2018, in hindsight, was a great year of gaming for me. I went into 2018 without any expectation or hype for a lot of AAA titles except for Dragon Quest XI and Monster Hunter World, yet I ended up getting surprised by almost every game I played in this year.
Favorite Game Released Before 2018, Played in 2018: Nioh
The idea of being a Soulborne clone with samurai and yokai wasn’t appealing to me at first. I was indifferent to Nioh when it was first released and then ported to Windows PC, until I recently saw a complete edition with a very cheap price-tag and decided to give it a try. It is definitely a Soulbourne clone but a good one as well. I ended up enjoying it.
2018 Honorable Mentions
Detroit: Become Human, Divinity Original Sin 2, Octopath Traveller, Xenoblade Chronicles 2 : Torna the Golden Country, Monster Hunter Generations Ultimate
Top 5 Games of 2018
5. Super Robot Wars X
Aside from two Super Robot Wars OG games from the Gameboy Advance, this on-going mecha mesh-up tactical RPG series had never really reached the West. Even if you imported the game, you need to understand Japanese to be able to enjoy the game to its fullest; that was until they released SRW V and X into the Asian market with official English localizations for both. They were not really special as a tactical RPG, but to be able to lead giant robots from all of your favorite mecha anime into battle and watch them do spectacular special moves is truly a special experience for me.
4. Red Dead Redemption 2
Without a doubt, Red Dead Redemption 2 is the grandest game of the year 2018. From the breathtakingly beautiful mountains to the shrinking balls of the horses, the game is meticulously crafted with attention to detail. Unfortunately, the overwhelming amount of detail made the game a slog to play as well. It is a masterpiece that I couldn’t enjoy as much as I expected I would.
3. Monster Hunter World
The Monster Hunter franchise has finally stepped into the West with Monster Hunter World. With one bold move, the MH team transformed a niche title into a mega franchise. Monster Hunter World kept me entertained throughout the entire year with regular free content updates. With the promise of a brand-new expansion on the horizon, I can see nothing but a brighter future for Monster Hunter World.
2. Dragon Quest XI
Besides Monster Hunter World, Dragon Quest XI was my other most anticipated game this year. Dragon Quest is a long-standing franchise that never deviated from its own roots. Dragon Quest XI is no exception. Instead of radically (and needlessly) reinventing the game, Dragon Quest XI proudly inherited the essence of being a Dragon Quest unabashed. As a result, I got to enjoy a whopping hundred-hour long JRPG filled to the brim with whimsical adventures and memorable moments.
1. God of War
God of War has never been my favorite franchise. In fact, I have not played a single God of War game before. However, the 2018 soft-reboot made me interested in God of War thanks to its new direction and more relatable protagonist. The moment I started the game, I knew that I was in for a treat. The new God of War was such a blast to play. The presentation is exceptionally unreal as the gripping narrative, the memorable characters, the phenomenal voice acting, the sleek and responsive combat, all polished and crafted masterfully into a single sublime experience that left an everlasting impression on me.
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