Coming in at second place for our Game of the Year picks is Far Cry 4. Leaving behind the lush island jungles of Far Cry 3, the latest addition to the series takes players to the land of Kyrat - a country found in the Himalayan mountains. The country is filled with violence, thanks to an ongoing civil war against its crazed and ruthless dictator, Pagan Min, but patrolling soldiers aren't the only things players need to stay on the lookout for. There's plenty of dangerous wildlife roaming around, ready to ambush an unsuspecting traveler for a free meal.
You play as Ajay Ghale, who travels to Kyrat to fulfill his mother's dying wish, but you get caught up in all the madness instead. As it turns out, Ajay's father is the one who founded the rebellion group, The Golden Path, and as his son, it's up to you to determine the fate of an entire country. You decide the balance of power between two leaders with very different views of what a liberated Kyrat will look like. Sabal seeks to return the country to its old traditions, heritage, and religious teachings. On the other side is Amita, who wants to modernize Kyrat by completely cutting ties with its traditions and fund the future by turning the country into a narco state.
There's plenty to do in the game, even if you put off getting involved in Kyrat's politics. Weaken Pagan's hold on the country by taking over outposts, bell towers, and fortresses. Side missions include becoming a sort of mythological spirit warrior in the Shangri-La quests. Or you can inject yourself with something strange and trip out on a Yogi & Reggie mission. Far Cry 4 has a long list of interesting, multi-layered, characters to meet.
However, the wild animals of Kyrat might be the real stars of the game. From Bengal Tigers to rampaging rhinos, you can go around killing rare animals with reckless abandon, because they might just come after you first. After spending some time traveling Kyrat's vast countryside, and being attacked by wolves, a bear, and an eagle all in quick succession of each other, you have to ask yourself... are YOU the endangered species here?
Best of all, the journey doesn't have to be taken alone. Far Cry 4 features campaign multiplayer, so players can invite a friend to join them in taking out an outpost or fortress. You'll just have to decide who gets to ride the elephant and who uses the gyrocopter.