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Games I Liked That Came Out In The Year 2013

It's been a weird couple of hours. I just woke up from a dream where I was a punk skateboarder and I was dating Mila from Dead or Alive 5, and now I'm sitting in front of this laptop, writing a Game of the Year thing. I don't even believe in game of the year all that much; probably because I barely ever finish enough games in a year to create a worthwhile top ten list. That, and I just like everything equally in their own ways. I'm not some sort of awful dictator who creates some sort of demonic hierarchy in a medium that I adore so dearly.

...oh, who am I kidding. Here's some games I liked this year, or whatever. It's awfully tough to make one of these lists when you've only really played like, six games that came out this year. Let's see what happens, though!

List items

  • What a shocker.

    I was sour on the idea of a DOA5 rerelease at first, but the "new characters", "new stages", "added features" and the fine tuning of the fighting mechanics made this game into a really solid package.

    Really, though. How could I not pick this game? It's the best Dead or Alive game to date, in terms of the solidity of game mechanics and overall feature-set. It's gorgeous, accessible, and it's just really, really fun. Out of any game on this list, this is already something that I'm constantly coming back to every day.

    I'm a fighter, motherfucker.

  • Oh, Devil May Cry. You carry so much childish controversy on your back, yet as someone who has never played a DMC game prior to this one, I can't really say for sure if all of the people that hate you are rightful in their burning desire to see you ripped to shreds.

    I don't care about that, though. I was pleasantly surprised by DmC in just about every way; from it's excellent style and perfect soundtrack to its oddly compelling story, unbelievable boss battles and wildly enjoyable combat. DmC is a game that I constantly think back to and reminisce about how much of a blast it was to play through. It's something that can be easily described as memorable, and that in itself is a complement greater than just about anything else I can say.

  • While it certainly won't be winning any awards for innovation in mechanics, Gone Home is a really beautiful game. It has a delightfully personal story, told in a, for the most part, natural fashion. As someone who continues to struggle in finding out who they are, this was a game that hit a soft spot that ended with me in tears.

    That's a good thing, by the way.

  • Grand Theft Auto V has its problems. A lot of them, actually. The fragility of your character, sacrifices of fun in favor of realism, and some design choices for the online component ultimately turned me sour on the game in retrospect.

    You know what, though? GTA V is fucking great. The story, while arguably non-existent to an extent, is a blast to play through. Some of the characters are so far from being two-dimensional, that I'm convinced that they have restraining orders set. Rockstar does some really cool stuff with the the three protagonists, even if some of it is small presentation stuff in comparison to the rest of the game.

    I don't know. I just had a lot of fun playing through it.

  • While the combat got really tiresome by the end of the game, The Last of Us had a really special story that was definitely worth seeing to its very end. The relationship between Joel and Ellie is one of the most fascinating things, narratively, that I've seen in a video game in a long time.

    It's almost like GTA V, where it suffers in its mechanics but really excels in its story and presentation. I felt like if the game had no infected in it, it would have been a lot better because it was easily my least favorite part of the entire thing.

    Fuck you, Eric.

  • I was very harsh to Ninja Gaiden 3 last year, and after playing a bunch of Ninja Gaiden Sigma recently, I feel like I wasn't harsh enough.

    Razor's Edge, to an extent, redeems the faults of Ninja Gaiden 3. It's infinitely more playable and enjoyable, with positive additions that change up what I normally expect from the series at this point. The added Ayane chapters are really fun, and the upgrade / unlock tree functioning through Karma scoring is really neat.

    Despite it's positives though, it's still so far from the glory that it should be at.

  • This game makes me glad that Nintendo is still around, despite the supposed ongoing trainwreck that is the Wii U. It's a really cute, relaxing and uplifting game that isn't really offensive on any level.

    In a year that has been riddled with controversy about game narrative, sexism, journalism, and whatever, this was a nice breath of fresh air.

  • There was something about a weird, niche, XSEED release on the 3DS eShop for 30$ that seemed really appealing to me. Setting aside the game's shameless sexuality for a moment, it's a pretty mindless, fun brawler with characters that are surprisingly totally likable (with the exception of Hibari) and a bunch of personality... in its own weird way.

    I don't know. I like it, okay?!

  • Why do I own this game? I don't really like Hatsune Miku or Vocaloid at all, and I'm awful at rhythm games to the point where it's absolutely no fun for me.

    It hit me by surprise, really. I played the demo, expecting to laugh at it but in the end, it got me hooked. I would spend like 45 minutes every day playing World's End Dancehall trying to get a perfect score. The full game is pretty cool too. A lot of the songs are pretty catchy and fun, but some of them are just downright awful. My goodness.

    Although, I think part of the appeal is that it's such a weird release in North America. Much like Senran Kagura, the idea of a weird, 40$ release of some rhythm game that like, 10 people will buy in NA is strangely appealing.

    I still don't like Hatsune Miku, and I really wish that we could have gotten Yakuza 5 instead, but part of me is glad that this game came to North America.

  • Muramasa is a game I've been waiting years and years to play, hoping that Vanillaware would make some sort of port to another system. Thank goodness it was brought to the Vita. It's a really beautiful game, with a pretty cool story and fun combat.

    I don't know. I played it like, twice. I just need a game for my tenth spot. I'll get back to it in 2014, hopefully?