GOTY 2013

Cory's Top 5 Games of 2013

What a seemingly great year for video games, I say seemingly because while it was strong for games we witnessed the dramatic marketing collapses of Nintendo and Microsoft. There were too many good games to count, both in AAA titles and on the indie sphere and that's something we all noticed, whether when writing deliberations about the year at large or even casual player disconnected from the culture entirely.

Cory's Top 5 Games of 2013

John K's Top 5 Games of 2013

2013 was another “bleh” year for gaming. No doubt, it had its share of memorable titles, but the publishers on PC and home consoles mostly phoned it in this year. The big budget releases were dominated by games with numbers above 2 in their title (Dead Space 3, Forza 5, Assassins Creed IV, Battlefied 4), and games that could have easily had numbers in their titles if they had wanted to (Batman: Arkham Origins, Sim City, Splinter Cell: Blacklist). In most cases, these titles were mediocre, subpar entries into their series. Both new consoles launched with a new, big budget IP (Knack and Ryse: Son of Rome), but neither game was good. Crowd-funded games exploded in popularity and number, with mixed results. The big budget new IP that I really wanted to play, Watchdogs, was delayed. But, as I said, there were some high points. The Playstation 3 had a very good year, and the WiiU welcomed some critically acclaimed titles, although I can’t comment on those because I don’t own a WiiU. If you ask me, 2013 will be remembered for its bombshell news events, and not its games. EA getting pummeled for its Sim City debacle, new consoles getting announced and released, Microsoft getting pummeled for their DRM policy, Microsoft reversing their DRM policy, Valve announcing hardware, Blizzard changing direction on the real money auction house, and the NCAA franchises getting killed off by the Ed O’Bannon lawsuit – all of these stories were huge and will have long term implications. Our hobby suddenly looks a lot different than it did 365 days ago.

John K's Top 5 Games of 2013

Adam Schedler's Top 5 Games of 2013

It's tough to talk about a year's worth of video games without being reductive, but overall 2013 felt like an appropriate closing ceremony to the last generation of hardware. Releases were focused on perfecting the design thesis laid out years prior. With the PS3 and 360's technical foundations unable to be pushed any further, familiar genres and series' were transformed through design and polish. I thought that more subtle, iterative process would make parsing out spots on this list tough this year, but it was remarkably easy. These five games dominated my time and my thoughts this year and got me thinking about what's next.

Adam Schedler's Top 5 Games of 2013

Crystal's Top 5 Games of 2013

This has been another great year for gaming. There were plenty of great games released and now we have next-gen consoles. I've been slacking on my backlog and haven't had the chance to play many of the new games yet, but I look forward to catching up pretty soon. Here is a list of what I think are contenders for Game of the Year, and what I'm prioritizing in my backlog.

Crystal's Top 5 Games of 2013

Joseph's Top 5 Games of 2013

2013 had its fair share of disappointments, but overall it’s been a great year for games, no matter where you look. While we had two major console launches, and long awaited games like Bioshock Infinite and The Last of Us finally released, I once again found myself most impressed and excited by the games I wasn’t expecting. It seemed like interesting titles were coming out of nowhere, to the point where (despite my best efforts) I just couldn’t keep up at all. However, the games I did play offered a great amount of variety, ranging from endlessly replayable strategy games, to short and succinct indie experiences.

Joseph's Top 5 Games of 2013

Doug's Top 5 Games of 2013

2013 has been a year of consistent turmoil and change for the industry we love. Most visibly, we’ve seen the clash of new consoles and the foundations for a new generation of in home play; and, online play. Less advertised, are the changes those like myself are most excited for. In that, I mean the changes to how representation, communication and feedback should be handled on the internet. In the combined efforts of marginalized individuals within the industry to oppose and illuminate the industry’s own oppressive atmosphere; in the growing demand for comment and feedback sections that were not a minefield for that very marginalization; and within the games themselves, whether they be pleading for change and recognition or representing the very thing being fought against - change was the talk of the year. For the first time since its inception, games are being challenged to mature; and, it is the start of something wonderful.

Doug's Top 5 Games of 2013

Brian's Top 5 Games of 2013

This is an odd list. In a year that highlighted how great non-blockbuster games can be, my list is filled almost exclusively with triple-A titles. I didn't mean for this to happen, and if I were smart, I probably would have played some of those smaller titles. But when you have a kid, and if you have been following along, you'd know that I have two small ones (there's a large one too, but he lives with his bio-dad), time is at a premium. That and apparently, I still have a problem with MMO's and time management.

Brian's Top 5 Games of 2013

Joel's Top 5 Games of 2013

2013 is such a weird year to write about my favorite games. For all but one of my Top 5 games, the console in which I played these games is no longer hooked up. That just goes to show that developers have learned to develop for these older consoles and put out some truly remarkable and memorable experiences. We can only hope it doesn’t take developers another seven years to put out the high quality of games that we got this year for the new consoles.

Joel's Top 5 Games of 2013

Hiram's Top 5 Games of the Year

It was a great year for games if you knew where to look. There’s always a feeling on these transition years that there isn’t really much to look for in the way of major releases, but this year more than any other, indie and handheld games really came out and showed you that if you’re just playing on the home consoles, you’re going to be missing out on some pretty good stuff.

Hiram's Top 5 Games of the Year

Condra's Top 5 Games of 2013

2013 feels a lot like that last vacation you take with your friends before an impending graduation. It’s filled with profound memories, reverie (perhaps drunken, or not), setbacks on the road, years-long gestating confessions to close friends, personal revelations; days and nights suffused with the overwhelming joy of imminent freedom, but bruised by the sadness of parting ways and unfamiliar routines that are about to take over.

Condra's Top 5 Games of 2013

Jeremy's Top 5 Games of 2013

Last year around Game of the Year time I had a clear cut set of games that I knew would be in my top five. This year it wasn't the same case. It took a lot of thought to really narrow down my favorite games I played this year and I think this year more than most I missed some of the bigger games. It's a bummer but it is what it is. No one can play everything. It's hard to deny that 2013 has been an exciting year, with new console launches and big changes in major franchises but what was more exciting to me is how much developers were able to squeeze out of their probable last attempts with the current generation. Something I think is well reflected in my list. So without further ado, my favorite games of 2013 follow!

Jeremy's Top 5 Games of 2013

Jon's Top 5 Games of 2013

2013 was the year I became “that guy”. I phased out of most main stream games as my move to the west coast meant leaving my consoles behind. Being armed with a laptop meant that a lot of the graphical powerhouses, like Assassin’s Creed IV and Saints Row 4, would have to wait until I built a PC of my own. In the mean time I became the guy that focused on indie games, and you know what? I liked them! I consider 2013 to be one of the best years in a long time as the games I played this year, as evident by my list, brought more fun, emotion, and provocative thoughts to my life than any gaming year has before.

Jon's Top 5 Games of 2013

Ashley's Top 5 Games of 2013

2013 was a special year for me when it came to videogames, being the first year of my life so far where I've had the money, time and effort to keep up with the majority of major releases. In previous years I was forced to pick and choose, or spend my time catching up with older titles I missed out on. 2013, in comparison, was gluttonous for me. I played so many great games that this list is possibly the hardest one I've ever had to make. I hope you had as much fun as I did this year!

Ashley's Top 5 Games of 2013

Jonathan's Top 5 Games of 2013

I’m continually amazed each year by the kinds of stories that videogames are willing to tell and the worlds they can create. 2013 is no different. From para-dimensional offices to post-apocalyptic Russia to a computer simulation in a computer simulation to a vacation house by the sea, this has been a phenomenal year to be part of the gaming community. but there are always too many game to play. When I think of what it means to be game of the year, I think of games that embodies the idea of “must play.” They’re games that no matter what genre, no matter what platform, they should be experiences by everyone. No games I’ve played in 2013 meet that description quite like these do.

Jonathan's Top 5 Games of 2013

Josh's Top 5 Games of 2013

For me, 2013 was about change. Life changes, career changes, and changes in the way I play and enjoy games. Almost every game I truly loved this year would never be found on a GameStop store shelf, and they brought me immensely more value than any number of AAA titles. I was looking forward to developers improving existing formulas this year, but instead I got completely new experiences that I wouldn't have dreamed of just a few years ago. Here are a few of my favorites.

Josh's Top 5 Games of 2013

Kyle's Top 5 Games of 2013

By the time I’ve finished up a review for Risk of Rain, I’ll have reviewed…not a lot of games this year. I spent most of the fall, easily the most plentiful of gaming season this year, doing school work and catching up with friends. As a result, there is an inordinate amount of handheld games and oddities on this list. I played games in cramped positions on buses, in dorm rooms seeking an escape, and maybe after a bright, sunny day of exploring outside. It’s worth evaluating how and why you play games, and I found myself doing that even more often this year. Thanks, 2013; I had one hell of a time playing you.

Kyle's Top 5 Games of 2013

Mikhail's Top 5 Games of 2013

This was such a rad year. I got my Master's degree, got a sweet job, finally got a 3DS (my first ever Nintendo thing), met with some DarkStation folks in person, made new friends, did Extra Life, and played an absurd amount of awesome games. It bums me out slightly that I have to limit this list to a top 5 and 5 honorable mentions because I really enjoyed every game I played this year. But I'm also glad that I get the chance to recognize the cream of the crop here on this site. The best of the best of the best, sir. With honors.

Mikhail's Top 5 Games of 2013

Nick's Top 5 Games of 2013

For console gamers, 2013 was a year in limbo. With new hardware finally on the horizon after almost a decade of waiting, major publishers either played it safe, or opted to wait until 2014. What resulted was a year in which inventive independent games for the PC had free reign over enthusiast attention and a Nintendo 3DS, of all things, became indispensable gaming hardware.

Nick's Top 5 Games of 2013

Alexander's Top 5 Games of 2013

2013 has been a mixed year. We have had some great games come out, we have also had some of the worst in recent memory. The new consoles are also upon us offering the chance for new experiences. 2014 looks set to be a great year. Anyway lets get on with my favourite games of 2013.

Alexander's Top 5 Games of 2013