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Games. Specifically video games. We love them, hate them, get frustrated at them, and basically play them to the end. Then there are some games you just can't wait to drop. Because of boring story or bad mechanics, they turn you off. The games you never want to end—those are rare. Let's talk about some games I've played in the last year and how they stack up.
We'll go from lowest to highest. The best is always saved for last.
1. 'The Witcher: Wild Hunt'
PS4 and Xbox One
I had high hopes for this game when I saw the previews. It looked awesome, great story, and I got to kill monsters. However, upon first play, I realized that this game, although absolutely gorgeous, was lacking in a lot of departments. One of the things it wasn't lacking was story. Like all Witcher games, this one had a great story. I won't spoil it, because it's the ONLY reason to actually play this game. That and the monster killing. No, what killed it for me was the mechanics. I couldn't get on my horse as it rode past me. That made me die like a million times. Second, Geralt swings his sword like a true hero, but he also jumps a great distance when doing so. A wild sword swinger, if you will. The crossbow is the most frustrating weapon. The slightest movement will send it veering off in another direction, and don't expect to aim at what you're killing because there is automatic arch in your shot. You have to aim high in order to hit ANYTHING. I had quite a few shadow glitches which at first weren't bothersome, but during cutscenes I'd see the shadows flipping around and that got me. Fast traveling sucks. I'm a freaking Witcher, I have magic. Why can I not just fast travel wherever? Yennifer can go wherever the heck she wants, but I have to find a stupid sign post just to fast travel. The signposts aren't close sometimes either. Not to mention you can just wander into enemies who are three levels higher than you on the map... hello, death.
Overall frustrating, but if you're a committed gamer then this game is worth a playthrough—if anything, just to experience the story because it's awesome. I played it on my PS4.
2. 'God of War'
Again, beautiful game. Absolutely beautiful. For veteran God of War players, this game is probably epic and awesome. The battles are insane, the scenery is awesome, and the storyline is great. For me. this game was just about weapon usage and the son who never shuts up. You wield an axe, pretty standard. However, I got real tired of throwing the axe constantly to kill enemies. To be fair, I only played through the beginning part so this game may get better as you go along. That was all that made this game a no go for me. Camera was good, aim was good, and overall movement was good. Just didn't like having to throw that axe all the time. Plus the kid... grrrr, the kid. He never shuts up, seriously, and he whines ALL THE TIME. You can't mute him, you can't kill him (believe me, I tried), and you can't leave him behind. You're stuck with him. Plus, though, you get to hear Teal'c from Stargate SG-1 your entire gameplay. :)
3. 'Mario Kart 8'
What can I say? At first it's fun. Especially on a plane, long car ride, and during general bouts of boredom. Eventually, though, it's repetitive. You have quite a few tracks, which to be honest are fun. However, it's only fun with two. By yourself it's kind of a no brainer. It's not classic Mario Kart either. Beautiful, but lacking in that old Mario Kart charm. No special uses for the controllers, but you do get a good rumble.
4. 'Super Mario Party'
Mostly lame. Small board, about 100 mini games. After two, three, or ten turn games we've already played all the mini games once or twice. They use the Switch controllers ONLY which means you have to play with a tiny little baby controller. You have NO OTHER CHOICE. The mini games for the most part are fun. However, the computer controlled characters cheat all the time. Mario for instance was a computer controlled player and he rolled six every single turn. Every one. His dice has two sixes, and other numbers. The odds are stacked against you depending on who you pick. Daisy, her block only has 3 and 4 on it. So you can only roll 3 or 4. All the other characters have a variety of differences in their blocks.
Secondly, they have these new ally spaces now. If you land on it, you can get an ally whose dice roll counts towards your moves on the board. If you never land on that space, NO ALLY. So the computer characters are running around with four allies and I have two and my mom has NONE. How is that fair gameplay? There's an overall happiness to the game that is frustrating. YAY teamwork. On the sidelines we called them Ho's but we're high fiving because the game wants us to.
ALSO... you can't play single mode until you've played ALL the mini games which actually wasn't that hard. :(
It's nothing like Mario Party 8. The big birthday cake... forget it. A board that took like twenty minutes to go around once... those days are gone. The game boards are just way too small. Mario got a star at the end of the game just for going around the board a bunch of times. You also get a star for the most allies.
Don't recommend. Play it once and then send it back.
5. 'Harvest Moon'
Farming. It's the life for me. I actually quite liked this new installment of Harvest Moon. A little frustrating, but I like a challenge. The graphics were a little odd, but for the most part it was a pretty fun game. It kind of looks like a mobile game to be honest, but the simplistic design makes it easy to play.
Basically you sell crops, sell fish, make money, and upgrade your farm. You can make more money fishing and it's actually pretty fun. Explore the cave and solve the mystery. I'm about halfway through and I really enjoy it. I've been a fan since the original Harvest Moon came out for Gamecube. It's a small game so I opted for digital download, but you can buy the physical game too.
If you like a timekeeper this is a good game to just chill to. No skill needed, and very low key. Pass the time kind of fun.
6. 'Super Mario Odyssey'
Super Mario was one of the games on Switch I was excited to play. Awesome graphics, great story, and just a really fun game. I won't lie... it's pretty easy up until the end. The last boss, it gets a little more challenging, but for the most part it's pretty easy. It's fun collecting all the stars, finding your way around, and taking in each world. You can go to different worlds too and that makes it super fun. It's a game definitely worth a playthrough.
7. 'Persona 5'
Awesome. Persona 5 is a great game worthy of a playthrough. It's fun, strange, weird, and generally scary sometimes. I've had so much fun invading castles, stealing hearts, and beating these weird things. Making stronger personas is awesome too. Just a great game.
8. 'Ni No Kuni II'
An adorable and fun game. A mix of animal and human people in a kingdom. You play as a young prince with his friends who are determined to create a kingdom and gain allies in the hopes of defeating the evil rat people and saving the cats. It's a great bout of fun. Good battle mechanics, great dialogue, and good story. Worth a playthrough.
Xbox 360, Xbox One, PS4, and Switch
Epic. Nothing else needed. Play it and experience the epic world yourself. Don't get killed. I have this game for both PS4 and XBOX One S and the difference is amazing. So much prettier on PS4. Do not play it on the Switch. The graphics were cut in half and your horse wants you to die. Choppy gameplay on the Switch. Beautiful on PS4.
You play as you. Total control of character creation. Be who you want and rule Skyrim.
10. 'Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild'
Zelda... who didn't play this game growing up? Zelda strikes again with this epic new game that you'll never want to put down. I had so much fun playing this game... I never wanted it to end. Play it.
You play as Link and you've gotta save Zelda! Ganon is even more scary and you can free roam anywhere. Climb trees, mountains, go into the snow, the heat, the hills, and the desert. It's a wild ride.
11. 'Horizon Zero Dawn'
Epic game. SO many cool things, so many awesome places, great graphics, and awesome gameplay. Mechanics are great and I didn't want the game to end. Fight the machines, kill Hades, and save your world! Play this game for sure.
You play as Aloy, a young outcast who is the only one who mysteriously has access to these underground machine building places and secret openings. Follow the story and find out why there's a kill order on your head.
Gameplay is weird, but the worlds are beautiful and the battle scenes are great. Just don't pay too much attention when the cutscenes happen. It gets weird. It's worth a play, though. You have control of your character's looks and your twin brother. It's easy to get a funky looking character, though.
There we go, those are my top picks currently for 2018. Games I'm playing next:
- Red Dead Redemption 2
- Tomb Raider
- Assassins Creed Odyssey
If you're wondering why Final Fantasy 15 isn't on here, it's because it's a 2 year old game. It's totally worth a playthrough, though, as it's awesome and epic.