End of Year 2019: Favorite Multiplayer/Ongoing Game

Favorite Multiplayer/Ongoing Game

In 2019, we continue to see games we are never finished with. There’s always another weekly challenge, another season of content, another set of outfits to release, another 8 GB to download. Games are being announced alongside their post-release content schedules, given new life with game-changing updates. You can launch a game from last year and be completely overwhelmed by just how much has changed.

The one unifying factor to so many of these ongoing games is they let you play with others. Games are as good a foundation for socializing with friends as a charcuterie board. Whether it’s getting into hi-jinks with our friends, or competing against others, we like playing games together. Turns out, customers - do in fact - want online games.

This year we have consolidated the favorite multiplayer/ongoing game discussion recognizing that there is a significant overlap between the two. That said, feel free to shout out single-player games that have gotten substantial updates, and multiplayer games that are just getting started as well!


Discussion Thread

This thread is all about discussing your favorites! The end of the year is always a great opportunity to look back and reflect on what we loved, but it’s also a great time to remind ourselves of what we missed and want to come back to next year. So give a recommendation, get a recommendation, and above all please be respectful and have a good time!

Be sure to check the Q&A section below if you have questions, otherwise feel free to reach out to one of us! We hope you enjoy this event and we’re excited to see what sorts of discussion each category inspires!

Please Note: We’re planning to write-up a summary thread at the end of the event and include various members’ quotes from the discussion threads, just like last year. The quotes that we select will be attributed to their authors and only posted on this forum (forum.waypoint.vice.com). If you would prefer to not be quoted in the summary thread, please indicate this in your posts.


Q&A

Q: End of Year? What's that?

A: I’m glad you asked! Just head over to our pinned topic if you need a catch up! You can also find details on the process for the event here.

Q: What can I discuss in this thread?

A: Anything that you think fits the topic! Feel free to share your favorite experiences of 2019, whether they occurred in media that released in 2019 or media from a previous year.

Q: Where are the nominations?

A: This year we’re structuring things a little differently: we’ll be posting discussion threads over the second half of December, and nominations won’t begin until January. This will give you a few more weeks to play more games before you’ll need to lock in your votes. We also hope that by focusing on open discussion threads, the event will be more inclusive of folks who haven’t been able to play many games from this year.

Credits

For me it has to be Destiny 2. To be honest I have something of a love/hate relationship with the game itself. I love the way it feels to play, the incredible art design of the environments and the raid and dungeon encounters. On the other hand certain ways the game has changed since launch to become more of a grind, to become something you really have to be logging into and putting the work in every day if you want to stay up to date to appeal to the more ‘hardcore’ crowd has been a disappointment and means it doesn’t fit into my schedule as well as it used to.

Despite that though, I still love this game, and that’s thanks in large part to the community we have here. Bashing my head against a difficult raid encounter with y’all trying to figure it out, or just doing meme runs against old bosses with 6 swords or something, is genuinely some of the most fun I have ever had playing video games.

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I made a thread about it relatively recently so I won’t go on too long but it has been pretty remarkable seeing how far Star Wars: Battlefront 2 has come since its mess of a launch. As a big fan of the original series I can say with confidence that DICE through their post-launch support have made something that lives up to the name. The addition of new PVE modes earlier this year have cemented it as one of my favorite mutliplayer games of recent years and a great Star Wars sandbox. They just dropped some new stuff to tie-in with Rise of Skywalker and seem intent on supporting the game into 2020, so there’s never been a better time etc etc. It’s cool!

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I had a blast playing through the Tall Tales in Sea of Thieves this year.

Let me be clear: the actual content of the Sea of Thieves tall tales was often sub-par and I think they are poorly implemented, and incentivize griefing. Despite that, it turns out simply having a sense of direction for what you’re going to do in a session of Sea of Thieves amplifies the fun of going off track. And the emergent content outside of the Tall Tales has been a ton of fun to play.

I do not recommend the game to everyone until they figure out how to curb the effects of griefing, but getting into shenanigans with my friends on the Seas has been a really fun time for me this year!

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I want to give a shoutout to the Fate of Atlantis DLC for Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. The new areas are wonderful to explore, the new enemies are fun to fight, and I really like how it takes existing mechanics and tweaks them just enough to make them feel somewhat fresh again. The stories that are told all throughout it are fun and the modern day aspects of it got me interested in the franchise enough to fall down a wiki hole and read up on all kinds of Templar and Assassin and Isu nonsense. Also, it was just a nice surprise to have something so fun and good after just how bad the first DLC (Legacy of the First Blade) was.

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This was the year I heavily soured on Warframe. I started playing Destiny 2, but I’m still in the honeymoon period on that so I can’t really judge of it’s better or just newer-to-me. So I dunno for this category.

In just this year’s content alone, Final Fantasy XIV has:

  • Given me both a car and Hypebeast-approved outfit from Final Fantasy XV

  • Tried to kill me with a high resolution Eden summon from Final Fantasy VIII

  • Remixed Weight of the World

  • Provided an allegory for ecological disaster and environmental justice that’s, for me, the best story in any JRPG, let alone any MMO.

  • At the end of Shadowbringers, it takes you to a wholly anachronistic, Art Deco metropolis where you can talk to giant ghost people about political philosophy and listen to Eorzea’s saddest jazz piano

  • Bestowed to the healing job, White Mage, a flower of DEATH

  • Given players the ability to attack enemies with the power of dancing and rhythmic gymnastics

  • Made mechanical frogs a canonical fixture of the game’s lore

  • And next year, it’ll make me confront childhood trauma by having me face off against FFVII’s Ruby Weapon for the first time since I was curious about that thing poking out of the desert in the overworld map.

It’s a good video game.

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I’m still on team Warframe but in no way can I in good conscience recommend it. it’s just too much grind to unlock the better bits. I’m past most of the power hurdles so it’s a lay back, chill and be a space ninja game now. The game got a lot of changes for the better this year. Disruption missions, updated melee, much better tile sets, etc…

Good: you never need to pvp for anything im looking at you destiny exotics. Hate that so much.

  • past a certain power level you can farm things
  • The closest thing to raids are all pubbable
  • story and theme is bonkers in the best way. it’s the post rush prog rock of video game narrative.
  • a wide variety of power fantasy horde shooting.

Bad: You’re going to the same things: a whole lot.
Lacks the slick presentation and feel of destiny.

For multiplayer, I gotta go Apex Legends. This game came seemingly out of nowhere, and I decided to load it up mainly because it was free to play. I had no idea how it’d be my favorite multiplayer game this year, but here we are. There are so many smart touches that the team at Respawn included here that I could talk about: the Jumpmaster role that has a player choose where the team as whole starts the match; the ability to both revive downed teammates AND respawn dead ones; the ability to not only request items, weapons, and ammo from teammates, but also thank them if they provide them (as well as now being able to now reply “You’re Welcome”!)…the list goes on and on…

HOWEVER, had everything I just mentioned been absent from this game, Apex Legends would still take top spot for multiplayer on my list. And it’s for one feature alone–my personal Feature of the Year™, Apex’s Ping Communication System. In a game that at launch, only offered a single game mode with players in mandatory teams of 3, and in a game that benefits so heavily on coordinating well with others, it was very forward-thinking of Respawn to add in a way for players to effectively communicate without needing a mic or using text chat. I recognize communication systems like this exist in other shooters, but I feel like it’s perfected here. Basically, you point your aiming reticle at something (anything) and press the ‘Ping’ button to convey some kind of context-sensitive message to your teammates. Your character will audibly say something aloud that your teammates can hear, and some kind of information/message will display on their screens. This can be as simple as pinging a spot in the world or on the map (“let’s all go here”), pinging an open door ("heads up, someone’s been here), pinging an item (“found some shotgun ammo if anyone’s running low”), pinging an enemy far off in the distance, a trap laid by an enemy, a healing drone you just deployed, on and on and on. There’s essentially a ping for anything you’d ever want to notify a teammate of, and it all works so intuitively and with a single button press.

I truly cannot undersell how useful the ping system is here, and I hope it’s something other developers learn from and incorporate into their games. Being been able to synchronize with my team and win many a harrowing match, all without ever putting on a headset or opening up a keyboard menu, has truly made for some of my favorite multiplayer experiences this year, if not ever.

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Apex: Legends is my champion.

Almost all my experience with it was no-mic with randoms on PS4. I always mute my squadmates and communicate by pinging.

This is the ideal way to play the game if, like me, you value chaos and surprise more than choreographed squad play and wins. This method still pushed above level 100 and unlocked every trophy in the game.

The unpredictability of my squadmates showed me how forgiving this game can be. My squad has a bad drop and two of us got picked off? No worries we got respawned and our other teammate is pinging gear.

Apex encourages aggressive play while leaving a ton of options to disengage if they’re used at the right time. This balance creates full building, some times more Scooby-Doo chase scenes. This game is funny! I love seeing an enemy on the other side of a door we’ve both tried to open at the same time. When this happens the door swings a bit but no one passes through. It’s a deer in the headlights moments for both parties that is just as likely to have both of parties turn tail and run as it does of turning into a shootout.

My playstyle is all about adapting to the circumstances rather than seeking out a perfect loadout or position. It’s created a galaxy brain inspired set of variables I’m refreshing constantly as I’m playing a match.

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(Oh yeah, I just want the record to show that had this been two separate categories, Warframe would’ve been my pick for favorite ongoing game)

Yeah, I’d really like to eventually return to FFXIV. Having a baby has made playing a game that can’t be paused at a moment’s notice untenable right now, but I put in 250+ hours this summer, cleared the hell out of a lot of the OG content, and just entered Heavensward. I think it’s amazing and can’t wait to go back.

for the record this is just the discussion phase of end of the year so feel free to talk about as many games as you want in as many categories as you want!

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Folks may be recognising a pattern here with my posting, but Tetris 99 is an incredible execution for a battle royale game with the Tetris versus framework. There’s a lot there that is familiar to battle royale players, and the Tetris gameplay still feels great to play after decades. The game has also been steadily updated with free content, paid DLC, and in-game events that reward both cosmetics and eshop gold coins. I’ve received $30 worth of coins so far, and fingers crossed I get another $10 from last weekend’s event, although I didn’t get a chance to play much so I don’t have any expectations.

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I think my favourite multiplayer game that I played this year was Red Dead Redemption Online. However, the reason that I enjoy it so much is because of how lonely it is.Unless you choose to play the matchmade activities, it’s incredibly rare to see another player, in stark contrast to other mp games I’ve played this year like SoT, Destiny, FFXIV and GTA:O. The nice surprise of actually encountering another human in the game world, followed by the unpredictability of the ensuing interaction really elevates the experience.

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Dang, I forgot Apex was out this year. I stopped playing it after only a couple of months, but the level of quality there is absolutely undeniable. That is a good-ass game.

Rainbow Six Siege one of the best multiplayer games I have ever played and they keep adding to it.

I’m saving my big pitch for the game of the year thread, but know that I absolutely, full heartedly back the mentions of Final Fantasy XIV in this thread.

Final Fantasy XIV for me, definitely. Shadowbringers was probably the best Final Fantasy game I’ve ever played (though Tactics is also still up there), not to mention the Nier Automata crossover, but also just as an MMO FFXIV saw a lot of improvements this year and Eorzea has never been better. It’s a shame ARR is such a drag, I hope the improved version of the 2.0 story that’s supposed to be released next year encourages more people to try the game.

The Division 2 has still has a good feel to the movement and shooting and a cool animation when the drone launches off your backpack and that’s all I want to say about that game.

But this year, this is the year where I’ve fallen behind and am just gonna tell Warframe to F-off. Oh, you have all this cool stuff now? And I have to go farming rare mats to build a thing that lets me unlock a thing from six months ago that I need to complete so I can do the new thing that I still need to farm rare mats to do? And I’m simultaneously three steps ahead and four steps back because I started before they rejiggered the progression. Damn, my Zephyr still looks cool but no thanks.