The 25 Best Games of E3 2014

By Kyle LeClair in Daily Lists, Video Games
Friday, June 13, 2014 at 6:00 am

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Artwork by CitrusKing46

We send one man to cover E3, he comes back singing the praises of Sony's offerings. We send another man to cover E3, he comes back singing the praises of Nintendo's offerings. So logically, one would expect me to come back with a strong endorsement of what Microsoft said, no?

Well, it's not going to go down like that. (Ironically, I'm in the minority who just thought Microsoft did have the best press conference, largely because they just went straight into talking about a crop of really impressive games...which come to think of it, is what we're doing here.) No, let's get straight to the action, round up a massive batch of terrific video games, and cap off this year's E3 with an extravaganza this deserves. These are...the best games of E3 2014.

*Flips on a boombox playing that Queen mashup from Sucker Punch*

LET'S DO THIS.



25. Devil's Third

Nintendo, I've said before that you need to nurture second and third parties a bit more, and picking up a long-delayed title from the man behind the Ninja Gaiden games is a good place to start. Having seen the trailer, I have concluded that this is more of a great place to start. A completely over-the-top action game of fast-paced combat, intense shootouts, notable drum solos and a story based on Kessler syndrome theory (assuming that part is still in the game). This is the time of ridiculous M-rated fun we could always use more of, so indeed, thank you Nintendo!

24. Below

Below is a roguelike adventure with quite the notable visual style: a minimalist adventure that has you exploring the labyrinthine depths of a remote island in cavernous areas with graphics that deliberately say it loud: you are but a speck, a speck in a harsh, uncaring world, one full of difficult challenges and permanent death where your adventure could end at any turn. A tough-as-nails piece of work full of exploration and mystery where curiosity can truly kill the cat. Fun for the whole family!

23. Bloodborne

From Software has become legendary in recent years for their tough-as-nails Dark Souls games, and while I haven't been able to get into them as well as others, Bloodborne is the type of game that I can't wait to get into. The setting of a mysterious late-1800s city known for the magic cures, now overrun with a plague spreading illness, madness and horror everywhere is just ripe with opportunity for some fantastic visuals and an intriguing story. Oh, and then there's the part where you get to take a giant cleaver to the head of a relatively giant goat demon. You know, always a pleasant experience.

22. No Man's Sky

To say that No Man's Sky is ambitious is kind of an understatement. A first-person game with an infinite procedurally-generated universe where you jump a rocketship and travel around the vast regions of space, discovering entire planets and species living on them. I don't know if you actually get to name them or not, but imagine being the person who discovered the planet Abraxas populated entirely by manicorns. Indeed, No Man's Sky is a game about exploration on a massive scale, and it looks to be something terrific.

21. Metrico

Having finally gotten my hands on what first came off as an interesting little nugget of a Vita game, I can thankfully say that Metrico is still preparing itself to be one of the most innovative platformers in recent years. A platform game based around statistics and charts may seem odd at first, but once you play it, it all makes for one surreal and amazing experience. A world where your actions go towards the statistics that form the obstacles in your way creates for an interesting and challenging game, perfectly capped off with some nicely ambient aesthetics. So grab a Vita and take this game along to escape your boring office job filled with graphs and numbers to...um, play a game filled with graphs and numbers. But a fun one, I assure you.

20. LittleBigPlanet 3

LittleBigPlanet 3 may be the first game in the series not to involve developers Media Molecule, but it still looks like it'll contain the same level of quality, whimsy and creativity that comes naturally to the series by this point. The big new addition is three new characters in addition to the lovable Sackboy, all of whom not only add an extra little bit to the platforming action, but whose abilities will encourage players to come up with even more imaginative levels in the series' famous level creator. Mind you, 95% of those players are still just going to wind up recreating World 1-1 from Super Mario Bros., but for those 5% who actually put forth effort, we salute you.

19. Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number

Dennation's original neon-soaked, blood-filled masterpiece was one of the great indie games of the year (or just one of the best games overall), and the sequel promises to live up to its lofty standards. Featuring a deeper, more complex plot exploring the vast intricacies of fandom and obsession in a country ravaged by '80s-era Cold War paranoia, Hotline Miami 2 has you address these tricky situations largely by putting on an animal mask and gunning down everything in sight, at least when you're not stomping some heads into a bloody pulp. More characters, more skills, more weapons, more of that unbelievably badass soudtrack, and now even with a level editor included, this game is just more of a f***in' good thing all around.

18. Night in the Woods

WARNING: Night In The Woods may be the most indie game ever conceived by man. After all, what you have here is a game about an angsty college dropout returning to her old hometown only to learn that everything has changed, leaving an aimless girl to deal with an uncertain future and trying to figure out how to move on with her life. Oh, and all of the characters are anthropomorphic animals, naturally. And the whole shebang is wrapped in the form of a lovely hybrid of an adventure game and a platformer. But yeah, imagine a mix of at least one indie game, comic and movie. Again, warning, this might be a dangerous level of indie-ness to take in, but it looks like it'll be worth it.

17. Broforce

Let's just get to the point: Broforce is essentially the 8-bit video games of your youth combined with all of the other games of your youth that you made by mashing together all of your action figures. In other words, for a huge amount of nerds out there, this is essentially a dream game. A frenetic, chaotic, action-packed romp through the action movies of - yep - your youth (your youth is getting quite the workout here), Broforce will no doubt be the testosterone-filled festival that your inner child demanded.

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