Opinion: Why 2014 Was a Good Year for Gaming in 2014

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Written by Dustin Murphy

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2014 could easily be considered one of the worst years in gaming. With rises to events such as GamerGate, Social Justice Warriors, and even an infamous (we are leaving unnamed) group of DDoSer’s – gaming has seen its rough patches. Unfortunately the media has seen its fareshare of criticism that may or may not have been warranted, the gaming industry has been busy. With hit titles such as Wolfenstein: The New Order, Wrack, Persona Q: Shadow of the Labyrinth, Mario Kart 8, Hyrule Warriors, The Evil Within, Trials Fusion, Freedom Wars, and many more having released; it’s no surprise that 2014 has actually been quite a busy year, and gamers have no reason to feel it hasn’t.

Instead of breaking this down into just one big conglomerate of a mess, it’s best perhaps to actually go over each fundamental area to provide a perspective that can actually display why 2014 was quite the good year despite a few hitches with game bugs.

|–| Nintendo |–|

Pokemon OmegaRuby_AlphaSapphire_Combo

Many here would argue that Nintendo has had a dull year and should already be working on their next gen console and handheld combo. Even with that argument, it can’t be denied that the company has been quite busy. With games such as Mario Kart 8, Super Smash Bros. (Wii U and 3DS), Bayonetta 2, Hyrule Warriors, and even their collectible figurines that interact with games called Amiibo; Nintendo has been busy. Part of what they can be applauded for is their capability to change and overcome the mainstream by going through whatever hoops they can towards innovation and quirkiness.

With them once more pursuing an online-only audience when it comes to trade shows such as E3; Nintendo has had a bit of a change on how things should be done. It’s because of their approach, that Nintendo remained one of the most unique companies for the 2014. This is partially due to their approach of how they handle their games, consoles, customers, and their endless line-up that could easily rival their competition in the following years.

The only thing they need now; a North American and European release date for the New Nintendo 3DS so that we can experience those upcoming NN3DS titles when they release.

|–| Bungie |–|

Destiny_SC_01

Even though Destiny has been a rough spot for Bungie, many can agree that Destiny has become one of the most played online-only titles that drive its fans to constantly strive to be the best. Whether it’s through the story that could still use some work, the new expansion called “The Dark Below”. With many of the changes made that were fan based feedback, Bungie has followed in the shoes that made Blizzard a rather successful cornerstone in the gaming industry. Even with the games lackluster campaign, many can admit that the game is addictive, fun, and at times down-right creative.

With players having booked in possibly millions of hours played already since its launch back in September, there is no doubt that the community has been bustling and keeping busy. Though the only place that this game seems to struggle is the consistency of keeping events around long enough for the more casual players to enjoy them and reaView Postp the rewards. Hopefully this is something that sees a change when the “House of Wolves” DLC launches sometime in 2014.

|–| Stellar Game Launches and Announcements |–|

Persona_Q_Shadow_Chie

We know there is always something that looks amazing and that’s without a doubt. Thanks to games such as “The Evil Within”, “Hyrule Warriors”, “Watch_Dogs”, “Freedom Wars”, “Soul Sacrifice”, “Persona Q: Shadow of the Labyrinth”, and many more that this has become possible. Some of this years most ambitious games though didn’t see such a glimmering execution on launch. Titles such as “Driveclub”, “Halo: The Master Chief Collection” and “Assassin’s Creed Unity” were hit with major launch problems to the extent they were unplayable and left companies having to refund or even patches on a weekly basis to ensure that the games would operate as they should have out of the box.

This is something that has become all-too-common as of late, but many games such as “Super Smash Bros.”, “Wrack” and “Pokémon” have displayed the lack-of-patching needs to be an accessible and fully functioning product once available. Even with those being some prime examples that can be handed out, 2014 was met with some amazing titles that launched this past year, so lets break those down in a small list; though do note not all release titles will be listed:

  • Alien: Isolation
  • Assassin’s Creed Unity
  • Bayonetta 2
  • Binding of Isaac
  • Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel
  • Destiny
  • Far Cry 4
  • Freedom Wars
  • Little Big Planet 3
  • Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes
  • Persona Q: Shadow of the Labyrinth
  • Pokémon Alpha Sapphire and Omega Ruby
  • Sunset Overdrive
  • Super Smash Bros. (3DS/Wii U)
  • The Crew
  • Wrack

It’s hard not to see just from those select few titles out of the huge list that 2014 has been a year that has been busy when it comes to releases. Some of the others being even bigger hits that have come across the seas thanks to game publishers such as Atlus USA, Idea Factory International, XSeed Games, and more. Even with their games released, there have been some huge announcements that players among the ‘elite’ will be highly anticipating. So what games are these? Players can easily point fingers at Bethesda’s QuakeCon 2014 announcement that B.A.T.G.R. writers were honoured to partake in during a closed door reveal. It was there that we were graced by meeting heads of Bethesda Zenimax, but also id Software and walked away with wonderful memories. Some of them would remain just that as we had learned shortly after that Steven Sarafin, a talented Technical Producer of the game had passed away. His gameplay would not be forgotten as it highlighted one of the most anticipated games that he will remain forever a part of – DOOM.

Even with DOOM being a game among many others such as “Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End”, “Arkham Knight” even Sony’s upcoming “Bloodborne”, and many more have set us up for a nice 2015 year as it quickly approaches.Take a peek below.

  • Bloodborne (3/24/15 | PlayStation 4)
  • Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin (4/7/15 | PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360 XB1)
  • DOOM (Date: TBA | PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One)
  • Halo 5: Guardians (2015 | Xbox One)
  • Mighty No. 9 (2015 | PC, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4 and PS Vita)
  • Overwatch (Date: TBA | PC | Consoles TBD)
  • Quantum Break (Date: TBA | Xbox One)
  • Resident Evil Remastered (1/20/15 | PC, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One)
  • Tom Clancy’s The Division (2015 | PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One)
  • The Elder Scrolls Online (Date: TBA | PlayStation 4 and Xbox One)
  • Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End (Date: TBA | PlayStation 4)

With all the announcements we’ve been surprised by, 2014 has truly set up 2015 to be one of the busiest years in gaming, and one that we truly can not wait for.

|–| PlayStation Experience |–|

PlayStation_Experience

Much like Nintendo doing their own thing with Nintendo Direct, Sony Entertainment soon followed suit with their own type of organizational setup with an event only known as “PlayStation Experience”. Here players got to go into a full-on Sony focused event, which allowed Sony to outline their upcoming games for the PlayStation 4, but also to allow attendees get a good look at the upcoming experiences of PlayStation as well as a glimpse of what made PlayStation stand where it does now.

The experience could be called even more unique as Sony was in the midst of celebrating their 25 years of PlayStation. This grandeur experience was also welcomed by the announcement of Sony’s 25th Anniversary Limited Edition PlayStation 4 Console, as well as themes for PlayStation consoles. This big announcement was something that Sony could easily stand up and be proud of as they broke their trend of holding all their big announcements for Tokyo Game Show, GDC, and even E3. We can only wonder – will this be the future of Sony’s announcements? We can only wait and find out.

|–| Closing Thoughts |–|

Even with all the bad that can be piled up due to the constant DDoS attacks starting back in July against numerous developers, the GamerGate attacks on multiple journalists as well as female developers, and even heavily broken games; 2014 has been a year that has many positive outlooks. Even with slow game launches and several big titles having not launched, the year has been eventful and has setup a future where the gaming industry can stand tall and show that 2014 was just a sample of what’s to come in the following years.

For those of you who think it has been slow. Check those game libraries and even the stores and take note; it’s been one heck of a busy ride.


About the Writers:

Dustin_BATGRDustin is our native console gamer, PlayStation and Nintendo reviewer who has an appetite for anything that crosses the boarders from across the big pond. His interest in JRPG’s, MMO’s, Handheld Gaming, and Pizza is insatiable and can’t be softened by even the biggest names in the gaming industry. His elitist attitude gives him direction, want, and a need for the hardest difficulties in games, which is fun to watch, and hilarity at its finest. To follow Dustin, hit him up on Twitter over at @GamingAnomaly, find him on his Google+. Wanna game with him? You can find him on PSN with RaivynLyken.

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