Ask me to pick my ten worst games of the year and I’ll struggle for days. I can maybe only think of two or three right now.
Ask me to pick my ten best games of the year and I’ll come back with about seventeen—in the first five minutes. That’s how good a year in gaming it was.
The issue is, there’s only so much time in the day and some of these games are long. Meaning there’s plenty of games that will appear on other people’s top ten lists that I just frankly… never got around to playing. (I thought about mentioning them here, but my friend Ben suggested that’s a dark hole you’ll never escape from because you’ll feel compelled to mention everything.)
So these are the top ten games of the year (along with the following ten, in no particular order) of all the games that I personally played. I’m sure you’ll agree on some. And I’m very sure you’ll disagree on others. Save that for the comments and let the debate begin!
1. The Walking Dead
Who would have thought in a zombie adventure game I’d rather spend my time talking to the other characters as opposed to, you know, killing zombies?
But it’s true. Telltale’s masterful The Walking Dead game, comprised over five separate episodes released from the summer through the fall, made you feel something for the characters. And if you’re not made of stone, you’ll shed a tear or two at the end as you see the depth of the love Lee feels for the one he protects above all else: Clementine.
I’ve played plenty of games where decisions mattered from game to game—or in this game’s case, from episode to episode. But never before had they felt more gut-wrenching. And on top of that, I often had seconds, just seconds, to make my choice.
I played The Walking Dead in a near constant state of tension and terror. Not for the zombies. But for the decisions and choices I was going to have to make. Above all, that makes it my game of the year.