The EZA Community Top 25 Best of 2018!

  • I gave my thoughts on GoW in its thread. It was ... Ok, but not remotely memorable for me. RDR I dropped for now because it truly is one of the biggest culprits I've played where the push for realism sucks out all the fun

    My List:

    Xenoblade 2: Torna
    Shining Force Refrain
    Octopath Traveller
    Yakuza 2 Kiwami

    Overcooked 2
    Shadow of the Colossus
    Dragon Quest XI

  • Another year another BLOWOUT GOTY!

    God of War isn’t even the best God of War game in my opinion but I want to go back and play it again. It’s still a lot better than most games you’ll play this generation.

    RDR2 was way too formulaic for me. I watched my roommate play it over the course of a month and parts of the game hurt my brain.

    Here is the main difference for me: in RDR2, while on a mission, any and all characters with you will absolutely chat your head off saying nothing of any significance. To make it worse, there is always one character who is completely unhinged like Nicholas Cage in Mandy which we have seen in 100% of Rockstar games that I can remember. I’m very tired of this meaningless dialogue that is nothing more than noise in your ear.

    Whereas, God of War only uses dialogue when it’s necessary. Kratos trains his boy to be a strong warrior and therefore, they are as focused as possible and discussions are relegated to boat rides. The writing is with so much more intent here. RDR2 feels aimless.

    MY TOP 4

    1. Yakuza 6
    2. God of War
    3. The Missing
    4. Yakuza Kiwami 2

    Honourable Mentions

    • Forza Horizon 4
    • Monster Hunter World
    • Bloodstained Curse of the Moon
    • Shadow of the Colossus

    Thank you @Axel for another fun GOTY poll

  • @mbun i find a lot of the”missions devolve into shootouts “ to be a big farce. Mission variety is there! And even the shootout when they do happen feel way different from each other

  • @bigdude1

    Couldn’t disagree more. RDR2 follows the same forumula as other Rockstar games where you lock on and shoot shoot shoot.

    I don’t understand why Rockstar gets a free pass for this. Destiny, The Division, Call of Duty single player, and more, are all games that follow this shoot shoot shoot formula and it rarely feels fun to me. RDR2 tried to contextualize it better but I still feel like I’m just locking on and shooting for hours on end.

    With that said, I love Yakuza which has brawls brawls brawls, but I personally get excited from the minute to minute gameplay. There are plenty of oof various weapons laying around, the heat meter mixed with different environments lead to different finishers. One second you’re fighting in a burger shop, whipping criminal scum through windows, and the next you’re in an underground fighting arena.

    Not to use my own argument against myself, but I can at least get on-board with repetitive fighting if it’s consistantly fun. I just don’t feel like shootouts in different ranches, or different city streets is a good variety. It all feels so similar.

    JUST MY OPINION. To each their own.

  • Since we're dropping lists:

    Top 4:

    #1: God of War
    This one was weird for me, because I'm more into Prince of Persia than the old GoW games, but I could tell this entry was going to be different tonally, and in rare fashion there's zero complaints I can levee against this after finishing it. Loved it from start to finish. They absolutely nailed the journey they were going for, the dialogue between characters was a joy to listen to, and I had lots of fun "moments" with the combat system. Then again, maybe I'm just a sucker for axes.

    #2: Astro Bot Rescue Mission
    As a lover of platformers, this is the kind of game that makes me sweat, because if people start making other platformer games as good as this, then I'm going to have to buy my own VR set, and I totally can't afford one. Even though God of War was a more incredible package overall, in my head I think Astro Bot was the most "important" game of last year, hence earning this spot.

    #3: Onrush
    I gladly threw my threespot in the garbage for this game knowing it wouldn't make the list, because what happened around this game and the developers of this game was nothing less than a tragedy. I don't play racing games much anymore, because all the ones I enjoyed when I was younger were the more arcade style racing games like Cruis'n and Rush you don't see a ton of big budget attempts at anymore. Onrush nailed what I wanted from a modern arcade racing game. So much fun with so many ways to play that was always blood pumping exciting with the music kicking in and the visual eyecandy of the carnage happening around you as the tracks zoom by. Endless fun with minimal downtime that always keeps you engaged, and I can't believe everyone scoffing at the price and letting it just die. Onrush, you were truly too good, too pure for this world. I'm going to miss you. Shout out to all the devs who poured your heart and soul into the game. It wasn't unnoticed.

    #4: Into the Breach
    For awhile, this one was my GOTY. I cooled down a little on it, but not before 100%ing the game. It was more going back to the devs' previous game, FTL, that made me reevaluate Into the Breach. While I still love this game to little pieces and am begging for an expansion, paid or otherwise, I think how scaled down and safe they went with Into the Breach makes it feel a little less special to me. That said, it is still a beautiful entry point for anyone interested in the strategy genre, and this little game has lots to give if you dig in and try different squads with different loadouts and really play around. Love the thought put into this title, not just being about beating the enemy, but making the player simultaneously focus on protecting the civilians, even if that means putting themselves in danger at times to achieve this. That plus the background lore for each pilot nicely meshes together into a cool setting for a game about giant robots fighting giant monsters, not that you needed another reason to enjoy that kind of thing.

    Honorable mentions:

    #5: Wandersong
    Celeste was an important game to many people last year, and while I think it is a sick speedrun game with some of the best music of 2018, a small part of me resents how it has funneled attention away from some other amazing indie titles that also chose to deal with human emotion in slightly less confrontationally overbearing ways. Wandersong is a surprisingly long game in which you play as a jolly bard who's only good at singing as he sets out to prove his worth and make the world a better place with his extremely limited skillset. The gameplay is like nothing I've ever played in any other game before. Can only describe it as "playful". Found myself smiling through the majority of the game at all the unexpected moments, the refreshing gameplay ideas, and dumb amusing ways you can have your own fun as you bard your way along with the power of positivity.

    #6: Sea of Thieves
    I get it. People have decided to hate this game forever. To me, it is still a super chill pirating experience that no other game has delivered on that has a perfect base established to grow from. This game is everything the devs promised it would be, and they never said it would be anymore than that. Super fun to hop back into every now and then solo or with friends and sail the seas pursuing pirate hijinks. Plus the water is 10/10, and damn this game is so cozy at night on a ship with how dark it gets and the sounds. Perfect for playing before bed. You can play it for very little money thanks to Game Pass, so I really don't get why people are so harsh on this one.

    #7: Bloodstained: Curse of the Moon
    Looking through this topic, everyone forgot this game came out last year. (Except DIPSET, who just listed it as I'm writing this. Shout out!) Least that's the narrative I want to believe, because how in the hell did you people not vote for this game?! This is the perfect classic boiled down Castlevania platformer experience distilled and improved for today. The game's style looks great and is always fair in difficulty. It lets you play different ways that lead to completely different experiences and endings. They included a boss rush as well as a true ending, so there's tons of replay value. This game has everything you could want in such a cheap package, and this was merely a bonus thing stemming of another game that I'm almost sure I won't enjoy as much as I enjoyed this one. If you didn't play this last year, I can't recommend it enough. I'm grinding my teeth in frustration that I seem to be the only one (besides DIPSET) who voted for this. Mbun will remember this.

    #8: Kirby Star Allies
    I get Kirby isn't that beloved around these parts, but hear me out for a little. I actually really didn't like this game at launch. 30 FPS, pretty short, the combo powers are lame compared to Kirby 64, and a whole list of other nitpicks I have make me think this is just kind of a weird transitional game as the Kirby team got used to making games in HD for the first time and doesn't have a ton to offer.

    That wasn't the end of Star Allies though. This game was updated throughout the year with character based free DLC called Dream Friends. These are akin to new Fighters in Smash Ultimate that you can use throughout this game. That might be a lofty comparison, but I specifically use it, because these are not throwaway characters with 1 or 2 new moves who feel like clones of something already in the game. These Dream Friends are fully fleshed out pivotal characters from the rich history of Kirby's past games, many characters we've never gotten to directly play as before, fully realized with sick custom movesets of their own that sometimes border on brokenly good. You get to brawl your way through this entire game as almost every Kirby character you've ever wanted to play with.

    The level of dedication to fanservice, to honoring Kirby's dense past as he jumps to HD and looks forward to evolving for the future put in this game to reward all the long time fans of the franchise, all for free, is just the exact ideal you wish every franchise you cared about would one day achieve. It goes beyond the Dream Friends to also recreating stages of games they're from in the style of Star Allies, remixing music, including rare easter eggs you can encounter involving Kirby's history, etc. and so on. They also tacked on a post-game free DLC bonus campaign that specifically highlights all the cool stuff you can do with all the Dream Friends and remixes bosses into new more difficult versions.

    They didn't have to do any of this, but so much effort and love was poured into this game post launch, without asking for anything in return, that even in a year as stacked as 2018 I had to make room on my list to at least give a small nod to such an incredible wholesome effort being made solely for the sake of making fans happy. All the kudos in the world to the Star Allies team for the warm fuzzy nostalgia blanket, for creating such an absolute culmination to honor the legacy as Kirby looks forward to the future, caringly passed to a new generation.

  • My top 8 list for 2018. Shoutout to Spyro Reignited trilogy and Return of the Obra Dinn who didn't make my list.

    1. God of War
    There isn't much to say about this game other than it's just perfect. The combat felt satisfying compared to the other entries. The story got me hooked from beginning to end, I can't wait for the sequel! The only minor complaint would be they could have done the lore a bit better, sometimes there were just 1-2 sentences about beastiary and locations.

    2. Yakuza Kiwami 2
    Got introduced to the franchise last year and I still love Yakuza, it's probably my favorite game series of all time. Personally I preferred Kiwami 2 more than 6, they improved the gameplay from 6, the story is up there along with 0, I love the characters that got introduced in the game and Kiwami 2 has some of my favorite substories. I was considering to put this game my personal GOTY until I realized my biggest complaints, while I'd fun with some minigames, some of them was just terrible. The karoke lineup in this game had the weakest lineup of all games, maybe the devs are just tired of karaoke because it's not in their recent game. The bouncer missions were tedious as hell and I'm still not a fan of clan creator, despite having the best song ever .

    3. Dragon Quest XI
    Compared to last year, this year was pretty weak for JRPGs, I know some titles came out on Switch, but I still need a reason to buy one. Dragon Quest XI filled that void. Great jolly oldschool JRPG and the story and the characters had me engaged. Only downside is as many people mentioned, the MIDI soundtrack.

    4. Monster Hunter: World
    This game is the most fun I had with a multiplayer in ages, I played it regularly for a while, but sadly I stopped because of new releases. I can't wait to get back to it for the upcoming expansion. My only complaint is the story could have been better.

    Honorable mentions

    Valkyria Chronicles 4
    As mentioned earlier, Valkyria Chronicles has one of the best war stories out there. The story and characters in VC4 are amazing, the gameplay is so satisfying. I've seen people complaining about it's too similar to 1, but I don't mind it at all because this is just how VC is supposed to be, I'm looking at you Revolution!

    Yakuza 6
    We got two Yakuza games this year and both of them are in top 10 on this list, I'm so proud of this community. While I enjoyed Yakuza Kiwami 2 more, I still enjoyed Yakuza 6. The story was pretty solid. Onomichi, such a cozy town to roam around in!

    Red Dead Redemption 2
    Okay, this game is good and I'd fun with it, but it's in HM for me because it's not my kind of game. People complained about the controls, but I didn't mind them. My biggest issue was some of the gameplay mechanics. I understand most of them are for realistic immersion, but it just got tedious in the longrun. I also lost interest at the second half of the story. The first half and epilogue saved the game for me so it gets an easy pass.

    Marvel's Spider-Man
    I had fun with this game, the story was good, the combat and traversal was fun. However, the sidequests were just mediocre and the open world activities are just bland that reminds me too much of the Ubisoft formula, but hey, that kind of gameplay works.

  • @dipset i mean eventally u have shootouts but thats far from the only thing in the campaign, not to mention all the side missions

  • Destiny has been slighted in this thread, and so I will no go into defense mode and commenced a longwinded post about why Destiny 2 Forsaken is actually an amazing game and I legit would have put it in my top 4 in this thread had it been eligible.

    Destiny 2 is a fucking fantastic game. I totally understand the hate it gets from the horrible launch and pretty egregious DLC practices, but I honestly haven't put this much time into a loot grinder since Diablo 3 hit v1.6.

    You can be reductive and say all you do in Destiny is 'shoot shoot shoot' and to be honest you would be kind of right since you can do that and still get quite a bit out of the game.
    For people who want something a bit deeper, it is there, and it is honestly more there than most MMOs. There are exotic quest threads in D2 that can only be solved by figuring out complex riddles than can only be solved by diving into the lore of the game, reading item descriptions, finding hidden areas, completing obtuse objectives... straight up Souls type shit up in a bitch.
    Strikes are all well and dandy, but if you want to be successful in the Raids in Deesty, you better be prepared to do some complex mental math. One of the raids has been out for months and people are still finding secrets about it... and this isn't counting that upon the world first completion of said raid, an entirely new zone was opened up for every player in the game
    I'll also say it has one of the fairest economies in a game I've ever played. Exotics can be purchased every weekend from a vendor by using shards you get from scrapping high level items. All items in the game's real money store can be earned through normal play. Materials you need for upgrading can be purchased from a vendor using other materials, and what can be traded for what is changed every other day so one thing is not more important or valuable than the rest.

    Tl;dr Destiny 2 is amazing. Fight me.

  • @mbun said in The EZA Community Top 25 Best of 2018!:

    how most missions just devolve into shootouts,

    This just isn't true. RDR2 has tonnes of mission variety, with many missions where you never pull out any kind of firearm.

    Besides the fact, describing any mission where you do use firearms in this way is just being reductionist. Criticising RDR2, a western videogame, for having a lot of shootouts is like criticising Megaman for being mostly jumping and shooting, or how Metal Gear Solid has too many stealth sections. Red Dead Redemption 2, like almost all other games of its calibre, is greater than the sum of its parts.

  • @bigdude1 @Hazz3r I haven't played it or even seen much of it personally, so just going off of complaints I heard postlaunch. Still inclined to believe there's some merit to the complaint when there's disagreement over it within this very limited topic.

    @El-Shmiablo I hate Destiny, but the raid stuff is pretty cool. Reminds me of Everquest stuff, or I guess just any MMO before WoW ruined MMOs by standardizing them all stuff. Probably resembles MMO stuff since the game stealth is an MMO pretending to be a console shooter. Also, the economy better be fucking fair with how they grill you with DLC prices on the regular. I don't foresee Anthem being any better though, so Destiny can be king of the "tricks you into playing an MMO" ring if that makes you feel better.

    1. Spyro: Reignited Trilogy
    2. Pokémon: Let's Go
    3. Mega Man 11
    4. Super Smash Bros Ultimate
      HM. Red Dead Redemption II
      HM. Yoku's Island Express
      HM. Dead Cells
      HM. Xenoblade Chronicles 2 Torna

    I've been playing more Red Dead since I made my list and I think it would be number 3 or higher now. It's getting better and better.

    I'm really surprised Dead Cells didn't make the top 25.

  • Congrats to God of War. It was a distant 3rd place in my rankings, but I cannot deny the astounding work that was put into this game. It's by far the best in its franchise and that is truly impressive.

    1. Celeste
    2. Dragon Quest XI
    3. God of War
    4. Monster Hunter World

  • @el-shmiablo the mobile game isn't shitty

  • My top 3 were the same as this list's top 3, but they moved around all the time up until the voting deadline. All three were games I adored, and that I was obsessed for a month or so around their releases. For someone who has a terrible tendency to not finish games, the fact that I finished those three was surprising. I knew I would finish Spider-Man since I love comic books and Insomniac games, but GoW and RDR2 were huge surprises since I didn't care for their previous games.
    God of War basically took my number 1 based on the fact that I used to HATE Kratos, and by the end of that game I didn't. Add to that an interesting story and fun combat, and it just beat out RDR2.

    My list though was:

    1. God of War
    2. RDR2
    3. Spider-Man
    4. Assassin's Creed Odyssey
    5. Let's Go Eevee
    6. Tetris Effect
    7. Celeste
    8. Smash Bros Ultimate

  • @mbun there really isnt. theres a lot of "hey lets go hunting" or "hey lets burn down this farm" even the shootouts are more intricate than what he is describing. there are times where you are sniping off of a ledge, a stealth segment, overall tons of varied missions. there is a Basically its not a genuine complaint. the biggest actual complaint i hear is how structured the missions are. compared to Botw or mgsv you dont have as much freedom in how you choose to go about the missions.

  • Boom! What a landslide!

    Here's my recap:

    • God of War is the most unanimous GOTY winner we've ever had, with 124 points and 18 GOTY votes (out of 45 voters)! Persona 5 was the record holder with 122 points from 54 voters, so no contest. God of War was GOTY for 8 of the first 10 lists I received, two thirds of the voters gave it at least a point, it's 55 points ahead of second place, I could keep going with the stats. God of War, take a bow!
    • It was such a crazy race between Red Dead Redemption 2 and Marvel's Spider-Man for second place. Spidey had it for most of the run but the very last list I received edged Red Dead above it, much to my dismay. Given it had 6 GOTY votes against 1 for Spider-Man, I'd say it's fair anyway. Goes to show that every vote counts!
    • 5 games from the Top 10 are from Japanese developers, as is tradition.
    • 2 Yakuza games in the Top 10. It's surprisingly not the first time we get 2 games of the same series both rank that high, we had 2 Danganronpa titles in the Top 10 of 2014!
    • Assassin's Creed Odyssey ranked unusually high for the series with #7. Given how little love the series has received from these nominations in the past, that's quite an achievement.
    • Top indie game is Return of the Obra Dinn at #10, congrats! It's also the only PC exclusive.
    • 7 PlayStation 4 exclusives, including a PS VR exclusive with Astro Bot Rescue Mission, 2 of those in the top 3.
    • PlayStation 4 won GOTY for 3 years in a row now (Uncharted 4: A Thief's End, Persona 5, God of War), they sure got something going!
    • 4 Switch exclusives, same as last year, but with the highest in 5th place it didn't soar quite as high as for its debut. No doubt this year with Metroid Prime 4 it will... wait... :(
    • 1 Xbox One (+PC) exclusive, Forza Horizon 4.
    • Now, who are the biggest losers? Shadow of the Colossus scored 7 points, same as Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden, but lost its spot due to lower "highest vote". It was the only game I played last year and actively disliked, so fine by me!
    • 6 points: Dragon Ball FighterZ, Hitman 2, Fist of the North Star: Lost Paradise.
    • 5 points: The Banner Saga 3, Subnautica, Metal Gear Survive, Dead Cells, Beat Saber, Warhammer: Vermintide 2, 428: Shibuya Scramble.
    • 4 points: Onrush, Black Bird, Shining Resonance Refrain, Azur Lane, Mega Man 11, Bloodstained: Curse of the Moon, SoulCalibur VI, Shadow of the Tomb Raider, Fallout 76, Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales.
    • 3 points: Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, The Council, All Our Asias, Battlefield V, Pro Evolution Soccer 2019, Sea of Thieves.
    • 2 points: The Walking Dead: The Final Season, Part Time UFO, Yoku's Island Express, Taiko no Tatsujin: Drum 'n' Fun!, The Awesome Adventures of Captain Spirit, Donut County.
    • 1 point: Wandersong, Kirby Star Allies, State of Mind, Monster Boy and the Cursed Kingdom, Football Manager 2019, Overcooked 2, Florence, Black Desert Remastered, GRIS, Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire, Persona 3: Dancing in Moonlight, Super Mario Party, Full Metal Furies, WWE 2K19, Pit People.
    • 0 point: The Quiet Man.

    I've played (and completed!) 9 out of these 25 games. The ones I'm hoping to play in the future: Yakuza 6: The Song of Life, Valkyria Chronicles 4, Astro Bot Rescue Mission, Kingdom Come: Deliverance, Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden.

    Thanks again to everyone who participated and voted with your hearts! I love making those and feel like we always end up with a great representation of most people's tastes.

    Now time for the intense battle for GOTY 2019 between Yoshi's Crafted World and Biomutant!

  • "0 point: The Quiet Man"

    You just had to do it to him.

  • Dragon Ball FighterZ with only 6 points :(

  • @axel thank you for doing this.

  • @axel Fallout 76 is in nice company. Ben would be proud.