1. Borderlands 2
It says a lot that even though the game has almost been out for three full months, that I still really want to play more Borderlands 2. My itch was definitely scratched with the first game, but 2 differentiates itself enough and keeps ramping the action up no matter what play through you're on.
2. The Walking Dead
Less a game as it is a sort of transcendental cross-media project; The Walking Dead does something that few other games have been very successful at. Telling a linear story that still brings about the feeling of complete agency over the way the story plays out is an incredible accomplishment and it potentially one of the best stories I've gone through in a long time. I've read every issue of the comic and this first season beats it.
This has been the year of "human condition" games and journey encapsulates what life essentially is on such a basic, yet profound, level.
4. Hotline Miami
5. FTL: Faster Than Light
This one completely came out of nowhere for me. Had no idea that it was even a game until it's release, but has quickly become one of my go-to's of late.
6. Trine 2
The first Trine never quite hooked me, but this one definitely grabbed me by the hand and never let me go. Felt like I was navigating through a charming fairy-tale and though it had rough points in gameplay, is still incredibly well paced and beautiful overall.
7. Persona 4 Arena
I don't feel like I should put the vita release of P4 down, but I spent enough time reading and playing through this one to at least acknowledge it. Persona trappings aside, it's visual style, sound design and music are all top notch and is hard to deny as probably the best fighting game released this year.
8. Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP
Sort of a surreal gaming experience with one of the more powerful, yet irreverent, game stories I've played. Charming experience.
9. Spec Ops: The Line
OH GOD MAKE IT STOP!!!!
A return to those adventure games I loved as a kid.