GOTYLY2018: Game of the Year, Last Year (2017)


#1

2017 was, at the time, viewed as one of the best years in games for a long, long time. Both on the independent scene and the AAA scene, good games were coming out on an almost weekly basis. When given outlets had to give their Top 10 lists, many struggled to fit all their favorites into just ten interests. We also had, here on the forums, a series of polls to vote for our own favorites.

It’s a year later, and we’ve had time to digest the huge list of great games from that year. What’s changed? Have your perspectives changed at all with time? Here are some questions for thought!:

What is your favorite game of 2017? What was it at the time, and what is it now? If it’s changed, what changed?

Of the categories we voted on last year (click link above), do you feel any games got snubbed by omission? What was in our blind spot last year?

Did you grow to appreciate any games of that year? Alternatively, did you sour on any games? Did more time with, distance from, or new perspectives on a given game change how you enjoyed it?

What games did you or others sleep on that were worth the return back? It was hard to keep up with all the great releases, so a lot of us ended up playing last year’s best in 2018. What about you?

What games were the underdogs of 2017? With so many incredible titles, there’s no doubt that some of them are getting overlooked. What games just don’t get the love they deserve?

If you could summarize 2017’s year of games, how would you? Was it good? Bad? An antidote? Were there themes you saw crop up in the games that came up?

How does 2017 look now that we’re nearly through 2018? Does it look better or worse in juxtaposition? Or does it look slightly different? Or entirely the same?

Let us know! :slight_smile: :heart:


#2

Tacoma is one of the best games of 2017, and would’ve given Hollow Knight a run for its money had I played it. It’s borderline tragic that it didn’t receive the attention it deserves. My only salient observation, as many others have said before me: There’s too many games, all the time.

If I were a betting man (which I am), I’d say Obra Dinn is looking like my Tacoma this year.


#3

Yea, a year later I think it still looks like an incredible year. Personally my GOTY Nier:Automata is unmovable from the top because it’s my favourite game of all time at this point… so yea.

The DLC to Origins made me appreciate it even more, although it was already high on my list.

I feel like more people should have played ECHO, I thought it was a phenomenal game that flew under the radar a little bit.

I think 2018 is fine and some really great games were released this year but honestly it does not come close to 2017 for me.


#4

Favorite game was and still is Nier. Not much to say there.

A handful of standout nomination omissions for me: Nioh and Tekken 7 for Big Developer Game, and Atelier Firis (listen to Atelier soundtracks if you ever want to just, like… feel good) and Blue Reflection in Music (this always happens to Gust games because nobody actually plays them, but the soundtracks are always good!) I also think a lot of us (myself included) were maybe a bit guilty of mishandling the nomination process last year as well, so may have lead to some stuff getting left out.

As far as appreciating/souring, one of the stranger things for me last year was how quickly I turned on Destiny 2; I didn’t like the changes they made coming out of Destiny Uno and ended up being done with the game pretty quickly… but now they’ve made some significant changes and put out a good expansion, so all of a sudden the arrows are pointing up again. Otherwise, I think I was probably in the same boat as a lot of other people in that any games I grew to appreciate after the fact were the games that I just didn’t have the time to play. On a top 10 list I’d probably have Xenoblade 2 pretty high at this point (top 5?), but given that it came out in December I wasn’t really in a position to say too much about it during the festivities.

It was just flat out hard not to miss something last year, but I think the ultimate underdog had to have been Gravity Rush 2. That game came out in January and it still got absolutely buried, even among people you might think to be a core market. You’d have thought January would be a safe place for it to land, but hey, have some Tales of Berseria, Resident Evil 7, Nioh, Horizon, and Nier Automata along with it in the span of like… 2 months, or whatever. Done all those? Here’s Persona. The reception to the game at launch seemed fine, but “fine” isn’t pulling you out from under that sort of avalanche.

Overall though I thought that 2017 may have been one of my favorite years ever, and the more time I spend with my backlog the more I think I was right. I think what may have ultimately separated it for me was a sudden abundance of… I don’t know what to call them? Smaller “AAA” games? Mid-tier games? “B-games”? Like, they’re still big studio games, but Nier Automata ain’t Final Fantasy, you know? The sort of game that comes out of a major publisher but is ecstatic to sell a couple million. Japan in particular kind of just pulled up with a dump truck of great games like that and it bolstered an impressive indie lineup, some decent blockbusters, and also Nintendo cannon balling their way back into the pool. 2018 hasn’t really had that element; there’s been the indie lineup and a lot of very, very expensive stuff, but not as much in-between this time around. The only thing that immediately comes to mind is something like Valkyria Chronicles 4, at least in terms of what has hit my radar.

One thing I’ll say 2018 has going for it though, and somewhat of a redeeming factor for me: fighting games. Dragon Ball, Under Night, BlazBlue Cross Tag, Soulcalibur, SFV: Sagat’s Back Edition, and there’s still a Smash coming. Even Koihime Enbu got a good PS4 release this year!


#5

I will say that one somewhat disappointing thing to look at in the poll results from last year is the makeup of the results. Like, in all nine categories for non-mobile game releases, only four games were found in top placements: Breath of the Wild (3 wins), Nier Automata (3 wins), Persona 5 (only one "Best Aesthetic), and Night in the Woods (2 wins). I think that indicates a tendency to get really attached and hyped about particular games. I’m not saying those games don’t deserve those accolades, but it definitely sticks out when parsing the list. Especially with so many great games to choose from!

edit: also i give u all permission to complain about overrated games just dont try to yuck anyones yum or yum anyones yuck :heart: !!!


#6

PUBG gone done fucked up. It was on my GOTY list last year but I haven’t touched it for a long time. It seems to have just lost track of what made it interesting and didn’t progress at the same speed as other Battle Royales.

Completely agree with @Seva , the DLC for Origins made me enjoy it even more.

Also Bomber Crews release on Gamepass on Xbox made it even more accessible so I played a lot more of that


#7

With how many Game of the Year awards it got given PUBG was easily the game of last year that I felt was ridiculously overhyped and incredibly overrated. Then we got to like, February of 2018 and pretty much every games outlet pretended like it had dropped off the face of the Earth. Probably one of the worst GOTY decisions Giant Bomb ever made for example (definitely worse than Skyrim at least).

NieR: Automata is still the best game ever made though.


#8

I don’t think PUBG was a bad GOTY. It was an absolute blast throughout 2017 and was arguably the biggest change in shooters since COD4s RPG elements. I loved PUBG in 2017, and I haven’t played much at all this year and Bluehole seem to have made some awful mistakes.

It certainly weren’t for everybody but I don’t think it’s fair to call it overhyped as one of it’s predecessors is now the biggest game in the galaxy


#9

What is your favorite game of 2017? What was it at the time, and what is it now? If it’s changed, what changed?

Mario Odyssey and Breath of the Wild were my 1A and 1B at the time, and I think that hasn’t changed much. Odyssey’s endgame admittedly left me on a low note with that game, but the joy of that first playthrough keeps it at the top of my list.

Of the categories we voted on last year (click link above), do you feel any games got snubbed by omission? What was in our blind spot last year?

Not a game, but Crazy Ex-Girlfriend getting snubbed completely from Favorite TV Show is a damn travesty. Why do people hate musicals?!

Did you grow to appreciate any games of that year? Alternatively, did you sour on any games? Did more time with, distance from, or new perspectives on a given game change how you enjoyed it?

I soured a bit on Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice after hearing some criticisms about its portrayal of non-neurotypical mental states. I still think it’s a neat game, but one that’s more flawed than I first thought.

What games did you or others sleep on that were worth the return back? It was hard to keep up with all the great releases, so a lot of us ended up playing last year’s best in 2018. What about you?

Oh gosh, so many. In 2018 I played Night in the Woods, Mario+Rabbids, Golf Story, and Yakuza Kiwami. All games that I would have certainly considered on my top 10 last year.

What games were the underdogs of 2017? With so many incredible titles, there’s no doubt that some of them are getting overlooked. What games just don’t get the love they deserve?

Golf Story is so freaking good y’all. I have no idea how it ended up being so slept on.

If you could summarize 2017’s year of games, how would you? Was it good? Bad? An antidote? Were there themes you saw crop up in the games that came up?

2017 was a great year in games, but I think that’s true for pretty much every year since the indie boom of the mid-2000s. Even if the AAA studios are having down years, there’s always great indie games keeping me interested. Luckily, 2017 was also a great year for big budget games.

How does 2017 look now that we’re nearly through 2018? Does it look better or worse in juxtaposition? Or does it look slightly different? Or entirely the same?

2018’s a Forza Horizon year, so it’s got that going for it. Overall, though, it seems like a wash of two great gaming years.


#10

Fav game 2017 was Yakuza 0, and that hasn’t changed, BUT after Yakuza 6 and Kiwami 2 this year I am feeling some Yakuza overload (still haven’t finished Kiwami 2)

I didn’t play Prey, Night in Woods, Hollow Knight, Tacoma and probably a few more I can’t think of right now until 2018.

Hollow Knight on the Switch is looking like my favorite game of 2018, brings up the question of later releases count in these game of the year discussions…

Also, Prey. So good. Especially if you consider the Mooncrash DLC. Easily one of my favorites this year.

Underdogs of 2017… I think some 3ds releases like Ever Oasis might been overlooked because the console is ending its lifespan.


#11

My game of the year last year and still in hindsight is Nier Automata with a very close Breath of the Wild in second. Nier Automata was an experience I’ll never forget playing and perpetually want to go back and replay in its entirety.

I think going into the end of this year, I didn’t play nearly as many AAA games, let alone games that even came out this year. I played a lot of rereleases/remasters between Shadow of the Colossus, Bayonetta 1&2, Burnout Paradise, Donkey Kong Tropical Freeze, the list goes on!! I might make time for either Monster Hunter, God of War, or Spiderman, but I wasn’t nearly as interested in any of those.

I did sleep on Night in the Woods and got around to it this year and really loved playing that game. It had such a unique voice that I really appreciated at times, even when it wasn’t super fun to play.

I just finished RDR2 and I can just see it winning a lot of GOTY’s, but it certainly won’t be mine. Yoku’s Island Express I guess is mine for now? Or honestly, Donut County which I played on my phone might be my GOTY.


#12

It was probably Wolfenstein II, and I don’t regret it at all. I still think about that game pretty regularly, and highly doubt anything that bizarre and bold and refreshing will be made at a AAA level like that for a very long time. Please Bethesda, continue to let Machine Games do whatever they want forever.


#13

Horizon Zero Dawn was and remains the best game of 2017.


#14

@Dyfrig @Lilly
Yeah, PUBG had definitely dropped off in a major way. I don’t think that backslide denies the incredible experiences I had or others had, but man, I used to play that game everyday. I haven’t touched it in months. I don’t even know what’s going on with it. I remember hearing Austin and Patrick say on an episode of Waypoint Radio, “It’s cool to have found a ‘forever game’ for the first time.” and… oh man. Yeah, definitely a game that was framed by the time it came out.

Still don’t understand Fortnite tho


#15

AC Origins was a game that I completely brushed off in 2017 and now it’s probably my favourite for the year. I’ve soured a lot on Horizon now I’ve read a lot about its treatment of indigenous imagery and culture following the expansion. I really should have picked up on that shit at the time but hey game pretty, robots shiny.

I loved how that game played and drip fed a great little sci-fi tale but god damn, did they have to be called fucking “braves”, guys?

Wolfenstein 2 and The Evil Within 2 are much higher in my estimation than they were then. Time and a couple of quick dips back into both have reminded me how they both got everything right that they needed to nail.


#16

i honestly didn’t play a whole lot of new games in 2017. the only game i can remember playing that year that came out in 2017 was persona 5…now i’ve been playing hollow knight and i think that while i enjoyed persona 5 quite a bit, hollow knight would definitely have been my top game of 2017 if i had played it that year. a beautiful 2D animated game with cute bugs? that’s exactly my shit. the gameplay itself is great too. i’ve never played a platformer before but i always suspected i would like them, and i was right!


#17

The only game I can still vividly remember playing, and loving, from last year is For Honor, so that’s my GOTY 2k17 I suppose.

I need to keep lists.


#18

uh… i liked pyre.

i don’t remember most of 2017. it’s all a blur


#19

I barely played any of 2017’s games actually during 2017 because I was too busy playing older games. My GOTY that year was a tie between Dark Souls 3’s The Ringed City DLC, and PUBG, because those were the only two games from that year that I actually played then lol. I had a blast with both but haven’t played PUBG in months and Ringed City, while probably my favorite piece of DLC for any game I’ve played, doesn’t really count as its own game, I GUESS.

I have been doing a lot of catch-up though, and having now played a bunch of Hollow Knight, Prey, Splatoon 2, Mario Odyssey, Destiny 2, and a teeny bit of Nioh (which I just bought in the steam autumn sale), I gotta say: 2017 was a buckwild bonkers year for good video games. Several of those have shot up to near the top of my all time best games list. And I haven’t even played Breath of the Wild, Resident Evil 7, Nier Automata, Pyre, Evil Wthin 2, Woldenstein 2, Persona 5, Asscreed Origins, Horizon, Night in the Woods,Tacoma, Yakuza 0/Kiwami… thats too many games. What the fuck. To be a Gamer is a cursed existence


#20

My favorite game of 2017 was Breath of the Wild. And it is still Breath of the Wild. There were some brilliant games released in 2017, and some that I wasn’t able to play until this year, but my relationship with that game is just at its core different than any other games I’ve ever played.

Prey deserved a spot in the big dev category, and Hollow Knight definitely got snubbed in the small dev category, mainly because it seems like most of the world was still waiting to play it on the Switch. At the same time, I adore Night in the Woods and am 100% satisfied with it winning that category.

There were a couple of games I just hadn’t gotten around to that would make my list this year. Horizon Zero Dawn is exceptional both in narrative and in its mechanical feel, and I think it got a bit drowned out by its proximity to Breath of the Wild. And if I count War of the Chosen as a new-enough version of XCOM 2 to merit inclusion here, I’d add it there as well. Wolfenstein II also, though the level design was hit-or-miss. I haven’t soured much on anything I played last year… mainly because I haven’t really had the time to go back and replay them.

Well, that’s kind of a lie. I know this is an unpopular opinion around here, and I think it was partially ruined for me because I knew the early twists and never got that “whoa” moment, but I just wasn’t a fan of Nier: Automata. There were a lot of singular moments I appreciated, but the game itself was such a slog.

And as for underdogs (well besides Prey)… that’s a hard question because I feel like most of the games I liked got recognition; there was just always something new to take their spot almost immediately. If not for the Switch version, I’d probably feel that way about Hollow Knight, but we know how that turned out. Did Resident Evil 7 get enough recognition for being an experience that singularly exemplifies the potential of VR?

I think 2018 has been an understandable ebb for most genres, but has been a real sleeper year for indie platformers (which happens to be my favorite genre). Celeste, Dandara, Iconoclasts, Dead Cells, and The Messenger all came out within… seven months of each other? The sheer quality and creativity in the platformer space this year has been great to see, considering 2017 was actually a bit quiet on that front.