plenty of work to go around.

Watch Dogs Legion, Rainbow Six Quarantine, Gods and Monsters are due in 2020

“…nobody in the team has lost their job! Every single one of the 200+ people in the team will be reassigned to an existing project in the studio (there’s over 15 of them),” according to de Carufel.

Ubisoft recently announced that all their major titles were being delayed following Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint’s disappointing launch. Ubisoft is worried that they are not innovating enough, and that core franchises are too similar to each other.

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Quiz Answer - Did You Get It Right?

Who has voiced Geralt in all the Witcher video games?

Answer: Doug Cockle!

Geralt’s voice is one of the most iconic in video games, but his voice isn’t as well known outside of it. Doug has also voiced other video game characters, including Victor Vran as well as tertiary characters in games such as Horizon Zero Dawn and TimeSplitters.

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