Kathy Rain is a retro adventure game that manages to include the throwback element of "a few weird puzzles that don't ruin the overall fun" along with its pixelated style. It's worth your time, particularly given that it only takes a few hours to play. As I said in my review, "a game that keeps you engaged for 10 hours is always preferable over a game that has 10 hours of good gameplay and 10 more of filler, and Kathy Rain definitely kept me engaged for its entire length."
I like both the Mario & Luigi series and the Paper Mario series, so I had high hopes for Paper Jam and its blend of the two. When I reviewed it, I only thought it was "good," but when I played Paper Mario: Color Splash later in the year, I really came to appreciate some of Paper Jam's gameplay mechanics. In particular, Paper Jam's use of Paper Mario stacks is genius. That doesn't make it the best game in either series, but I now appreciate its strengths more than I did at the beginning of the year.
This game based on a book came out fairly late in the year, and I hit a real stumbling block in the form of a battle I couldn't seem to win, even on Easy. But when I finally managed to move past it, the success was very satisfying. The Dwarves has done a great job of translating the book's story into game form, including lots of little vignettes to make your travel through its world map entertaining and worthwhile.
I liked Stories: The Path of Destinies right from the moment I saw it. It looks and sounds great, and both the story and gameplay are a lot of fun. It's built for folks like me who love Choose Your Own Adventure books, and it's short enough to make replaying it over and over a good thing.
When I reviewed Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth back in March, I was pretty nervous that I'd be the outlier in loving it. So it's been gratifying to see my RPGFan colleagues play it this year and appreciate its version of the formula that so many gamers mainly know via Pokémon. Awesome music, a story that's much more grown up than it might seem at the outset, and above all, fun gameplay that kept me playing long after I could have finished all add up to my favorite game I played in 2016.