2018 was a stellar year for the world of gaming. Whether it be a throwback, a reinvention of an existing franchise or something new entirely, there was something for everyone. So with 2019 just round the corner (and already looking promising) I thought I’d give my list fo the of the best games of 2018.
Disclaimer: This list is entirely opinion based so if you don’t agree withsome of the ordering that’s fine. Also I currently only own a PS4 so if you’re wondering why there’s a lack of Switch & Xbox One exclusives, that’s why. Also there will be spoilers for various games. You have been warned.
InkSplosion is a fun and addictive arcade shooter style game which will have you firing at enemies and dodging their fire whilst trying to take them out as quickly as possible. Each enemy you take out explodes into paint making the screen very colourful and visually appealing to look at.
This is one of those games where if you’re in need of killing a little bit of time with something simple then go right ahead and play this. Also for any trophy hunters the game is a fairly easy platinum to add to your trophy count. I wish there was more i could say but to be honest it’s only a small game compared to others on this list plus I played exactly 10 games from this year so it’s kind of only at number 10 by default.
9. Dynasty Warriors 9
Dynasty Warriors made a return this year with it’s 9th installment in the franchise (me putting this 9th is a coincidence not intended). Whilst the franchise as a whole isn’t well received by most gamers, I thoroughly enjoy the hack-and-slash adventure across China.
Granted this game does diverge slightly from past games by having a more open world aspect to it which previous titles did not. Regardless of that when it comes to the combat it’s still the same Dynasty Warriors combat i know and love. I mean it feels so good being able to slash through hundreds of enemies at once.
The story is sort of a retelling of the previous games, featuring classic Dynasty Warriors alumni aswell as some new faces. Granted playing this game constantly without something inbetween to cleanse your gaming palette does get tiring but regardless it’s still fun.
8. Dragon Ball FighterZ
Arc System Works helped kick off this year in gaming with the chaotic yet fun fighting game Dragon Ball FighterZ. This 3-vs-3 action-packed fighting game features all sorts of characters from the popular anime including the likes of Goku, Cell, Vegeta, Beerus and even Yamcha.
There’s tons of references in this game. Whether it be through dialogue, move names or even the dramatic finishes you can experience by beating character A as character B on a specific stage. The fighting mechanics work so well and are simple to understand even for fighting game newcomers.
The story within the game does tend to drag from time-to-time and is pretty long even by fighting game standards but outside of that it’s still a very enjoyable game. If you want a fighting game that is fast-paced and hype as hell to watch, this is the game for you.
7. LEGO DC Super-Villains
They might be simple games to play and complete but honestly who doesn’t love to play LEGO games. Given my love for the villains within the DC Comics Universe this was a must get the moment it was announced.
Much like the LEGO Batman games before it, LEGO DC Super-Villains features a unique story with inspiration from existing comic book storylines and featuring characters from the well known to the down right bizzare.
Also to add on to the story, your own custom character is involved within it. Granted your character is mute but seeing your own OC Super-Villain stand alongside the likes of The Joker & Lex Luthor is pretty amazing.
6. Soul Calibur VI
Yet another game on this list that the placement is a coincidence and not intended. Anyway, the tale of souls and swords enternally retold returns after a 5-6 year hiatus.
In what is a franchise saving entry, Soul Calibur VI is kind of a soft reboot to the franchise by retelling the events of the first Soul Calibur with a couple changes. This involves the new characters Groh & Azwel and even a brief apperance of the guest character Geralt from The Witcher franchise.
The combat is fluid and the speed fits the pace of the earlier games. I believe it is safe to say that the Soul Calibur franchise isn’t going to be coming to an end anytime soon.
5. Spyro Reignited Trilogy
The nostalgia feels are in full effect with this next entry. Yes I know this is technically 3 games in 1 but they were packaged together so i feel it wouldn’t be fair to rank them all seperate.
Toys For Bob helped to recapture the greatness of the original 3 Spyro games with this remaster, aswell as providing a major visual overhaul. Hearing Tom Kenny voice Spyro again is a joy and having the choice of using the Reignited soundtrack or the Original soundtrack is a nice touch.
Everything that was great about the first 3 Spyro games is still there and improvements have been made where needed without too many major changes. This is a great return to the 90’s for people who played the originals and also for the people who’ve yet to experience them.
4. Assassin’s Creed Odyssey
As an Assassin’s Creed fan, I was slightly worried when I heard Ubisoft wasn’t going to take a year off with releasing the next game like they did with Origins. This lead me to more than pleased with the game that we received.
Odyssey carries on with the franchise makeover that started in Origins last year and goes even further with it. This game always has something for you to do with the amount of side activities, collectibles and even just sheer size of Greece itself.
Granted of all the games on this list this is the only one I’ve yet to finish the story of but regardless I’m still enjoying the ride. Much like Origins, whilst the modern story’s feels a little bland it doesn’t take away too much from the overall experience. I can’t wait to see where the Animus takes us next.
3. A Way Out
In my personal opinion, A Way Out might just be the most overlooked and underrated game of 2018, or atleast one of them. In today’s age of online shooters and huge open world games, It’s nice to have a linear, story and character-driven game like this.
This game’s selling point is that it is entirely a 2-player game from start to end, spending most of it’s time in a split-screen format regardless of if you’re in the same house as each other or playing online. The story is intriguing and well-paced and has a good blend of character moments between Leo & Vincent combined with action without overdoing it.
Genre-wise this game has something for everyone, from puzzle solving to third-person shooting to even a somewhat side-scrolling section of all things. The end of the story really drives the narrative home to a great, well deserved ending. Honestly, if you haven’t gave this game a chance, grab a friend and please do. You’ll be pleasantly surprised.
2. Marvel’s Spider-Man
Marvel’s web-slinger has had a long history in the video game industry. Insomniac’s take on an older Peter Parker who’s been Spider-Man for a few years is one of the best, if not the best take on the character in video games.
The web-slinging mechanics are a joy and feel so fluid as you swing from building to building in New York. It’s also a nice change to have a villain such as Mr. Negative take center stage as opposed to say Green Goblin or Venom, both of which are absent this time around.
The combat is very familiar to that of Rocksteady’s Batman games but with a bigger emphasis on aerial combat and much more floaty movement. The story is intriguing and compelling by telling a more personal tale, whilst also showing the struggle of Peter trying to keep his personal life and his superhero life seperate.
It was a shame to lose both Stan Lee & Steve Ditko this year, the creators of Spider-Man, but both would be proud of the respect and recognition given to their creation. As Stan would say himself, “Excelsior!”.
1. God of War
Santa Monica Studios took quite the gamble with this game, and my god did it pay off and then some. To mostly reinvent a franchise’s formula and keep some of the existing formula and put it together into this masterpiece is quite the achievement.
God of War takes Kratos to the land up North by moving the game into the Norse mythology and it’s 9 realms (or atleast the 6 available in-game). Along with his son Atreus, he sets out on a dangerous journey to reach the highest point in all the realms to spread his late wife, Faye’s ashes.
This journey takes them from Midgard, the central hub of the game and the 9 realms, to Alfheim where the waging war between the light and dark elves takes place, to even the soul filled depths of Helheim and much more. The people of Norse mytholgy you come across are also just as intriguing as Kratos and Atreus with their story of acceptance playing through the narrative, Kratos accepting his past-self and Atreus wanting acceptance from his father.
The boss fights for the most part are engaging with the main ones against Baldur each being a cinematic spectacle. Even the post-game fights against the corrupt Valkyries provide a good challenge and require great knowledge of the game’s combat mechanics, especially against the Valkyrie Queen, Sigrun (It took me 3 hours to beat her).
The game’s ending really does leave questions as to where the story will go in the next game. Only two things are for certain. First, we aren’t done with the Norse Gods just yet and second, Ragnarok is coming.