Q1 2018 was filled with some pretty epic games so it’s time to take a look at the 10 best games of the year (so far).
We’re now a quarter of the way into 2018 and if I’d have told you that we’d have a number of GOTY contenders by the end of March before the year began, you’d have probably scoffed at the the thoughts. But here were are, burdened by a mountain of brilliant games to play before Spring had even sprung.
Here’s a quick run down of 10 of the best games we’ve been fortunate enough to play so far in 2018.
Top down adventures are ten a penny these days but none of the releases this year tell a story as powerful or as enjoyable as Crossing Souls, the debut game from Fourattic, published by Devolver. With sublime orthogonal pixel art, a majestic soundtrack and enough 80’s nostalgia to make any millennial smile it’s a genuine delight to play. In our review, we described it as “more than just a love letter to the past” and it’s certainly one of the best games we’ve played so far in 2018.
Before the release of Moss, Paul was considering selling his PlayStation VR kit. “The wow factor had gone” he said, but with Moss, that Wow factor returned in spectacular style. An adventure game bursting with charm and charisma, Moss really showed what unbridled creativity could create within the VR space. Moss is a must own game of 2018 and the flagship of a slew of titles hitting PSVR this year. For more information, take a gander at Paul’s review.
Like the best platformers, Celeste keeps things simple. You can jump, dash and climb up most surfaces but those mechanics are used in a variety of nefarious ways and combined with myriad deadly obstacles for you to cross resulting in a challenging but incredibly rewarding game. You play as a girl named Madeline who’s dedicated to climbing the Celeste mountain – but there’s something very amiss with this particular mountain and it’s giving physical form to her feelings of anxiety and depression. Celeste took me completely by surprise, gleaming with complexity while being entirely intuitive thanks to masterful games design and is an essential gaming experience for those that enjoy the genre. When I do eventually get around to reviewing it, you can expect nothing less than a 10/10.
4). Shadow of the Colossus
There’s a reason why over a decade after the game initially released back on the PS2, Sony saw fit to hand Team ICO’s second masterworks to Blue Point for a remaster. That’s because it’s truly something special. Blue Point worked some incredible magic to bring this much loved game up to modern day visual standards and even though the core concept and game play are more than 12 years old, Shadow of the Colossus is a real GOTY contender once again.
5). Batman: The Enemy Within
I didn’t think it was possible for Telltale to top the narrative strength of Season 1 of their Walking Dead series but they’re achieved just that with Batman: The Enemy Within. Utterly shattering the status quo, Telltale have given truly original spins to established Batman characters you probably thought you knew like the back of your hand. Featuring a dream line-up from Batman’s rogue gallery, an incredible branching story line that truly evolves based on your decisions and phenomenal voice performances from everyone involved, The Enemy Within has set the new high bar for story based adventure games. You can read our series of reviews by clicking here.
6). Where The Water Tastes Like Wine
When Rossko reviewed Where The Water Tastes Like Wine, he called it “a colossal reimagining of what a narrative driven game can be”. A cross country trip across America, WTWTLW is an omnibus of second hand stories with hundreds of tales told by a plethora of charismatic individuals who you meet on your travels. Featuring some of the world’s top voice actors (including a star turn by Sting – the singer/songwriter, not the wrestler – and “FingerGuns Favourite” Cissy Jones), content from a gaggle of incredible writers and a soundtrack packed with bluegrass, jazz and folk to complement the overall Americana, WTWTLW is a truly special game.
7). Monster Hunter: World
After serving as a bit of a niche since the series started all the way back in 2004 on the PlayStation 2, Monster Hunter finally slashed its way into mainstream appeal back in January with its 5th instalment, Monster Hunter: World. While it still contains a mountainous learning curve and, even when you’ve conquered that cliff face, enough nail biting challenges to make Dark Souls blush, Monster Hunter: World is the most accessible title in the series to date. It caters to veterans and newcomers alike, focusing on its co-op mechanics to create a collaborative, social experience that’s definitely worth having.
8). Life Is Strange – Before The Storm
Before the Storm is like the ultimate fan service for people who enjoyed the original series of Life is Strange. It’s a prequel that packs a massive punch, containing equal amounts of heartwarming and heartbreaking. Leaning into Chloe Price’s abrasive personality, Before The Storm introduces new mechanics which allow you to shape the story based on how well you can chat back and argue with characters. The Deluxe Edition is available now which contains a heart string pulling bonus episode too.You can read our series of reviews by clicking here.
It took 8 years to build Iconoclasts and you can certainly see where that time was spent when playing this shooting heavy metroidvania game. God is a Geek gave it a 9.5/10 saying “Iconoclasts is a game that simply must be played” and that’s something we wholeheartedly agree with. Best in class boss fights, unique characters, intuitive level design, a complex story line, a sublime art style and fluid game play combine to make Iconoclasts a game that was worth waiting for.
After 3 years of development while in Early Access, Subnautica finally launched as v.1.0 in January 2018 and it has turned out to be something of a revelation to the survival sim genre. Set in a gorgeous alien ocean, you’re challenged to stay alive by scavenging resources and crafting tools in a dangerous situation that’s spiralling out of control. The innovation here is that there’s an arms reach narrative that unravels the more you discover and the further you adventure. With more than 61k “Very positive” Steam reviews, it’s easy to see why it made this list.
Night In the Woods
Okay. So. Night in the Woods has been out for more than a year now meaning it doesn’t technically qualify for this list but the game only arrived on the Nintendo Switch in February 2018 which finally gave us a chance to review it. We don’t give out many 10/10 scores here at Finger Guns (we’re highly critical critics) but in Rossko’s review he calls it “one of the most important experiences I’ve had as an enthusiast of this industry for over 30 years.”. High praise indeed and if you’ve not played it yet, you should.
Of course, this is purely our opinion and you’re more than welcome to agree approvingly/disagree fervently. If you’ve got your own pick for best game of 2018 so far, hit the comments section and educate us.