Game of the Year 2018

Since I can't find the old link to generate the game of the year list I'm just making it here I guess. I'll include a little blurb about each game and why I'm including it. Not every game will be a game released in 2018, but rather this list is the games I enjoyed most this year, regardless of actual release year.

First off, honorable mentions to games that I would have liked to play this year but didn't end up having the time for: Into The Breach, Celeste, Shadow of the Tomb Raider, Life is Strange 2/The Awesome Adventures of Captain Spirit, The Messenger, Soul Calibur 6, and Super Smash Brothers Ultimate.

Shout out to Red Dead Redemption 2 for being my most disappointing game this year.

List items

  • Dead Cells is simply put the most I've enjoyed playing a game this year. The controls and the combat are tight and the music is fantastic. Rogue-lites are like crack to me, especially since the release of the Switch, and Dead Cells was the one that hooked me the most.

  • So good that I bought it (and all the overpriced DLC) twice. I held out for the Switch release this year and ended up enjoying it so much that I purchased it again on PC during this recent steam sale. This single handedly reinvigorated my love for fighting games to the point that I'm looking into buying a fight stick now.

    It's not perfect (the lobby system is incredibly annoying and the online experience could be better) but when it's firing on all cylinders the game is such a job to play (and even watch thanks to the great anime accurate art style), especially for someone who grew up a fan of the series.

  • The oldest game on this list, but the game I easily spent the most time with this year. The community is toxic as all hell, but the game is a breath of fresh air when it comes to competitive shooters. When I'm playing with friends in a discord call and we're calling things out to each other using our knowledge of the maps and a plan comes together well there is no shooter that is this satisfying to play.

    1000 hours in and there's no sign of stopping any time soon. Every other video game is just what I play when I'm not playing Siege.

  • The fact that I cared about God of War in 2018 is amazing. The fact that a God of War game told an incredibly touching story and humanized Kratos is even more amazing. That alone would earn it a spot on this list, but they went the extra mile and included great Dark Souls inspired combat, a great amount of end game content to enjoy and a beautiful world to explore. Then there's the amazing technical feats this game achieved, such as how incredible this game looks on old outdated hardware, the lack of load times, the single shot camera "gimmick", and so on so forth. It's well worth playing, even if you're like me and not a huge fan of the franchise to begin with.

  • Like I said, rogue-lites are like crack to me and Flinthook was one of the ones I enjoyed most this year. I purchased it when it came to Switch this year and dumped 100 hours into it over the course of a few months. The combat is satisfying, the grappling hook mechanic is incredibly fun and the pixel art is some of my favourite in a long time.

    Oh, and the soundtrack is amazing. Like seriously, amazing. Chiptune folk metal amazing.

  • Another older game, but I (like many others) never owned a WiiU so the Switch port released this year was my first chance to play Bayonetta 2. In terms of 3rd person character action this game is unmatched. The fluidity of the combat is backed up by excellent visuals, direction, and music and it all comes together to create some of the most outstanding set pieces I've ever seen in a video game.

    This game opens with you fighting angels on top of a jet racing through the skies of a city. That's the opening. And it only gets more insane from there. Seriously play this if you havent.

  • I didn't go as crazy for this game as a lot of people did. On a technical level it's phenomenal. The city looks incredible, the swinging mechanic is great, and the game very rarely (if ever) stutters. The problem for me was that the game does pretty much nothing new or exciting. The combat is exactly what you expect it to be, the mission structure is exactly what you expect it to be, the side missions are as repetitive and borderline tedious as you expect them to be, etc. It's a very by the numbers open world action game, but what kept me in was the story. This is a near perfect adaptation of Spider-Man, and at a time when recent Spider-Man movies have been a disappointment to me (I didn't hate Homecoming as much as Dan, but it's very much not a movie directed to me) it was nice to get a Spider-Man story I could enjoy as well.

  • If you're a fan of old school JRPGs it's hard not to fall in love with Octopath Traveler. The format can be a bit weird; how totally unconnected each of the stories are is odd, but if you can get past that the rest of the game is a treat to play. The pixel art is fantastic (I love pixel art if you can't tell), the orchestral soundtrack is beautiful, and way everything is presented almost as a staged play happening before your eyes is great.

  • A fantastic end to a fantastic trilogy. I'm not usually big on tactical RPGs like this, but the Norse setting and art style drew me in to the series and I'm glad it stuck with me. A great story told across three games with a satisfying combat system that evolves throughout the series. Definitely worth looking in to, even if you're not usually huge on this style of game.

  • Specifically the remastered version.

    The souls series is one of my favourite series of all time, and Dark Souls Remastered is a fantastic way to play this flawed masterpiece in 2018. Maybe avoid the Switch version if you can though.