2020 was a bit…different…wasn’t it? From lockdowns and face coverings, Zoom birthday parties and scouring the shops for toilet roll, it’s not been the year any of us planned. But despite the global pandemic the gaming industry, be that AAA or Indie, has produced some magnificent titles. In a historic 12 months, what games have stood out as our Games of the Year?
Masked Mayhem: Animal Crossing New Horizons
For me the game of the year has to be Animal Crossing: New Horizons. Not only was it a major escape for me during the pandemic lockdowns but also a way for connecting with other friends and family. Its coverage and even having a podcast made using it shows its ability to entertain. Yes it’s full of overly corporate under tones but that was part of the fun. You could take the mickey out of it for being a con but seems to have legs and is still growing as an on-going game.
All in all it was the only game I kept going back to and had me spending hours on daily to keep the boredom away, and was an easy and colourful play.
In 2021 I’m looking forward to playing: Song of Iron
Thom Wilde: Ghost of Tsushima
2020 has been a unique year for sure but for gaming, it’s been phenomenal. There are so many titles that I could pick for the game of the year from Planet Coaster: Console Edition to Watch Dogs: Legion. Many games have provided me with such entertainment like not many other years have been able to.
However, my pick is Ghost of Tsushima. A stunning game with intriguing combat mechanics and an engaging storyline. The title even performs excellently on the PS5 and it has encouraged me to play the game again from scratch. However, as of writing I have not played The Last of Us Part 2, so perhaps that could take the title of Game of The Year?
In 2021 I’m looking forward to playing: Hogwarts Legacy
Adam Bomb: Little Orpheus
Little Orpheus will come as a pleasant surprise if you’re a subscriber to the Apple Arcade service. It’s one of the best games to hit the service in 2020. The story starts off wild, your Comrade, Ivan Ivanovichis. You drop into an extinct volcano in an exploration capsule, called Little Orpheus, to explore the centre of the Earth. It’s an excellent narrative-driven game full of laughs. But be warned, the gameplay isn’t all that intense; imagine a supercharged Pit Fall. For example, you’ll swing from ropes, make giant leaps, and run from giant Dinosaurs. That is clearly, not happy your down there. But again, it’s the story that will have you pushing forward. Besides, if you spend years in the centre of the Earth, something interesting is bound to happen.
I’ve played some amazing games this year. Final Fantasy VII Remake is a masterpiece (I’d love to see FFIX get the same treatment) but there’s an indie title that I’ll always remember when I think of 2020. Röki, from indie newcomers Polygon Treehouse, got a 9/10 when I reviewed it for BG4GHub and for good reason – gorgeous visuals, emotive soundtrack, and a story that tugs at your heartstrings. This game has reinvigorated my love of point and click adventure games and for that I’ll be eternally grateful. If you haven’t played it yet, you should. You can pick it up on Steam or on the Switch.
In 2021 I’m looking forward to playing: Little Devil Inside
Venomous_AK: Mafia Trilogy
I have always been a fan of anything to do with the mafia, godfather etc. The loyalty to family and running a business always interested me. That’s why I have chosen the Mafia Trilogy as my GOTY, the way they remastered all three games and added so much work to it was amazing, family is a big thing for me so Mafia hit that right where I live. I played the second when I was younger and loved every part of it, the emotions and the way betrayals can happen just felt so real to me, the story was vivid with a deep sense on what being in a mafia would be like and I can’t wait till they bring out Mafia 4 or even the godfather remastered (one can dream) if you haven’t tried the game yet I would 100% recommend it.
In 2021 I’m looking forward to playing: Hogwarts Legacy
Games of Dayne: The Last of Us: Part II
Naughty Dog follows up on their instant classic 7 years later with the highly divisive The Last of Us: Part II. Taking place in a world ravaged by a deadly virus that has brought humanity to the brink of extinction, the characters that inhabit the world and have endured the hardships life has thrown at them are so excellently layered and brought to life with such emotional depth.
Playing heavily on themes of revenge, desperation and redemption, the paths of Ellie and Abby are so similar that it is difficult to see which side of the line in the sand they walk on. I personally believe the experience that players will walk away from this title with is based on their perspective of the very grey morality on display from each of the lead characters and their motivations.
The Last of Us: Part II beautifully blends it’s stunning cinematics and exploration with fun gameplay on an emotionally charged journey that ultimately delivers on all levels from a technical and narrative point of view.
My decision may be unpopular or misunderstood but there is no other title that released in 2020 that managed to pack the same emotional punch as The Last of Us: Part II for me personally. An excellent story full of incredible performances and a flawless technical experience is a combination I’ve not experienced since 2016’s Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End. Love it or hate it, players should at least give this experience a go and come to this conclusion for themselves.
In 2021 I’m looking forward to playing: Werewolf the Apocalypse: Earthblood
GameR-Views: Persona 5 Royal
2020 has been one crazy year for all of us. A lot of uncertainty, confusion, fear, etc. However one thing that has not changed is gaming. My GOTY choice is Persona 5 Royal on the PS4. I love RPGs and when P5R was announced, I knew I just had to get my hands on it. The style, the gameplay, the awesome soundtrack – the game is a masterpiece and it makes me continuously return to it.
Looking towards 2021, I cannot wait to play God of War Ragnarok. The God of War series changed its combat and overall approach for the better and to see what lies ahead for Atreaus and Kratos makes me giddy all over again.
In 2021 I’m looking forward to playing: God of War: Ragnarok
And there you have it. There are sack fulls of other games we’ve loved this year and despite everything, 2020 has been truly excellent for gamers. With loads more exciting titles on the horizon, here’s to a happy (and healthy) 2021.
We’d love to hear your game of the year! Let us know in the comments.
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