It must be hard for a developer nowadays, either established or aspiring.
Gone are the days of wild experimentation being bankrolled. Now publishers are more wary about dishing out that big money to take a gamble on something.
Thankfully, as these examples show, those that did take the plunge have had that investment returned. Maybe not monetarily at first, but the praise and interest has propelled these wildcards into critical acclaim.
Games about long haul driving, or even rural community farming, don't sound great on paper. The mention of Rabbids is enough to kill a conversation. The words "walking simulator" are enough cause mild hysteria in some.
We're too stubborn, too set in our way to embrace change. It's too easy to fall into the embrace of the familiar, so that when something comes along that changes our normal we treat it with caution and trepidation.
So think of me as the mediator, the tour guide in this proverbial ride towards the outwardly weird but actually incredible games. Consider me the nerdier version of Willy Wonka as we look at ten examples of games that shouldn't work, yet are actually incredible.
Don't expect any musical numbers or singing though.
10. Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle
It would be a fair assessment to say that Ubisoft's Rabbids are an absolute blight on the gaming world. About as novel as Minions, these bunny-things should have disappeared as quickly as they came.
That being said, Nintendo took a gamble with Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle, and it paid off.
Playing like a more kid-friendly, less-alien invasion-y version of XCOM, Nintendo and Ubisoft have done with the Rabbids what should have happened originally: made them supporting characters.
As the stars of the show, they grate. Yet putting them second fiddle to Mario and pals makes them... well I want to say "more endearing" and be polite about it.
As a game, it plays like most other grid-and-turn based tactical adventures. As an entry in the vast canon of Nintendo's favourite plumber, it also holds its own as a franchise "spin off".
For fans of XCOM, it's a lighthearted and less difficult take on the genre. For newcomers, it's a welcome introduction to a new style of game.
For Rabbids fans, as there must be some, presumably they're just happy to see the little sh*ts get more airtime.