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19 Quicknotes: Brief reviews of all games I played this year

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The Outer Worlds – 5/10 – Really solid worldbuilding and nice aesthetic. However it feels far too small, and the combat is incredibly basic. The gun choices are so barebones it's terrible. I think if they made an Outer Worlds 2 and really fleshed out the world it would be brilliant.

Cuphead – 4/10 – I can understand why this game is so loved. The cartoon-ish style and beautiful animations make it very unique. But I could never get into it because I dislike 2D games, and though I like more difficult games this one had all the frustration with none of the satisfaction.

Rainbow Six: Siege – 9/10 – if you like FPS and strategy games this is definitely for you. The most fleshed out FPS I've ever played, the low TTK and one-shot headshot mechanic make this less of a run-and-gun and more based on setup and teamwork. It's been out for years but the skill ceiling is so high that the way it's played now at the highest level is so impressive. Biggest downside is the very toxic community so try to play with friends if you can.

Borderlands 3 – 5/10 – Story was mediocre, gameplay felt too much the same without actually adding anything, nothing too memorable. Borderlands 2 was better.

Football Manager 2020 – 10/10 – 1600 hours played in just 4 months, I literally never left this game. If you like football and hate free time this is amazing. I've spent so much time scouting the lower Colombian/Argentinian leagues for wonderkids, and it's so satisfying the feeling of improving your club and improving your players. Only stopped because I kept winning everything and got bored (on multiple saves).

Dark Souls 3 – 10/10 – it is so satisfying the feeling of taking on these incredibly tough bosses and eventually winning, even if it takes me several hours. Combat is fast, exciting and challenging, the areas are all beautiful and add to the atmosphere (not as much as the first game though), and the sheer amount of hidden stuff makes exploration amazing.

Call of Duty: Warzone – 6/10 – meh. It's a free battle royale from Call of Duty, lots of okay gunplay. Good game to play for an hour or so.

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice – 9/10 – I'm not a fan of the ancient Japanese style but if I was this would be a 10/10. The most advanced git-gud combat of any game I've ever played, it encourages you to go all in and be relentless like a proper samurai would. Bosses were amazing and so was the world and all the different endings.

Red Dead Redemption 2 – 9/10 definitely the best open-world experience ever. So much to do and none of it feels like it's added just to pad the game length, and the AI is brilliant too. I love the story but I dislike how slow the pacing can be to make the game more realistic.

Rogue Company – 3/10 – Nothing special. Supposed to be a free Counter Strike game but it's in 3rd person and it really offers nothing that hasn't been done before in way better ways.

Subnautica – 10/10 – holy shit. I love single-player exploration games and this is no different. A game where you crash land on an alien planet that's entirely underwater and have to escape, and the entire game is underwater. The story is really impressive too. The game is a lot more horror than initially expected and though I don't normally like horror games this was done perfectly, and the atmosphere of being 1000m underwater certainly helped (picture being hunted in the Mariana Trench while in a submarine). I recommend it to everyone.

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Outer Wilds – 10/10 – holy holy shit. Much in the same vein as Subnautica but in space. Another single-player exploration game where the meat is in finding out what's going on rather than actually doing it. One of the most memorable games I've played in a long time. I'm not going to tell you anything about the story, because it really is best to play it blind and just go for it.

Halo Wars 2 – 4/10 – As someone who hit General on the first game I feel like I didn't give this game enough of a chance but it never really sat right with me. The UI felt weird and the campaign felt far too corny with cheesy American jingoist tropes. Plus I feel like the Banished aren't a fun enemy. If you didn't like the first one I wouldn't recommend this at all.

Untitled Goose Game – 8/10 – it's only about 4 hours long but it's a brilliant experience. You're a goose in a small English village and your job is to shithouse everything in the area. Definitely worth a shot and it's easy enough that anyone can play it.

Forza Horizon 4 – 7/10 – I'm not that into racing games, but I liked this game. The game itself is absolutely beautiful, and I loved the soundtrack on the radios while doing races. I especially loved all the Edinburgh areas as I used to live there. But after a while racing games just become the same thing each time and I'm not a fan of it.

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt – 6/10 ehhhh…. I never really got into it. I can tell it's an amazing game but it's so dialogue-heavy and I find myself constantly comparing it to Skyrim which I prefer. I dislike the combat and the graphics seem kind of mobile-y. I dislike it's 3rd person as well. Also the amount of times I've heard kids in the game say "hehe, we's catching snails" does my nut in.

Doom Eternal – 9/10 – I've never felt as tense and hype from a game as I have with this. The soundtrack is Halo-tier. Everything you do makes you feel like a badass, and the pacing is exceptional. The combat feels perfectly balanced and every enemy has its place in the game. I thought the movement felt quite early-2000s, and I didn't care too much for the story, but still an amazing experience.

Cyberpunk 2077 – 8/10 – you're all gonna hate me for rating this higher than Witcher 3 but I'd rate this 10/10 if it wasn't so buggy. Holy shit the world is so beautiful, I love the futuristic theme, I love the storyline (but not so much the endings) and I love how the combat feels. They implemented a lot of new things in the game which I loved like Braindances or the Breach Protocol/Quickhacks during combat which has completely changed how I play the game. Once this game is fixed absolutely give it a shot because it might not be optimised but you can tell there's a brilliant game underneath.

Fifa 21 – 7/10 – Really nothing new with this at all but it's a fifa game and I like football. If you've never played them then you'll love the amount of features the game has and probably get hooked on the Ultimate Team packs (basically trading cards you can play games with) like I did, they're so fun. I like that you can get them now through Squad Building challenges without actually buying packs because the SBCs themselves are really fun and it gives a use to all the mediocre players that nobody would bother with.

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