I joined TiX earlier in 2017, so that makes this my first ever Game Of the Year post as a (part-time) bona-fide games reviewer. I always thought this decision would be awful, but in this case my GOTY stands head and shoulders above its competitors this year. However, it’s only fair to point out that I haven’t played everything thats been released, so I can only base it on what i have actually experienced. I don’t have a Switch, although it’s days away from arriving, so they’ll be no Mario or Zelda. And I have a few big-hitters lined up in Hellblade, Assassins creed Origins and Shadow of War, which I’ve saved for the barren New year period.
So, lets start with my Number one, Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus. This game had me hooked with not only it’s balls-to-the-wall action, but the story and character development as well. I reviewed it for TiX and gave it a whopping 9.5/10. Once the first few (not great) levels are out of the way, and you reach Nazi-controlled America, the game just blasts it’s way from one awesome set piece to the next, whether you’re on a rocket train to Area 51, or blasting off to Venus to meet the Fuhrer himself. The new characters that are introduced are written so well that you will be caring about them as the game progresses. And its incredibly funny to boot, with two of the best cut-scenes you’ll find in a video game. Considering there has been some talk of single player games being canned in preference of developing large multiplayer experiences, its fitting that Wolfenstein should come along and blast that theory to smithereens!
Second up is another single player game, Horizon Zero Dawn. I need to mention that I am yet to complete the main quest on this, having only started playing in November, but clearly this deserves to be high up on anyone’s best of 2017. Let’s start by mentioning just how amazing this looks on a standard PS4. It must look incredible on a PS4 Pro on a 4K/HDR TV. But the graphics don’t take anything away from the gameplay mechanics, which never feel even when you are taking down the millionth robot.
Thirdly, and deservingly so is Destiny 2. Yes, its had its haters, and Bungie have made a few mistakes in the endgame, which are now hopefully being addressed and fixed, but no other game this year caused myself and nearly all the other members of the TiX team to immerse ourselves in a game as much as this one. Destiny 2 was a seven nights a week pastime for around six weeks, whether it be Crucible, Nightfall or Heroic Events. It took over our lives, and I for one was struggling for time to play the review games that came afterwards. My mind was fully immersed in the world that Bungie had created and I couldn’t think about anything else. At its core, Destiny 2 is the best FPS game there is with perfect gunplay mechanics.
Next up is Cuphead. A throwback to the incredibly difficult games of old. And no, I still havent been good enough to finish all the levels. But I will get there, even if it takes me years! Every so often I will get back into this gorgeously hand-created world and spend an hour perfecting a level in order to get that little bit further forward. It is the best looking (and sounding) game of the year.
And finally, rounding out the top 5 is my suprise of the year, The Sexy Brutale. I reviewed this back in May and fell in love with the gorgeous visuals and simple gameplay that surrounded me in my quest to stop the multiple murders from taking place. I loved it so much that I will be double-dipping and purchasing it on the Switch for my second playthrough. I described it as Groundhog Day meets Cluedo, a comparison which led to the developer quoting me in a Tweet, a moment which made me very proud!
An honourable mention should go to Fortnite, both in it’s Save the World mode, and the PUBG inspired Battle Royale addition, which got plenty of my attention. However, my most played games this year were 2016 releases that continue to be supported by their creators, so a huge shout to Hitman, Rocket League, GTA5 and Rainbow 6 Siege!