This weekend I’ve experienced and finished the two most beautiful games in history. Both in a completely different kind of way. Both defining a new generation of games.
The Order: 1886
Above is an ingame (!) screenshot. Never before we had “photo realistic” graphics like that. And very likely we won’t get anything on the same level in the next two or three years. In some parts it actually looks “real” (Not in a “real life” way obviously, but in a stylized / Hollywood / Magazine way). The whole game through I couldn’t get enough and still couldn’t grasp the beyond impressive realistic technical achievement. For a sequel I still hope it will have less shooting (like every game in general), but overall a high class production like this is still very rare in videogames. The graphics and great artstyle aside, The Order also had incredible animations, faces and sounddesign. Besides Naughty Dog games easily the most impressive work in gaming yet.
The Dark Sorcerer from 2013
Ori and the blind forest
While The Order technically is the most impressive project in games, this title is just beyond beautiful thanks to its breathtaking artdesign (and score!). Journey aside this easily is the most beautiful game I’ve ever seen. The only negative would be it’s difficulty. It’s still a masterpiece but overall it would have been even better with a more story driven experience (for example like Journey) instead of depending on “hardcore” gameplay elements. That way the people who would appreciate true work of art like that won’t even be able to experience it (while the typical “hardcore PC gamer” doesn’t appreciate the amazing art).
Both of those experiences pretty much define a new generation in games. Technically we now get into “CGI” quality territory and art-wise we finally have games that actually look like their concept arts. Great times.