People have been asking where our 2021 raddest list is. Apologies for the delay! This post is a bit later than expected due to continued COVID related reality and time distortion. Additionally, we have been working on some exciting upgrades to The RadCade for 2022; stay tuned!
2021 felt like a continuation of 2020 and was another excellent year for binge gaming. We joined a discord community that hosts regular weekly multiplayer gaming sessions, so multiplayer was a theme throughout 2021.
We played a ton of Minecraft this year. Our Discord server launched a long running Minecraft survival mode server. We larped as crusaders and built a fortified cathedral with a surrounding village. The longer we played, the more epic gamer moments we had, and the server developed its lore. One of our players, known as "MikeyBoy," collected the lore into a book and acted as the server historian and lore master. We defeated the Ender dragon and collected the Elytra item that lets you fly. We have archived the server and may return if there are future content patches.
Nier Replicant ver.1.22474487139
In 2021 Nier Replicant ver.1.22474487139 was released, a remaster of the 2010 cult hit game Nier and the predecessor to the masterpiece Nier Automata. Last year Nier Automata was on our raddest list. I had never played the original Nier, so I was hyped for more Nier content. This game blew me away; I think I enjoyed it even more than Nier Automata. Replicant feels like it has more soul than Automata; the characters are more relatable. The soundtrack is more dynamic and diverse than Automata's. I was seriously bummed when I finished this game, and there wasn't more to play.
We have been following development of Death Trash for many years. 2021 moved the game into early access and the developers released an early version of the game on Steam. Death Trash is a totally rad open world action RPG that takes place in a post-apocalyptic waste land world filled with Robots and flesh monsters. The current release of Death Trash is a solid play through and experience, but it is incomplete. To be fair, the developer could have just released it in its current state and called it the finished product, its that good. The developer is continuing work on the project and we can't wait to play it again after its expanded.
Half Life 2 Death match + Garys Mod
The discord group is always looking for cross-platform high-player capacity multiplayer games. We had a period of a few months in which we were playing HL2 Deathmatch and some Garys Mod. These two are legendary multiplayer experiences. We started playing vanilla HL2 deathmatch and then gradually moved to deathmatch mods and Garys mod. Gary's mod always gets weird. It is like an acid trip of a game, Like 4chan minecraft. We played a Miami Vice mod in Gary's mod and role-playing as the characters we played cops and robbers larp.
A Way Out
A Way Out is a unique Co-op adventure game which stars 2 protagonist characters Vincent and Leo. Players take the role of Vincent or Leo and work together to break out of prison. The game presents puzzles and challenges that require players to plan and synchronize their actions to successfully execute. A Way Out is a shining example of the video games art medium. The story and cinematography out class Hollywood films. A Way Out is a great bonding exercise you'll always remember breaking out of prison with your bro.
Psychonauts 2 was a highly anticipated big hype release for 2021. Psychonauts 2 was super charming with great humor and cheerful environments that provided great escapism from the Covid pandemic reality outside. The gameplay and controls of Psychonauts 2 are fluid and responsive and a blast to play. The game is a real masterpiece and shining example of the artform.
Streets Of Rogue
Players can pick one of the dozens of character types. Each character has uniquely different play styles and experiences. Players are assigned a set of objectives to complete on the level. Example objectives are like "collect this item" or "eliminate target". On top of all this add 4 player cooperative multiplayer in which the players collaborate with their individual player classes to complete the shared objectives. All the generative systems in the game synergize with each other and produce some crazy experiences. For example, you can be playing as a giant gorilla who gets access to steroids and can punch through walls. Or you could be playing as a vampire that needs to feed off NPC civilians and pick skills for hacking computers and manipulating electronic devices. The multiplayer gets wild and super fun with all these synergies and possibilities playing together.
At one point in my life I applied for a job as grounds keeper of a graveyard. The job posting advertised that you get a free house to live on the grounds. The idea of having my own place to host parties at the cemetery sounded rad. I did not land the position for better or worse, my life may have turned out quite differently. Graveyard Keeper lets me live out that alternate reality.
Graveyard Keeper is a Harvest-Moon-like with a gothic horror setting. There is a relaxing and calming vibe to Graveyard Keeper. The visuals are amazing the team has put in some serious work to to make the pixel graphics very dynamic. Theres a ton of things to do in Graveyard Keeper. You can farm, fish, go on dungeon adventures, give sermons at your church, create wine, and visit neighbors. All the meanwhile you are tasked with managing a graveyard and preparing bodies that get delivered to the morgue. All of this has a very peaceful and relaxing vibe and never feels tedious.
Dark Souls Remastered
The hype for Elden Ring's upcoming 2022 release is off the charts, and its early play-tests look fantastic. The Elden Ring hype finally intrigued me enough to play a souls-borne-like game. The soul's games have been in my periphery for years as something I'd enjoy; I love fantasy gothic horror. I had avoided Souls games for fear of full-blown addiction and the risk of time loss. I picked up Dark Souls in a moment of weakness and was immediately obsessed. Unfortunately, I messed up; I used a guide like a filthy casual. I tried to play blind with three different noob character classes. I immediately got overwhelmed with build planning all the freedom and secrets. I am a completionist, so I have a nagging urge to discover all of a game's content and get massive FOMO when presented with gameplay choices that restrict content. I turned to a guide and regret it, I did play some segments blind, and those were insanely rewarding and the segments I remember the most.
Dark Souls Remastered gave me a taste of the souls like the world, and now I'm considering playing BloodBorne and maybe Dark Souls 3. When Elden Ring drops, I will be playing it blind for the whole experience. I can't wait to hit that in 2022.
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