Although 2014 is not yet over and there are still a few gaming gems for all of us to get our teeth into before the year is out, 2014 has not had such a bad year in terms of quality games. While 2014 on the one hand will be known to us Wii U gamers as the disappointing year that saw the end of 3rd party quality multiplats stop releasing on the Wii U, on the other hand we did get some very good exclusive software. Reading this article will hopefully give you a bit of understanding as to why I believe that the Wii U has three serious contenders for GOTY 2014.
It is worth mentioning what these three games are up against as well as 2014 on the whole saw the release of some big games on other consoles. We have had the likes of Dark Souls 2, South Park: The Stick of Truth, Watch Dogs, The Last of Us Remastered, Titanfall, Destiny, Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor and Alien Isolation to name a few. We also have some big hitters that are still to be released this year like the PS4 and Xbox One versions of Grand Theft Auto 5, Far Cry 4, Sunset Overdrive and Assassins Creed Unity. It goes without saying that these are all very high profile games that none of which will be easy to beat when deciding on GOTY 2014.
But with games like Evolve, The Witcher 3 and Batman: Arkham Knight not releasing until early next year, the following three Wii U exclusives should be able to hold there own against other big releases. Although Donkey Kong: Tropical Freeze is not in the following select three games, to me it is still considered a big release for the Wii U and one of the best games on the console. Without further ado, check out these three games, and understand why in my opinion that they each make the cut for a contender for GOTY 2014.
Mario Kart 8
If your looking for a game that has a huge focus on story or character development keep looking, or how about a mature game that requires you to kill someone every 20 seconds? This game isn’t that game. However, if you are looking for a game that looks amazing, plays amazing, is enjoyed by people of all ages, has tons of replay value and plays great online then Mario Kart 8 has it all! It may not be a new IP or the most surprising game released all year, but a GOTY candidate does not need to be the most innovative or fresh game ever made, it just needs to be a game that is ridiculously fun to play.
Mario Kart 8 is visually stunning, this cannot be denied and other than that it handles like a charm which shouldn’t really come as a surprise since all Mario Kart games tend to be like this. The latest entry to the franchise brings new stages, new power ups, new characters, “Mario Kart TV” and promising looking DLC in the near future. For the first time ever, you are going to be able to play as characters from other game series like Link from The Legend of Zelda series and the Villager from the Animal Crossing series. For a more detailed look at what exactly Mario Kart 8 has to offer check out my full review of the game
Mario Kart 8 really is that kind of game, you will spend hours and hours on this game and will always find it hard to put down after starting a session. A game that will always accumulate brownie points from me will be a game that has a tonne of replay value, I like to think that I have gotten my moneys worth after purchasing a game. Mario Kart 8 is the kind of game that will always be there for you whether you want to take a break from a more serious game or if you just want to relax and get some guaranteed enjoyment after a stressful day at work. I got this game on launch day and I will be playing it for years to come, once I am done with newer releases I will always be coming back to this game.
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For the more serious take on gaming for those of you desperate to scratch that mature gaming itch, look no further than Bayonetta 2. This game is bonkers! Playing as the main character “Bayonetta”, a witch that wields melee weapons as well as two guns and another two guns strapped to her feet. Players will be thrown into action packed combo styled combat, gorgeous visuals, over the top boss battles, a very deep learning curve and replay value that will have you coming back to try and earn a platinum trophy on every single chapter.
Bayonetta 2 is so addictive, the gameplay mechanics alone sell this game with its action style combat that will have you chaining combos together in outrageous ways to try and take down your enemies. Many gaming websites are making brave statements like this game is the best action game ever made, yet when you play the game you won’t think its so brave because to me at least, it IS the best action game ever made. I urge you to look up every review of this game that you can find, they all say the game is amazing! But Bayonetta 2 is not just a button masher, you will have to think on your toes as to how you plan on taking down a particular enemy as some can interrupt your combos. Also you will have to master the art of dodging enemy attacks which if you manage to do at the last minute before taking a hit you will activate “Witch Time”. This will slow enemies down for a few seconds enabling you to unleash your most unholy of all combos on them.
Another neat feature of this game is “Tag Climax” mode which can either be played with a computer controlled character or another player online. You will both be put against enemies in a series of six verses, whoever gets the highest score in each verse by chaining the best combos and taking the least damage wins. Before you start the six verses you bet halos (in game currency) which you will accumulate a lot more of if you are the overall winner after the six verses finishes. #OperationPlatinum is a fan made movement with an attempt to get Bayonetta 2 one million world wide sales after comments were made from Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillimot that Wii U gamers do not buy mature games. Bayonetta 2 has been out for a couple of weeks in Europe and the US now and after the first week of release in these territories it has sold around 250,000 units world wide not including digital sales so it is a very good start indeed. #OperationPlatinum
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Super Smash Bros Wii U
OK so I cannot tell you first hand that this game is a serious GOTY 2014 contender in my opinion because the game has not been released yet. But does it really need to have been? Unless you have been living under a rock for the past year you will have no doubt seen some form of hype surrounding this game and it is not hyped for no reason. SSB Wii U is shaping up to be the Smash Bros we have all been waiting for, it looks like it is absolutely stuffed with content and I for one cannot wait to get my hands on it.
So why is a gamer like me, who tends to play games single player only unless playing online multiplayer so hyped for a game that is in its element when being played via local multiplayer? Surely a game like this is meant for people who always have friends and family visiting? It matters not to me, for I believe that there is easily enough going on in this game for even the loneliest of gamers. I have high hopes that the online issues that Brawl was riddled with will be ironed out in this game, also there is the whole amiibo aspect to the game. After purchasing an amiibo figure, you can place it on the gamepads NFC chip which will transport it into the game which you can train and level up by playing against it or along side it. Think of it as your own Smash Bros pet.
Also, more recently announced is that you can now play the game with 8 players! Unsurprisingly due to certain latency issues, 8 player mode is local multiplayer only and only some of the more bigger stages can be used on this mode. Stage builder makes a return too, this time you are able to create your own stages by drawing them with the stylus which completely makes Brawls stage builder look obsolete in comparison. This game has literally got so much content packed in and with release not far away, surely it makes a good GOTY contender for 2014.
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While GOTY doesn’t necessarily mean anything in terms of the gaming industry as a whole in my opinion, It would certainly be nice if The Wii U had some of its game in the running. If only to gain the Wii U a much needed boost of recognition that it is severely lacking and deserves.
What do you guys think? Do you think these three games are certain GOTY contenders? Do you think other Wii U games should make the cut? Or do you think the Wii U has no games good enough for GOTY 2014? Please let me know what you all think in the comments section below.
Written by Sammy J on 7 November 2014