I barely dragged my carcass over the finish line of 2017, but I did play some games. Not as many as I might have done, but hey, probably still more than some (Hush I'm looking at you).
This might be a bit of a ramblefest, as I can't really get my thoughts together well enough about the year as a whole. There are too many games I didn't play, some that I haven't played enough to form a solid opinion of, others that I wanted to play and simply haven't had time, and still others that I feel I wasted my time on. Let's press on and see how it turns out.
The best, around.
In no particular order, you should go play these games. In my mind, they are the best that 2017 offered, and I finished all of them, so I'm allowed to say that. I have previously written about all of them except Night in the Woods and Fortnite, so I'm just going to be super lazy and link to my own articles. How's that for dedication and professionalism?
Night in the Woods
Heck. That was a great read!
Now let's look at the games I played some of, but not enough to form a valuable opinion about.
The nominees for "best game I didn't play enough"
First up we have Nier: Automata. It definitely grabbed me in the first few hours, especially because of its batshit opening. No spoilers though, eh? After that, however, I found it to be a tiny bit grindy, and I bought Assassin's Creed Oranges and Zelda, so Nier fell by the wayside.
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. Goddamn if it's not an awesome game. However, I haven't progressed far enough to say how good. Many shits and giggles have been had with the emergent gameplay on offer. I especially like standing above enemies and rolling bombs downhill to blow them up. That's fun.
Resident Evil 7. Man, fuck this game. I loved the early part of the game, which was basically P.T. remixed, and felt that it could do really interesting things with the series. But then I got to an underground corridor full of tough to kill meanies, died a few times, and thought y'know what, there are better things to be doing with my time. As such, I haven't seen enough of the game to pass judgement.
Behold the Kickmen. Best football game ever, but I got distracted and didn't go back. I really must as this ridiculous version of Super Mario Strikers Charged is very, very good.
Yeah! Let's keep this going!
The nominees for "best game never played"
I haven't actually been that bad this year. I have mostly played at least a bit of every game I've bought, except for these two. I have been assured that they're great, I just haven't even loaded them yet:
Subsurface Circular. Mike Bithell (Volume, Thomas Was Alone) quietly dropped this little bombshell with zero marketing or hype. Smart move Bithell, smart move. It's a narrative game with robots, so that's cool. I'm gonna get on it ASAP, promise.
What Remains of Edith Finch. This is my type of game. I just haven't played it. I am a bad person.
Moving on then, here are the games that could have, but didn't make the grade because of reasons.
The nominees for "So Nier, yet so far"
Prey. I really, really wanted to like Prey. It's basically Bioshock with Dishonored art in space. In space however, no one can hear you shrug disappointedly at unsatisfying combat and very annoying enemies. I might go back and play it on easy to see where the story goes, but then again, I might not.
Absolver. I was having fun with this quirky online fist-'em-up. Then a bug kept all my progress but wiped all my stats, and I don't have time to be losing 10 or so hours of progress because the game decides it wants to do that. Uninstalled, sorry.
Lawbreakers. You could've been a contender. You could've been somebody instead of a bum, which is what you are. Winning a separate award for biggest disappointment of the year is this great, fast-paced, innovative, horribly-marketed, dead-in-the-water shooter. I loved it, I really did, and we had a collective bucketful of laughs while playing it. Then it died. RIP Lawbreakers, you could've been the one.
Super Mario Odyssey. Very fun to play, has all of Nintendo's trademark weirdness and inventiveness, but for me let down by dodgy camera angles (usually when you need them most) and dare I say it, repetitive gameplay. Still, I got to 280 moons, so something must have been good about it.
Shadowhand. I wrote about my love for Grey Alien's previous game Regency Solitaire a while back, and I had been looking forward to the solitaire/combat funtimes of Shadowhand for a while. Unfortunately, while the game is addictive and nice to play, it is heavily dependent on RNG, which sucks. I later realised that hey, solitaire itself is RNG, so I lost my frustration and started hitting the restart hand button a lot quicker. I have logged 26 hours with the game, so I obviously like it, I just don't think I can include it as one of my best.
PUBG. My computer runs it like a potato would run it, and Fortnite is just more fun.
Assassin's Creed Origins. I have logged 25 hours with this game and I'm not slowing down. Gotta clean that map! I really like it, but it's more Assassin's Creed. Nuff said.
So that's my year in gaming. Go play them games, and go play them now. Go on, off you trot.