Favorite Games of 2013
It’s that time of year again. I have to reflect on what games I played this year and which ones are my favorite. It’s practically law that I do this, so without further ado, in no particular order, my favorite games of 2013.
Sadly, there shall be no HD remakes on the list so no Kingdom Hearts or WindWaker.
Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag
I hated ACIII. But ACIV? It’s basically Assassin’s Creed combined with Wind Waker, which is something I can really get behind. Also there’s no Connor, and you don’t feel as bound to the nonsense of the overarching plot-line as you may have in previous games. And when playing on PS4 that water is particularly gorgeous.
Fire Emblem: Awakening
I hadn’t been interested in Fire Emblem in a long time when Awakening came out. But I watched a Quick Look on GiantBomb and was really impressed with what I saw. So I bought the game - the first digitally downloaded commercial game for my 3DS - and was instantly into what I played. There’s so much depth to the game, and it’s got a colorful cast of characters that really make you ache when they die.
The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds
I… I think I have a new favorite Zelda game. Which, by proxy means I have a new favorite game of all time? This is subject to change, but basically my time with the sequel to a Link to the Past has been full of nostalgia. This, in addition with showing a potential avenue for the franchise’s future - in a much more positive way than that of Skyward Sword - makes this a must play title.
I have been living with depression (that is to say with the official diagnosis) for about a decade now. When I was in middle and high school I kept it hidden from everyone, and only came clean about it when I was a freshman in college (about four years ago). For years I’ve been wondering about how to turn my issues into a game, a deeply personal game that could show how I see the world, that wouldn’t be too heavy handed, or too steeped in metaphor for most players. Depression Quest, a game made with Twine, does just this. It puts you in the shoes of somebody slowly coming to grips with the fact that they have depression, and your choices really reflect those that myself, and other people I know who’ve gone through things similar to me, feel and do in the situations presented.
I fucking love Super Crate Box. And Ridiculous Fishing is another game I fucking love. I’m sure Nuclear Throne would also be on this list if I wasn’t so hell-bent on waiting for the PS4 version to come out before I play it. But anyways, back to Ridiculous Fishing. This game is simple, unadulterated fun coupled with catchy music and great art. With this game, Vlambeer have cemented themselves as world class game developers.
2013’s ~2012~ Game of the Year
I’ve had plenty of time to reflect upon the games I played last year, and new games I finally got to play from 2012 that I just never had an opportunity to ACTUALLY play that year. And well, it was clear which game has remained my favorite.
Rock Band Blitz
I’m still in mourning on the fact that the band has gone on hiatus, but Rock Band Blitz is a great game, and a fitting way to end the franchise for the time being. I’ve put way too many hours into this game, with it’s addictive score chasing mechanics. If that wasn’t proof enough, my game - Hyper Groove - is basically tweaking the formula presented by Rock Band Blitz. I fucking love this game.
2013 Games I Need to Give More Time / a 2nd Chance:
The Last of Us
I was extremely busy when I bought this game and just didn’t have the time to devote to it. I need to acquire another copy and give this gritty game another shot. It feels like one of the few big blockbusters of the year that has a story not necessarily at odds with the gameplay (aka no ludonarrative dissonance as seen in Bioshock Infinite).
Ni No Kuni
A JRPG. With monster training. With art by Studio Ghibli and music from Ghibli collaborator Joe Hisaishi. So why couldn’t I get more into this game? I think it was a matter of timing. I think I’m ready to go back to the world of Ni No Kuni and be whisked away by it’s whimsical quest of a young boy trying to bring his mother back to life.
This game is fucking awesome. Sadly, I have no one to play it with, which kinda detracts from the fun. Holidays are upon us though, so there may be hope yet!
I could go on with some list of games I need to play from this year but… I think that list would go on for quite a while, with games like Gone Home, The Stanley Parable, Bioshock Infinite, Super Mario 3D World, Rayman Legends, etc. on the list.
I could also list some games from next year I’m excited for, but just know there’s a lot of them including Transistor, Below, Titanfall, inFamous Second Son, Destiny, and a lot more.