6th place. Cyberpunk 2077
Cyberpunk 2077 is a great game. Large-scale, detailed, fun, extremely ambitious, well-written, and so on and so forth. We gave her 10 points out of 10 on “Kenobi” – and read about why this is so in the review. Here, I’ll explain why this great game only came in at # 6 on our top of the best games of 2020.
And the answer is really simple: because Cyberpunk 2077 was not ready to come out in 2020.
Cyberpunk 2077 review
This is an ideal example of a release false start, when the game is released not in order to “release the game”, but in order to have time to release it in the most favorable period for the sake of beautiful financial statements. And these reports, judging by the numbers on the pre-orders alone, really turned out to be very attractive, but the hype still put Cyberpunk 2077 in an extremely awkward situation. Many were waiting for almost a “second coming” and the main game since the inception of the industry, but got … well, just an excellent RPG, which the studio CD Project can create.
Its merits, however, were not seen by everyone, and one cannot blame them – all these merits on the release were hidden behind a dense veil of bugs and terrible technical errors. Also these versions for consoles of the previous generation …
Judging by how many problems Cyberpunk 2077 had and still has, the game could well have been postponed for another six months, or even more. Fans would not forgive the developers for this, but they did not quite accept the buggy version either, so CD Project in this sense can only sympathize – the studio, of course, had no choice (a place for a joke about the fact that Cyberpunk 2077 also No).
All about Cyberpunk 2077 and the cyberpunk setting – a review of the new RPG, the “evolution” of Keanu Reeves in games and guides
However, as I’ve said more than once, bugs by themselves don’t make games bad. Cyberpunk 2077 would have easily become the best game of 2021, but they decided to release it earlier. The funny thing is that it will finally be repaired in the next few months, and for some it will become available in the new year.
5th place. Animal Crossing: New Horizons
For me, Animal Crossing: New Horizons, as for many, turned out to be the entry point into the popular Japanese series and universe. At one time, the sequel Demons Souls so opened For the Western audience From Software. Well yes, Animal Crossing is Dark Souls from the world of village simulators!
According to fans, Animal Crossing: New Horizons is far from the best part of the series. But the game is almost perfect anyway. As I have already told you, this is a set of the simplest, but verified in the smallest details, activities. They both distract from each other and complement each other. Fishing, catching butterflies and mining – on the one hand, craft, home improvement and the simplest “social” with animal heroes – on the other.
Then the economy begins – the payment of the mortgage for the house, the speculation of turnips on foreign lands in order to buy insanely expensive artifacts to decorate their own island. The fact that the game is played in real time quickly becomes outdated – you stop paying attention to it as a real change of day and night, and even the seasons outside the window.
But Animal Crossing remains playable and engaging because of the almost limitless possibilities for customization of the city and the associated actions. This is a game where there is always something to do – no matter whether for five minutes or for the whole evening, alone or in a company.
What sets Animal Crossing apart from other gardening simulators (and outright clones) is its unlimited budget and endless development timeline. They allow Nintendo to maintain its own level of quality for each mechanic and an ingenious balance between island fooling and healthy possessive instincts.
The game never completely turns into a hymn to capitalism and consumerism, but it would not be so interesting to relax under the palm trees if the subconscious did not now and then bite the thought of an unpaid loan or a piano that had not yet been bought.
This is probably the most similar to life in Japanese society – a meditative but ruthless daily grind. In the era of a pandemic, this approach to existential questions in the spirit of “Do you live or earn a living?”, Judging by the sales of New Horizons, proved to be universal.