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GOTY 2013


List items

  • This game made my appreciate tactics games, with its incredibly addictive gameplay. The story is kind of your standard save the world story, but the characters are really what make it amazing. The game has this really great relationship mechanic between your characters, and encourages building those relationships through gameplay and by making it the way to unlock new characters (children of characters in a love relationship). It ends up being this great way to get you attached to the characters, and makes you just want to see more. Maybe the only 3DS game I've ever bought DLC for, just because I wanted to see more of that world.

  • Best Zelda in years. The new rental system makes exploring the world very fun, as you can explore it on your own terms. The dungeon design is really fun, and it has enough references to the original game to poke at your nostalgia, without feeling like its banking entirely on it.

  • One of the best puzzle games I've ever played. Manages to constantly play with and betray your expectations throughout the entire game, and a large part of the game is adjusting your view of what is possible in a game in order to solve puzzles. No story, all gameplay, but that gameplay is really incredible.

  • Kind of the opposite of Anti Chamber. The 'gameplay' of this game is very simple, and very straight forward (you just move around and open doors), but the narration and the story, which is sometimes serious, sometimes deconstructive, and sometimes just having fun, really make this game a great time. Probably the funniest game I played this whole year, absolutely something that needs checking out.

  • I was kind of done with Assasin's Creed after 3, I really hated all the Desmond stuff in that game, and while I liked Connor the gameplay just wasn't there. However, somehow this game roped me back in, and I'm better for it. It returns to a more AC2 style of gameplay, is very relaxed about the combat, and overall the story is more jokey and fun than it is serious. The Templar/Assassins stuff barely even makes it in the game, and it's probably better for it.

  • The 3D Land team knows Mario, they know how to make Mario just fun, so their Wii U Mario game ended up being one of the most fun Mario games I've played in a while. I also managed to play the game with a friend, which really changed the dynamics of the game. Its more of the same from those guys, but that same is just really really fun.

  • Monaco is chaos, absolute chaos as you scramble trying to steal everything you can from everyone. While your friends mess it all by busting through walls, getting greedy and standing in front of enemies, and in general just being the worst thieves ever. But that chaos is just really fun.

  • Probably the weirdest thing on my list, but this game is probably the one game this year that challenged my conception of what games could be. Starting off as an innocuous 'click to get more' game, and somehow ending up as an RPG of sorts with pretty specific strategies and mechanics. All of that from a little ASCII web game all done in Javascript. I'm excited to see more people rip this game off.

  • Short, Humorous, and to the point. Gunpoint is just a quick fun little game that has some interesting mechanics, without lingering on them too long. The hacking stuff ends up being just complicated enough to make you think, without being frustrated. It's a good game to just spend a night playing and beating.

  • I'm not a big shooter guy, so this game didn't really strike me on that level, but the story is really interesting. Obviously the ending is very interesting, going in directions games don't usually go, but in general the characters are well developed, and you get invested in the story of Columbia.