For the next ten days, Dan will be posting picks for the Games of the Year in no particular order. These are favorites from 2015 that he actually played and were released during the calendar year. Enjoy!
Cities: Skylines is a huge surprise in a year with huge surprises. For a city-planning simulator to complete obliterate any mention of the last iteration of the long storied Simcity franchise, is absolutely remarkable. Developers Colossal Order has thrown down the gauntlet and established itself instantly as direct competitor to the old guard. It marks a monumental shift in the landscape and it is just a pure joy to play.
Cities: Skylines does not necessarily innovate or even change the mold, but it does so much in the service of fun. Simcity now seems old and crusty where this wonderful game is light, airy and great. What Cities: Skylines does different is accomplish all of this with a real ease and breeziness. All of the usual city building stuff is present here. Augmenting city zones with civil services is easy and fun. Constructing roads is miles ahead of all previous Simcity games, and the traffic simulation is, with some caveats, interesting and a fun problem to solve.
However, the real big innovation in Cities: Skylines is the unreal mod support. Coupled with the Steam Workshop, the mods are plentiful, robust, and incredible. First person perspectives and more traffic and mass transit information are few of the multitude of additions that players have built. Pages upon pages of new buildings, roads, and services makes Cities: Skylines the ultimate destination for this generation's city planning simulation. The game almost works as a platform for the insane and ravenous city-simulator community, and the value just grows exponentially every day. It is the real ease of clicking on a number of mods and how it simply populates the game coupled with a solid simulation makes Cities: Skylines an easy pick.
The last Simcity simply did not work and made everything a chore. Cities: Skylines empowers its players to build what they want and reminds us how fun this genre can be.
Come back tomorrow for the final day. Witch Wild game will it be?