This is the third installment of my Best of 2014 list. Missed any entries, or want to skip ahead? Check out the whole list here:
[PART ONE] [PART TWO] [PART THREE] [PART FOUR] [PART FIVE] [PART SIX] [PART SEVEN]
But enough about the past: this list is moving onward and upward, towards number one! So here we go! Best of 2014: Part Three -- ACTIVATE!
16. Marvel Puzzle Quest (D3Publisher)
|Even for a mobile game such as this, it still|
has some eye candy to offer!
From an outside perspective, Marvel Puzzle Quest is nothing special: as mentioned, the gameplay is basically just Bejeweled -- it's a Match-3 game, where you slide gems around to form lines of varying length in order to score points. The twist is that you slowly accumulate a team of superheroes, each with their own abilities, which you take into each round to face off against a team of three enemy heroes or villains. All of the gems you match damage the enemy team before going into colour stockpiles which can be spent to activate the different abilities of your heroes. You have to be careful, though, because the enemy team is also accumulating colours and can activate their own abilities to knock out your team. While it appears pretty simple at the face of it, Marvel Puzzle Quest really is a tough game of risk and consequence as you weigh your options against the health of your team.
As I mentioned: it might sound stupid but, because of its addictive, "gotta catch 'em all" style, Marvel Puzzle Quest devoured a lot of my time. It is fun and simple to play, scratches both the collection and superhero itch simultaneously, and even allows for some social interaction with the Alliance feature where you can team up with your friends to get rewards. Marvel Puzzle Quest: as embarrassing as it is fun!
15. Sir, You Are Being Hunted (Big Robot)
|For the first few playthroughs, my experience was|
very similar to this screenshot.
SYABH is a game never takes itself too seriously. One needs look no further than the premise to see that: you are alone on a chain of islands inhabited by robots who are actively hunting you. You were attempting some sort of experiment that misfired terribly, causing the machine to explode and sending fragments flying all over the archipelago. You are now out to recover these mysterious fragments in hopes to, at the very least, escape the dangerous robots. A butler-type character gives you tips and updates on your progress along the way which honestly sound more like threats.
|Forgot to mention: SYABH is procedurally generated,|
so no two gameworlds are ever the same.
Also, the hot air balloons are persistent bastards.
The gameplay of the game has you scrounging for supplies and managing your limited inventory in an effort to protect and feed yourself and, generally, just stay alive. You hide in a ditch, waiting for a hunting party to pass by, the whirr and clicks of their mechanical parts fading from earshot before you break cover, and you suddenly understand what SYABH is all about.
This is a game about simple concepts coming together to create a truly unique and enjoyable whole. Part stealth, part survival horror and part comedy, it takes the best parts of many different themes and mashes them together to create a game worthy of any "best of" list.
(This is where I plug my series again. Go watch some of the episodes: it's good stuff, promise.)
Part Three is done and Part Four is on its way! The next installment features the first game on the list that isn't a video game! It's very exciting stuff, you really shouldn't miss it.
'Til next time!