Game Of The Year 2015

Its been a strange year for games this year, many of the big hitters have actually left me disappointed if I’m honest. But there have been a couple of games I was not expecting much from that have really impressed me.


So what is my game of 2015?
Well before I get to that, I want to recognise the elephant in the room…well two of them actually.
Two big games this year that I liked, but still left me feeling disappointed overall.
Just as a side note, possible spoilers ahead. Though I’ll try to avoid as much as I can.


Batman: Arkham Knight: I loved…sorry LOVE Batman: Arkham Asylum and I will stand by my opinion of it being the best of the franchise so far. I have felt the series has declined as it has progressed though, but that didn’t make them bad games, just not a great as the original was.
Still, I held out hope that Rocksteady would deliver an opus especially seeing as this was to be their final Arkham game in the franchise.

After completing the game, I just felt “empty” and to be honest found while playing the game it was mostly a chore rather then a pleasure.
Those Batmobile Vs tank battles dragged on and on. It was interesting the first time, not so much the second time, the third time they were tiresome and by the time you get to the final part of the game with 70 tanks to take down…it was just tedious and dull.
The big reveal of the Arkham Knight’s true identity was so obvious and telegraphed I fail to see how it was meant to be a surprise. I’m not the world’s biggest Batman fan, I know the basics. But even I called the reveal of the Arkham Knight after not too long.
I was really looking forward to Scarecrow being the main villain, but he is not due to the overbearing, overuse of a certain other villain…The Joker. Now don’t get me wrong, I love Joker as much as the next man. but he has been the focal villain in all the games so far and I so desperately yearned for a change. The whole Joker’s blood being in Batman was a nice idea and a great way to bring Joker back I admit. But it was just over done and too “in your face”. Climb a building and JOKER!. Crawl trough a vent and JOKER! Open a door and JOKER! He was just everywhere and I feel that concept of Joker being part of Batman would have been so much better if it was more subtle and used more on a subconscious level, tricking and misleading not only Batman but also the player.
The overall plot was so hackneyed and trite I quite honestly lost interest about halfway through.

The gameplay itself just didn’t feel as if it had evolved. Rocksteady claimed the game HAD to be next gen as the game was too ambitious for the previous gen…I saw none of that. Graphically far more impressive yes, but gameplay wise it had not evolved at all.

Bad game? Not at all. great game? Not even close.
Batman: Arkham Knight was just an average game at best.

Onto my second elephant in the room and this is a BIG one.


Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain: Just forgetting about the whole Konami Vs Kojima controversy for a while. This game got old fast. Now I think the shift to an open world styled map was a great one, just a shame the development team didn’t bother to make these open world maps interesting or engaging.

I constantly found myself repeating the same handful of missions over and over in the same locales over and over. This game offered very little in variation. The open world maps were mostly empty and barren as well as being such a pain to navigate.
The plot was paper thin and the voice acting was flat. It has none of the humour that made the MGS games stand out and none of the inventive or creative boss battles that were a staple of the MGS franchise.

I wish I had more to say about this game, but it really has very little worth talking about. There had been a lot of rumours about Konami cutting a fair bit of content from the game. For that, I am grateful as I don’t think I could stand any more of the banal, redundant and repetitive gameplay.
It is probably best that Kojima has no more ties to Konami and hopefully in the future we will see a truly great MGS game once more.

It was okay, but just lacking so much depth and variety. I can only assume the high praise this game got was due to drug educed reviewing…or being paid off.

So those were my two big disappointments of 2015. They were okay, but nothing great.
Lets move onto the games I really enjoyed before I get to my Game Of The Year.


Rise Of The Tomb Raider: After the more gritty and adult reboot of the Tomb Raider franchise in 2013 I was really looking forward to this one. Lara is back doing what she does best, jumping around in tombs and shooting endangered animals in the face.

This game has everything the previous game had, but brings with it a few new additions and also builds on what made the last game so enjoyable. With more weapon variety and even more upgrades and an improved stealth mechanic to help you deal with enemies quietly, coupled with new skills for Lara to learn. The game gives the player a lot to work with while you explore the semi-open world map, trying to find relics, treasures and even learn new languages along the way.
The crafting and upgrade system has also been improved as well as the addition an interesting weather system and time of the day which affects the type of animals you will encounter.

This really is more of the same, only with plenty of spit and polish to help improve the whole experience a hell of a lot.


The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt: This almost made my GotY…almost. A beautifully detailed open world to explore melded with the impressive combat and variety from the previous game. This game is amazing and well deserving of the high praise it receives.

With you playing as Geralt of Rivia the monster hunter trying to track down the sorceress Yennefer of Vengerberg. Along the way you get to explore and interact with this impressive game world the developers have crafted. With so much to see and do from finding abandoned villages, caves and even haunted forests. Then having the pleasure of drawing your sword and using your magic to take down the many, many monsters you’ll encounter along the way. With some monsters only appearing in specific locations or even only at certain times of day.

Each village you find even has its own economic and social conditions and depending on which village you are in and their personal beliefs or social conditions, you will find this affects they way they welcome, talk to and even interact with Geralt.

A wonderful action/RPG with so much to see and do, you’ll never get it all in one play through.


Mad Max: This is one of the games that I really didn’t expect too much of this year. Yet I have put in well over 40 hours into the game and still not bored of it. Its another open world style game all set in the world of Mad Max.

With you playing as Max, the game is not directly based on any of the films but it is inspired by the film series as a whole. It feels a lot like Mad Max 2, but has the aesthetic and style of Mad Max: Fury Road.
The hand to hand combat is similar to the Batman: Arkham series, however it feels much more brutal like Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor. But the game also features a really impressive car combat mechanic with you being able to use your car as a battering ram or even sit in the driver seat blasting away with your shotgun. You can even target individual parts of vehicles to weaken armour or take out the driver. Your car is fully upgradeable from improving the engine, armour, tires to even attaching weapons like a sniper rifle, flame-throwers and even a harpoon you can use to remove parts from enemy cars or tear down structures and gates to open new areas to explore.

Max himself is also upgradeable. With you being able to change cosmetics like how Max looks to more important upgrades that will improve Max’s personal armour, hand to hand combat and even learn new skills.

The game offers a hell of a lot, despite the really simple plot (a staple of Mad Max) which is your car being stolen and dismantled and you have to build a new car…or Magnum Opus as the game calls it and try to get hold of a V8 engine.

One thing that really surprised me was how interesting the world map is, seeing as it is just a desolate wasteland. It still has a lot of variation with plenty of places to find and explore. The game as a whole really puts me in mind of Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor (a game that almost made this list too) only with much more to see and do.

Cracking game and one that is often overlooked with reviews being very mixed. Yet a game I have found to be amazing and rewarding.

So, what is my Game Of The Year then?
Well if you have read this blog for the last few months, or if you are a friend/family member. Then you’d know that Fallout 4 has been my big game this year, the one game that got me to finally go next gen and the only game I have ever pre-ordered.
So lets get this out of the way then…


Fallout 4: Is not my GotY….shocker! I have to admit, it was a close call. A VERY close call indeed.
Fallout 4 is a wonderful game, no doubt about it. It is deep, engaging, funny (at times), emotional and offers a tonne of variety and gameplay. There is so much to see and do here its simply impossible to sum it all up in the short space I have allowed myself here.

Fallout 4 is a work of genius and a game you can put days and days into and still only just scratch the surface. Create your very own character with a very deep and intuitive character creation tool and go out into the post nuclear war Boston wastelands. Shape and create your character however you see fit. Be a pillar of the community and help out those less fortunate. Or break the law, steal, murder and become feared.
Learn from a plethora of skills and talents to help create and shape your persona.

With a huge open world map to explore, hundreds of individual locations to find and loot. Craft weapons, armour and even build settlements with plenty of more options to play around with. Want to build a farmland? You can by planting food and getting your settlers to look after the crops. You can build defences like turrets and guard platforms. You can even build entire structures and decorate/furnish them. Create stalls to bring in trade, build generators to provide your settlement with electricity. The list goes on and on…
Fallout 4 is one of the most in depth crafting games outside of Minecraft and the really amazing thing about all that is…its not even a main part of the game. You can play through the whole story not having to craft a single thing (after the opening tutorials). But that is the kind of game Fallout 4 is, so much of what you can do is simply not necessary. It is just there for you to play around with and enjoy if you want to and the more you do play around, the more you will find to play around with.

Fallout 4 was almost my Game Of The Year, but the reason it didn’t quite make it was simply because as great as it is…its not a major leap forward from the previous games. It just didn’t grab me as I hoped it would.
My actual Game Of the Year is my second surprising game this year (after Mad Max).


Dying Light: A spiritual successor to the Dead Island franchise with it being made by the same team, only without the licence. Dying Light is the game Techland wanted to make with Dead Island, but were held back by budget restrictions and other problems.

With this game, Techland took everything that was restrictive and cumbersome about Dead Island and threw it all out. They then took everything that worked with Dead Island and turned it up to eleven.
Its (yet) another open world game with you playing as Kyle Crane. Crane works for The Global Relief Effort (GRE) and is dropped into the fictional city of Harran, where a mysterious viral outbreak has turned most of the population into flesh hungry zombies. Crane is tasked to getting hold of a sensitive file stolen from the GRE by somebody called Kadir Suleiman, which he is using as leverage to blackmail the GRE.

This is an all action first person game with some really interesting and well implemented game mechanics. Crane is an expert at parkour and can run, jump, slide and climb pretty much any and everything in the game. This give you a real sense of freedom as you climb buildings and other structures. There is also a levelling and upgrade system that is split between three main skills. Strength helps you with your attacks and basic hand to hand combat/melee attacks. Stamina is where you can improve your parkour skills and basic cardio. Then there is survival which is where you learn any and everything that can help you survive the day to day life in Harran.
The game is very melee weapon based, but there are also plenty of guns to find and use too.

The most terrifying part of the game is when the sun goes down and night time comes.
During the day, you can go out quite safely and scavenge for supplies and items, as the zombies are mostly slow and predictable. But when the sun goes down, things get a little more intense as the infected zombies turn much more aggressive and faster, plus the night also brings out a new type of zombie that will actively hunt you down.

You can even craft and create weapons by adding elemental mods such as lightning, fire, etc as well as improving their durability, attack and other stats. Plus the game has an amazing four player co-op mode which is immense fun with a few friends.

I first played this game when my brother let me borrow his copy. I completed that and went out and brought my own copy and the season pass for the game too. The DLC was very, very weak…but coming in February 2016 is Dying Light: The Following. A HUGE expansion to the main game that is said to be just as big as the vanilla version of Dying Light. The DLC brings plenty of new additions aside from a whole new map there is a drivable buggy that can be upgraded, a load of new weapons, all new enemies…and it’s completely free for season pass holders.
I can’t wait for this slice of Dying Light goodness.

As I said, it was a close decision between Fallout 4 and Dying Light. But I feel Dying Light was a massive improvement and several huge steps forward over Dead Island while Fallout 4 was pretty much the same as Fallout 3 (not a bad thing at all) with a few minor tweaks. Plus with Dying Light, I really was not expecting too much and was pleasantly surprised when I did finally play it.

So there you go, my Game Of The Year 2015 all wrapped up.
Please check out my Film Of The Year 2015 too if you haven’t already.


Physical Vs Digital

I suppose similar arguments and points could be made for films, TV & music too. But for this rant, I’m going to be using games as my medium of choice here.

We now live in an age where we do not need physical copies of games (or films, TV & music) as everything is becoming more and more digital.


There are plus points and negative points to owning both physical and digital copies.

Some people, myself included, just like actually owning something physical. Having the box for the game with the inlays, instructions, posters and other tat they often throw in is a nice thing to own.
Having rows and rows full of physical copies is often nice to see and even a talking point (you should see my DVD/CD collection).
You can swap and lend out to friends and family. Lets not forget the fact you could always sell on via the second hand market later, which of course works the other way too as you can often find a good bargain if someone else is selling.

Yeah owning a physical copy has its perks if you enjoy that sort of thing.

But then there is digital owning. Its quicker as you can download pretty much whatever you want whenever you want it. You don’t have to worry about taking up space on shelves, just space on a hard drive. Still modern gaming now you HAVE to install he game to the hard drive even if you own the physical copy, so this is a moot point. Of course there is the downside of not being able to sell on with digital or buy second hand copies, which ties into my biggest problem with the digital concept…money.


Now more and more developers and publishers wish to see a complete 100% digital future, and for a lot of reasons it does make a lot of sense. But its the pricing of digital goods that is the main problem for me.

First let’s look at the benefits of digital gaming from a publishers point of view.
Lower production costs as they do not have to print covers, inlays, instructions, etc. Nor do they have to worry about boxes.
Then there are the logistics of getting the finished product into stores for you to buy or having games delivered to your door. No cost there on having to load up trucks and paying delivery companies and so on, its also better for the environment as there are less vehicles on the road.

So then, the publishers must be saving a fortune for digital gaming, right? Which must mean they pass these savings onto us the consumers…or do they?
As I said, pricing is my biggest problem with digital gaming and this is precisely why. Because those huge savings they are making are not passed on to the consumer at all. In fact in most cases not only are digital games just as expensive as physical copies, they are often actually more expensive.

Allow me to give one of my most recent purchases as evidence.
I pre-ordered Fallout 4 as soon as I was able to. It was announced in June of this year at E3 and I placed my pre-order in July just a couple of weeks later. This pre-order guaranteed delivered on the day of release, so for that kind of service you’d think that would cost me more than the RRP. But it didn’t, in fact my copy of Fallout 4 cost me £36 including delivery on launch day. £36 for a brand new release of a AAA title with delivery for launch day is amazing to be honest.
It’s been a little over a week since Fallout 4 launched and you can pick up a new copy for around the same price I paid for it with my pre-order, if you shop around. If you don’t shop around you’ll pay around the £40 mark for a copy.

So how much is the digital version, which is exactly the same game only without all the extra overheads the publisher would have had to have paid?
On the Xbox marketplace right now, Fallout 4 is selling for £50 (£49.99, but I rounded up my £35.99). £14 more than the physical copy I brought.
So how does that work then? We pay more for the exact same game, only it has less overheads for the publisher. Its not just Fallout 4 that is guilty of this either, pretty much any digital version of a physical copy costs more and the higher price seems to stay the same longer too.

Convenience, you pay the extra for the convenience of not having to go go the shop and buy a copy, that’s an argument you hear a lot.
Just to refresh, I pre-ordered my Fallout 4 for £36 and it was delivered in time for launch day, it was sitting there waiting for me when I woke up. The only inconvenience I had was open in the damn shrink wrap.


So why are digital versions of games with their lower overheads more expensive than physical copies with higher overheads?
Does this make sense to anyone?

Now that is not to say you can’t get a good digital deal. I myself have several digital games I have downloaded, but I always got them at a great price and cheaper than the physical version (always check). But these digital deals are often few and far between.
Part of the reason I write this whole thing was because Microsoft have announced their Black Friday sales on digital games. But seeing as the digital versions are almost always more expensive, the sale price often works outside to about the same as the physical price…and it just should not be this way. It is not much of a sale if its around the same price in the shops.


Pretty much every major company involved in gaming want a digital only future, and you can see why. As it means they can rip off the consumer by charging more for a game with much less overheads. But why would anyone want an all digital future when they are charging more for the games?

Digital games need to be cheaper as a standard than physical copies.


Fallout 4 first impressions


This is the one game that convinced me to finally go next gen after really not being interested in doing so. The last few months since Fallout 4 was first announced at E3 in June have flown by and Fallout 4 is here.

This will be a genuine first impressions. I’m going to just have a play for a few hours and write down anything that comes to mind and I’m playing on the Xbox One.

I have avoided anything to do with this game except for the reveal trailer at E3, so I’m going into this relatively blind.
I’ll try to avoid story spoilers, but as I don’t know the story, I don’t know what are or are not spoilers.

So lets tuck into Fallout 4…

First up after the amusing installation films, title screen with that music and opening cinematic (War, war never changes) is the character creation.
We are spoilt for choice here. There have been some great character customisation tools in other games like the OTT Saint’s Row IV one.

Fallout 4’s offering is amazingly detailed with plenty of options to play around with using a “sculpting” idea. Just highlight the facial part you want to change and a plethora of options open up for each individual feature. You can alter any part of the face you want from eyelids (both top and bottom), ears, earlobes, cheekbones, chin and many more. Plus the option of being male or female too.
Then you can even alter the body make your character fat, thin, muscular or even a combination of all three.
Having a good character creation in a game like this is really important to me as it allows you to really embody the character and also helps with the immersion, even though this is mostly a first person game so you never really get to see you character (for the most part anyway except with conversations and other parts and there is a third person view option) knowing you created the character adds a whole new level of immersion to the game. That is effectively me in the game and that is how I think of the character when I play as them and the decisions I take.

Okay, my character is created. Let’s see what the world of Fallout 4 has to offer.
Almost forgot, for the first time in a Fallout game, your character is now fully voice acted. But there only seems to be one voice option for the character, or at least I can’t see anyway to change/alter the voice.

Just playing through the opening of the game and for the first time in the Fallout series, we get to see the world pre-nuclear war (Not including simulations in previous games) as you walk around and interact with your pre-war home.
It has a really nice 1950s aesthetic and vibe. I feel like Marty McFly.

Before I crack on, I just want I address the elephant in the room with Fallout 4, the graphics.

Now I already touched upon this earlier this year when Fallout 4 was announced as there was a lot of backlash about the graphics and that backlash is still on going today too.
Fallout 4 is not the most handsome game on the market, I admit…but Bethesda games never have been anyway. Yet what Bethesda games always offer is deep immersion, huge and interesting game worlds, well written characters, interesting plots and best of all, hours and hours and hours of variety and gameplay.
If you are a Fallout fan complaining about the graphics, then you are not a Fallout fan at all.

This is why I wanted Fallout 4, the gameplay not the graphics.

There is a reason Fallout 3 is still talked about and regarded as one of the best games ever and it has nothing to do with graphics.
By the way, the Xbox One version of Fallout 4 comes with a free digital copy of Fallout 3 to play via the backwards compatibility. So that’s pretty damn great.

But I do have to say from what I’ve seen so far, the graphics of Fallout 4 are fine and now I’ve seen them first hand, they are better than I was expecting.
There have been reports on frame rate issues but I have not seen any…yet.
Enough about the graphics, lets see what this game is all about.

F4 1

Just wandering around my pre-war home and it looks very nice. 50’s music playing on the radio, the TV, the terminology the NPCs use when you interact with them is all very authentic.
The conversation mechanic has been tweaked and now much easier to use, I like it.
The news reports are saying nuclear missiles have been exploding all over America, time to get to the vault. I’m now able to (lightly) explore the town as I make my way to the vault. Sirens are going off, there’s a military presence and the residents are panicking. Its all rather tense.

Made it to the vault and have to say for something so simple, that was quite exciting.

Avoiding spoilers, things have gone very wrong at vault 111 and I am now trying to find my way out.
I am finally free of the vault and out into the wastelands and openness of Fallout 4, time to really see what this game has to offer.

It all looks very familiar now with the destroyed towns, bleak outlook, nuclear fallout, etc. Just found Dogmeat, a regular to the franchise and your companion through this game.


Also found a workshop where you can construct power armour and even structures, furniture, resources and so on. There is a whole new crafting mechanic to Fallout 4 now that allows you to build and create settlements. Looking forward to experimenting with that in detail later. But for now, me and Dogmeat are off for a spot of exploration.

The world is very detailed and despite the dilapidation, it all looks really nice with plenty of variation from big towns, forest areas, other vaults and many others too.
Just wondering around the map and finding new locations. Found a couple of towns that seem to have plenty to explore and discover in them. A few bits of farmland with workstations which means I can build there. Also found a few trading stations.


Well I think that’ll do for now, played for a couple for hours and reached level 5. This was only a quick look at my big game for 2015 and from the very small amount I’ve seen so far, its really great.

I did notice a few graphical glitches though. Nothing major but things like lip syncing being out on some of the conversations, some minor clipping problems (Dogmeat did get stuck in a wall) and that’s about it really. No frame rate drops, no freezing up or anything.

I sank 100’s of hours into Fallout 3 (finishing it several times, playing the DLC, etc) and I can see me spending many more hours with Fallout 4 (and Fallout 3 again with my free copy). Can’t wait to really dig deeper with Fallout 4 as even if you played for 8 hours straight, you’d still only just barely scratched the surface. There are hours and hours of Fallout 4 for me to enjoy yet, and enjoy Fallout 4 is exactly what I intend to do.


Fallout – PC

With the release of Fallout 4 just days away. I take a look at the game that started it all.


Little Bit of History: Developed and published by Interplay Entertainment and relased in 1997. Made available for MS-DOS, Microsoft Windows, Mac OS and OS X. Fallout was originally going to be a direct sequel to Wasteland, a RPG relased in 1988 which was also developed by Interplay Entertainment. But Fallout used an all new system called SPECIAL, this new system made Fallout similar but too different to Wasteland for it to be considered a true sequel, so a new IP was born. The SPECIAL system went on to become the backbone of all Fallout games from this point onwards.

Little Bit of Plot/Story: Fallout’s plot is set in an alternate timeline with a post-apocalyptic and retro-futuristic aesthetic. Technology, politics and culture followed a different course and while technology more advanced then we know. But cultural and societal progress has stagnated which gives the world a 1950s art deco style. On October 23 2077, a global nuclear war occurs and most major cities around the world are destroyed. The aftermath of the war do not start to fade for a hundred years. Many humans live in underground fallout shelters known as Vaults. In one of these, Vault 13 lives the protagonist’s in Southern California, where the game begins in 2161, 84 years after the war.

Little Bit of Character: You create you own custom character at the start of the game or can chose for three already pre-created characters. In your adventure you meet numerous other NPCs too many to list here. But one character worth a mention is Dogmeat, a canine companion who becomes a regular throughout the series.

Little Bit of Influence: Fallout had humble beginnings but went onto become its own successful franchise with four direct sequels, three spin offs and even four games that were ultimately cancelled. The Fallout series has become infamous for its deep, open style gameplay and branching stories.

Little Bit of Memories: I have to admit to never playing this one originally, but I did discover it years later when my brother introduced me to Fallout 3.

Little Bit of Playability: It is a little clunky and slow, but the game still offers a great deal of depth and enjoyment. Its also a game that is screaming out for a iPad/Andriod remake, the touch screen would be perfect for Fallout and Fallout 2. Still a great game today and well worth a play if you have never experienced the original Fallout (though Fallout 2 was the better of the two original games)


Fallout 4 is relased in just four days…and I can’t wait!
Remember. War, war never changes.


Are graphics important?

Before I get into this age old debate and offer my own personal perspective. I just want to paint the picture of how/why I decided to tackle this subject to begin with.

I, like millions and millions of others, watched the official Fallout 4 trailer.

Fallout4 logo

I was impressed, very impressed. In fact, for a while I’ve been reluctant of getting into the next generation of gaming for various reasons. One being there have been no games that make me want to jump into the next gen…until now.
Fallout 4 is the game that has sold me and I’ve been eyeing up both the PS4 and Xbox One over the last few days. I’ve still not made the plunge yet as I’m still not 100% sure which console to go for.

Anyway, the point is that my seeing this trailer has finally convinced me to get into the next gen of consoles.
I thought the game looked simply stunning but of course it’s not all about the graphics. Yet I was stunned to find there had been an interwebs “fallout” over the graphics of Fallout 4.
Seriously, I do not get it. The game looks amazing from a graphics point of view, yet there have been millions of comments about how bad it looks. Just do a Google search for “Fallout 4 graphics” and you’ll find plenty of sites doing their own reports on this very subject and so many people complaining that the graphics look bad.

It was all these sites and all these comments that made me want to throw my hat in the ring. Not only in defence of Fallout 4’s graphics, but in terms of graphics in general.
Before I get into that, I just want to say something in direct defence of Bethesda Softworks Fallout 4 trailer…

At least they are not lying.
My I bring up Ubisoft and Watchdogs?


Now again. Not talking of the game itself but just purely of the graphics.
Does nobody remember Ubisoft showing off Watchdogs at E3 2012? Well if you have forgotten, take a look at this handy comparison video of Watchdogs being shown at E3 2012 to the final game actually running on a high end PC.

It was pretty obvious that Ubisoft had given Watchdogs a graphical downgrade and were showing something at E3 2012 they just could not deliver.

Now back to Fallout 4. As I previously said, I think the game looks stunning and I personally do not get the “bad graphics” comments that have been popping up.
But even if I were to agree the graphics are bad (they are not), one could argue that Bethesda are not trying to pull a Ubisoft and actually showing what the game will look like…and I do not see that as a bad thing.
I’d much rather developers be honest than lie and deceive.
Even more so, this is an early trailer. There is a very good chance that game will look even better when released and the trailer is based on an older graphical style. As the game is not released until November 2015, that is quite a long time in the gaming world and a lot can change between now and then.

Anyway, I think Fallout 4 looks amazing as it is.

So lets get into the meat of this article and answer whether graphics are important or not…


You ask most gamers and they will say: “graphics are not important, it’s all about gameplay.”
I somewhat agree…but I can not say that graphics are not important. I personally think graphics are massively important part of a game, I mean without them…you wouldn’t have a game at all would you?

I’ve noticed an amazing amount of hypocrisy among gamers too. They will say graphics are not important, but then argue which has the better graphics; the PS4 or Xbox One? Then on top of that you’ll get the PC elitist brigade and their “PC is better than either” arguments.
But if graphics are not important…why do most gamers argue of which one has the better graphics so much, why are there so many comparison videos on Youtube?
Clearly graphics are important, otherwise these arguments and comparison videos would not exist.

Again, I point you towards the recent Fallout 4 graphical debate. Why does this debate even exist if it’s gameplay and not graphics that matters?

So for me personally, are graphics important?
Yes, very much so.
Now this does not make me a “graphics-whore” as I’m not saying that great graphics equate to a great game. That is a very different argument and one for another time.
But to dismiss graphics as not being important is just plain ignorant or stupid.

Graphics can set a style, tone and feeling for a game before you even play it. I’m going to bring up a handful of games people would consider have “poor” graphics on sight and explain why I feel they are quite the opposite.
I bring exhibit A.


Limbo, a very simple action/platform/puzzle game with even more simpler graphics.
As you can see for the screenshot, the game offered a minimalistic silhouette graphical style. Yet those graphics added so much depth and atmosphere to the game, it was amazing. I really do not think that game would have worked with photorealistic, 3D polygon, 18 million colour palette graphics.
The graphics of Limbo were simple and minimalistic…and they worked perfectly.


Ahhhhhhhhhhh, Minecraft. One of my favorite modern games in recent years.
I have played this in front of people that do not know what it is and the first thing they say is “this look crap”.
Does it “look crap”? I honestly do not think so, the blocky and pixelated visual style is just perfect. In fact, I have played Minecraft with various other skins from cartoon style to even more “realistic” versions and none of them work as well as the original graphics.
Minecraft is meant to look blocky and pixelated…it just works.

rerto city

Retro City Rampage. If you have no idea what RCR is, allow me to educate you.
It’s a simple homage to the original GTA games with 100’s of gaming and film references done in a NES graphical style. Just looking at that screenshot above, would you believe the game was originally released in 2012?
Do the game’s graphics look bad? For me, not at all. The game is trying to emulate a very specific style and direction and these “simplistic” 8-Bit graphics are just perfect.

Those are just three examples (there are numerous others) of a game having what many would consider “poor graphics”, but what I consider to be amazing and very apt graphics for the games.
It’s this attention to the graphics that makes the graphics themselves just as important as the gameplay.

Yes, graphics are important, they are even hugely important I would say. Graphics can tell you so much about the game, they can set a tone and atmosphere, they can be emotive as well as pleasing to look at.