Cary’s Best Games of 2016 Awards Show!

TERRA_BOXIt’s that time of year again!  It’s the Cary’s Best Games of 2016 Awards Show blog!  Keep in mind that no outside opinions went into the making of this list.  It’s just my own picks.  And if a game is missing from my list, it either didn’t appeal to me as much, or I just simply haven’t played it yet.  Can’t play all the games out there, you know!  Plus I do apologize if this list leans toward the Nintendo side.  I don’t have an Xbox One, and I just got a PS4 at the end of November, so you’ll just have to deal with it.


Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam (3DS)

This actually isn’t the best RPG of the year, but another RPG got an even bigger award, so we’ll give this one the best RPG award for now.  There’s been quite a few new RPGs this year, so if you like RPGs, this has been a good year for you I guess.  Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam is a crossover title between the Mario & Luigi and Paper Mario series.  It has a few problems and isn’t the best Mario RPG out there.  But I still beat it and it’s better than some of the other Mario RPG titles I’ve played recently.  So I guess it can’t be all bad.

Runners Up:

Project X-Zone 2 (3DS)

This strategy RPG features characters from popular game companies like Capcom, SEGA, Namco, and Nintendo.  It plays pretty much exactly the same as the last game, but this one had Phoenix Wright in it so I had to get it.  If you like the characters in this game, you may want to check it out.

Paper Mario: Color Splash (Wii U)

Ultimately this game was a disappointment, as it’s basically a Sticker Star sequel, and that game wasn’t very good at all.  But Color Splash will get a mention here because it is vastly improved over Sticker Star.  I just think it could’ve been a whole lot better if it had played more like the older Paper Mario games.


Axiom Verge (Wii U)

I loved how this game played like a 16-bit Metroid style game.  It wasn’t quite as good as Super Metroid, but I sure had fun with it anyway.

Runners Up:

Kirby: Planet Robobot (3DS)

For those of you who know me, this shouldn’t come as a big surprise, since I’m such a huge Kirby fan.  Even though it’s pretty much more of the same from Kirby Triple Deluxe, it’s still a fun game and it’s cool to have Kirby tromp around in a mech.  Although I think I like Triple Deluxe slightly more, just felt more epic to me.  This actually won my Best Game of 2016 SO FAR award back in the middle of the year.

Shantae: Half-Genie Hero (PS4)

I’m a huge fan of the Shantae games and I even have the very first one on GBC with the box and everything.  The newest game in the series looks and sounds beautiful and plays great, too.  At first I thought it might even win a bigger award, like Best 2-D Game or even Game of the Year.  But ultimately I liked some other games more.  This one focuses more on action and less on exploration. Capcom needs to have WayForward make them a Mega Man game!


LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens (Wii U)

There’s a lack of colorful and whimsical 3-D platformers lately.  Hopefully next year’s Yooka-Laylee will rectify that.  This is pretty much a typical LEGO game, but it is one of the funnier ones.  A special shoutout should also go to LEGO Dimensions for the Series 2 add-ons they’ve done this year.

Runners Up:

Skylanders: Imaginators (PS3)

It’s basically just a regular Skylanders game with a character creation mode, but it’s still a lot of fun, especially for kids.  They deserve good games, too, you know!

LEGO Marvel’s Avengers (PS3)

I think Traveler’s Tales had their B-team working on this one.  It’s decent, but not great.


The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD (Wii U)

When I first played Twilight Princess on the Wii, I didn’t like it as much.  The graphics were so muddy and blurry that it was hard to see where you could step, and it affected gameplay enough that it was frustrating. But the HD remake fixes all that.  The graphics are much sharper, and there are no silly motion controls on the Wii U version, but it still works just as well.  Now I like the game a lot better the second time around!

Runners Up:

Mega Man Legacy Collection (3DS)

While I am disappointed that it doesn’t have as many games as the Mega Man Anniversary Collection that came out ten years prior, this is still a decent compilation of the NES titles.  Plus I got the special edition that came with a gold Mega Man amiibo figure!

Shantae: Risky’s Revenge Director’s Cut (Wii U)

As I said before, I’m a huge fan of the Shantae games.  While Risky’s Revenge is my least favorite of the bunch, it’s still a fantastic game and worth playing.

SEGA 3-D Classics Collection (3DS)

You don’t really see arcade collections anymore, so I try to nab them when I see them.  It’s a pretty decent selection of SEGA classics, although I wish we could’ve gotten the Streets of Rage one.

River Ciy Tokyo Rumble 3DS

The original NES classic River City Ransom was remade on GBA, but it still had a lot of the clunkiness of the original game.  This re-imagining of the Kunio-kun series fixes all of that.  While I was disappointed with the Dodge Ball mode, the main game was still fun and made lots of references to the old Renegade arcade game and even Double Dragon!

Pac-Man Championship Edition 2 (PS4)

Cool story about this game.  When I got my PS4, this was one of the first games I wanted to get for it, but I didn’t have the funds to download it on the PS4 and I don’t like to use my credit card to buy things on consoles.  But one day when I turned on my PS4, Sony sent me a message saying, “here’s ten bucks.”  So I then had enough money to buy it!  Thanks Sony!  I wish Nintendo would do stuff like that!  Anyway, it’s a really fun game.  A little bit too much like DX, but still pretty good.


Pokken Tournament (Wii U)

Forget Street Fighter V, this game is where it’s at (hey, at least it’s a complete game, am I right?).  It’s a 3-D fighting game featuring many Pokémon, and since it was made by the same folks who do the Tekken games, it’s actually pretty good!  And as with any good fighting game, it’s easy enough for beginners to grasp, yet there’s enough technique for pros to master.  And hey, it has Pikachu in a Luchador outfit, what’s not to like about that?  If you like Pokémon, you’ll definitely want to try out this fun and colorful fighter.  Now if only Nintendo would localize that Detective Pikachu game!


Picross 3D: Round 2 (3DS)

There were a lot of Picross games this year!  We got a My Nintendo Zelda Picross, a Pokémon Picross, and even some folks at PixlBit made a Picross game!  But I think my favorite one was Picross 3D: Round 2.  I got so into this game that I let my 3DS battery run all the way down, and I never do that!  Plus this game was made by HAL Laboratory, and they’re awesome.

Runners Up:

BoxBox Boy! (3DS)

Speaking of HAL games, here’s another great 3DS puzzler.  I didn’t review it because it’s pretty much more of the same, but it’s still a lot of fun.  I read a rumor that Nintendo is going to make a BoxBoy amiibo in 2017!

Mini Mario & Friends: amiibo Challenge (Wii U)

This was a free-to-play game, but you had to have several Mario themed amiibo figures to get the full enjoyment out of it.  Since I have all the amiibo figures, I was able to get the full enjoyment!  While I don’t think it’s worth the price to get a bunch of amiibos to play this game, I kind of consider it as a reward from Nintendo to people who avidly collect amiibo figures.  It plays like most other Mario vs. Donkey Kong puzzlers, so it’s a lot like Lemmings.  But I really like Lemmings so I like this game as well!


Gotta Protectors (3DS)

Back when the Xbox 360 was big, one of the great downloadable indie games for it was Protect Me Knight.  It was an action-packed tower defense style game with 8-bit graphics and sounds.  And it was made by Yuzo Koshiro’s team at Ancient so you know the music was good!  Well, the sequel was released in the US this year on the 3DS!  It has new characters, bigger maps, more RPG elements, and you can even design your own playfields!  Plus you only need one game to play with four players, and it’s a snap to set up!  If you have a 3DS, you really need to download this hidden gem!

Runners Up:

Pocket Card Jockey (3DS)

A game that combines horse racing and solitaire may seem really weird, but when you consider how many sports themed solitaire games there are on mobile devices, it’s not that weird.  In fact, if Nintendo does more mobile games in the future, this would be a good candidate. Aw heck, who am I kidding? The game is still weird!  It’s just presented in that quirky yet cute Japanese way.  And also, the game is insanely addicting.  This was also made by Game Freak, the same folks responsible for Pokémon.  If you’re curious, you can download a free demo on the eShop, and the data from the demo will carry over to the main game if you decide to buy it.  And the game is only 7 bucks so it’s a great deal, too.

Rhythm Heaven Megamix (3DS)

Of course this music rhythm game is weird, too, as it was made by the same folks who do the WarioWare series.  I just wish it was a cartridge game and not a eShop only game, as it is still 30 bucks.  But it is certainly the biggest Rhythm Heaven game out there, so at least you get what you pay for!

Disney Art Academy (3DS)

I know there have been lots of Art Academy games, but I still think a game about teaching you art is weird.  But in a good way.  This one is more kid-centric than the others, even Pokémon Art Academy.  But that’s OK, kids deserve good games, too.

Phoenix Wright: Spirit of Justice (3DS)

There has also been a lot of games in this series, but I still think playing a game about being a lawyer is weird.  I hated it that this was download only, but it’s a really good entry in the series and introduced a new character (Rayfa) that will probably end up being on my top five favorite Phoenix Wright characters list.

And now for my Best Game of the Year 2016 (Taiko drum roll, please)…


World of Final Fantasy (PS4, Vita)

When I was a kid (well, a high school kid), I was totally into the Final Fantasy games.  But as the 32-bit era came about I kind of got out of them (except for FF9).  While this game is just essentially Final Fantasy Pokemon, they changed things enough to make this game their own, and it felt like a Final Fantasy game that was designed with me in mind.  Plenty of cute and whimsical characters and the game didn’t take itself too seriously, and I needed something like that this year.

It’s kind of monumental for this game to win, because the last time a non-Nintendo game won my big award was back in 2012.  It was Theatrhythm Final Fantasy on the 3DS.  But even then that was on a Nintendo console.  The last time a game won my Game of the Year award on a non-Nintendo console was back in 2006, with Okami on the PS2!  I have to say that I have been pretty disappointed in Nintendo this year.  From them we got a Star Fox game that sucked, a Metroid game that nobody wanted, and another disappointing Paper Mario. Plus I thought it was ridiculous how hard it was to get the NES Classic Edition. It just pales in comparison to how they were last year.  Last year Nintendo had an awesome new IP with Splatoon, the brilliant masterpiece that was Super Mario Maker, and even Yoshi’s Woolly World was great.  I think this disappointing year with Nintendo is one of the reasons why I got a PS4 this year.  But it’s not the first time I was disappointed with Nintendo. The lack of good games on consoles such as the N64 and Wii caused me to get other consoles then as well, like the PlayStation and Xbox 360.

The thing is, it’s that World of Final Fantasy isn’t even THAT good of a game.  There was just a lack of standout titles for me this year.  Usually there is one game that just stands out for me, and I know it’ll win my Game of the Year award, but not this year.  The lack of good games is just one of the reasons why 2016 wasn’t a very good year for me.  It was a rough year for a lot of people.  We had a lot of famous people pass away, but as we get older, so do our favorite celebrities (yeah I know, Capitan Obvious).  So sadly, I expect we’ll see more deaths in the future, unfortunately.  The US Presidential election was also rough, but while I’m not really disappointed with the outcome, I am disappointed with how some people reacted to it.  But 2016 was a rough year for me personally, because it was full of false hopes and broken dreams (the National Videogame Museum gig is a good example).  Let’s hope and pray that 2017 will be a better year for all of us, and it’ll have better games, too!

And that’s all for now!  In the comments section, let me know what you think of my list, and tell me YOUR favorite games of 2016, too!  Later!  –Cary

One Response to “Cary’s Best Games of 2016 Awards Show!”

  1. I just found your blog when searching for WoFF reviews and guides. I really appreciate the review and the review of the guide. I just picked the game up on PS4/Vita and I’ll head out to get the guide tonight. My favorite FF was definitely IX, and if this can capture the same feelings of cuteness mixed with fantasy strategy, I’m set! I’m enjoying FFXV, but I miss the classic style FF games. So, I decided to support this one. I’m glad another aging dude is with me on this one. I need to collect these classic feeling ones now so our kids (when we’re able to have them) will know what RPGs used to be like.

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