THE WASHINGTON POST – Although the pandemic delayed production of many high-budget titles, 2021 was still a stellar year for a diverse range of experiences.
Gene Park, The Washington Post’s gaming culture reporter, provides his picks on what’s worth picking up.
SEGA: LOST JUDGMENT
The year’s best story is about a 40-year-old skateboarding attorney investigating everything from murder, government corruption to high school bullying.
Plus you get a Shiba Inu as a detective partner.
IO INTERACTIVE: HITMAN 3
PlayStation, Stadia, Xbox
The Hitman series is the closest thing to the James Bond experience in gaming.
The studio is tapped to make the next Bond game, and there’s no better way to preview how they might pull it off.
SQUARE ENIX: LIFE IS STRANGE: TRUE COLORS
Nintendo Switch, PC, PlayStation, Stadia, Xbox
An Asian American young woman discovers she has a special skill for empathy, and this new discovery is put to the test after tragedy lands in her small-town life.
CAPCOM: RESIDENT EVIL VILLAGE
– PlayStation, Stadia, Xbox
Horror fans – especially schlock horror fans – will delight in the amusement park of thrills in the eighth installment of the long-running series. It also happens to be one of the best.
SONY: KENA: BRIDGE OF SPIRITS
This delightful DreamWorks-like original story about guiding souls into the afterlife is a surprisingly challenging game that any fans of 3D motion pictures will find alluring. (Knock the difficulty down if you’re having too much trouble.)
BETHESDA SOFTWORKS: DEATHLOOP
– PC, PlayStation
This is for anyone looking for a different kind of first-person shooter. It’s a mind-bending puzzle that challenges you to break a timeloop by understanding a single day on an island full of gluttonous, murderous elites.
DOUBLE FINE: PSYCHONAUTS 2
PC, PlayStation, Xbox
This is the brainiest game of the year, with demanding and colourful puzzles, plus enough psychedelic visuals to delight anyone at any age.
CAPCOM: THE GREAT ACE ATTORNEY CHRONICLES
– Nintendo Switch, PlayStation
It’s a murder mystery, but if your children are mature enough, this 19th-Century yarn has a cast of memorable characters and surprising twists.
SONY: RATCHET AND CLANK: RIFT APART
This may be the most visually stunning game ever, and it has a number of accessibility features to make it playable for many skill levels.
NINTENDO: MARIO PARTY SUPERSTARS
– Nintendo Switch
This edition of the famous party game series brings back tons of old favourites.
Kids will love the games, and parents and older siblings may remember some throwbacks from past releases.
UBISOFT: CHILD OF LIGHT
-Nintendo Switch, PC, PlayStation, Xbox
This role-playing game with stunning visuals was designed by two women, Mélissa Cazzaro and Aurélie Débant.