2016 was a great year in gaming following a rather lackluster couple of years. This year we really saw this console cycle come into its own with original content after a few years of non-stop remasters. It made people excited about gaming again. The announcement of the Nintendo Switch only exacerbated this excitement. With so many great titles coming out it is always difficult to narrow a list down, but these are the best games from 2016, our 2016 GOTY.

2016 GOTY — Most Underrated Game: Zero Time Dilemma

Zero Time Dilemma was the final installment in the Zero Escape series, and it included the best puzzles and the best narrative in the series to date. While it may not have been on everybody’s radar, it was one of the best games to come out in 2016 and is more than deserving to be recognized as one of 2016’s GOTY candidates.

2016 GOTY — Most Disappointing: Uncharted 4

Yes, Uncharted 4 has been heralded by some as the second coming. In reality, it’s just an OK game. The narrative is slightly intriguing, but at the end of the day it isn’t a great video game, and that is what matters most in the end. The combat is very robust and it is incredibly repetitive. It is a shame because it had the chance to allow the PlayStation 4 to shine, but instead it fell flat on its face.

2016 GOTY — Best RPG: Pokemon Sun/Moon

Nintendo pulled out all the stops for Pokemon’s 20th anniversary, first with Pokemon GO and then with Pokemon Sun/Moon. Pokemon Sun and Moon saw both a revival and reinvention of the series. The formula was mixed up and created an enjoyable experience for both old players and new. The addictive nature of the gameplay is still there and the abundance of old and new Pokemon present, with a twist, is a nice touch. Pokemon has gone back to its roots in many respects which is why Pokemon Sun/Moon is the best RPG to come out in 2016.

 2016 GOTY: Best Action/Adventure Game: Quantum Break

Many considered Quantum Break to be a disappointment, but it was one of the best games of the year, even if it was overshadowed. The gameplay was a lot of fun and it had a really fascinating story. While there were many other Action/Adventure games out there, Quantum Break was unique and a breath of fresh air. This is why it was the best of its genre in 2016.

2016 GOTY — Best Shooter: Gears of War 4

Gears of War 4 was one of the most anticipated games of the year. The Coalition had some huge shoes to fill in Epic Games’ wake, but they didn’t falter. Gears of War 4 brought something old yet something new in terms of both story and gameplay. The game played great, the story was fantastic but not too heavy, and it was one of the most satisfying experiences of 2016.

2016 GOTY — Best Handheld: Zero Time Dilemma

Zero Time Dilemma was released on the Nintendo 3DS and the PlayStation Vita. Given the limited amount of resources available for development, it’s astounding the game turned out the way it did. So much has been and will be said about the game, but there is a reason why it was the best handheld title of 2016.

2016 GOTY — Best Multiplayer Experience: Gears of War 4

Gears has become the face of Xbox and while the campaign was fantastic, the multiplayer was just as good. With co-operative multiplayer returning such as the renowned Horde mode being revamped (for the better) as well as competitive multiplayer returning with a few new modes, it’s by far the most satisfying multiplayer experience of the year. Gears multiplayer went back to its roots, which is a good thing. That, coupled with new and old maps alike, make it the best multiplayer experience of 2016.

2016 GOTY — Best Narrative: Zero Time Dilemma

Zero Time Dilemma’s story had a lot to live up to. It had to wrap up a trilogy and multiple plot points in a very story-driven series. It passed with flying colors. The story is the best of the year and arguably one of the best stories in gaming, period. It has a perfect balance of philosophy, science fiction, and most importantly, character development. The characters dominate ZTD and make the game what it is, even with the philosophy and science fictional elements thrown in. No story can succeed without a complex, interesting cast of characters. Zero Time Dilemma has just that and ends the series on a superb note.

2016 GOTY — 2016 Game of the Year: Zero Time Dilemma

There were so many quality games to come out this year. This was not an easy choice, but when it came down to it Zero Time Dilemma was the best game to come out in 2016. It had the perfect balance of gameplay and story. The puzzles in the game are second to none and really make you think. The story tugs at your heart. It is an excellent commentary on the human condition while still maintaining the indentity of a video game, which shows just how far the medium has come, making it 2016’s Game of the Year.

Agree? Disagree? Let us know in the comments!

About The Author


Morgan Lewis is a Video Game Journalist and is the Founder, Owner, and Editor-in-Chief of VGCultureHQ. He has been writing about games for over six years and has written over 2,000 articles during that timespan. He first fell in love with gaming when he received A Link to the Past for Christmas when he was six and is the guywazeldatatt. He also loves anime and anything that has to do with gaming culture and Tetsuya Takahashi games. He is also a huge anime and Star Wars fan.

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