The end is near! The end of the year, of course, but also of our list of the 10 best games of 2016. After today’s entry, there’s only one more left. Can you guess what it is? Don’t worry, we won’t make you wait too much longer. Until then, let’s talk about the most innovative shooter I’ve played in years! At least, that’s what the game told me to say about it. That game is:
Superhot is, on the surface, a first person shooter, but what it’s doing is so different that it’s hard to call it that with a straight face. It’s more like a puzzle game. Or an action game. Or something else altogether.
When I play a first person shooter like DOOM, it feels like it’s about survival. I’m playing reactively more than I am proactively, trying simply to stay alive long enough to make it through the game. Superhot is, to some degree, about survival, but that’s more of a side-effect of what I’m really doing.
Superhot feels more like improvisation. I’m choreographing a dance that requires me to make effective use of all my available moves, to interact with my dance partners in new and interesting ways. And then, after all that choreography, I get to see it all in motion. Superhot is all at once an action movie, a puzzle game, and creative improvisation, fueled in part by gorgeous, functional art, a fourth-wall-breaking story, and a weird sense of humor.
After so many games this year didn’t live up to the hype, Superhot absolutely did.