The best localized games of 2016

We’ve broken down the best of the year category by category, but now’s the time for the top overall titles. What are the ten best games to see Western release in 2016? Read on to find out!

10. Digimon Story Cyber Sleuth

Digimon is back! …Wait, really? Yeah, actually. Cyber Sleuth builds a compelling creature-raising RPG around those digital monsters, making for a much more accessible and enjoyable game than the glorified Tamagotchi games of the classic era or the small-budget spinoffs seen in their wake. It’s a deep game worthy of multiple plays, not really at all due to the story and absolutely due to how fun it is to simply grind through digivolution chains to make the best beasts. – Graham

9. 7th Dragon III Code: VFD

7th Dragon III Code: VFD is an incredibly engaging game. You get to travel through time. You have multiple classes to choose from when creating characters, building up an extensive team of dragon hunters. NPCs are quite personable, giving you weapons and goodies for taking time to hear there thoughts. Also, there’s a cat cafe. When was the last time you played a game with a cat cafe? – Jenni

8. Pocket Card Jockey

When Game Freak isn’t making a lot of people a lot of money with Pokemon, it’s making silly little side projects, like this one which I imagine wouldn’t get past a pitch stage at any other studio. Pocket Card Jockey is built as the ultimate portable game, with short bursts of exhilaration that end quickly enough to keep you from missing your bus stop or next meeting. Plus you get to give pun names to horses! – Graham

7. Picross 3D: Round 2

Picross 3D: Round 2 makes you think. Which isn’t to say other Picross games don’t, but you really have to ponder when picking away at these blocks. You have to account for two kinds of blocks, allowing for more intricate creations to come through. It’s rewarding. – Jenni

6. Odin Sphere Leifthrasir

Odin Sphere Leifthrasir goes above and beyond any other remaster released this year. VanillaWare stepped things up with improved visuals, expanded areas, gorgeous foods and a revamped skill systems. It feels like a brand new game. But then, for people who did prefer the original, they went ahead and shoved a prettier version of that in there too! – Jenni

5. Gotta Protectors

We had to wait almost two years for Gotta Protectors, but it was absolutely worth it. This real-time strategy game covers every base. There’s a great campaign you can go through alone or with a friend. There are characters you can improve. You can create your own scenarios and share them with other players. We can’t forget that instruction book too, complete with a cheat code! Don’t let its diminutive appearance deceive you; there are lots of details packed into this game. – Jenni

4. Pokemon Sun and Moon

In a world where most Pokemon core series installments tend to stick to a particular pattern, Pokemon Sun and Moon dared to be different. The Alola region offers an entirely new worldview, where we’re completing island challenges for captains and challenging kahunas as we travel from one landmass to another. Along the way, we’re joined by the original 149 from generation one, as well as 80 entirely new creatures. We wholeheartedly choose and embrace you, Pokemon Sun and Moon. – Jenni

3. Fire Emblem Fates

Fates certainly has its flaws, but it’s hard to fault a game that gives you so much to experience when a few of its things are best skipped. Ultimately, the game has more great gameplay than any in the franchise, and it makes some smart fixes to Awakening‘s tactical missteps. It may or may not be the best place to start — check our guide for that — but it’s certainly a can’t miss in the 2016 lineup. – Graham

2. Dragon Quest Builders

A game that seems at first glance to be a Minecraft knockoff shouldn’t be able to be this good. But it is! Builders implements simple action-RPG stick-and-move combat, tactical tower defense and purposeful aesthetics to its block-crafting world, making for a level of meaning that Mojang just can’t match. It certainly helps if you have an affinity for Dragon Quest, too; there’s a lot in the game to tickle longtime fans. – Graham

Game of the Year 2016: Rhythm Heaven Megamix

It may have been quickly swept out the door by Nintendo of America, but Rhythm Heaven Megamix is certainly worth your time and attention, and our appreciation that it made it out in America at all. It packs all the fun of the old installments in with new challenges, remasters the Wii minigames on a system better suited for precise timing and generally lathers on the charm and wordplay to make every moment of playing it a delight. – Graham

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