Gaming Video Games

gXp 10 Favorite Video Games of 2017

Has there ever been a year in gaming that has been as polarizing and controversial since 1992, which led to the formation of the Entertainment Software Ratings Board? I mean, some of the topics that arose out of the video gaming genre this year really struck a nerve with gamers everywhere – no matter what side of the argument you were on. Still, despite all that, the year managed to put out stellar game after game in 2017. Some were expected to be huge successes, like the majority of Triple A titles should be, others were sleepers that came out of nowhere and took the gaming community by storm, and some surprise apps and mobile games even popped up and game gamers a reason to stick to their cell phones and tablets for a quick dose of gaming fun.

Indeed, 2017 is going to go down as one of the most important and influential years in video gaming that we have seen in recent years. Mark my words, 2017 is going to be remembered as a pivotal year in gaming. But, with that being said, I am getting a bit off topic here. I wanted to talk about my favorite video games of 2017 and I will get on with that list right now. Keep in mind, this is a subjective list comprised of games that I personally found to be my favorites of the past year. Not the best games or the most memorable games, but my personal favorites.

*Summaries provided by Metacritic.com and Wikipedia.org.

Honorable Mentions: Cuphead, Dark Rose Valkyrie, Fate/Grand Order, Pokkén Tournament DX, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

10. WWE 2K18

Developed by: Yuke’s & Visual Concepts
Published by: 2K Sports
Genre: Sports
Platform(s): Microsoft Windows, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
Release date: October 13, 2017

Summary: A new MyCAREER experience puts you on the path to greatness as you journey along on the road to WrestleMania. Explore WWE through free-roaming backstage, conversing with WWE Superstars, forming alliances, making enemies, seeking out quests, and strategizing for upcoming matches. Road to Glory – Can your MyPlayer make it to the WWE Hall of Fame? Introducing the all-new Road to Glory. Compete with opponents online to improve your MyPlayer by earning unlockables, boosts and upgrades all while securing your entry into Special Events that are held alongside real-life WWE special events, such as pay-per-views.

Yeah, the professional wrestling fan in me is saying that there are some issues with WWE 2K18 that should have been addressed while in development. But – the fan in me is also loving the fact that I can create dream matches at will, challenge my friends online to some crazy matches, and the create-a-wrestler feature, which has always been one of my favorite options, allows me to create everyone from my favorite superheroes and celebrities to family and friends.

9. Fate/Extella: The Umbral Star

Developed by: Marvelous
Published by: Marvelous & NA: Xseed
Genre: Action
Platform(s): Microsoft Windows, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita
Release date: January 17, 2017

Summary: The Moon Cell Automaton is a spiritron computer, which exists on the moon and has the power to grant any wish. Throughout the spiritron-constructed virtual world, SE.RA.PH., Servants and the Masters who control them fight for the right to be the Moon Cell Automaton’s sole owner in a ceremonial conflict known as the Holy Grail War. Now, the Servant Nero Claudius and her Master have won the Holy Grail War and have obtained the universal wishing mechanism, the Holy Grail. They also obtained the Regalia, a ring that proves their kingship. With it, they rule over their once-enemy Servants and start a new beginning on the moon’s new world. But a new enemy has appeared before them. And this enemy has something that shouldn’t exist: another Regalia.

I am already of huge fan of the Fate series of games, so when Fate/Extella: The Umbral Star was announced and it would feature gameplay that many would liken to the Dynasty Warriors series, another series I am a huge fan of, and I knew I was going to be playing this for hours on end – and it didn’t let me down.

8. Cyberdimension Neptunia: 4 Goddesses Online

Developed by: Tamsoft
Published by: Compile Heart & Idea Factory International
Genre: Action, Puzzle, Role-playing
Platform(s): Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4
Release date: October 10, 2017

Summary: In this hack ‘n’ slash adventure co-developed with Tamsoft and Compile Heart, everyone’s favorite four Goddesses enter an online fantasy game world inspired by…themselves! Joined by the CPU Candidates, you’ll fight in 4-person real-time brawls, unleash devastating Awakening Skills, customize with tons of cosmetic accessories, and even play online with others!

No lie, I will always love the games in the Neptunia game series. There is just something about the characters, the setting, and the stories for each game in the series that I simply adore. And with this new game in the series, Cyberdimension Neptunia: 4 Goddesses Online, was one of my favorite games in the entire series. I think I have played through the game at least three times just because I couldn’t get enough of the humor and extremely cute characters.

7. Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite

Developed by: Capcom
Published by: Capcom
Genre: Fighting
Platform(s): Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
Release date: September 19, 2017

Summary: The epic clash between two storied universes returns with Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite, the next era of the action-fighting game series. Marvel and Capcom universes collide like never before as iconic characters team up for action-packed player-versus-player combat.

Look, I’m not saying that Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite didn’t have some glaring issues; what I am saying is that, on a whole, I rather enjoyed the game. I wish I could’ve played as some of the X-Men characters (thanks Fox), the music for the game was regrettably forgettable, and the graphics could have really been tweaked, but when it comes to the actual gameplay I really enjoyed what was presented.

6. Resident Evil 7: Biohazard

Developed by: Capcom
Published by: Capcom
Genre: First-person Shooter, Horror, Survival
Platform(s): Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
Release date: January 24, 2017

Summary: While Resident Evil 7 draws from the series’ roots of atmospheric survival horror, it also delivers a new level of terror. In the Resident Evil games of yesteryear, players braced for fear in the first-person via the creepy door-opening scenes, and Resident Evil 7 ramps up that tension with an immersive first-person view and a photorealistic graphical style. Capcom is able to achieve a higher degree of visual fidelity thanks to the new proprietary in-house RE Engine that includes VR oriented tools. With the RE Engine plus industry leading audio and visual technologies, you experience every abhorrent detail up close and personal in Resident Evil 7. Playing the game in the PlayStation VR Mode escalates the unsettling feeling of presence to a level that horror fans have never experienced. The full gameplay experience is available in the included PlayStation VR Mode from beginning to end. No Resident Evil you’ve ever survived could prepare you for this.

After Resident Evil 6 I had very little hope for this series moving forward. I thought that Capcom had humped the bunk so bad that there was no way the series could ever be rectified – but from the first glimpse of the trailer for Resident Evil 7: Biohazard dropped I had a renewed hope for the series. And when I finally got to play the game, I was not let down as it seemed that Capcom had finally remembered what it was to create a survival horror game.

5. Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War III

Developed by: Relic Entertainment
Published by: Sega
Genre: Real-time, Strategy
Platform(s): Microsoft Windows
Release date: April 27, 2017

Summary: Jump into a brutal battle between three warring factions In Dawn of War III. You will have no choice but to face your foes when a catastrophic weapon is found on the mysterious world of Acheron.

What Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War III does extremely well is take what made the first two Dawn of Wars game hugely popular, mix in some classic and time-honored real-time strategy elements that fans love and expect, and adds in some of the amazing property that is the Warhammer series and you have yourself a recipe for success that both Warhammer fans and RTS gaming fans could easily get behind and play for hours on end. By the way, Relic – my wife won’t ever forgive you for all the hours she spend watching me play the game.

4. NieR: Automata

Developed by: Platinum Games
Published by: Square Enix
Genre: Action, Role-playing
Platform(s): Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4
Release date: March 7, 2017

Summary: NieR Producer Yosuke Saito, director Taro Yoko and composer Keiichi Okabe return, teaming up with character designer Akihiko Yoshida and PlatinumGames to present the next entry in the saga – NieR: Automata.

What the hell?! Where did this game come from? I mean, I was a fan of the original NieR pair of games – NeiR Gestalt and Neir Replicant – and I was a fan of the series that the games were a spin-off from – Drakengard – but I never expected NieR: Automata to be the hit that it was. Excellent gameplay, amazing graphics, and a deep and engaging story, I really enjoyed this game to no end this year.

3. Fortnite

Developed by: Epic Games & People Can Fly
Published by: Epic Games
Genre: Survival, Third-person Shooter
Platform(s): macOS, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
Release date: July 25, 2017

Summary: The Storm came without warning and wiped out 98 percent of the world’s population in a flash. Poof. Adios. Sayonara. Then came the monsters, wave after wave, night after night. Destroying everything in their path. But it’s not all doom and gloom. In an abandoned missile silo, we’ve found one of our first weapons against the Storm you. We’re looking for a few good commanders like you to help make a difference, push back the storm and protect those among us who are unable to protect themselves. Explore the world. Rescue survivors. Make hundreds of guns, swords, and things that go boom. Make impregnable forts. Tastefully decorate with sniper perches, poison gas traps, and jump pads. Take back the world. You know, the usual. And be sure to invite your friends. Welcome to Fortnite.

While many others would consider PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds a superior game as opposed to Fortnite, personally I have had way more fun playing Fortnite than I ever did playing PUBG. More so, I have had a lot of fun watching my three kids play this game as it was easier for them to get into and play around with as opposed to PUBG. Plus, and this is a huge plus considering my kids are still all under 12-years old, the online community for Fortnite has been exponentially less toxic and more welcoming and helpful than I ever encountered in PUBG.

2. Injustice 2

Developed by: NetherRealm Studios
Published by: Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
Genre: Fighting
Platform(s): Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
Release date: May 16, 2017

Summary: Every battle defines you. Power up and build the ultimate version of your favorite DC legends in INJUSTICE 2. With a massive selection of DC Super Heroes and Super-Villains, INJUSTICE 2 allows you to equip every iconic character with unique and powerful gear earned throughout the game. Experience an unprecedented level of control over how your favorite characters look, how they fight, and how they develop across a huge variety of game modes. This is your super Hero. Your Journey. Your Injustice.

Take all the things that made Injustice: Gods Among Us successful, add in a bit more of the successful rebooted Mortal Kombat fighting mechanics, and add in some customization that allows you to power up your hero or villain to your liking to a moderate degree, and you have a fun to play and addicting fighting game in Injustice 2 that kept me and my kids busy for hours and hours.

1. Uncharted: The Lost Legacy

Developed by: Naughty Dog
Published by: Sony Interactive Entertainment
Genre: Action, Adventure
Platform(s): PlayStation 4
Release date: August 22, 2017

Summary: The first standalone adventure in Uncharted franchise history led by Chloe Frazer. In order to recover a fabled ancient Indian artefact and keep it out of the hands of a ruthless war profiteer, Chloe Frazer must enlist the aid of renowned mercenary Nadine Ross (from Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End). Venturing deep into Indias Western Ghats mountain range, Chloe and Nadine must learn to work together to unearth the artefact and fight their way through fierce opposition to prevent the region from falling into chaos.

Naughty Dog is a developer that just seems to get better with each new game they release. And that is saying a lot because I thought that with the Uncharted series they couldn’t do any better than the swan song for Nathan Drake in Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End. I thought it was a damn near perfect game. But when they released Uncharted: The Lost Legacy, not only did they release one hell of a fun and entertaining game, they released what I would consider, arguably, the best game of the Uncharted series. I had loads of fun playing through the game, I thought the story was simply astounding, and I thought and firmly believe that The Lost Legacy is the best game, and certainly my favorite, video game of 2017.

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