The XBLA Fans Twitch Stream Team has grown drastically in recent months thanks to the support of our viewers. I’d love to personally encourage each of our readers to check out at least one broadcast this week. We will be updating the site on a weekly basis with a plethora of streams for you to enjoy.
If there is a game you want to see streamed, please contact us.
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We at XBLA Fans are incredibly excited about the state of indie games on the Xbox One moving forward into 2015. In the next two weeks you’ll see an article from us highlighting some of the fantastic games we are anticipating. In the meantime, though, we highly suggest looking at some of the great games that released in 2014. We posted our Game of the Year awards yesterday. In honor of those games, we have a week full of streaming for you over on our Twitch channel. Make sure to give us a follow (or subscribe if you are feeling super generous).
It’s January, which means it’s time for XBLA Fans to take a look back at the best and brightest games of the last year.
2014 was a transitional year for the Xbox brand. It was Xbox One’s first full year on the market, and it bore witness to Microsoft going all-in on its complete reversal of the console’s strategy and public image. Redmond distanced its next-gen console from being some sort of multimedia wonderbox as much as possible and did its best to focus on the games. Despite a litany of exciting ID@Xbox game announcements, the program got off to a bit of a slow start, though. Ports and re-releases dominated much of 2014’s ID@Xbox release calendar, and last-gen Xbox Live Arcade releases on Xbox 360 were used to buoy Microsoft’s greater indie library.
If you paid as much attention to ID@Xbox as as XBLA Fans did, though, then you know there were some standout stars even if there was not a terribly high quantity of them. We’ve played the games and cast our votes, and how we present you with our 2014 Game of the Year awards. Don’t like our picks? Fair enough. Head to the comments and make your case for why yours are better.
Child of Light was developed by Ubisoft Montreal and published by Ubisoft. It was released April 30, 2014, on the Xbox One and Xbox 360 for $14.99. An Xbox One copy was provided for review purposes.
Child of Light is a game that isn’t afraid to take what it likes. Ubisoft Montreal’s pastiche borrows liberally from the JRPGs of yesteryear in paying homage to them. Its roughly 12-hour adventure is filled with bits from its source material: Final Fantasy VII‘s sword gigantism, Final Fantasy X‘s in-battle character swapping and a sidekick that acts like a more palatable version of Ocarina of Time‘s Navi and looks like a Dragon Quest Slime, to name a few.
The story also feels like it was cut from the same cloth of many seminal RPGs. It revolves around a group led by the titular Child of Light (Aurora) on a quest to save the fairy tale world of Lemuria from the Black Queen, who has pilfered the land’s sun, moon and stars and appropriated its throne for herself. Child of Light‘s pitting of good-natured youngsters against an evil covering the world in darkness is nothing new, and its world, while beautiful, can be less than exciting to traverse. You might not then expect a game aspiring to be an indie love letter to the JRPG composed by the blockbuster shooter production crew at Ubisoft Montreal to keep you happily adventuring along. Thanks to a sublimely addictive combat system, pretty artwork and a delightful cast of characters, however, you’ll continue to gravitate towards this quest until you reach its conclusion.
Child of Light, the Japanese-style RPG from the creator of Far Cry 3, has a unique co-operative mode that allows a second player to take control of an orb named Igniculus who aids Aurora, the protagonist of the title, through her journey by distracting enemies in combat, finding items in unreachable places, lighting dark paths and opening up new passageways. Their teamwork is highlighted in a new trailer from Ubisoft: