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


Couldn’t agree more that game changed something in the industry. But man I fell off hard, and it isn’t because it isn’t fun. If I jumped in with people now I’d still have a blast but something stopped me playing so religiously and I’m not sure I can say why.


Night in the Woods was my favourite and remains my favourite because it rulz ok. I think Dangan Ronpa V3 stood out for me as underappreciated because I went in certain that it would be comptent (if painfully misogynist anime bullshit at points) but nothing would captivate me the way SDR2 did. While I was right that I didn’t like the cast as much save a couple standouts, the end twist was beyond anything I would have guessed it could attempt, much less pull off. Though I love Nier: Automata, I can’t help but feel it’s appropriate that we chose to honor its depiction of player involvement while DRV3’s condemnation goes unnoticed.

That said, DRV3 can be painful misogynist anime bullshit, and has a pretty high barrier of entry; while it’s not as necessary to play the previous games as it was in SDR2, it’s a much better experience if you’re familiar with the entire series. So I understand why it didn’t catch on, even if I’m a little disappointed by it.


I still think Danganronpa V3 is utterly fantastic despite itself but now more than a year after I played it I can no longer ignore the misogyny embedded deep into that game. It’s so unpleassant even by contemporary anime standards.

So for my new GOTY I want to highlight Fire Emblem: Shadows Of Valentia, which I’ve just grown more and more fond of as time has passed. Starting to think Fire Emblem is better off without the relationship stuff? If Three Houses could take all the right lessons from Echoes that would be great.

Haven’t played NieR Automata yet, but I loved the first one so I have high hopes. The positive reception in this thread is really encouraging.


The more and more that I play NieR the less I think that I’m actually interested in all that much about it. The soundtrack though is so superb. Have it on all the time while I’m studying and Amusement Park is one of my favourite pieces in a long, long time.


Honestly? It was probably 3DS remake of Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga. I didn’t realize it when I was playing but it was probably one of the best times I had when playing any video games, let alone RPGs. I real love the look and aesthetic of the game, the music is soooo good, I adore the battle system, and while it’s absolutely not an amazing plot I real enjoyed the story it had to tell. I still think fondly of cold autumn nights I’ve spent playing it. Dunno if puting a remake as my GOTY is cheating but it was my first time playing this game so.


Okay, I thought about it and drummed up a top 4:

  1. For Honor
  2. Night In The Woods
  3. Resident Evil 7
  4. Battle Chef Brigade (which I didn’t play until this year, but I couldn’t think of anything else)

Zelda was the Most. Nier:Automata was the Most. Wolfenstein II was nothing if not the Most. You’d think with so many games pointing to the lights of the stadium in 2017 that we’d have at least a few more failures than we did, but nope! With a few exceptions, I can’t really think of any games that weren’t worth appreciating in some way. I mean, it’s a year when a worthy followup to System Shock 2 came out and it’s an underrated game.

2018, though? I’ve been disappointed with many of this year’s large-scale games, and several releases that I thought would serve as respites haven’t done as much as I’d hoped. It reminds me a lot of 2013 – Bioshock Infinite, GTAV, and The Last of Us all arrived and demanded equal levels of artistic piety. Looking back, none of them (especially the first two) escaped a complete reevaluation critically and culturally speaking. As someone who felt similarly about a lot of this year’s games, I’m glad that places like Waypoint exist now to catalyze that process.

All that said, 2018 has been very useful as a catch-up year. There’s still a roster of games that I’m happy to root for when the time comes, but I can’t imagine I’ll be as enthusiastic. Well, if Kentucky Route Zero finishes this year, then maybe.


My original 2017 list was as follows:

  1. Breath of the Wild
  2. Splatoon 2
  3. Super Mario Odyssey
  4. Universal Paperclips
  5. Snipperclips

I have since played NieR: Automata but it does not break into the top 5 for me, so my list still stands. I liked NieR: A, but I had a bunch of issues with it, like the combat being kinda not very fun and just difficult to actually look at. There’s too much stuff going on and I can’t tell what’s happening so eventually I just turned on easy mode not because I didn’t think I could beat it on normal but because I simply wasn’t enjoying that aspect of the game and wanted to more or less skip it. I have also played a bit of Hollow Knight but I’m not really enjoying it and haven’t played more than 8 or so hours of it, so I’m not putting that up there for various reasons. I also played a LOT of PUBG last year and I continue to play PUBG quite a bit, unlike many people here, it seems. This is despite the fact that I am Australian and for many months, the Australian server simply disappeared from existence and I had to play on 200+ ms ping usually. But in my opinion the game has not gotten worse at all, though Erangel continues to be my favourite map in the game (and I continue to more or less ignore the cosmetics). I do enjoy playing that game in duos/squads far more than in solos, so the reduced interest in the game overall does impact my own ability to enjoy it, since I have fewer people to play with. But I’d still be playing it a lot if I had regulars to play with.


I barely played any of the games of 2017 in 2017… and despite intending to give myself more time to take time on things like games this year, I’ve barely had any time in 2018 either!

Of games in “GoTY 2017” lists that I’ve played [it’s a short list, with only about 4 games in it], there’s only one which I hadn’t played in 2017 that I’ve had time for in 2018, which is Dead Cells.
[Not having a console means that I’m only selecting from games available on PC here.]

I don’t think I’ve really changed my opinion on 2017 as a result: for me, 2017 was a year where lots of people seemed to be having fun with games that either are inaccessible to me because of platform/controller, or types of game which I really don’t get / don’t work if you don’t have friends, whilst the things which interest me mostly got less attention as a result.

So, Opus Magnum is probably still my GOTY2017.

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I don’t think many of my feelings for last year’s games have changed to be honest.

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

I still think it is Breath of the Wild, by a country mile. A lot has been said for and against Red Dead 2 since it has been released, but I just don’t think any open world game carries the same level of joy and glee of exploration - not to mention conveying this kind of understated melancholy with the world. It’s still so easy to just pick up and play and it just is designed for relishing in an adventure and the distance travelled. I just think that game is ingenius and it’s going to be a while before it’s topped.

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?

Hollow Knight for sure. Only got to play it this year on Switch. It was brilliant. Art style, gameplay, exploration and mood.

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?

One game that I never really got into was Nier Automata. I tried completing it before the end of the year, then my copy of the game got stolen by my shitty housemate… I was trying to plough through it on easy, I think my robot sentry friend was programed to autofire on everything. I just felt as if the combat was a slog and not as slick as Platinum’s other games like Bayonetta 2. I was picking up all these items but never knowing what to do with them. I never did complete it to see the other game endings. No idea what I was really missing to be honest. It was just one of those games that got lost in the end of year grind as I tried to keep up with everything.

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?

Was so ready to dismiss Assassin’s Creed Origins, but a large chunk of the beginning of 2018 had me playing nothing but Origins. Though I do think some of the big Ubisoft open world mechanics do become repetitive, I really loved that photo mode.

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?

This may be controversial, as it is such a big game but Battlefront 2? Yes, EA did throw it under the bus on arrival and making the developers to apologise for it at E3 was a real dick move. I could take or leave the ground combat to be honest, but the space combat is great. I’ve really enjoyed playing it with friends and doing the whole Star Wars things - ‘watch for enemy fighters’ - ‘you’ve got one on your tail’ - ‘no it’s nothing, I’m all right’ [crashes into star destroyer). They have piled on lots of free content too. But that starfighter mode is great.

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?

I would say it was a land mark year with the return of Zelda and Mario looming largest.

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?

2017 was still a better year. Nintendo really brought it with their first party titles, though they really brought it with all the indies throughout the summer. I couldn’t stop playing my switch… I also think Sony have had a really good year - God of War was really good, but I wasn’t expecting to love Spider-man as much as I did. It feels as if each one of their games they’ve knocked out of the park. Astro Bot for VR is also fantastic.

There really has never been a better time to be playing games.

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I want to give a shout out to Pyre, which I completely slept on last year. I didn’t like Bastion or Transistor, and the idea of a linear sports rpg sounded pretty unappealing. I was wrong. It was one of the best games I played this year and if i could edit my 2017 list I would put it at number 2 right behind Breath of the Wild.

It felt like the truest successor to the storytelling of last gen’s mass effect series. Can’t say enough great things.


So I’m gonna post about it over in this thread for a more structured pitch, but I am of the opinion that Rain World by Videocult is a near unplayable masterpiece. It had a little hype before launch because it has this awesome, unique procedural animation system that made everything look fluid and wild. It also has this gorgeous, weird art style. It just looks incredible in motion. But after launch, I think a lot of people passed it over. It’s not the kind of game I think a lot of people expected.

It’s a cruelly difficult, confusing, and frustrating mess. It’s hard in a way no other game I’ve ever played is, and it is unrelenting in that difficulty. But with all that, it gave me an experience as a player I don’t think I’ll ever get again. So I don’t think I’d call the game my favorite of the year, but I definitely think it deserves more praise.


also hell yeah Pyre kicked ass

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Oh dang, I forgot Rain World came out in 2017, my brain had it as 2016 for some reason. That game is an incredible piece of work and in a more just world would be widely considered one of the best indie games of all time. But it isn’t something like Super Meatboy or Celeste or Hollow Knight or Hyper Light Drifter where the difficulty is wrapped in familiar genre and mechanics, its far more of its own unique thing that follows its own rules and I think that unfamiliarity scared of a lot of people away from really giving it a shot. But its such a special game that really does things no other games do and I love it so much. It is a 2D survival horror metroidvania set in a massive fully simulated ecosystem and that is the most tailor-made-for-me game I could possibly think of. I need to go back and try to actually finish it at some point soon.

I wonder if they released a Switch version, would there be there any hope that it’d get a big surge in attention like Hollow Knight did? Probably wishful thinking lol


Night In The Woods and Breath Of The Wild were my top two games of 2017, and they both are likely to remain in my personal “all time greats” list for the foreseeable future. My partner and I just re-played NITW in October in what could be a new fall tradition. And we are just now using the BOTW expansion as an excuse to return to Hyrule and do a little more cooking / clothing upgrading / Korok finding / gliding off tall objects. It’s just reminding me how much of a joy it is to traverse the world in BOTW.

Reading the replies to this thread, I find myself intrigued by Pyre and Rain World - two 2017 games I missed. Hopefully I’ll have time to play them in 2019!

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I think it might, but I wonder whether or not it would be a good way to experience Rain World. On one hand, being able to run through a cycle while you’re on the subway sounds nice, and the game can feel way better in short bursts, but on the other hand, the intensity of those cycles feels so intense that I feel playing in public would feel… strange.

edit: also, it’s worth saying that the narrative in Rain World is another part of the game that is like, impossible to engage normally with but is absolutely brilliant when you get into it.

Still think it would be cool, though. Not sure if it would be worth the time investment on their end. I’ll wishfully think as well, though! It’s an incredible game.

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Thank goodness y’all have so much respect for Pyre here. I liked Bastion when it came out, and Transistor even more when it came out… I replayed both this year and found that while they still have some charm, they don’t hold a candle to Pyre, which feels like it was where Supergiant finally felt unencumbered by expectations and did something weird and unique.

I don’t think I’ve soured on anything that I played in 2017, except maybe Hellblade a little bit the same way @Navster did. More like, having played a bit of catch up this year, making a top 10 for 2017 would be even harder than it was at the end of 2017. This year I played Night in the Woods, some of Assassins Creed: Origins, Tacoma, Opus Magnum, Gorogoa, Life is Strange: Before the Storm, and Snake Pass.

I think only a few of those would have been top X contenders against my genuine favorites like Nier: Automata, Persona 5, Hollow Knight, Horizon: Zero Dawn, Pyre, etc. that I really adored in 2017, but they all were great experiences that I’m glad I came back to!

Phew. 2017 sure was a year, huh?

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Didn’t play Night in the Woods last year. Finally played it on Switch this year. It does deserve the acclaim it got.

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I picked Night in the Woods last year as my GOTY, I think it is still incredible and exceptional. But I the game I probably love most still ends up being Neir: Automata. Night in the Woods is hilarious and a very special personal story, it is something everybody should play. But… how can I say no to a existential anime robot girl action game with incest aliens and super dark moments?

Ultimately it all comes down to whether I prefer the charming indie movie or the huge blockbuster. I like to think of myself as the indie guy, but I’m actually more about chugging popcorn and explosions.


My thoughts on the year in retrospect are pretty much the same as they were at the time. I still really like Prey, Pyre, and Night In The Woods. I still really hate Persona 5, Nier, and Zelda. I have come to like Prey even more than I did at the time thanks to it’s DLC though. Mooncrash is real good

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