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Your Game of the Year: 2017 Edition

ChickenGodChickenGod Overdosing Heavenly BlissModerators
edited December 2017 in Miscellaneous Gaming
Hey everyone! Its end of the year again, and with it comes our fun little GOTY topic. While the staff gets ready to formulate their awards, this is the place where you, the forum goer, can let us know which games you thought were the most outstanding (and no so great!) this year. Honor your favorite title with your own personal GOTY Award, tell us why, and even shame your not-so-favorites.

2017 has been a monster year in gaming. We've seen Nintendo Heavy Hitters Breath of the Wild, Mario Odyssey, and Splatoon 2. An excellent array of RPGs to choose from ranging Persona 5, Nier: Automata, and Xenoblade Chronicles 2. Horizon: Zero Dawn, Resident Evil 7, and Assassin's Creed Origins offered up some AAA success stories. With so much to choose from in such a stellar year, how can anyone decide?! So, what stood out to you over this past year? As always, this is is all in good fun and a very unofficial thread to talk about your opinions on 2016's releases in gaming. Without further ado, here are some category suggestions we have used before for your copying and pasting pleasure, but feel free to add your own:

GOTY: Pretty self explanatory. Any game in any genre that came out this year is eligible, and if something came out late December last year that can count just avoid any questionable situations.

GOTY Runner-Up: The second/third best game you played this year. This is for everyone who loved too many games to list only one.

Anti GOTY: The worst game you played this year. Doesn't necessarily have to be a bad game either.

Anti GOTY Runner-Up: The second/third worst games this year. For those of us who want to dishonor even more games for being crappy!

Anything Else: Want to add your own category? Go right ahead! Some examples used by others range from "GOTY that didn't come out this year" to "Most Surprising/Disappointing". These can make for a more interesting read.


  • ClixClix Former Listmaster Full Members
    I did not complete as many games as I intended this year. There are still a number of games from this year that I just won't get to until later this decade: The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Persona 5, Nier: Automata, Assassin's Creed: Origins, and Xenoblade Chronicles 2.

    GOTY: Tales of Berseria - I spent a lot of this year playing catch up in recent Tales titles and am now over the 50% mark for mothership completion. For me, ToB is the first Tales game that I have played that was able to match my love of Tales of Vesperia from ten years ago. If anything, this has reignited my desire to replay ToV. I think sometime in 2019 or 2020, I will replay both games and see if Berseria can take Vesperia's spot in my Top 10 Favorite Games.

    GOTY Runner-Up: Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia - After the sheer disappointment of all three Fire Emblem Fates campaigns last year, I was surprised to see a "new" FE game out so soon. I especially did not anticipate a remake of FE2, let alone a good remake. The production values that went into this are ridiculous, and it really raises the expectations of what the next entry on the Switch will be able to achieve. The biggest complaints that I have for FEE is that the class system is too basic compared to the more recent games (some promote twice, some don't; axe users are gone; etc) and that Celica's teammates were left high and dry for the final dungeon (I understand Celica herself being unavailable, but her party should have been available to Alm at that point). However, I do appreciate how much everything else from FE2 was fleshed out, and the balancing is overall quite good. Shadows of Valentia has supplanted Path of Radiance as my third favorite overall title, and SoV falls into the same echelon as The Blazing Blade (favorite) and Awakening (second), unlike PoR.

    Biggest Disappointment Pokemon UltraMoon - In a year of pleasant surprises and top tier games, GameFreak phoned it in, HARD. In what should be a "third version" like the days of old, USUM is more like a novelty version of last year's SM. Gone is my favorite villain in the franchise, replaced by an extremely annoying boss fight against Necrozma. Gone is the "Champion" match from SM, replaced by a slightly weaker final challenger. What changes are made to the story felt like lesser substitutions, and it took forever to even get to the plot deviations. Meanwhile, what little things thrown in to fill out Alola gameplay-wise just don't seem as significant as those done in Crystal, Emerald, or Platinum. For a game of "Ultra Changes," this was just overall kind of embarrassing. At this rate, the franchise definitely feels like it's getting dangerously close to the nadir of Ruby/Sapphire, FireRed/LeafGreen, and Diamond/Pearl. The last of those games nearly got me to quit the series for good. I want the quality of Platinum to Black/White 2 back. X/Y was squandered potential left and right, ORAS fell short (though still better than R/S by virtue of being fun), and both Alola games just don't feel complete, one way or the other. I sincerely hope we aren't getting a Switch game next year; this series clearly needs to do some soul searching again. Too bad sales have been solid for the 3DS games, so I doubt they will do that.

    Best Re-Release: .hack//G.U. The Last Recode - I went in this year expecting Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiark Age to win this hands down. While FFXII HD certainly delivered and fixed almost all of my issues with the original, the best HD port for the year goes to CyberConnect2. First off, no one saw this coming, and the effort put into the HD version is fairly staggering. While there's still room for improve (see lack of lip flaps in in-engine cutscenes), the collection is still a godsend, especially given how rarer the series's original physical release has become over the last ten years. Hell, most HD collections don't include a new game, even if it's more like a DLC episode in terms of overall content amount. Truth be told, I did not play .hack//G.U. despite the original tetralogy being my official gateway into RPGs. I watched the cutscenes one summer a couple of years later. This second chance really feels like it was made for me. I am still working through the collection since I did not want to get burned out, but I am so far loving it. I am so happy that they even got the original dub cast (sans Lia Sargent) back for Vol 4. I look forward to completing the collection next year.

    Off of the Bucket List: The Hyrule Fantasy: The Legend of Zelda - Well, I finally beat the first Zelda game. Hurray. It was a total chore, but I was surprised at just how much they were able to get into the game. I had to really push myself to play it, and it led to me putting off gaming for a month or two due to the dread of playing it. Really, I did it more for the sake of saying that I did it. Sadly, this isn't going to be the last game like this on my list. Hell, not even last for this franchise. I am not looking forward to playing Zelda II one day, and I experience a special kind of dread when playing Majora's Mask due to the clock (yes, I know it's no big deal, but it just gets to me--same problem is affecting my drive to play Lightning Returns at this moment).
  • 7thCircle7thCircle Proofer of the Realm RPGamer Staff
    edited December 2017
    I didn't get to as many games as I wanted either, thanks mainly to unplanned addictions to Overwatch and Clash Royale.

    GOTYs: Breath of the Wild and Persona 5 - After I finished Persona 5 I made a mental note of which of the two I enjoyed more, but I didn't write it down and now I've forgotten. I'm leaning toward BotW. Both are outstanding games that weren't perfect, but the flaws didn't bother me. I don't enjoy 3D Zeldas much, and BotW's overhaul of the formula turned it into my favorite game in a long time. Persona 5, on the other hand, was the more of the same that I wanted it to be.

    Anti-GOTY: Cosmic Star Heroine - I found Cosmic Star Heroine to be boring. A defining strength of Zeboyd's prior games for me was a return to the zippy pace of JRPGs in the SNES era. CSH's combat being slow and somewhat burdensome made it a slog and I didn't get very far before the Overwatch shortcut on my desktop called out to me louder than the CSH one, and I didn't go back to it. This is also my biggest disappointment in 2017.

    Anti-GOTY Runner Up: Metroid: Samus Returns - I'm a big fan of 2D Metroidvanias and was looking forward to this one, but got stuck early on and never went back to it. I could have checked out a guide to see what inevitably simple puzzle I wasn't solving, but the game was awkward to play and I have trouble making myself play handhelds if they aren't gripping me on their own. The counterattack system making a small nuisance out of exploration was part of the problem, but more than any one thing, the game just didn't grab me like Metroidvanias usually do.

    Biggest Disappointment that I Liked: South Park: The Fractured but Whole - It's a step back from the first South Park game in every way. While the grid-based battle system was fun considering I don't usually like them outside of tactical RPGs, the game started slow and concluded with a drawn out parody of a bad superhero ending that took too long. The good stuff was in the middle, and since the writing and setting were the best parts of the game, I ended up feeling like it would have been better as an R-rated movie than a video game. The interactive parts were the low points.

    Biggest Surprise: Pyre - This is the 2017 game I could rave about the longest, but I won't because part of why I loved this little thing is how surprised I was by it. It's heavy on story, relatively short, and the combat isn't as bad as it looks. Try it!

    Best Patches/Expansion: Galactic Civilizations III: Crusade - When it released, GalCiv3 was the unfinished, busted follow-up to my favorite 4X game of all time, and while I enjoyed how the changes deepened the strategy without making it more complex, I did not enjoy the broken AI or glitches. I came back to it this year after reading it had been fixed, and while I think Crusade's unexplained new systems tip it toward being more complex than I'd prefer, I'm happy I didn't run into anything broken. The game feels like a complete release now. I need to get into this more once Overwatch has freed me from its persistent embrace.

    Most Humbling: Mario Kart 8 (Switch) - Ugh. After beating this on 200cc with my brother, I was at a friend's house and played it with his 5 year old son on 200cc. Sure, they had "features" toggled on that I wasn't expecting like auto-don't-drive-off-cliffs and motion sensing where turning the controller turns the kart, and while both messed me up royally, I lost in Mario Kart to a 5 year old and will never be the same again.
    The lesson here is that dreams inevitably lead to hideous implosions.
  • ChickenGodChickenGod Overdosing Heavenly Bliss Moderators
    edited January 2018
    Been pretty busy after New Years, but here's what I've come up with for 2017. I still need to get around to trying 5 or 6 others I missed too.

    GOTYs: Persona 5 and Tales of Berseria - I like 7ths use of the dual award, as this time around I truly cannot decide on a winner between the two. Both of these amazing titles delivered exactly what I look for in a single player experience, a well told story backed by a strong battle system with a lot of meat on the bone. P5 excelled a bit more in style and flair, while Berseria was very engaging to play with what I feel is the best Tales battle system ever made. Consequently, both of these games find themselves in my personal Top 5 of all time, and if you were to ask me which I prefer the answer might change daily.

    Anti-GOTY: Accel World vs Sword Art Online - The sad thing about this is that it did actually have potential. Unfortunately though, the game's horrible performance on the Vita, and lack of people playing online multiplayer on this version of the game made my decision pretty easy time around.

    Most Surprising: NieR: Automata - This one might seem a little strange, but Im one of those people who was not a big fan of the original NieR and I absolutely despised Drakengard 3. So when I got my hands on Automata, I was very hesitant as to whether I'd like it or not. Thankfully Automata ended up exceeding all my expectations and being one of the standout titles of 2017 with its unique soundtrack and story telling.

    Most Despair Inducing: Danganronpa V3 - What does this mean? Well, with the somwhat divisive nature of Danganronpa V3, I feel like this game is not going to be most people's favorite, and therefore I won't find a lot in common ground on opinions. I also think that if the divisive content had been played in a more straightforward manner ala the original Danganronpa that it would be many more people's favorite in the series, which is a shame because this is an experience I truly, truly loved. I've got at least 30 Miu Iruma quotes pictured on my phone.

    Best Multiplayer: Splatoon 2 - This was such a huge step up from Splatoon 1 for me that I've been hooked for a good 6 months or so. One of the things I appreciate is that they really understand how to do proper patching here. Most games I play with balance patches focus on making severe nerfs to content as needed, where as Splatoon 2 focuses more on bringing weaker specs up to speed and slowly whittling away at the more powerful options over time, which leads to everyone being happy. Its great to see new maps and weapons being released all the time.
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