Top 5 Games Of 2018.
2018 has been a solid year for gaming for most developers, firing out a consistent stream of quality games left right and centre, it’s been hard to keep up with all the solid releases.
Lucky enough this year I have been able to keep up with a lot of the titles this year, however, I have missed all of the Sony exclusives unfortunately, but they have been hitting it out of the park with exclusives judging by other reviewers opinions, with games such as Spiderman and God of War landing very high on peoples personal lists of their favourite games of this year.
There are still many games that been highly recommended that I still haven’t had the chance too play this year myself, such as Red Dead Redemption 2, Celeste, Warriors Orochi 4, Two Point Hospital, Subnautica and Far Cry 5. Any of which could have easily filled a space, but as I haven’t played them yet they will unfortunately have too wait. With that being said, here are my honourable mentions.
HONOURABLE MENTION – GRAVEYARD KEEPER Morbid yet satisfying
A fantastic cemetery management game, which far surpasses the “Stardew Valley” likeness a lot of people give it, with a deep crafting system and an interesting story interwoven into the different characters you interact with around the town and graveyard. With multiple skill trees too help keep you invested in improving your Graveyard, from learning how to dissect the corpses efficiently too increase their quality, learning how too use marble too make fancier gravestones, and upgrading your church where you hold your ceremonies too increase your income. The game is packed deep with features too keep you playing for just “one more night”
HONOURABLE MENTION – BLACK OPS 4 A huge improvement from previous itterations
I know I’m likely going to get a lot of stick for this, but the most recent Call of Duty game was a good step in the right direction for the franchise. The removal of the campaign was a bold step for them, as they added a Battle Royale mode and focused more on the multiplayer and zombie elements which are frequent additions too the titles. The multiplayer is about what you can expect from call of duty, with a few changes, such as bigger health bars and having to manually heal yourself, make it a lot more tactical, however there are still issues with balancing and spawns, but hey, the sky is still blue, and pigs still don’t fly. The Zombies mode was very enjoyable, as someone who isn’t a massive fan of zombies in the past, this was the first game I actually had a interest, with nicely designed maps and interesting dialogue between characters, however it does get repetitive quickly. The Battle Royale mode, however unnecessary in the industry that’s currently saturated with the Game Mode, manages to stand out, with the Call of Duty gameplay suiting the genre, keeping it much faster pace than some of the other Battle Royale games on the market. If Activision could learn to control their greed by adding unnecessary microtransactions and the very popular “battle pass” style to unlock unwanted rubbish, then it could be Call of Duty’s real chance too impress again.
NUMBER 5 – GWENT Solid Trading Card Game with a interesting best of three battle system
This game remained in early access for a while, however it came into full release late this year and it’s fantastic. I haven’t enjoyed a Trading Card Game this much since Hearthstone, as I’m not usually a fan of the genre, however, CD Projekt Red make GWENT a very enjoyable experience for veterans and beginners alike, whilst keeping the aesthetic that made The Witcher games popular too begin with.
The “Best of 3” style that GWENT provides, makes for a really interesting style of gameplay, as trying too think when too let your opponent win or too push yourself to a card disadvantage really makes the game tense and close, and also means even if you aren’t the strongest at deck building games, you can still win due to clever strategies, like making your opponent waste cards or baiting them into using strong units early. The changes they made too leaders and other units means that you always must be on your toes for different ways for opponents too attack.
The art style and board are beautiful, with the illustrations on the cards really standing out, having both “Standard” and “Special”, with the special cards being a treat, as the illustrations move and look truly gorgeous. (Shout out too the Roach special card, as that never ceases to amuse me)
If you are looking for a new Card Game experience, GWENT delivers in spades with quality and content.
NUMBER 4 – DEAD CELLS Fast, Frantic, Fun.
Dead Cells is a fantastic 2D platformer. The fast pace and beautiful pixel art style make this a joy too play. Spawning as a weird snot creature, you take control of a corpse and must make your way through a series of levels, which can lead too multiple different paths through the game. The Rouge-Lite elements mean that each time you play the game is different, keeping you on your toes for enemies you may not have encountered previously, and paths that may be opened through permanent upgrades you can acquire throughout playing.
The risk/reward style of gameplay really suits this game, as if you’re having a good run and are carrying multiple Cells or new blueprints that you really want to save, you still have to make it to the end of the level too bank them, meaning you end up in a trance state, feeling tense and on edge fighting every enemy you face.
The combat as well is fluid and responsive, with multiple different styles of ways to play the games each run, with a great variation of melee, ranged and magical spells too choose from. The game also has traps, grenades and other useful tools, all on a low cooldown too, so you don’t ever feel like you need too save them for a tough fight, as by time you have used them on a mob of enemies, by time you reach your next encounter it will likely be ready for use again, as nothing is more satisfying then dodging past a particularly tough enemy and shoving a fire bomb up their backend, walking off letting the damage over time tick by as they melt, only thing missing is the sunglasses and guitar riff.
The difficulty of the game is very well implemented too, meaning that the curve increases quite nicely beside your skill level, as once you have learnt a certain monsters attacks, you get much more adept at dealing with them, even when they’re grouped with their buddies.
Dead Cells is worth a play if you like difficult but rewarding gameplay with a touch of random elements to keep things interesting.
NUMBER 3 – SPYRO, THE RE-IGNITED TRILOGY Spyro's Back!
This was truly a treat to play. I knew what I was getting into with this game, as I was a fan of the originals on the Playstation One, however I was blown away by the effort they put into this remastering of the Trilogy. The level design for these games has aged well, with the updated graphics the scenery for each level was truly beautiful, I felt my excitement grow each level, looking forward to seeing the next area and reminiscing, it really took me back to my childhood playing these games through again. With the option too change the soundtrack too the original was a really nice touch too.
The gameplay is solid as you would expect from Spyro, with most of the platforming feeling clean and smooth, even the flying controls felt solid too me, even if a lot of people didn’t like those levels, I found them too be a blast.
It was always fun finding the secrets and hidden treasure these games would hold and getting a pang of excitement every time I would find a new hidden statue or egg, seeing what the dragons designs would be like visually and with the solid voice acting that was put in to the game.
This game is brilliant for people of all ages, whether you have played the originals or not I would recommend these games, as they are very accessible, clearly seeing the time and effort Toys for Bob put into putting Spyro back onto the map with this iteration, it feels like a game that was actually made with love.
NUMBER 2 – ATTACK ON TITAN 2 Hi There.
I may have not got to play Spiderman this year, but I played the next best thing, possibly the better game.
Now me and Attack on Titan don’t actually go that far back, I tried watching the anime when it was first released a couple times, but it didn’t really hook me, not until the first Attack on Titan game, when the appeal suddenly clicked for me. So, when I heard there was going to be a second iteration of the game for this franchise I was pumped for it’s release, and I was not disappointed. Attack on Titan 2 is a blast!
With a new story mode implemented, where you can play as your own custom protagonist alongside the main cast as they go through the story against the titular titans, it makes you feel like you are part of the universe and imbedded in the action. Being able to increase relations with other Scouts, and even unlock different skills for the effort, makes it worth doing.
If you don’t like playing as your own character, then there is a good size roster, with most named characters being playable, with different skills and abilities.
Now the combat is where the game really shines, throwing yourself around with a jetbelt and grappling hooks is a crazy amount of fun, and controls fluidly, hooking onto the titans and swinging into the air, turning and diving onto their weak spots makes you feel like an adrenalin fuelled physics wizard.
The titans themselves are also designed beautifully, looking straight into the uncanny valley with their creepy, almost human design, with a good mix of special titans to keep the action fresh, as you need to change your strategies to deal with some of the different titans.
Attack on Titan just feels beautifully cathartic to play, the balance between involving gameplay and interactive, yet simplistic, travel makes it an absolute treat to play.
NUMBER 1 – MONSTER HUNTER WORLD Big Bad Bosses, Big Barrel of Brilliance.
Whilst I was compiling this list, I thought long and hard what my best game of the year should be, and it was tough, as there were so many hits this year, but no matter what came out, Monster Hunter World was the game that kept bringing me back all year.
Capcom went all out in making a Monster Hunter that’s much more accessible, and they certainly achieve that with world, making the gameplay much smoother and simpler, and adding areas to practice with weapons beforehand, and the weapons all play so well, with such a wide variety too pick between, including bowguns for the players that prefer too stay out the way, hammers and great swords for people that like slow, harder hits, daggers and Insect glaives for people that want too pin themselves too enemies and fly around like lunatics, and a hunting horn for people that prefer a supporting role, there is a weapon for everyone.
The monster design is fantastic, with the new monsters all looking unique and interesting, learning about the monsters always feels rewarding, learning about their weakness and places you can smash/chop off. The game also includes some old fan favourite monsters from previous titles, and at the time of writing, cross over monsters from other games, such as the behemoth from Final Fantasy!
The world of Monster Hunter has been made so interesting and oddly satisfying, with the small touches in the game really adding too the experience, like the cutscenes after you buy food always being fun to watch. Being able to catch wildlife whilst on expeditions and release them in your home too add a personal touch and making you interested in actually finding them, taking a break from hunting too search for plants, or even just too fish, there’s always something you can do and it’s usually helpful towards a goal that you may not even realise you have.
The developers have also taken time too release timed events weekly too, meaning that each week there can be interesting new quests to take, leading to some cool rewards, such as new cosmetics for your characters, or silly hats too show off.
Monster Hunter World Is my game of the year, mainly for the pure satisfaction I always felt after surviving a really tough fight and managing to take down a monster the size of a building with clever tactics, teamwork and ingenuity, and not much else manages to feel better then that. It’s definitely not a game for everyone, but for people that want a slower paced game that leads to climatic and dramatic fights, Monster Hunter World really hits the sweet spot.
Posted by Blaizicus
on 30 December 18 at 21:32
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