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So, with both next-gen consoles and Nintendo's heavy hitters of 2013 out, I figured there was no time like the present to make this topic. So in this topic you can talk about what your personal GOTY's of 2013 were, and why they were. Rather straightfoward really. So let's take a look back on what has been a very exciting and once-in-a-decade year of gaming, with the launch of the Big 2's Next Gen consoles and all. 

 

Here are my personal choices, in no particular order. 

 

Super Mario 3d World

As soon as I put this one in the WIi-U for the first time, I knew instantly that it would be on this list. It's just so awesome. Fantastic, top-of-the-class level design, amazing soundtrack, incredibly great-looking graphics due to the enhanced power of Wii-U, lots of cool new level tropes never seen in Mario before, and great multiple character mechanics with good co-op. It's basically 3d Land turned up to 1000 (in terms of quality) and it's the first Mario I've truly loved since Galaxy 1. Incredible.

 

Injustice: Gods Among Us

Another great fighting game from the people who brought us the fantastic Mortal Kombat 9, with combat that feels significantly different from Mortal Kombat, and arguably is better. A great story mode much like MK9 which is always a great thing in fighting games, and overall it's just a really good, solid DC fighting game with great fighting mechanics. I played the shit out of this one this year. 

 

Grand Theft Auto V

Say what you will about the glitchy, unbalanced and beta test-y multiplayer that's only good for fucking around with friends with mics in Freemode, but I believe that shouldn't take away from how great the single-player mode is, which in my mind is a true return to form for GTA after the much more bland and boring (by comparison) GTA 4. Much more variety in the missions, great and funny characters, some really funny dialogue ("CALL HE A HIPSTER ONE MORE TIME I SWEAR TO GOD!") and so many great things that were absent in GTA 4 are back. It's not perfect and still has some flaws that IMO keep San Andreas above it (cough cough Stock Market cough), but for single-player GTA, it's still a amazing return to form. And hey, I've had some of my greatest laughs fucking around in Online Freemode with my friends, so that must count for something, right?

 

And here's some honourable mentions that I want to include but can't because of circumstances 

 

The Wonderful 101

I can't include this because I have not played it yet due to only having a Wii-U a day or 2 before Lost World came out. But from everything I've heard and from some of the stuff I've seen, I know it would be on this list if I played it and I can't fucking wait to play it myself now that I have a Wii-U. 

 

Minecraft

I can't include this one either because it did not come out this year, but god damn I had a great time playing this with my friends over the summer. We played on a private server and with friends this game is just so fun. 

 

So those are my choices. What are your GOTY's of 2013?

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Seeing as I have both a Wii U and 3DS I'll pick a respective Game of the Year for both...

 

Wii U - Super Mario 3D World

This one goes without saying, really. I've only had the game since Friday but it's already become my absolute favourite Wii U title so far, absolutely bursting with creativity and the incredible quality we've come to expect from Mario these days. Sure, it may not have the scale or atmosphere of the Galaxy series, but it more than makes up for it with its unique charm and constant barrage of ingenious ideas. There's ideas in here that you could base entire games around, but nope, Super Mario 3D World is so confident in its own excellence that it can happily let you toy around with something for a level or two, and then throw it aside in favour of something different yet equally compelling. It's a joy to play from start to finish and the definitive reason to own Nintendo's new console.

 

3DS - Luigi's Mansion 2

It's the Year of Luigi so it's only fair the man in green gets a chance in the spotlight! In all seriousness though, Luigi's Mansion 2 is a stellar title, and one that completely blew away my expectations. The game is bursting with personality and the gameplay is even more solid than it was before in my opinion - everything has been tweaked, refined, and better suited to the handheld platform. The puzzles are challenging and rewarding without ever becoming truly frustrating, and it's a game I keep finding myself going back to for a quick dose of ghostbusting glee. Of all the game's Luigi's starred in throughout this year, it's this one that shines the brightest.

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Call of Duty Ghosts of course. *shot*

Okay okay, personally, my GOTY of this year would be...

 

34259_I8qs1tkbTg_game8indo_mgs.jpg

 

Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance of course. I honestly had no idea I was going to have this much fun with the game, I wasn't really into Metal Gear. I mean, sure, I played Metal Gear Solid on PC and I absolutely loved it, and Sons of Liberty too I believe.

 

Anyway, I bought MGR back when I got my 360 back from uuuuh modding it. I was browsing the list of games and found it right below Bioshock Infinite. Naturally I got both of them. 

 

Boy was I surprised, MGR absolutely amazed me, it was fun from the get-go and reaaally reminded me of MadWorld for some reason. I beat it in like, a week or so? Took my time. Enjoyed every single part of it. The music was fantastic, graphics were really great, gameplay was fun, Zandatsu was spine-chilling. Story was one of the best I've seen this year. Everything about it was great. The villains were great, specially Sundowner. 

 

5LMTNojAYIU7GAEeWChq.png

 

Gotta love Sundowner.

 

But yeah, great game, I should really get the DLC whenever I'm not lazy, but whatever, it still was pretty fun. 

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This. Definitely this.


I haven't really come across any games that came out this year that impressed me enough to grant them a "GOTY" status. I've mostly been playing games that came out years ago which I simply hadn't found the time for up to this point. Fallout: New Vegas is probably the most fun I've had with a game recently.

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Fire Emblem Awakening was probably my favorite, which is weird since I bought it on a whim and didn't expect it to be as good as it was. Fantastic game all the way through. It ties the story and gameplay together excellently, which is more than I can say for a lot of games in general. The gameplay is always challenging and always excellent. 

 

As far as runner ups go, Metal Gear Rising is fucking excellent but it has a few key flaws. It's too goddamned short. The story goes from charming to unbearably bad after a certain point. Did I mention it's too goddamn short? It's too short. Faaar too short for 60 bucks. Best bosses in any game ever though.

 

Pikmin 3 was another favorite of mine. Pretty much a fantastic sequel in every way. It isn't as good as Pikmin 2 but it's hard to follow up on something as amazing as Pikmin 2 so I'll let it go. The new characters and Pikmin types are some of the best in the series. Needs more extra content for sure though..

 

There are still some games I need to play  (Mario 3D World, The Last of Us, Bioshock), but this is my list for now.

Edited by Snow Bulborb

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All the games I anticipated greatly this year turned out to be just "eh", and all the games I bought on impulse, thought were going to bad bad or influence by wraith that came out this year are now some of my favourites.

 

Metal Gear Rising

Wraith tempted me to get it, and so far I've poured almost 30 hours into it.  The story is shit, but holy shit the gameplay is superb. It was fun right from the start even if you don't have your full moveset, and it never felt like they ever ran out of ideas. At every corner they had something epic to do and it was just a blast all the way through. Cutting up an enemy in blade mode and ripping somebody's spine out was so satisfying (even if it made the gameplay a bit easy sometimes) And holy shit those boss fights are some of the best I've ever played, and I can listen to their themes over and over without ever getting tired of them. They recently released the DLC for free and thats just extended my play time even more. The stealth parts kinda suck though. They give you all these new fighting mechanics and the nthey punish you for wanting to you to use them. but still everything is so amazing oh mah goood

 

Fire Emblem Awakening

fucking wraith again By far the best 3DS game, just ahead of Pokemon XY and Kid Icarus Uprising. The game will kick your ass, and I've turned off my game hundreds of times because of my units dying off. All the characters are likeable, the soundtrack is incredible and the gameplay is pretty good.

 

Some honourable mentions are Animal Crossing New Leaf. I still play it sometimes just to check up on my town, and also Pikmin 3. The characters, the atmosphere, its all incredible. It takes alot out of you to play though, not gonna lie.

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My game of the year is:

 

the-last-of-us-wallpaper.jpg

 

The Last of Us:

 

Quite simply a breathtaking post-apocalyptic experience with beautifully detailed environments, fun combat and a mixture of slow-paced and exciting gameplay which keeps me hooked for hours. The sense of realism this game provides is almost unheard of. The story is engaging and throws plenty of surprises at you. It always keeps you guessing and the ending is one of the most thought-provoking scenarios I have ever experienced in a video game. You see how Ellie grows into a hardened fighter. Troy Baker is outstanding as the voice of Joel, as you see him cope with daily life after the loss of his daughter, and how he bonds with Ellie. This is probably my game of the decade so far. 

 

 

Special mention to:

 

Tomb Raider: An impressive reboot to the franchise. Much like TLOU it has excellent gameplay and strong combat. The dialogue is good and the world is vast and incredibly detailed.   

 

Metal Gear Rising: Revengeanace: I don't normally like this type of gameplay, but the action sequences, parry system and funny dialogue makes this an enjoyable experience. NANOMACHINES SON! I love the soundtrack.

 

Sonic 1 (Mobile): Best version of the game. Playable Tails and Knuckles, widescreen 16:9, no speed-cap physics, time attack, debug mode (including beta textures) and Super Sonic. The StealthTax version brings fresh life to the original classic.

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For me, its honistly a three way tie between Rayman Legends, Guacamelee, and Bioshock Infinte. Rayman is just so good (tons of content, even tighter gameplay than origins, really creative level designs) and Guacamelee was a real surprise for me; one of my first indie games on Vita and man, was it good. The game did some really cool things with the Metroidvaina style, and had by far some of the funnest combat machanics I've played in a while.

 

Bioshock was great...for the first half of the game. The game starts off so strong, with an even mix between exploration sections and combat sections, but the second half is just filled with combat and while it is fun, it's not enough carry the whole game. But with everything else being so good, its hard not to like Bioshock Infinte :).

 

I would say Tearaway be my GOTY, but I only played the demo and don't own the full game yet :).

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Probably got one for each console, so I'll keep them brief!

 

Wii U - Super Mario 3D World (Overall GOTY)

 

Probably my overall GOTY too (I never thought I'd say that), but as everyone else has already said, this game is just a sublime experience. The challenge is good, the visuals are incredible and this easily wins best soundtrack of 2013 in my book. Mario at his best.

 

3DS - Luigi's Mansion 2

 

Hate to have to copy MK here, but he's right! This game is bursting with charm and everything about it is a step up from the original. That, and the multiplayer is actually really good fun!

 

PS3 - The Last of Us

 

This game is one of the best story-driven experiences I've ever played. The characters, setting and writing are all top-notch. Naughty Dog are going to be hard-pressed to top this one! Oh, and the multiplayer in this is pretty addictive too!

 

Vita - Tearaway

 

This has only been out a week or so but that's more than enough time for me to be able to say that this game is only second to 3D World for my overall Game of the Year. The amount of creativity the game not only contains, but gives to you is through the roof. If you have a Vita, do yourself a favour and play this gem!

 

Xbox 360 - Spelunky

 

This might not count since it's multi-platform, but I love love love me some Spelunky. This randomisation, the difficulty, the tightness of the controls....everything about it just wants to play over and over again. Which means I die over and over again, but I don't mind since the game's so damn good! 

 

Can't comment on PS4 or Xbox One since I don't own them yet...not that I mind, because you can't play 3D World on either one of them! wink.png

 

Honourable Mentions (and what I played them on):

 

Guacamelee (PS3/Vita)

GTA V (360)

Zelda: A Link Between Worlds (3DS)

Animal Crossing: New Leaf (3DS)

Rayman Legends (360/Vita)

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Wow, can't believe it's already nearly the end of the year. Anyhoo...

 

Pokemon X/Y

A Pokemon game hitting so well with me is something that rarely happens, in fact, it's only happened twice before, with G/S and HG/SS.This game was needed, oh it was needed bad. The Pokemon formula, while great, required a new breath of air, and this gave it. Beautiful graphics, a story actually worth paying attention to, and, most important of all, features that added quite a bit to change up the norm. A fantastic title that only fell down in the post-game, due to lack of things to do. Ignoring that though, this experience was well-rounded and fun. This is my handheld GOTY.

 

Saints Row IV

In terms of sandbox fun, it was a toss up between this and GTA V. Saints Row won out in the end, due to the sheer amount of fun I had with it in comparison. I found that Grand Theft Auto was weak in one area, the area of fun, something that matters more than anything to me. Saint Row just goes above and beyond the call of silly, with movie and game references left, right, and center, weapons so mad they wouldn't be out of place in a drug trip, and a story that's so hilariously overplayed that it's fantastic. I love this game, and the amount of times I've came back to it on countless occasions, just to enjoy the sheer stupid fun of it. This is my console GOTY.

 

Here's to another year of great games, and fun surprises.

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Fire Emblem Awakening

Fantastic. Awakening was another great entry into the Fire Emblem series, and is my favorite FE game out of all the ones released in the west. Awakening had a great story, great gameplay improvements (I really liked partnering up my characters instead of having them side by side), lovable characters, glorious music (the BEST music in any FE game I heard so far, and so good that I imported the soundtrack), and even great graphics for a 3DS game. My goodness, I can't even forget how well done the English voice acting was for this game. It was a thousand times better than the English voice acting we got in Fire Emblem Path of Radiance and Fire Emblem Radiant Dawn. This is the most easiest FE game to recommend anyone so they can get into the series. I'm also glad that Awakening did well enough to save the franchise from dying. 

 

 

Hatsune Miku: Project Diva F

I love rhythm games, and Hatsune Miku was just so darn good. This game is still competing against Rhythm Thief when it comes to my favorite rhythm game. I'm not even really a vocaloid fan, but I enjoyed the music very much, and I got a great challenge in the game. I also really ended up liking the editing feature in the game where you can make your own music video. I really hope SEGA localize the sequel for us next year since it would be a shame if this is the only Miku game that ends up getting localized. 

 

For kicks I would throw in E.X. Troopers into the mix as well. I know it came out in 2012 for Japan and Capcom never localized it, but I ended up importing it this year for the PS3, and while having no real understanding of the Japanese language, the game was extremely import friendly and I managed to beat the game and understand what was going on in the story because of the nice comic book cutscenes it used to tell the story. For an anime shooting game, it was extremely fun and it's worth importing. 

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I still have a few to play, but I don't think it'll be topped...

Zelda-A-Link-Between-Worlds-Test-Banner.

 

The Legend of Zelda A Link Between Worlds

I've been dreaming of a brand new traditional top-down Zelda since the moment I completed Minish Cap, but all we got were touch controlled games with hub worlds rather than an actual overworld (I do like the DS games, though). I was so excited when this game was announced in April and it didn't end up disappointing. The game looks great (And I'm honestly happy to get away from the WW look, which I do like, but it was getting tiresome and it didn't look all that great in the DS games) and plays fantastically. It was so nice to be bothered by annoying partners telling me the most obvious things. The story was simple, but nice. And the music, oh my God, it's absolutely fantastic.

 

It admittedly could've been a bit longer and harder, but the fact that I never stopped having fun in that time easily makes it up. The game is probably my third favorite Zelda, only behind the Oracle games.

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Wii U and generally speaking: Super Mario 3D World

I love platforming and I love Mario so considering it's a fantastically made game this was a given.  I was in pure heaven the entire time.  I never stopped having fun.  The only thing I dislike were mostly based off personal "hopes" rather than anything the game did wrong.  It's just incredible.

 

 

3DS: Luigi's Mansion 2

Hard to narrow it down since Animal Crossing has given me tons of entertainment but it is all still just busywork and time killing after a while.  Whenever I properly put effort in to partake in an event it annoys me how randomised and luck based it all is.  So I guess for the good times I've had in multiplayer with online friends (when we weren't having connection issues) and the impressive production values, Luigi's Mansion 2.

 

 

PS3: The Last of Us

No doubt.  In fact this is like, a single inch away from usurping Mario 3D World.  Such a powerful immersive storyline, great gameplay.  My first time playing through this was unforgettable, and has solidly joined the joint 1st place position with the Half-Life 2 series and BioShock as my favourite story-based video game(s) ever.  Also possibly one of the greatest and most emotionally complex endings I've ever had the pleasure of playing/watching.

 

 

PC: The Stanley Parable

Was super close between this and Papers Please, but the power to make me laugh just gets the edge.  Such a fun and clever game.  I played the original mod so I knew what to expect, but this really takes the concept up to eleven more than I could have imagined.  I also got decent gameplay time out of doing every ending (yes, even the one that takes 4 hours).  But Papers Please also gets a special mention for completely and utterly absorbing me even though I never thought it ever would as I vastly prefer action games to... well I can't really define a genre for it gameplay-wise but it certainly isn't an action game, even if it does require quick movements sometimes.

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This was definitely a better year for games than 2012, at least for me, anyway.  Plenty of good stuff came out.  Guess I'll go with my top 4.

 

#4 - Bioshock Infinite The first FPS in a very long time that I gave a crap about.  Mainly because the game itself MADE me give a crap.  The gameplay is fine and good, if a bit too hectic at times, but the story is what really kept me coming back.  It wasn't just moving from point A to point B for the sake of saving the world or whatever, it actually made me care about the characters and the lore.  I kept playing because I wanted to learn more about these people in addition to the fun gameplay mechanics.  A great game, and one of my favorite FPSs ever.

 

#3 - Pikmin 3 - Before this came out I was hoping for it to be my #1.  It's not, but it's still a damned fine game, and possibly my favorite of the three.  It's super-polished, the bosses are a huge improvement over the first two, the music is great, the story is enjoyable, and there's tons of little touches to the gameplay that make it a smoother experience.  I also love the challenge mode, and I'm glad to see DLC for it.  It's not perfect though.  A lot of the times it seems too forgiving.  I never even came close to running out of juice, and enemies seemed a bit more few and far between on the maps.  But the cooler puzzles and boss fights almost make up for it.  A great game, and one of Nintendo's finest in recent years.

 

#2 - Metal Gear Rising - Incredibly fun combat, awesome music, great bosses, and all-around just ridiculous fun.  Not much else to say about it.  Also has one of the best finales ever.  Platinum games has quickly become one of my favorite developers.

 

And the winner is...

 

#1 - Super Mario 3D World - This game takes polish to a whole new level.  It looks incredible, plays ultra-smoothly, has tons of hidden goodies, and is just overall a blast to play.  The cat suit is probably my favorite power up in the series next to the cape.  The levels are designed wonderfully, and there's a huge amount of challenge to be found if you're going for 100% completion.  It's not a revolution like Galaxy, but it's definitely more polished and satisfying to control.  A fantastic title.

 

And now for some honorable mentions.

 

- The Wonderful 101 - I love this game, but it has a few too many issues to be a GOTY contender for me.  The combat can be really frustrating, levels go on too long, and the difficulty feels really unfair at times.  But when it's fun, it's really fun.  The whole fighting system is really unique and enjoyable, and the characters and story are likable.  Platinum's stories are a lot better when they embrace their silliness, I must say.  Also, credit where it's due: best final boss ever.

 

- Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon - Another great Nintendo game, full of personality and fun gameplay.  The multiple mansions are fun to explore, and it's fun turning over every nook and cranny in search of hidden stuff.  But as good as it is, I think I prefer the original.  The new one has some fun cartoony antics, but the original has a much heavier atmosphere that I feel the sequel lacks.  That, and the ghost designs are kinda boring this time around.  No more unique portrait ghosts.  For the most part it's just a bunch of single-colored blobs.  But it's still a great game, and one of the best 3DS titles.

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5: DmC: Devil May Cry

Don't murder me guys. Buut as a reboot, I love the game so much, I enjoy the story, gameplay and world design, so damn much.

4: Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance

As the first, Metal Gear game I've played, I enjoy the game so much, it blends hack-and-slash and stealth wonderfully, in my opinion.

3: Pokemon X & Y

As, it's own game, it's great, the graphics are amazing, the soundtrack is lovely, but pales in comparison for Black 2.

2: Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3

It's the best of the UNS games and follows the anime/manga beautifully, I love the control and aesthetics.

1: Beyond: Two Souls

Ellen Page, makes this game, I prefer this to Heavy Rain and am going for all endings

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Bearing in mind I've not played Mario 3D World yet, here we go.

 

Animal Crossing New Leaf: Fuck, I've not played this in weeks - which is bad, because I really should go play it. Right now.

It's a wonderfully charming game, and evolves AC to the point I have no idea how they'll top it.

 

Pokemon X: The best Pokemon game I've ever played. Simply put, I had a blast with this game - the lack of endgame content besides Looker is kind of a let down, but regardless, I enjoyed my experience with the game. 

 

Tomb Raider: I keep forgetting this came out this year. I loved this game - it was interesting, fun, emotional at points, and a fantastic reinvention of a classic series.

 

Perhaps my current absolute GOTY though? (again, bear in mind I've not got Mario yet)

 

Sonic-Lost-World-box-art-052913-1.jpg

 

 

BELIEVE IT.

 

The best goddamn Sonic game since Adventure in my opinion - and given Adventure is my second favourite game of all time, that's no easy feat. Dumps the filler of Colours in favour of all the levels feeling fleshed out and original, outdoes the boost gameplay's improvements from Generations (in my opinion, again) in favour of more traditional, more open 3D Sonic gameplay, introduces a wonderful new atmosphere that melds with Sonic incredibly well, a pakour system that is rewarding if you take the time to learn it, and an absolutely bitchin' OST. And a 3D Sonic game! That isn't pathetically easy!

 

I love Sonic Lost World. A great deal. Am I alone in that? Probably. But I don't fookin' care.

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2013 is mostly underwhelming for me. Only The Last of Us and my GOTY were ever really fun or engaging, where as in 2012 I had a load of games to entertain and engross myself in. Mine is...

 

 

Official_cover_art_for_Bioshock_Infinite

 

Yep. It may feel more like Half-Life than Bioshock, but I was engaged by the plot and game-play wasn't too bad. The ending genuinely had me go "what what what" and remains one of my most treasured memories. Burial at Sea fixes most of the problems gameplay has, so check that out too.

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Uh, well I haven't played many of the popular games out this year because I still don't own a 3DS (really want Fire Emblem) but here goes:

 

Tomb Raider

This was the first Tomb Raider game I had ever played and oh man was I blown away by it, this game is truly brilliant (although there aren't many tombs) and the story as well as the gameplay are just pure bliss.

 

The Last Of Us

This is probably my favourite, but only just. The Last Of Us feels like more than a game, it feels like a high-budget movie. I really love this game, the story is great, the graphics are great and so is the gameplay. If you still haven't played this then you must!

 

GTA V

I'll be honest, this is the first GTA game I have owned and it has blown me away, the story is very funny along with the gameplay and rich open world to explore. The Online was shaky upon release but is now stable and me and my friends keep coming back to it and messing around together blowing each other up etc. This is a game that eveyone should play.

 

EDIT: I must mention Arkham Origins, whilst the story was a lot weaker than the other games it was still quite fun and I was impressed by it. It did freeze on me a couple of times and Roger Craig Smith's voice acting is a bit hit-and-miss (no Kevin Conroy) but it was still fun.

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The Last Of Us (PS3)

It's a fucking Naughty Dog game. They haven't made a game that I disliked since they joined with Sony.

The gameplay is basically Uncharted with some twists like stealth and item management. So, if Unchated's gameplay was already fun for me, this additions only made it better.

While the gameplay is fun, the strong point of the game has to be the story and characters. I actually got immersed into the game and cared about the characters, especially Joel and Ellie, a thing that only the Persona series have done to me.

All I have to say is that it was an amazing experience and you guys should play it.

 

Persona 4 Arena (PS3)

Fuck it, it was released in 2013 in Europe.

Well, what can I say about this? They grabbed one of my favorite JRPGs and turned it into a fighting game.

One of my problems with fighters is that after a month or two I stop caring about them and never touch them again, but with this one it's a different story.

For starters it has characters that I know well and love. Gameplay wise, P4A follows the style of modern anime fighters (fast combo-centric combat) which I vastely prefer over the imput-heavy fighters like Street Fighter or the mess that are the Marvel vs games.

The game is easy to get into, but hard to master, so if you only want to play it for the story (yes, the game has a story mode and it ain't that shitty stuff from the likes of Street Fighter) you don't need to worry too much about mastering combos and shit.

This and Skullgirls are the only games that I actually cared enough to join the online scene and while I'm not a fucking God, I can put up a fight.

Online of offline, I'm always ready for a match.

 

Muramasa Rebirth (Vita)

I don't know shit about the Wii version, but when I saw this on the Vita I had to get it. Fast 2D CUHRAYZEE action game? Count me in!

The game takes place during the Genroku era on Honshū, the main island of Japan. Some shit with the Muramasa blades happen and a bunch of netherworld monsters start to appear.

You either play as Kisuke or Momohime (or the new Vita DLC characters) slashing some fuckers while their story goes.

I started playing expecting just some action game and ended up really liking the characters.

And don't forget the graphics and music, that shit is just plain amazing.

Play this fucking thing.

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Super Mario 3D World

 

When Super Mario 3D World was first revealed, many just thought it was an upscaled Super Mario 3D Land with a cat suit. I was one of them. I disliked the game, and hated it. But when that second trailer rolled out... Oh man... The hype train took off and I instantly fell in love with this amazing title.

 

The game controls great, and the level design is spectacular. The game just gets better each world you travel to. The difficulty is nice, and the multiplayer is pretty fun.

 

Mario and Luigi Dream Team

 

Another amazing installment in the Mario and Luigi Series. While many bash it to have too many tutorials, I find this game to be extremely fun and amusing, and probably the best in the series. It even tops Superstar Saga.

 

Animal Crossing New Leaf

 

A wonderful edition in the Animal Crossing Series that I'm still playing. It's very enjoyable and adds a lot new to the series which I hope return in future installments.

 

Pokemon X and Y

 

Amazing games which add a lot to the Pokémon series. While they're kind of easy, the games are engaging, fun, and great experiences for Pokémon fans old and new.

 

And many more...

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glorious retail box I will never have *sniff*

 

My game of the year has to be Ace Attorney 5, or Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney: Dual Destinies if you want to say it the long way.  Seeing this game get released overseas (although only digital) was kind of dream come true for me; I'm still absolutely livid about Capcom not localizing Ace Attorney Investigations 2, but at least we still got the next major installment in this brilliant series.

 

And it's beautiful.

 

The first big standout for this game is how it takes the entire Ace Attorney world and recreates everything using 3D models.  The transition was pulled off without a single hitch, in fact, I'd say AA5 looks a lot livelier than the other games simply because of how much more smooth the animations are.  The amount of detail they managed to capture in the characters and environments is stunning (I almost fell out of my chair when I learned that the investigation areas were rendered fully in 3D after being able to change your position in the crime scenes).

 

The next big thing is the writing, the characters, the overall plot, etc.  AA5 also does something different here, because now instead of playing primarily as one character throughout the course of the game, you play as 3 (Phoenix, Apollo, and Athena).  The group shares an interesting dynamic: Phoenix plays the mentor figure throughout the game, Apollo is sort of the everyman, and Athena is the new energetic youth.  They bounce off of each other quite well, and I enjoy being able to see the world through 3 different sets of eyes and minds.  The norms of the Ace Attorney games are still there, there are many twists and turns through all 5 of the cases (6 if you count the DLC case), and the game hardly ever misses a beat with any of them (I'd say one or two of the twists in the game rivals Ace Attorney 2's final case in sheer shock value, I still can't fucking believe it).

 

Also the norm for the Ace Attorney series is its brilliant soundtrack.  In fact, AA5 is my favorite Ace Attorney soundtrack.  There's just too many good songs in it, and it has not one, not two, but three Objection! themes.  I died and went to heaven when I heard Athena's for the first time.

 

It's a fantastic game, and if you haven't already bought it, you need to.  I cannot stress enough how great of a game this is.

 

Honorable mentions go to Metal Gear Rising and The Wonderful 101.  Both are fantastic action games that deserve several playthroughs.  Metal Gear Rising also has the best soundtrack that's not AA5.

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Ah yes now that 2013 is coming to a close it's time to pick my GOTY's.  I'll try to be brief in my selections for games so here it goes in no particular order.

 

Naruto Shippuden Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 Full Burst:  Lengthy title aside this game is one of the most entertaining 3D fighting games that I've played in a long time.  The gameplay is over the top and the animations of the characters in action capture the feel of the Naruto series.  There is just something satisfying about using the Fourth Hokage's ultimate move on Madara Uchiha.

 

Skullgirls:  Another fighting game but this time it's 2D and a different art style.  The gameplay is solid and actually teaches new players to the fighting genre how to play while also letting veterans enjoy the game as well.  

 

Outlast:  This game has given me as good a scare just as Amnesia The Dark Descent.  Lost a few hours of sleep as a result for the rest of the month. 

 

I know this list might not be what some people had in mind for their GOTY's but these games stand out to me the most as I've played them.

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The Last of Us

 

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I love zombie/post-apocalyptic stories and this game is like the ultimate zombie game. Story is not something revolutionary or super original - it's all about the character study. It's simple and heart-wrenching, the way post-apocalyptic tales should be in my opinion.

 

Guns feel great and pack a big punch. Melee seems buggy at first but once you get used to the way it works you can pull out some really awesome moves. Enemy AI is amazing and the only issue I have with it that their awareness is a bit... weird. For example: I'm strangling somebody in a room and the other guy just walks by the room despite the loud and obnoxious gurgling noises.

 

Presentation is flawless. Graphics are truly beautiful and buildings reclaimed by nature are stunning. It's like I am Legend (film) taken to extreme. Soundtrack is also quite beautiful. Props to Gustavo Santaolalla for making yet another great OST.

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