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The most underrated games of the decade

Review of the Year Review of the Year We look back on the highs, lows, surprises and peculiarities in and around video games this year.

The decade has come and gone, and the passage of time has once again shown that we live in a meaningless universe where we ultimately die. But hey! On the way there were some cool video games. There were countless games in this catalog that were completely misunderstood and never got the limelight they deserved. This is an arbitrary list of the best but unfortunately not sung games of the decade.

Some Pre-Launch Rules: I tried to keep this list in the range of AAA or AA Indie games. Suffice to say that there is a whole wing of independent and old games that many people tragically ignore, a source of some of the best game concepts of all time, too many of which could similarly be called "underrated". In my time here in Kotaku I did my best to catalog many of them. Their creators are wonderfully talented and I strongly recommend to read this list of games I presented during my time at Kotaku . Play these games, buy them, support these artists.

But even within well-known franchises and the works of established creators, there are titles that are falsely or punishable. This is my list of games cobbled together and remembered by my colleagues and myself. You may not agree if these games are underestimated. You can refer to another game in the comments that you think should be on this list. That's cool. These are the games I personally wish to give people more recognition, along with a few game selections from some members of the rest of the staff.

MAG (2010) [19659010] MAG stands for Massive Action Game because the video game industry still has not figured out how to name things normally , On the surface, it's a multiplayer first-person shooter, but its size was really ambitious at the time. MAG matches captured 256 players, all battling on big cards with different designs. There were three factions to choose from, and in the best game mode were all before the rule. PlanetSide 2 would eventually dethrone it as the huge online shooter de jour, but MAG had a real problem that was underestimated. The servers of the game switched off after four years of operation and ended a game that paved the way for many of the great multiplayer experiences we now take for granted.

Alpha Protocol (2010)

Obsidian is known for his role-playing games, in particular the Dynamite Fallout New Vegas . However, working in established franchise companies only brings you up to here, and one of the studio's strangest projects was Alpha Protocol . It was a role-play game about being a spy and trying to survive in a world where you never knew who to trust. The Alpha Protocol puking, but the amount of variable it pursues in its narrative is (in a good way) frightening. There are actions that you perform at the beginning of the game and that can later drastically affect everything, but other characters also have comments, even for small things like the shirt you wear. The bosses had secret solutions that could drug them or sneak through the encounter. Often you could turn them into disapproving allies. No play through is ever the same. It's clumsy and flawed, but I have never seen anything so detailed. BioShock 2 (2010)

I'll never understand why ] BioShock 2 did not swing as much with it as the original. While BioShock seemed only impressed by his wisdom, BioShock 2 decided to add real emotional inserts. It worked and gave a better game than the original. The players controlled an experimental Big Daddy whose decisions ultimately influenced the moral path of his adult little sister. His decisions were more complex than "whether I kill these kids or not", the weapons were more interesting and his DLC "Minerva's Cave" laid the groundwork for games like Gone Home . Besides, I'd rather play that than endure BioShock Infinite .

Dragon Age II (2011) [19659013] Here's the truth: Dragon Age 2 is the best game in the series. It's not as extensive as the other games – it was not even planned to be a complete sequel – but it has the biggest focus as a story. Equally funny and heartbreaking, Dragon Age II characters with a believable mess through their lives. It is a story of power structures, persecution and identity. I do not want anyone ever complaining about recycled assets because the game has written this good.

Driver: San Francisco (2011)

Mike and Stephen swear by this game that was so unsung at the time that we did an article with that Title " Driver San Francisco is the best game nobody talks about" published. The big catch was the ability to jump to every car in the game to fulfill your mission. Instead of getting out of your car and stealing another one, you could just shift the perspective for a seamless chase.

Binary Domain (2012)

What do you get when Toshihiro Nagoshi and the team behind Yakuza make their own shoot on Gears of War? It turns out you're getting one of the decade's best sci-fi titles. In a world where robots can now pass as humans, a team of special forces must determine where these creatures come from. Their mission will eventually reveal evidence of a new way of life that goes beyond the bounds of what it means to be human. It's a smart game and the fight – you could blow up robot limbs and control your teammates with voice commands – is one of the best actions of the genre.

] Sleeping Dogs (2012)

What if Grand Theft Auto had heart and goodness? Then you would have Sleeping Dogs . It is not only one of the best plays in a game with Will Yun Lee's portrayal of the protagonist Wei Shen, but also mixes history and mechanics with each other. Wei Shen is an undercover police officer who infiltrates the triad, and Sleeping Dogs closely tracks whether you're a good cop or a bad cop. Wei Shen's story takes place in dark places and there is a feeling that anything could go wrong at any moment. It's a really good crime story, and the fact that the series was never released is … dare I say, criminal.

Assassin's Creed IV: Freedom Cry (2013) [19659010] Assassin's Creed is a world-traveling adventure involving it is often an easy excuse to meet famous people. Is that da Vinci? What is Karl Marx doing here? But in the best cases, such as Freedom Cry the series uses the various settings to examine important historical events. Black Flag was already a great game, a daring character study in personal responsibility. Freedom Cry builds on this after Adéwalé was assassinated in the run-up to the Haitian Revolution. It encountered questions of slavery and violence with a surprising openness. It was not perfect – the systems of the game collide with its story – but there was a risk that paid off for the most part.

Remember Me (2013)

Another Mike Fahey darling! This is Dontnod Entertainments first game, an overly ambitious action title about a resistance fighter who manipulates memory and defends himself against a massive business. It's standard cyberpunk stuff, but Remember Me has a big catch: you can rewrite and explore the thoughts of your enemies. There are many interesting scenarios, no matter if it's about finding hidden information by looking at real-time memories, or trying to reformulate a company boss's opinion to make it more empathetic. Remember Me sets a standard for Dontnod: It's an intelligent game with a cool core concept and more than a little jerk. This ambition has served the studio well, leading to games of similar interest such as Life is Strange 2 and Vampyr .

Call of Juarez: Gunslinger (2013)

It's hard to imagine a series as contradictory as Call of Juarez . Coming after the abysmal crap Call of Juarez: The Cartel Revolver Hero abandoned rudeness for delicious Penny-Roman pulp. It's a fabulous arcade shooter based on the stories of a saloon drunk named Silas Greaves, who is more than he seems to be. His stories are incredible and often change in the middle of storytelling. Silas could decide that the story is better if it was actually disabled, and the game will accordingly take most of your ammunition. Sometimes he tells a story about what could have happened before he told the real thing. Combine this funny stupidity with some tense lunchtime duels and you have a recipe for a fantastic game.

Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII (2013)

People complain way too much about Final Fantasy XIII and its sequels. The first game was rough, but the following titles have smoothed the combat systems and really expanded the setting. Lightning Returns is the last game in the trilogy and plays out as a hybrid of Majora 's Mask and Final Fantasy X-2 . In just 13 days to save the world, Lightning must resolve conspiracies and complete side effects to save wayward souls. There is plenty of melodrama and fancy fashion that will become one of the Secret Best Games Final Fantasy .

Virginia (2016)

Virginia is a risky game. It is a thriller without spoken dialogue. Instead, it uses music and editing techniques to reveal its greater mystery. On a page from games like Thirty Flights of Love an intense story becomes an experience of bite sized size culminating in a hellish climax. It was perhaps too experimental compared to contemporaries like Firewatch and slipped relatively unobtrusively under the radar. It pays off to watch a movie that does not take longer than a movie you might see on Netflix.

Watch Dogs 2 (2016)

Watch Dogs & # 39; s protagonist Aiden Pierce is a piece of shit. Watch Dogs was not a good game. But what if we are not concentrating on a nervous vigilante, but have a story about likeable counterculture hackers defending against state security and invasive technology? What if we ignored the bad comic nonsense in favor of something that suits current topics? Watch Dogs 2 does just that, after young hacker Marcus Holloway exposed FBI corruption and the transgression of Silicon Valley. As I mentioned to my colleague Josh Rivera this morning Watch Dogs 2 he agreed that it is a great example of a game that has some real issues in mind. It was a remarkable change for what had frankly started as a boring series.

Echo (2017)

When Riley reminded me of this game, I said "of course !!" so loud that I got a few glances in the office. Echo is a stealth game in which enemies learn how to perform the actions you perform. First, they know how to walk around, and that's it already. Whenever the lights in the strange facility you are exploring are on, any actions you perform are recorded and learned by the enemies. Jump over a danger? They will do it. Shoot with a weapon? Shit, now they can too. If you do not perform these actions for a certain amount of time, they are unlearn by the enemies. Echo builds its layers so that you are forced to take actions that make enemies dangerous and asks you not to use your best options so they will not turn against you. Part Stealth, Part Horror, Echo is a gem.

The Missing: J.J. Macfield and the Island of Memories (2018)

The Missing begins with a message: "This game was made with the belief that no one is wrong to be what he is." The Missing is a bloody and bloody puzzle platformer. Below is a story of exclusion and depression, which is considered by an explicitly strange lens. Director Hidetaka "SWERY" Suehiro carefully addresses these issues. It's a clever game, but more importantly, it cares about the pain of its characters. Deadly Premonition is SWERY's most well-known work, but The Missing is certainly his best yet.

Pathologic 2 (2019)

The original Pathologic was published in 2005, telling the story of a plague-stricken city with dark secrets. But that's not a real explanation for the game. It was a disturbing, hostile and bizarre work where the fourth wall was blurry and never worked for the player. Pathologic 2 re-imagines this experience and refines it to an even better experience. This is a game in which a single scattering ball can be a disaster in which a waste of too much time causes the effect of a tragedy. Newcomers will balk at how inhospitable Pathologic 2 is, but sticking to it reveals an unparalleled history of alienation and pain.

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