Best Products of 2015: Gaming

The Witcher 3 slays the competition in a year of enormously epic games

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

2015 was the year massive, open worlds became the norm for AAA gaming. A few years in to the latest generation of consoles, developers were ready to flex the new hardware with game worlds that were immersive, dynamic, and beautifully rendered. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt tamed its immense scale with a narrative that felt both epic and personal. Its ending called back to notable choices that players made throughout the story, solidifying a cohesive sense of agency that is hard to pull off for a game where you can spend this much time aimlessly wandering around and slaying monsters.

The game leading up to that satisfying conclusion is a challenging blast, as well. Warsaw-based developer CD Projekt RED has been working on the series non-stop since the first game in 2007, and all of that passion is reflected in this refined culmination of the trilogy. The basic experience remains the same: you are Geralt of Rivia, a professional monster hunter who slays beasts and seduces sorceresses in a medieval high fantasy world with Slavic inclinations. The main story revolves around Geralt’s daughter-figure Ciri being pursued by a band of inter-dimensional elves for her immense power. Its side quests range from standard fantasy RPG fare to grittier territory involving abuse, serial killers, and genocide. That emotional gravity is balanced out by the right amount of humor, and a lot of good old-fashioned monster slaying.

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt tamed its immense scale with a narrative that felt both epic and personal.

The character progression system is the most flexible and intuitive yet for the series. Combat is fun and challenging, replacing the flashy sword heroics of other RPGs with a tense, positional dance that puts your timing and tactics to the test in any fight against more than a handful of grunts. High-level monster contracts can be especially tough, giving you more incentive to do your research and prepare with the appropriate oils, spells, and weapons for the extra edge they afford you. Inventory management can be clunky, but that’s a common and mostly forgivable sin for the genre.

While no one element of Wild Hunt stands out as particularly innovative, CD Projekt RED has put together a stunningly large, studied, and cohesive RPG that sets a high watermark for modern fantasy.

Runners up

Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain


In Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain you can approach any objective from any angle, with any combination of equipment and support you want. Stealth is encouraged, but you can still come in guns blazing. Trouble behind the scenes rears its ugly head in some of the game’s structural elements, unfortunately, likely due to the abrupt departure of series creator Hideo Kojima during development. The game is a delight, but still feels like a missed opportunity for true greatness.

Fallout 4


Fallout 4 is the most refined Bethesda RPG. Boston is the setting, full colorful characters and interesting details that compel you to aimlessly explore. The new leveling system is simpler and more flexible than previous versions, allowing for a great degree of control in how you want to play. New item-modding, crafting, and base-building systems—features are also a perfect fit. Fallout 4 has a bright future ahead of it too, with no level cap and the promise of mods and DLC.


Annual game releases are boring. Try a quirky indie game for the PS4 instead

While big budget games rely on practical innovation, indie games dive head first into new, unexplored territories. If the quirky and unusual appeal to you, take a look at our list of the best indie games on PS4.

Your PlayStation 4 game library isn't complete without these games

Looking for the best PS4 games out there? Out of the massive crop of titles available, we selected the best you should buy. No matter what your genre of choice may be, there's something here for you.

These are the best Xbox One games out right now

More than four years into its lifespan, Microsoft's latest console is finally coming into its own. From 'Cuphead' to 'Halo 5,' the best Xbox One games offer something for everyone.

The hottest Nintendo Switch games you can get right now

The Nintendo Switch's lineup started off small, but games have steadily released as the console continues through its second year. Here are the best Nintendo Switch games available now, from Super Mario Odyssey to Fortnite.

Who needs a sharpshooter when you have our 'Fortnite' shooting gallery guide

Fortnite season 6, week 4 challenges are here and with it comes the shooting gallery challenge. We show you where to find the shooting gallery locations and what kind of guns to use.

The best Nintendo Switch deals and bundles for October 2018

Looking to score Nintendo's latest hybrid console? We've smoked out the best Nintendo Switch deals right here, including discounts on stand-alone consoles as well as bundles that feature games like Fortnite and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.

'World's best gaming processor'? We put Intel's new i9 through the ringer

Intel has launched the first Core i9 for the average gamer. Despite some controversies around its release, it’s the fastest gaming processor we’ve yet tested.

Rockstar Games employees defend work culture following controversy

Rockstar Games employees have taken to social media to speak out about working conditions following the controversial comment about 100-hour work weeks made by co-founder Dan Houser in an interview.
Home Theater

They’re not just for gaming: Watch Blu-rays on the Xbox One S and Xbox One X

While the Xbox One S and Xbox One X boost the visuals of your games, they also can pull double-duty as Blu-ray players, but there's a bit of set up needed. Need help? Here's our guide on how to watch Blu-rays on the Xbox One S and X.

More days gone: Sony moves zombie exclusive ‘Days Gone’ to April

Sony has delayed the PlayStation 4 exclusive Days Gone to April. It was previously bumped from a 2018 release window into February, 2019, but Sony Bend apparently needs more time to add polish.
Product Review

Huawei’s monster Mate 20 X makes the Galaxy Note 9 look small

The Huawei Mate 20 X has a 7.2-inch screen, but is surprisingly manageable to hold, yet still a little too big to carry around. Huawei’s pushing the phone’s ability as a mobile gaming handheld, challenging the Nintendo Switch.

Here's where Xur is and what he has for wares this week in 'Destiny 2: Forsaken'

The weekly vendor in Destiny 2: Forsaken always brings Exotic weapons and armor, some of the toughest loot to find in the game. Here's everything you need to know to track down Xur: Where he is, when he shows up, and what he's stocking.

‘Call of Duty: Black Ops 4’ adds Black Market system to dress up your soldier

Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 added the Black Market system to PS4 today, giving players new ways to unlock and acquire additional customization items, such as outfits for Specialists.

In 2018, the rivalry between AMD and Intel has become more interesting than ever

When it comes to selecting a CPU for your PC, there's no shortage of chips for you to choose from. With Ryzen, Threadripper, and Core i9 CPUs though, the AMD vs. Intel argument is muddier than ever.