Hi, it’s me, Brett, the guy you might recognize from Enthusiast Gaming YouTube videos. Or maybe you’ve read my articles obsessing over The Last of Part II theories? Today is going to be a simple opinion piece from your’s truly. While you might disregard my opinion completely after witnessing the lack of Breath of the Wild in this list, I hope we can still both agree this year has been one of the greatest the industry has seen. Without further ado, my top ten video games of 2017.
Note: I wasn’t able to play Nier: Automata, Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus, Cuphead, or spend enough time with PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds.
10: Call of Duty: WWII (PS4, PC, XBO)
You might think I’m crazy, but my love for the Call of Duty franchise didn’t begin until Advanced Warfare hit the market just earlier this console generation. Up until that point, I just couldn’t connect with the single-player campaigns or the beloved online multiplayer the series offered. That changed when the franchise moved into a faster, futuristic direction. So I was worried my love for the series would come to a grinding halt when WWII launched. Luckily, I was wrong, and Call of Duty: WWII offered an enthralling single-player campaign, on top of rock-solid multiplayer that I surprisingly enjoyed (even if it is lacking in the jet-pack and walling-running departments).
9. South Park: The Fractured But-Whole (PS4, PC, XBO)
South Park is my favorite show of all time. I began watching it when I was just five years old (yep, my mom is that cool). The Fractured But-Whole changes and builds upon The Stick of Truth in all the right ways. The new grid-based combat is a great new addition that induces strategic thinking during battle. The controls are much more streamlined in comparison to its predecessor. Slap on a chaotic and hilarious story and you basically get a whole new season of the show in the form of a video game.
8. Fast RMX (Switch)
Fast RMX was the first game I bought following Zelda on the Switch. I rarely find myself getting attached to racing games, but this one in particular sunk its claws into me and still hasn’t let go. Gamers are often clamoring for an F-Zero sequel but I personally don’t see the need. In terms of gameplay, Fast RMX reigns supreme over the entire F-Zero series (yeah, I just went there, don’t kill me please). Lastly, it’s one of best-looking games on Switch, and you get so much bang your buck.
7. Rivals of Aether (PC, XBO)
Smash Bros. clones are finally starting to come out of the woodwork and a lot of them are pretty great. Out of the ones I’ve played (Brawlout, Brawlhalla, PlayStation Allstars Battle Royale), Rivals of Aether is the best of the bunch. Not only does it offer a charming and nostalgic art-direction, but the gameplay is just different enough from Smash Bros. to offer a unique feeling experience. I only hope more third-party characters join the roster!
6. Resident Evil 7: Biohazard (PS4, PC, XBO)
Resident Evil 7 was a great mix of everything the series offered before it. The game features classic Resident Evil elements like backtracking, inventory boxes, and heavy puzzle influence while also changing up the series’ formula. With or without a virtual reality headset, Capcom nailed the atmosphere and I am super excited to see what it’s going to do next.
5. Mass Effect: Andromeda (PS4, PC, XBO)
Mass Effect: Andromeda took a lot of heat at its launch due to the title not running smoothly and having bugs. I personally think the title didn’t deserve a lot of the criticisms toward it. But I won’t jump into that here, you can read my thoughts on all that shenanigans HERE. I loved Andromeda’s gameplay, it’s the best the series has ever felt and offered so many options to the player. I personally loved exploring the galaxy with characters like Peebee and Drack.
4. Uncharted: The Lost Legacy (PS4)
Uncharted: The Lost Legacy answered the one question that was burning in everyone’s minds, “can there be a great Uncharted game without series’ icon Nathan Drake?”. The answer is a resounding yes. While I did miss Nate’s sarcastic quips, The Lost Legacy pulls out all the stops and offers a fantastic stand-alone storyline and the best-executed gameplay the series has seen. I would love short side-stories set in the Uncharted universe every year — that’s a bit too good to be true though.
3. Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice (PS4, PC)
Ninja Theory could have taken the easy way out with Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice by adding more combat sections that would have added hours of additional gameplay. Then slapped in a few upgrades for Senua and created a run-of-the-mill role-playing game. They also could have charged $60 for that. But they didn’t. They had a vision and went for it. They created a beautiful, unique, well-written and acted video game. A game that truly pushes the medium forward in sound design, presentation, and storytelling.
2. Super Mario Odyssey (Switch)
I don’t know what else I can say about Super Mario Odyssey that I already haven’t. It’s such an endearing experience from beginning to end. It’s easily the best game available on Nintendo Switch. Undeniably a masterclass of level and sound design — a celebration of the Super Mario franchise, and one of helluva celebration to take part in.
1. Horizon Zero Dawn (PS4)
In terms of scope, Horizon: Zero Dawn is a scaled down version of something like The Witcher 3. But that’s not a bad thing — while The Witcher puts its focus on giving you endless things to do, Horizon: Zero Dawn gives you less, but with perfectly executed features. Whether it’s the intricate, well thought-out gameplay, the easily accessible workings of upgrading, the mysterious story, or the unbelievably impressive world; in this case, less is more. Pretty much out of nowhere, Guerrilla Games created PlayStation’s next flagship franchise.
These Games Should be on my List… (Honorable Mentions)
Rocket League (PS4, PC, XBO, Switch) – I wanted to mention Rocket League because it’s a ‘games as service’ title and constantly gets updated with new modes and features. The game it is today is not the same game it was last year. Therefore, it deserves a mention (at least) on my list.
Persona 5 (PS4, PS3) – I love Persona 5. However, I don’t feel comfortable putting it on my list because I haven’t finished it yet. I’m about 60 hours in and I can say with certainty that it offers the best turn-based strategy the series has seen. Now, excuse me while I get back to this game!