2019 has been an interesting year for games as the current generation of consoles is rapidly heading towards the end of their lifecycles. The PS5 and the Xbox Series X are on their way now and a new generation will begin. Despite that, 2019 has been an excellent year for gaming; we have revisted Raccoon City, fled from the Inquisition through war-torn France, returned to the beaches of Iwo Jima, we were cursed again from FromSoftware, and our journey has been an epic one as we enter a new decade and a new set of games.
One game, however, captured my imagination unlike any other, combining a fascinating world and a return to old school RPG mechanics and that is The Outer Worlds.
If Bethesda allowed Obsidian to develop another Fallout right on the heels of Fallout 4 and do what Obsidian did for Fallout 3 then this would be it. The Outer Worlds is the RPG that throws the hypothetical “What if” question at you and at the same time, it is the RPG that we have been waiting for. The famed developer who developed such hits like Fallout: New Vegas created an original RPG that hopefully becomes a classic down the line, their own original ideas into the formula that was established by the old kings of RPGs like Bethesda and BioWare, their efforts ended up with an adventure that’s both quite very familiar and fresh at the same time. It’s even better that The Outer Worlds arrives at a time when Bethesda and BioWare are no longer the kings of RPGs and are basically the old timers that nobody cares about is funny and quite refreshing.
The Outer Worlds blazes its own path between the styles of Fallout and Mass Effect amongst the older RPG games of the past like Fallout 3 and emphasizes choice and character development in a way that is pretty familiar.
The freedom of choice is very reminiscent of the older Fallout games, especially Fallout 3, it has the air of Fallout 3 and the flair of the same game, unlimited freedom and unlimited choice. From the way it thrusts you into a situation that forces you to decide the fate of citizens and the world to extensive character quests to the multiple endings, it really is the most choice based RPGs that I have ever played. The choices also extend to the gameplay as well, the dialog wheel lets you define who your character is.
It’s worth settling into this brand new world and experiencing what it has to offer and getting to know everything and everyone and settling into the pace of it. Much like the Fallout games, it pays to see everything that The Outer Worlds can offer and take it slow and invest some serious time into the game. The Outer Worlds is truly a classic RPG in every sense of the word; from the freedom of choice to the dialog wheel and to the sense of wonder, it is one of those classic RPGs that no longer exists from the big and well known publishers like Bethesda and BioWare. It deserves every ounce of praise and award handed to it.
Runner-Up: Resident Evil 2
Resident Evil 2 is a phenomal remake that turns itself into a technically brand new game; if it wasn’t a remake, Resident Evil 2 would be my Game of the Year for 2019. It is a phenomenal horror game and returns the Resident Evil franchise to what it does best.
Like all remakes, Resident Evil 2 could have been a complete disaster and a failure: before Resident Evil 2 and Resident Evil 7, the franchise had been in an identity crisis and struggled. Resident Evil 5 and 6 were games that were completely out of touch and ever since then up until the release of Resident Evil 7 and now Resident Evil 2 but now the franchise has returned to form with Resident Evil 7 and Resident Evil 2.
The remake of Resident Evil 2 is something that we deserved from the very beginning and Capcom delivered; Resident Evil 2 is now the gold standard for remakes, a game completely built up for 2019 and for the 21st century and built for the standard of today. Horror is back and it’s all thanks to Resident Evil 2.