Platforms: PC/Mac, iOS
Can you guess which game is most unlike every other on this list? That's right, it's Her Story, a full-motion video affair that some would probably even hesitate to call a game.
It's their loss, and a shortsighted one at that. This surprising indie has you watching loads of police interviews with the wife of a missing man – and then trying to sort out what happened all the while. Strong acting makes this experimental game an essential experience, particularly for just a few quid.
Mortal Kombat X
Platforms: Xbox One, PS4, PC
After the previous reboot, Mortal Kombat X continues the classic fighting series' winning streak with a game that strikes a balance between old and new. It's as gory as ever, and many of the familiar fighters fill the lineup – yet it continues to become a more technical, richer combat experience, and a full one-third of the combatants are totally new. That gives it some extra excitement, and whether playing solo or against friends, there's plenty to play, unlock, and enjoy.
Ori and the Blind Forest
Platforms: Xbox One, PC
Like many of the full-priced games on this list, Ori And The Blind Forest boasts incredible production values, telling a sweeping story with tremendous style and animation. Yet it's a total steal as a bite-sized downloadable game.
The side-scrolling Ori has a Metroid-esque progression, as you'll unlock game elements as the adventure unfolds; however, it has its own distinctive spark, helped by your little creature's zippy movements and unique abilities.
Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number
Platforms: PlayStation 4, PC/Mac, PS3, Vita
For all the guff that Grand Theft Auto gets for its violence and brutality, it might as well be a child's game compared to Hotline Miami – and this sequel is even grimier.
Wrong Number sets you off running into rooms filled with murderous henchmen, only you're going to massacre the lot of them before they can return the favour. While added variety means Hotline Miami 2 is a little less of a consistent, singular thrill than the original, it still leaves one hell of an impact.
Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PC
The Dead Island games delivered solid, brash fun, yet there were always significant issues and caveats that kept them from greatness. Fortunately, spiritual successor Dying Light proves more polished and engaging, delivering an open-world zombie thriller that's often wildly entertaining.
Implementing parkour elements adds a fresh spark to the genre, and while no part of the game is especially brilliant, it all gels together in a way that makes you glad you hung around.