Hello and welcome to the latest edition of the Giant Bomb Community Spotlight and I, @zombiepie, am honored to you host this week! With everyone getting back into the swing of things, and GOTY a distant memory, I hope all of you in the Northern Hemisphere have been able to stay warm and comfortable this last week. As the winter weather bites at your bones, there's so much to talk about this week regarding the Giant Bomb Community AND video games in general! Many of you are still wracking your brains on what was the most notable release from 2017 was, and if it was a hallmark year for games. Others already set resolutions or took a valiant stab at your backlogs. Regardless, thank you for being here, and let's transition to the site related housekeeping.
Alex Navarro is very tired.
In the interest of not beating a dead shitty horse and also getting this list up in a semi-timely fashion, I'm going to keep this opening short. I think you probably already know how I feel about the events of 2017. If you'd like it summed up in a metaphor, if 2016 was the feeling of veering off a road, 2017 was one long, protracted sensation of watching through the windshield as your car careens down a hill. My hope for 2018 is that at the bottom of that hill--a bottom which we most assuredly have yet to see--is a nice patch of soft grass that will minimize the impact, and not a yawning chasm, the floor of which can't even be seen from this distance. Maybe we'll be able to get up and walk away with a few scrapes and bumps and only a totaled vehicle to worry about, and not a fiery ball of death from which there is no escape. Gotta look on the bright side, right?
It's been very strange trying to maintain focus on video games this year. Nothing could possibly feel less important, more utterly frivolous than these goofy fucking entertainments. But I also recognize that people need these frivolous entertainments in the face of overwhelming dread. I certainly did. I spent more collective hours...
Yoko Taro is a video game writer and director best known for his work on Square-Enix's Drakengard and spin-off Nier franchises. His latest work, NieR:Automata, was developed in collaboration with PlatinumGames, and released in 2017 to critical acclaim. You can find him on Twitter at @yokotaro.
*The platforms mentioned are those that Yoko Taro purchased and played on, and do not represent all of the platforms that the titles have been released on.10. INSIDE (Steam)
Playdead’s previous title, LIMBO, was an artistic title that mixed high difficulty gameplay with philosophical questions. I cannot help but purchase a new game from them. That game made me think… while I may be busy every day, I want to make sure to set aside time to play games that are important.
That being said, in the end I wasn’t able to make the time. So although I purchased it on Steam, I haven’t been able to play it even once. Regardless, I am sure that it is a masterpiece. Not only because it is a game developed by Playdead, but also because everyone’s reviews are great as well.
I'm Janina Gavankar. I play things and when I get lucky, I play in them. These are my favorites of this year. Also, thank you to GB and the community for being really kind to me this year. Please note: I made this while emotionally hung over from the Last Jedi premiere.
Hi everybody. I’m Bakoon and this is the fourth time they’ve asked me to do this. It has been a hell of a year for games and gaming. We all doff our gamer’s helmet and salute the calendar, which roars in delight. Before I begin, lets take a minute to think about who we have lost this year. RIP the guy from Amagon; autoerotic asphyxiation has claimed another “blue angel”. May you become weirdly beefed up and strong in Hell with David Carradine, that guy from INXS, and the original Dr. Pepper.
CAVEAT: I haven’t picked up one of the new Nintendos yet, so I haven’t played the new Zelda or any of that yet. It looks great and I want to play it. I feel like I preemptively need to say this so that I might prevent people from stomping all over my dick about it. I need that to pee out of, folks. Also I am foregoing a numbered ranking system. These games are equal in my heart. I am not a Gamepro, I have no real grasp of “fun factor”. Who am I to say what is...
Jason Oestreicher is the Senior Video Producer on the West Coast and often does video things to the Giant Bomb site. You should not trust what he has to say because he likes those Monster Hunter games.
This awful, sucker-punch of a year is almost over and I'd like to keep it that way. So. Moving on...
10. Nintendo Switch
“Oh, I bet that’d be pretty awesome on the Switch” is a phrase I found myself saying a lot this year. While the concept of a handheld isn’t at all a unique experience, playing games on a Switch somehow feels like it is. Old games like Skyrim, new ones like Battle Chef Brigade, and potential bangers like, say, Animal Crossing, all have a place on this handy little guy.
My Switch and I became very close this year. Granted, it’s hard to not love a system that touted a return-to-form Mario and a bold new Zelda adventure. But what really kept the system and I together wasn’t necessarily the library (Oh, man. That launch was pretty light, huh?). Rather, it was the tender moments we shared playing Mario Kart 8. Again. And when the family TV was taken over by Puppy Dog Pals, the Switch was there for me.
Now we come to the final payoff. This is our final day of deliberations and our final set of categories. We've been through a lot together, and the people here at Giant Bomb hope you've enjoyed our stuff this year. Let's get down to it and clear the slate before we all take on 2018 together.
We also have our last batch of lists from the staff and friends, so check those out, too. Hey, want a video, right here, for you? For free? OK, here it is!
Cool! Here's the final set of Nicolas Cage pictures, which as you know are here to separate you from the winners. Don't scroll down unless you want to see those winners right now!
Best Super Mario Odyssey CapturePokio
Look, we all saw that E3 trailer and loved...
Hidetaka "SWERY" Suehiro is a game designer, beverage enthusiast, and Buddhist priest best known for his work on games like Spy Fiction, Deadly Premonition, and D4: Dark Dreams Don't Die. His new studio, White Owls, opened its doors this year. You can follow his continuing adventures in drinKING on Instagram and Twitter.
In 2017, it was Nintendo's Year for me personally.
The Nintendo Switch, which was released in March, fascinated me for months, and full-fledged Nintendo content that can be played on a Mobile Phone also appeared, which was not bad to me.
As a bonus, they finally released Star Fox 2. This is one of the things I found most unexpected this year.
Not only that, a lot of Japanese games were released. It was a very good year for the Japanese game industry.
Also, unfortunately there were too many games released on Steam, and I could not keep track of them all.
There are lots of wonderful indie games on Steam. But how do we find out about them?Especially in Japan,...
Teddy Dief is a game designer and writer. He co-designed indie RPG Hyper Light Drifter, Co-founded LA game collective Glitch City and the Square Bowl charity, and is now a Creative Director at Square Enix. To hear his unsolicited opinions on game design and fashion, find him at @teddydief.
2017, whoa. I hope you’re doing okay out there. A lot of people were let down by leadership that we trusted to represent our interests. Thankfully, our games are an oasis where we can refuel and rally. This year, some feared the Death of Single Player at the hands of loot boxes. That war has taken the lives of some promising games this year. But I have faith in the amazing people making all sorts of games today. We are bigger, more diverse, and louder than ever, and we fight back.
Most games I gravitated to this year explore friendship, relationships, and how we coexist without destroying each other. Here are the games of 2017 that I loved most:10. Destiny 2Best Cape Fashion
I’m real bad at shooters. Sitting down for an evening of getting killed by the...
John Bellomy is a programmer at Naughty Dog, known for his work on such popular franchises as Uncharted, The Last of Us, and USB Drivers for PlayStation 3 Fight Sticks/Instrument Controllers. Please yell "YEE-HAW" at him via Twitter.
Sitting here trying to unpack the twenty years of life that happened in the last twelve months doesn’t seem like a year of half measures. With more than a fair number of bright spots set against the backdrop of larger anxieties, this year felt especially exhausting and writing this as I am huddled up recovering from the flu only adds to the sense of limping across the finish line. For all the retreating from the outside world I found myself doing, there was just a staggering amount of amazing titles to lose myself into. You can find so much to love this year, from teams big and small, the breadth of creativity on display reminds me why I joined this industry and leaves me hopeful for us and our future. But really between Horizon, Assassin’s Creed, Mario, etc., my real game of the year is photo mode.10. Gorogoa
Escher-esque puzzles with lovely storybook aesthetic to...
IT'S BEEN A BUSY YEAR FOR OL ZODIAC. NEW HOUSE NEW JOB MARRIAGE KIDS... ZODIAC DIDN'T DO ANY OF THAT SHIT. NO WHAT ZODIAC DID THIS YEAR WAS DRINK. A LOT. HE ATE A LOT OF CRAZY BREAD. HE WATCHED BUZZARD 98 TIMES. HE RESOLVED TO ALIENATE HIMSELF FROM HUMANITY ENTIRELY (EXCLUDING VARIOUS FOOD DELIVERY EMPLOYEES AND DOCUMENT COURIERS) AND HAS BEEN LARGELY SUCCESSFUL WITH IT. HE GOT ON MEDS AFTER A VIOLENT INCIDENT HIS COUNSEL HAS ADVISED HIM NOT TO DISCUSS. HE GOT OFF MEDS AFTER A VIOLENT INCIDENT HIS COUNSEL HAS ADVISED HIM NOT TO DISCUSS. AND HE WENT TO UNIVERSAL STUDIOS. BY HIMSELF.
ZODIAC DRINKS KESSLER AND LIVES AT THE MOTEL 6. WATCH HIS INEXORABLE DECLINE AT WWW.TWITTER.COM/ZODIAC_MF. OR DON'T. FUCK IT. WHAT THE FUCK DO I CARE.10. Party Hard
WE'VE ALL BEEN THERE: THERE YOU ARE TRYING TO SLEEP OFF A SOLITUDINOUS BENDER BUT THE PARTYING ASSHOLES NEXT DOOR JUST WONT KNOCK IT THE FUCK OFF. AND GENERALLY YOUR OPTIONS ARE TO EITHER CALL THE COPS LIKE A NARC OR FACE BATTERY CHARGES. BUT PARTY HARD PROPOSES AN ALTERNATIVE: SNEAK INTO THE PARTY AND STAB THE SHIT OUT OF EVERYBODY...
OK, yesterday was a whirlwind of emotions, but if you're here then that means it must be time for the fourth day of our proceedings. We've got another fresh batch of categories for you, available in the now-customary way. If you want audio, we've got a long podcast full of it. If you want video, we've broken that up into one video for each of the day's four categories. Here's that!
We also have a hot batch of lists from guests and the staff of Giant Bomb, as well as some video-based excitement, embedded below.
OK, the winners are below these images, so don't scroll any further unless you want to read more about those! See ya tomorrow when we wrap this whole thing up!
Best DebutPlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds
I honestly think 2017 might be one of my favorite years for games! It was one of those years without a WoW expansion, but even had there been one, I still think I would've preferred to spend my time on the bevy of fantastic games that have graced my computer. I'll let someone else do a state of the union, though: let's get down to business. I don't claim to have any special criteria for this list; instead I'll just say that it's down to which games gave me the most sheer enjoyment in the act of playing them this year.10 (TIE). Divinity: Original Sin 2 / Destiny 2
I’m going to go ahead and call this what it is: a total goddamn cop-out. These games are not at all similar (except enough in name that I constantly say one when I mean the other), and I’ve flip-flopped back and forth as to which one I wanted in the ten-slot so often that I figured I’d just split the difference.
Divinity 2 is clearly the better game here. It’s huge (I’ve spent almost 50 hours in it and have yet to get past the beginning of Act II), and offers more choices to a player than probably any isometric RPG that I’ve ever played. You have complete control over...
Danny O'Dwyer makes a ton of gaming documentaries over on his Patreon, Noclip. He lives with his wife in one of those tiny states on the east coast, but spends lots of time flying around the world talking to developers and staring at Adobe Premiere timelines. He's also a real good dude. Find him on Twitter at @dannyodwyer.
When I wrote my Giant Bomb Game of the Year list for 2016, I had clocked in 7 months at GameSpot before leaving to form Noclip. That means I had 7 months of responsibly playing as many games as I possibly could. Those days are gone.
I’m honestly a little embarrassed. This list is written by a man who has worked for himself for 12 months. Who played whatever games he wanted, not what he thought he should. In fact most of the games I played a lot of this year were older games we covered in some of our docs. For instance, I played a bunch of Final Fantasy XIV and The Witcher this year. I played through The Witness again. God knows how many hours of Spelunky I clocked in.
At times it felt like there were so many great games coming out that I’d never catch up with them. I’m halfway through Wolfenstein (good...
Brad Shoemaker hasn't played Dota in several months and keeps telling himself he might be off the habit for good, which means he'll inevitably start playing it again as soon as he has nothing else going on. Idle hands do the Dota's work.
Well, what a year. Writing a piece about the best games of 2017 and only talking about games would feel insincere, if not downright irresponsible, so here goes. This isn't a conventional list of 10 games because, frankly, I barely finished 10 games in 2017, and I sure spent large swaths of it thinking about games no more than was required for my job. In a year when callousness, hatred, and greed held sway, when a large portion of the populace seemed to renounce its desire for basic facts, and when new affronts to common decency arrived by the day, it usually felt like there were more urgent things to pay attention to. I spent what was probably an unhealthy amount of time transfixed by all the shocking developments, both in the United States and around the world, in this strange new era in which we find ourselves. More often than not it was impossible to look...
His titles include Enclave (2002), The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay (2004), The Darkness (2007), Wolfenstein: The New Order (2014), and Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus (2017).Horizon Zero Dawn
I loved exploring Horizon’s breathtaking valleys and the ruins of our future world. The game is a lovely marriage of vast possibilities and strong narrative cohesion. I found it fascinating to dig into the archeological storytelling and uncovering bits of information about the past events that led to the state of the world. A special nod goes out to the art direction of the mechanical fauna which is simultaneously awe inspiring and terrifying.Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice
A high-risk concept, executed...
Bennett Foddy is a New York-based designer who is directly responsible for games like QWOP, CLOP, Super Pole Riders, and 2017's Getting Over It with Bennett Foddy. When he's not creating games that make people scream in anguish, he works as an Assistant Arts Professor in game design at NYU's Game Center. He's @bfod on Twitter.My Summer Car
For me one of the most interesting trends in PC gaming right now is "anti-design", meaning games that resist or totally ignore the popular orthodoxies of game design. We all know well-designed games need to be easy to understand and play, and that they should explain themselves clearly, and always be fair and reliable. Well, My Summer Car is not like that. It dumps you in an unfamiliar country and time period with no explanation. Then asks you to do something you have no idea how to do, inside an extremely detailed autobiographical simulation. It’s crude and nonsensical and almost impossible, which feels extremely fresh in an era of perfectly polished, perfectly playable games. A massive breath of fresh air.Human: Fall Flat
Well HELLO, friends! Nice to see you all once again! This year has been pretty wild for me, but thankfully I’ve been able to take a few dips into 2017’s pool of particularly good video games. I spent a fair amount of time this year on planes, so that may have something to do with this list being pretty mobile-heavy, but that aside, I still wish I could play everything on the Switch. That thing is great! Anyway, here are some games:10. SteamWorld Dig 2
I loved the original SteamWorld Dig for how laid-back it was, but fell off once I got my fill of the simple loop of digging and upgrading. Dig 2 keeps the lackadaisical nature of the series but has more going on like crafting and a simple quest system that extended the time I spent with it. I eventually got stuck and haven’t gone back to it, but I think the game is symbolic of...
Bruno Dias precariously straddles the line between “game dev” and “game journalist,” with mixed results. His nonfiction has appeared this year mainly on Waypoint, and his writing will be in Dim Bulb Games’ upcoming Where the Water Tastes Like Wine. His 2017 mobile game, Voyageur, is coming to PC in 2018.
The end of this year comes with two feelings: “Fuck you, I’m still here, you couldn’t kill me”; and “I’m so glad to have made it this far to have seen what I have seen.” This was a hard list to put together; the first six or seven games in it came very naturally, but after that it was very much a wide open field. Indiepocalypse or not, loot crate madness or not: so many incredible games came out this year, and I hope they helped you find peace and meaning in turbulent times.Dishonored: Death of the Outsider
Dishonored is a fantasy of revenge, a story about clawing your way back to the top of a power system. In Death of the Outsider, it becomes a fantasy of revolution. It’s about breaking the existing power so that a new world, for better...
Hello. How are you? Sitting comfortably? My name’s Mike Bithell, and I make games. Games like Thomas Was Alone, Volume, and this year’s Subsurface Circular. I was asked to write a list, and this is that list. It’s a good list. I’m happy with it. Sort of. This year has been a busy one, so if a game you love isn’t present, then you can probably go ahead and assume it’s because I didn’t find time to play it. This has been a phenomenal year for games (and not a lot else), so I suspect I’ll be going back and playing a bunch of 2017 vintage stuff over the next year.
All those caveats done, let’s go for it. Star wipe to:10. Yo! Let’s UP (Android)
This is not my first rodeo. I know that GOTY lists need to begin with something obscure that you might not have heard of so as to establish my pretentious credentials and show you you’re in safe hands. This is mine. I have no idea why I downloaded this game, I probably saw it flicker across social media at some point, but it’s very possibly the game I’ve spent the most...