After all of the knockout titles we saw the year before, 2016 had a lot to live up to. And with the launch of three major VR platforms, a half-step console released from Sony, and the rise of 4K gaming, 2016 turned out to be extremely eventful. There was plenty of new hardware for devs to take advantage of, but raw horsepower doesn’t always win out in this industry. Pluck and ingenuity during the development process are just as important for the final product.
Today, we want to call out the year’s most impressive games. Each of these titles have noteworthy technical accomplishments, but this isn’t a pixel count and frame rate competition. Instead, we want to tip our hats to the games that astonished us the most.
Sadly, there’s just not enough time to discuss each and every impressive release — even some of our personal favorites. Games like Abzû and Rez Infinite make our hearts sing, but even they missed the cut. So with that in mind, here’s our list of 2016’s most impressive games. And as always, you’re welcome to give props to standout games in the comment section below.