Best of 2013

This has been another crazy year for video games. Even with fresh hardware on the market, and public relations and gaming journalists calling it the "next generation", I don't feel as if we have stepped into brand new territory yet. Compared to previous years, 2013 was quite lackluster overall, but the few games that shone through the fog were brilliant. Games are what make for innovation, hardware just enables the games to do more. My friends and I tease over this coming generation being the end of video games, but in truth, we are just waiting for a new beginning.

List items

  • A masterpiece by it's own right, Rockstar Games made a culmination of all the great aspects from it's extensive library of brilliant games, and realized the latest entry in an already astounding franchise. The ability to maintain credibility in the cast and world, along with adding in the craziness and insanity is where this game shines. A believable, yet eccentric cast of characters with free roam over a vast, expansive, dazzling and breathing world. After putting many hours into this game and the past GTA games, I find it absolutely incredible how far we've come. Sony and Microsoft don't get to decide when the next gen starts, Rockstar does.

  • I've never been a fan of the Uncharted series, but when a bunch of Xbox 360 owners started migrating in droves to the PS3 over this game, it was time to step into the world of Naughty Dog. I was not left disappointed. The Last of Us is the apex of interactive cinematography, with gameplay that was just as intense as the characters and environment. Not many games with the zombie theme do a great job of showing the real world brutality and lack of humanity of a real zombie apocalypse. The Last of Us fixes this by amplifying your feelings to eleven, and showing the true brutality of the dystopia. And at the end of the day, you realize there are no survivors. They are all monsters.

  • Yes, I know. This came out in December 2012. However, I only picked it up this year, along with my PS Vita. Persona 4 being one of my top games of all times, I played this game for a total of 200 hours, having many sleepless nights grinding in dungeons, and reacquainting myself with memorable characters. The additions and gameplay changes make it the best version of the game, along with worth picking up a Vita for if you are a fan. If you love JRPGs, then I don't need to tell you anything. If you think you hate them like I do, you are making a mistake by not at least playing the PS2 version. Let me reiterate: Persona 4 is one of the best games ever.

  • The GRID racing series is very underrated because it's in a weird middle zone between simulation and arcade, and us racing genre fans are hard to please. GRID 2 hits the sweet spot in between with great racing mechanics, large car and track selection, and excellent graphics. If you are an arcade racer, it's a great challenge and a rewarding game. If you are sim racer, it's a great break to play with friends while not sacrificing your knowledge of cars. Codemasters has one again made a must-play racing experience.

  • This is an entry on my Best of 2013 list called The Stanley Parable. The Stanley Parable is number five on my list, and contains text to the side of it. In this text, I will explain why The Stanley Parable deserves a spot on my list for the top video games of the year 2013. In the year 2013, there were many games released. Only one of them was named The Stanley Parable. There is no guns in the game, neither is there DLC, or quick-time events, or tutorial levels, or a soundtrack from Skrillex. The only thing in this game ...is Stanley.

  • Ubisoft, you finally got DLC right. While the game says Far Cry 3 in the title, the only similarity between this 80s retrospective of movies, games and other media, and the lackluster adventures of Jason Brody, is that you shoot guns. With a crazy setting, hilarious dialog with Michael Biehn, the SEGA Mega Drive style cutscenes, and a great soundtrack, this game is the best piece of downloadable content ever. Other game developers, take notice. This is what everyone's been looking for in a video game: crazy bullshit.

  • Tearaway was not on my radar for the longest time, despite my Vita collecting dust after finishing Persona. So expect my pleasant surprise when I booted this game on my neglected handheld. This 3D platformer's cute construction paper style, light-hearted story, and brilliant soundtrack is just a delight. It uses the Vita's full hardware capability to really put the player into the game, allowing you to use the two cameras, and both the front and rear touch panel to interact with the world, or create your own objects in the game. I never thought my Vita would get two spots on this list.

  • I really want to love you, Need For Speed: Rivals. I really do. You have the perfect combination of cops vs. racers, a large unique world, and driving handling all from Hot Pursuit 2010, along with the open-world aspect and car selection of Most Wanted 2012. The graphics look amazing, and the soundtrack is much improved. You are essentially the perfect Need For Speed game. But I can't play you, Need For Speed: Rivals. Your terrible PC port's frame-rate/physics lock, along side my five-year old, archaic PC, makes you unplayable at times. Maybe soon, we can be great friends again.

  • Amid the tumultuous launch, the absolutely unplayable frame rate I've been getting with my computer, I feel like Battlefield 4 is still the game I've played for the past two years, with some excellent refinements. A game where amazing moments of teamwork and insanity take place with my friends and I, that we look back as if they actually happened. I probably shouldn't have put this game on this list. I haven't even bought the Premium expansion yet, because of my worries with the future of this game. But I feel like I may regret it later on if I don't. Because this could very well be the game I play all the time in 2014.

  • Remember Me is a perfect example of a game that excels at art direction, style, story and characters, but makes those high points moot when you put your hands on the controller. What could have been an excellent game is ruined by mediocre combat which is riddled with AI issues and just pure jankiness. The game's remixing feature is a new concept, and I thought was an amazing addition to the game. To me, this game had tons of potential, and if it had more time would have been on a higher spot on my list for this year. Which is hard to believe, since this is a Capcom game.