Well boys and girls, 2015 is officially over which means it’s time for reminiscing. 2015 was an eventful year, featuring some both terrible and fantastic games, the revitalization of Star Wars with Episode VII: The Force Awakens, and a crisis over Nintendo’s 12$ plastic collectible Amiibos. Naturally, I decided to make a list of my five favorite things that were born this year. Though I may make a separate list of my 5 favorite games from 2015, I tried to diversify this list, picking a wide selection of nominees. In no particular order, here are my five favorite things given to us by 2015.
1. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
Before Wild Hunt was released, I really did intend to play the Witcher games. The problem is, I just always seemed to have bigger and better games in my backlog to attend to first. I hadn’t heard of the books, played a few hours of the first game, and played maybe 10 hours of the second before changing to other games people were actually talking about. I mostly like what I played but I just never really got around to it. If the first two are anywhere near as good as the third then I was seriously missing out. The stories and characters that CD Projekt Red craft are fascinating and the world is completely enchanting- there is never a dull moment to be found. Whether it’s slaughtering archaic beasts, navigating underground crime rings, or bumpin’ pixeled uglies with some fine-ass sorceresses, whenever I jump into the world Geralt of Rivia: Professional Monster Hunter, I know I’m in for some damn good adventure. Even though I bought the game in June, I find myself still playing here in January of 2016, more than 150 hours in. Oh, and I haven’t even touched the Hearts of Stone expansion pack and another one, Blood and Wine, is coming to players soon.
2. The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses
If you know me at all, you know I always have and always will have a special spot in my heart for The Legend of Zelda. I’m currently in the process of completing them all and thus far, I haven’t encountered a title I haven’t thoroughly enjoyed. It’s my most definitely my favorite series and the Wind Waker will always be my favorite game of all time. Therefore, I had always wanted to attend Symphony of the Goddesses because grand, swashbuckling music has always been a staple in the The Legend of Zelda series. So last October, I called up a friend, told him we were going to the Symphony in a week, and precisely one week later, we were listening to a live, orchestrated version of Gerudo Valley performed by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. It was fucking awesome.
3. Marvel and Netflix’s Collaboration
Yeah, I technically have two things listed for number but they go hand-in-hand. Also, it’s my own damn list and I will do as I please. I am a fan of many comics from both Marvel and DC but I’m a bit of a skeptic when it comes to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Some of the movies – Iron Man, Guardians of the Galaxy, Ant Man – are a blast while others – Iron Man 2, Thor 2 – reek of corporate money-milking. This is why both Netflix and Marvel’s Daredevil and Jessica Jones, starring Charlie Cox and Krysten Ritter, respectively, were precisely what the MCU needed. While there are differences and I think I enjoyed Daredevil slightly more, both dramas take a far darker, grittier look at two of the biggest Marvel badasses in Hell’s Kitchen, Daredevil and Jessica Jones. They provide a deeper, more personal connection to the Marvel world thus far and offer a unique perspective in contrast to the massive, box office cash cow that has been the MCU lately, particularly with Age of Ultron.
4. Razer Blade 14″ QHD+
Before I headed off to school this last quarter, I decided it was time to look into gaming laptops. I love my desktop but hauling or shipping it cross country just wasn’t feasible. Because I’m going to be using this computer quite some time, I allowed myself a larger budget. Yeah, the Razer Blade is pretty expensive but it was worth every penny. It’s primary appeal is that not only is it beast, rocking an Intel Core i7 processor and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970 graphics card and 256 gig. SSD, but it’s also incredibly sleek, weighing 4.4 lbs. If I had to complain, it would be that 256 gigs is a relatively small space but at the same time, I’m never playing more than 3 games at a time so it’s never been an issue. It also sometimes gets hot. Other than though, I’m more than satisfied. It boggles my mind how a computer so small can still be so powerful.
5. Majora’s Mask 3D/Majora’s Mask Edition New3DS
I’ll finish this list with an old classic, prettied up and ported over to the 3DS. I’m just young enough to have missed the N64 so when Majora’s Mask 3D was announced, I was stoked to finally be able see what all the fuss was about. It turns out Majora’s Mask is a pretty damn creative game. The concept in which you have 3 days to save a land you grow increasingly close to is unlike anything I’ve encso far. It’s a darker take on The Legend of Zelda and a refreshing play compared to all the shit that all other AAA companies seem to be churning out this days. I also headed out to Target at 3am to collect the Majora’s Mask edition when I decided it was time to upgrade to the New3DS, despite Nintendo’s consistent horrendous habit of giving their products ass-backwards names. It looks pretty spiffy.