The 2018 Waypoint Community List of Lists


#1

Hey, Waypointists!

This isn’t part of the Waypoint mod team End of Year event, but I was chatting it over with a friend and got to thinking: listicles are popular at the end of the year. Whether it’s your top five games, the best albums, or the articles you’ve found most interesting, my timeline has been full of these lists. Even those of us who aren’t mining that seasonal #content feel the itch to put some together.

With that in mind, I thought I’d open up a freeform space for us all to do a little bit of our own listicle action.

I don’t want to make us all beholden to style guides, topics, or even necessarily certain conventions. I want to give you the space for your favourite five, the classic top ten, or the podium-finish three – and I don’t just want to hear about games (although, somehow, I imagine we’ll have a lot of games in this list) – anything goes! It can be your preferred representations of food in games, NPCs, or albums – maybe you will find inspiration for our End of Year 2018 threads too.


To stir the pot a little (and to justify this title), I am going to use this list as an opportunity to make a grand old list – a List of Lists. Consequently, I’m going to need some help from you – if you want to be featured in this opening post, make sure the following two things are clearly stated:

  • List Title
  • Topic

That’s it! That’ll just help me get it all together for the list of lists. I’ve included some model formatting below for folks who might have some trouble with the default listing tool.

Formatting

We’ve noticed some oddities in how Discourse has been formatting lists lately. To get around this, I would recommend using the below template for your lists:

----

`5)` 

`4)` 

`3)`

`2)`

`1)`

Let’s list!


The List of Lists


#2

Let’s give you an example or two!


Top 5 Films That Robowitch Saw In 2018

According to my profile on film diary website Letterboxd, I watched twenty films this year. By my standards, this is what I would call a pretty good innings. I am not a huge film buff but think that cinema is fascinating; I endeavour to do better in watching more.

Reflecting on my year, here is a smattering of the films that I would like to talk about – it’s hard to watch a bunch of Kurosawa films and put anything else in your ‘top five’. Think of this more as a statement of what I want to talk about than an indication of the relative qualities of the films. As a non-film buff, my views are, at best, amateur hour.


5) Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse – I don’t really love comic book films, so that this film has stuck in my list despite being perhaps the most comic book film is a testament to its quality. From a relatively straightforward, but remarkably efficient, script to its fantastic animation work, this film is a very solid piece of work. I am still looking for that Gwen character poster, though…

4) The Shape of Water – My favourite 2018 release (technically). A deeply sentimental but caring film; I saw it twice in the cinema and have evangelised for it since.

3) High and Low – This listing is for, well, half of Akira Kurosawa’s work. In a week in which I endeavoured to watch a Kurosawa film a night for a week (I managed six of seven – let’s just say that something came up), I found the divide between Kurosawa’s modern and ‘period’ work to be quite fascinating. High and Low was the first film I watched and it augured a great deal of potential – it was the latest film in his filmography that I watched and the style was captivating.

2) Sanjuro – Sanjuro represents the flipside to the above in that it is both a period piece and, well, much sillier. I think I enjoyed this film more than its more influential predecessor – its sharp tone, brief but great action sequences, and transparent political commentary all did a lot for me. This is the film that made me realise how electric the chemistry between Toshiro Mifune and Tatsuya Nakadai was, as their relationship becomes the load-bearing pillar of the film. It’s the most fun I had watching Kurosawa – so it rises above the rest to be on this list.

1) Your Name – This is a film that truly does reflect my biases and eccentricities to the highest degree. Putting this at the top of my list is almost a testament to my tastes in a way that is almost entirely unflattering to me. However, Your Name is almost tailor-made to strike through me like a knife through hot butter, relying on conventions that fascinate me by nature and leading to a conclusion of a very particular sort. I read the His Dark Materials series when I was eight or nine and the ending of it, in which two lovers, Will and Lyra, are separated, permenantly, by a dimensional barrier stuck with me, a poignant and firm reminder that you can always lose what you love. While Your Name retreats from such a firm stance, it does play enough with notions of lost time and missed opportunity that it made me truly sad to watch. Yesterday never returns.


#3

Some ideas for lists!

Top 4 (Genre) Games
Top 6 NPCs
Top 3 Boss Fights
Top 2 Favorite Mechanics
Favorite Couch Co-Op Games
Top 4 OTPs
Top 5 Vehicles in Games
Top 7 In Game Animals
Top 3 Videogame Worlds You’d Actually Want to Vacation To
Top 3 Videogame Foods you wish were real


#4

Top Liverpool Players of 2018

7) Gini Wijnaldum and also the rest of the dang team.

6) Trent Alexander Arnold / Andy Robertson - Young lads who aree really doing what the gaffer asks of them. Tireless.

5) James Milner - Older lad who is doing everything the gaffer asks of him. The most Underrated player of our generation.

4) Alisson – Has only been with us for six months but has saved our season a bunch of times already.

3) Virgil Van Dijk – A moderately aged lad who has done everything the gaffer asks of him, and has more than earned his transfer fee.

2) Sadio Mane / Bobby Firmino – Two lads who do everything the gaffer ask and never stop fighting.

1) Mo Salah – Never stops scoring. The best forward in the world.


#6

Realized my last list was not in-line with the forum’s rules on horny posting, so I’ll go with something more PG. Here are the best things my wife has said whilst playing Pokémon Let’s Go Eevee:

  • “I beat your stupid Rattata, kid, now hand over the Poke balls!”
  • After I explain the concept of grinding “That’s not as fun as what you do at the club. They should call this ‘boring time’ or something.”
  • “I’m rubbing my little Pancake!” Pancake is the name of her Eevee
  • “hurr hurr” Every time her rival, who is named ‘butt’, shows up on screen
  • “Fuck your freedom, get in the damn ball!”

#7

Lists are fun! They’re extremely arbitrary and I love to do arbitrary things.

Top 3 Point ‘n’ Click Games I Played This Year That Had Disappointing Sequels (That I Also Played This Year)

Before this year, I thought that I hated point and click adventure games but I finally forced myself to play through a handful of them and hey it turns out some of them are actually pretty good! Yay! And some of them have pretty disappointing sequels! Oh no!

  1. Still Life & Still Life 2 - The first game ended on a pretty big cliffhanger then they start off the sequel by saying "oh yeah, we solved that and everyone knows what happened, we’re just not going to tell you until you finish this game, despite it being totally unrelated to that plot. Still Life 2 also had a lot of technical problems and I eventually gave up on the game after having to go through an extremely tedious crime scene investigation sequence for a third time. This isn’t really related to my disappointment but I just want to give a shoutout to Still Life’s soundtrack because it has some legitimately good/creepy/eerie music in it.

  2. Syberia & Syberia 2 - Hey, there’s some real actual disappointment here. The first Syberia was pretty good all around. Solid puzzles, an interesting story, fun areas to explore, a relatively modernized take on point ‘n’ click games, it had the works. But then in Syberia 2 they suddenly went back on a lot of that. The story went some really weird places and was just occasionally a big bummer. Perhaps worst of all, though, was that the puzzle design took a nosedive. In Syberia 1 you could pretty much get through everything with solid logic and paying attention to clues, but in Syberia 2 they just threw all that away. I had to brute force several solutions and relied pretty heavily on a walkthrough because most of it just didn’t make any sense (feed the bear the red fish and not the green fish so it will leave you alone).

  3. The Longest Journey & Dreamfall: The Longest Journey - Okay this one is a little unfair because I only played about an hour of Dreamfall: The Longest Journey but I felt weird having a list with only two things on it. I was pretty immediately disappointed that I wasn’t playing as April Ryan and it seemed like they were going somewhere else with the plot. Then when I was looking some stuff up about the third game and the franchise as a whole, it turns out that the main person behind the series (Ragnar Tørnquist) has said that while he wants to make another game in the series it probably isn’t going to happen, so that’s a pretty big bummer too. I should really play Dreamfall and Dreamfall: Chapters, though.

Top 4 Pieces of Media That Aren’t Video Games or Anime That I Consumed This Year

I’ve realized that I don’t really watch/listen/read/etc much stuff outside of video games or anime so I wanted to put a small list of the things I really loved.

  1. Bloody Rose - I, sadly, haven’t been reading a lot of books lately but when a close friend gave an extremely strong recommendation for this I checked it out. I read it over the course of a few days while travelling for Thanksgiving and when I finished it I wanted to start over and immediately re-read it. It’s a wonderful fantasy adventure with some amazing action and an incredibly lovable (and queer) cast of characters.

  2. Mandy - After hearing about it on Waypoints (and also Alex Navarro’s twitter) I checked this out on streaming and absolutely loved it. I’m not really into anything horror or scary stuff in general but this is such a different thing that I was super in to it. The arthouse thriller… thing. I’m not even sure what to call it. I preordered the BluRay and watched that on a nice big 4k TV once I got it (which is absolutely worth doing, if you haven’t seen it yet I recommend watching it on the biggest nicest screen you can).

  3. Revue Starlight OST - This is the soundtrack to an anime but it’s technically not an anime so I’m putting it on this list. I’ve been listening to it a ton lately, especially while doing some writing, and it’s just so extremely good. I’ll point out my two favorite tracks: halation and 再生産 (reproduction).

  4. Land of the Lustrous Manga - OK this does have an anime adaptation (that is fantastic and people should probably check it out) but the manga is extremely good as well and people should probably check it out as well. I love the art style of it, the character’s faces can be rather simple but extremely expressive.


#8

Top Five Times I Wondered Just How Fucking Long Red Dead Redemption 2 Is

  1. After the bank robbery in Saint Denis
    (“Man, this game is long. I’m not really opposed to it, but cripes”)

  2. After Guarma
    (“Did they make a whole separate ecosystem for 2 hours of gameplay? WHAT?!”)

  3. After Chapter 6 and Arthur’s death
    (through tears “Wow, that was beautiful, and time consuming. Surely, now it’s over.”)

  4. When “Epilogue: Part 1” appears on screen
    (“Uh… okay. You know, I have a life and a full time job R*, I kinda need to go. I love your game, but can I go please?”)

  5. When “Epilogue: Part 2” appears on screen
    (“JESUS CHRIST. SET ME FREE.”)


#9

Top 5 Games That Rehabilitated My Love for Games after God of War Almost Killed It Forever

  1. Thief Gold & Thief 2: The Metal Age - After about 3 happy, game-free months, I decided to go back to a couple of my favorite games of all time. They reminded me what it’s like to play a game that has mechanics that are engaging from start to finish, even when those mechanics are relatively simple.

  2. Dark Souls: Remastered - By the time I finished the Thief games I was ready to move on to something a little more action focused. Dark Souls reminded me that combat in games could feel deliberate and powerful without being a total cake walk or ridiculously punishing depending on the difficulty setting.

  3. Metal Gear Solid 1-3 - Conquering Lordran once again had me finally ready to play something I hadn’t played before. The Metal Gear Solid series reminded me that games could have the thematic depth and breadth to keep me thinking about them months after I played them.

  4. Forza Horizon 4 - When I had finished plumbing Hideo Kojima’s mind for answers, I was finally able to muster the enthusiasm to buy a new game. Forza reminded me that it’s okay to have fun while you’re playing games, and that it’s okay to put them down the second you stop having fun.

  5. Return of the Obra Dinn - After a few months of dabbling in other games, Obra Dinn really got it’s hooks in me. It reminded me that games could challenge me in more cerebral ways, and make me feel like a genius.

My short breakup with games has made my relationship to the medium much healthier. I read more books now, and I watch more movies. I get my fill of narrative from mediums that are much better at it, which allows me to enjoy games for what actually makes them special.


#10

Favorite NPCs

5) The Cat Chefs from MonHun World

4) Gabriel from Quarantine Circular

3) Eila from Ashen

2) Theo from Celeste

1) Emilie from CrossCode

(I will edit with descriptions I just wanted to get this list down)


#11

3 Good Games That I Obtained In 2018 That I Probably Won’t Finish Until Late 2019 Or Later Not Because I Don’t Like Playing Them Or Anything My Focus Is Just That Bad

  1. XCOM 2 - i really love customizing my soldiers and creating shitty posters, and the strategy is pretty fun, but it is long and overwhelming and i have ADHD

  2. No Man’s Sky - i’m really glad i picked this game up because the planets all look incredible, i love taking photos of all the interesting animals i find, and the storyline is very intriguing, but it is long and overwhelming and i have ADHD

  3. Subnautica - i’m a HUGE fan of marine biology and weird aliens so this game ticks all my boxes, i have so much fun exploring this world and it hasn’t been too much of a horror game for me so far, but it is long and overwhelming and i have ADHD


#12

top 5 dogs:

  1. saw a dog two weeks ago, very good
  2. i rlly liked this dog i saw on snapchat
  3. my friends dog is really cute
  4. cartoon dog
  5. my friends dog, again, this time asleep

#13

Games I want to play more of/have not played yet but really want to from 2018:

  1. Battletech
  2. Pokemon Let’s Go!
  3. Vampyr
  4. Hitman 2
  5. Just Cause 4 (it’s good, y’all)
  6. Heaven Will be Mine sounds dope
  7. Assassin’s Creed Odyssey (How can you not like Kassandra?)
  8. Return of the Obra Dinn
  9. Hollow Knight

#14

Got two lists for yalls.

Favorite short, single-sitting games (that ironically took me two sittings to play through):

  1. Gorogoa - Really clever puzzle game that does very interesting things with framing and perspective.

  2. Donut County - A “hole-gobbler” (as Rob calls it) with lots of charm and personality.

  3. Floor Kids - Uhhhh a score-attack/rhythm game centered on breakdancing??? Neat!

Questionable, potentially controversial, potentially trash content that I found myself actually kinda enjoying:

  1. Strangers: Prey at Night - I really enjoyed the original Strangers film and absolutely did not want a sequel, and yet, here we are…Hey, but there is a scene (CW: Violence, blood) with Bonnie Tyler’s “Total Eclipse of the Heart” playing in the background, so that has to count for something right??

  2. Devolver Digital’s Big Fancy Press Conference 2018 - A weird semi-parody semi actual press conference put on by Devolver Digital during E3. Check a look!

  3. Eminem’s Kamikaze album - As icky as his subject matter can sometimes be, I can’t deny the dude’s a super talented wordsmith. Coupled with that is the fact that this album is essentially a rant in response to his previous album not selling that well, so I knew I’d be in for a ride.


#15

The Best Not-Quite-Metroidvanias (Despipte Being Declared Metroidvanias) of 2018:

  1. The Messenger - This game is a Metroidvania … eventually. The Waypoint team generally had good things to say, though Patrick panned the length of the initial bit of the game, which is much more linear than the latter parts. Personally, I really enjoyed it despite it not opening up yet. It gave a lot of good runway to get to know the abilities you pick up, and had a difficulty curve that was shallow enough to keep progress nice and snappy as you traverse the world. Once the “now this is a fully explorable world with portals between past and present” bit happened, I felt that the buildup was well justified! It really made the entire world (most of which I’d seen in one timeline or another) feel like it was full of new secrets.
    Also, the humor was a bit over-the-top but had an endearing genuineness to it, especially since I played it on the heels of the infinitely-more-try-hard Guacamelee! 2.

  2. Dead Cells - It’s definitely not a Metroidvania . But it borrows the element of permanent traversal ability upgrades and uses it to unlock access to new stages, including new intermediate stages. What’s so cool about that is that you can get 3 or 4 stages in, get a new ability, and then on your next run have a new branch to take at stage 1 or 2. That structure keeps new runs really fresh because they branch so early and often, and it’s one of the ways that Dead Cells succeeds at reducing tedium.

  3. Death’s Gambit - This game tends to have an identity crisis from time to time, and though it was marketed and discussed as a Metroidvania , I would argue that it is not one because none of its areas are gated by abilities or gear, and you don’t gain new traversal abilities during the game. However, it was a really interesting 2D soulslike. While messy and inconsistent, it was also full of interesting boss fights, dramatic music tracks, and surprisingly effective narrative flourishes. There are plenty of rocky elements, and the variety and balance of the combat is out of whack, but the team seems committed to addressing feedback and continuing to improve and expand the game. It has a ton of potential to be something special once it’s more refined.

Note about terminology: I don’t mean to be an ass about how to use Metroidvania as a classification, but for the sake of the above list the required elements are:

  • A persistent open world to explore, or at least branching paths
  • Abilities or gear that, once acquired, allow access to new areas in the world

All of these games were declared Metroidvanias by reviewers or tags on steam, hence this pedantic list. Also! If anyone’s interested, I wrote more about all these games on my hobby review blog: https://pauldoyle.space/blog/


#16

Top 8 Zones in 2018
Fortuna, Warframe
Lathyrus Palace, Ashen
The Library, Octavi Navarro’s The Librarian
The Inn, The Hex
Ossuary, Dead Cells
The Bridge, All Walls Must Fall
Miami, Hitman 2
(This space reserved for when I play more CrossCode)


#17

9, discourse.zone


#18

True

(Even mods are subject to the 15 character limit)


#19

The Bridge in All Walls Must Fall is a sneaky good pick. The feel and the theme music for it is such a good contrast to rest of the game, and yet it fits so well.


#20

Another two great Zones for the full top ten, that couldn’t be more opposite, the airport in this game, which reframes the airport as a space for surreal horror. It’s doing things I think are really smart that I’m legitimately stumped to try and explain why. I played this two nights ago, it takes about 10-15 minutes (unless im missing something big, and gosh is it affecting.

I am now very excited for this

The other game that I want to shout out for having a great zone is Touch Melbourne, which is an impressionistic tour of Melbourne, Australia. It also takes about ten minutes to play and is very good.


#21

Top 13 Most Powerful Heat Signature Names i’ve Seen This Year

  1. Thankful Stillness
  2. Jazz Truth
  3. Sly Dialect
  4. Ocean Prince
  5. December Orchard
  6. Gemini Glass
  7. Catch Cavness
  8. Magic Gemini
  9. Castor Coldstar
  10. Crater Dust
  11. Sunshine Fiasco
  12. Zero Hightower
  13. Ash Fairplay