As the year ends, everyone here at Nerd(Col)lab wanted to wish you all a very happy holiday and a fun (and safe) new year! For our last collaboration post, we posed the question to ourselves,
What are our top games of 2017?
To keep this inclusive, we opened up our picks to not only video games but also tabletop games as well. Here’s what we chose and perhaps they may be a good last minute gift for those nerdy types in your life!
As anyone here at Nerd(col)lab can vouch, I’m not much of a gamer but I did come across some games that I really enjoyed this year. The first is a tabletop game that I fell in love with and during my second time playing it, I purchased it from Amazon straight away. The game is called Sushi Go Party! Card Game and it’s a pumped up version of the card game Sushi Go! I honestly played Sushi Go! years ago and didn’t particularly like it. But this version was so much more fun and the ability to customize the game gives it that illusive replay ability factor.
The game is pretty simple where you are trying to build the best card combinations to score points each round and ultimately gain the most points based on your sushi combos. The best part is you can choose from more than 20 other dishes to add to the menu, making the game unique each time. I really enjoyed this game and was happy to add it to my tabletop game shelf!
Another game that I’ve been anticipating for some time now is Star Wars Battlefront 2 that was released in November, a month prior to the release of the newest Star Wars movie. I’ve enjoyed playing Battlefront here and there but the multiplayer aspect isn’t really my thing. I got into this game because I’m a huge Star Wars fan and playing as a stormtrooper had been super fun, especially running around on Hoth but I’ve anticipated the solo player campaign the most.
As of now, I’ve only had the chance to play a bit but it has been fun so far. If you’re a fan of the first game and want the latest and greatest offering with not only a solo player campaign but a class based system game like Overwatch, then check out Battlefront 2!
My top games this year are a combination of video games and tabletop games. This year, I was introduced to the Nintendo Switch and even though I did play a few games on my PS3 (RIP Disney Infinity) and PS4 (Star Wars Battlefront), the Switch has definitely taken a lot of my time. And, being a big tabletop gamer, I was introduced to a few must play games which I will be itching to play at every game night, family gathering or in line at a con! Here are my top 5 games that I played this year!
1. Splatoon 2 on the Nintendo Switch – This game is why I was so interested in getting a Switch. I did not have the opportunity to play the original game on the Wii U system, but was so excited to see footage of Splatoon 2 during the Nintendo Switch launch last March even though the game was not released until July! I am not really into first person shooter games and with all the time and effort you have to put in to get familiarized with the controls and to compete against other players, I could not find the time. But with Splatoon 2, it isn’t a traditional shooter and I can ink the turk (objective of turf war is to cover the ground with more ink than your opponent.) Plus, with the 3 minute time limit per game, it’s easier to play a few short games wherever you have the free time!
2. Sushi Go! – This game was a lot of fun to play and first played with a few new friends at a Bachelor party. You combine a strategic card game with the awesomeness that is sushi and you get Sushi Go!. The replayability is very high with this game and with its relatively quick game play, you can have rounds and rounds of fun!
3. Legends of Zelda: Breath of the Wild on the Nintendo Switch – This game got my so engrossed in playing after the Switch launched. It is definitely a must own for the Nintendo Switch as well! I clocked in more than 270 hours of playing time and being a completionist, I did not want to defeat Ganon before I completed all the shrine quest and gathered all the kook seeds. It was my first open world game and it did not disappoint at all!
4. Organ ATTACK! – I wrote a post about Organ ATTACK! which you should check out on our blog. I was impressed with the cartoony organ cards and the ease to set up and play. It starts out simple and can play up to 6 people total, but toward the end of the game with less organs to afflict, it can get pretty savage! With a quick game play and different levels of game play quality, Organ ATTACK! will be in my regular tabletop game rotation!
5. Overcooked on the Nintendo Switch – I was able to play this coop game at one of our game nights and I had so much fun! We started out playing it in tabletop mode with four people which you can imagine, was very difficult to view. But, once we docked it in TV mode, it was not only easier to see each avatar but easier to control them. It is deceptively simple with the object of the game to cook and serve different recipes together, it can get crazy with four people trying to do everything at once from gathering ingredients, prepping the ingredients (cutting the food), cooking the ingredients, plating the cooked food and serving it, and you still have to wash the plates once the food is eaten! Our co-op team had to do a few levels over again because we didn’t reach the point requirement to move on to the next level, but we still had a good time being chefs!
1. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild – This was my first Zelda game and I was so impressed by the level of interaction and freedom given to the player. You could climb pretty much anything you saw. Puzzles/shrines were thought provoking. Gameplay was physics based. Crafting elements were not overly complicated. The story was intriguing. All of these elements made BoTW the game of the year for me.
2. Cuphead – The animation-style alone sold this game for me. It’s throwback to 1930s cartoons made the gameplay fun to watch and it’s difficulty – while frustrating at times – never made you lose hope. I still haven’t beaten it but it’s easily one of my favorite games of recent years.
3. Destiny 2 – The game I am currently playing. It’s a solid shooter with great sci-fi elements. The shared game world makes it feel alive and I enjoy the loot grind if only to find the best looking armor for my Hunter.
4. Overwatch – While I don’t play this game as much as I used to, it’s definitely staying installed on my machine for the foreseeable future. With the constant events and new skins, it’s a game that I will always check up on even if I’m not actively playing it.
5. Witcher 3 – Yes, I know, this game came out in 2015 – but I just finished the main campaign this year and I can easily say it’s one of my favorite games of all time. The characters are so well throught out. The quests are meaningful and the world itself is so well realized. There are 2 DLC packs left and I am trying to finish them but I’m in no hurry since I love spending time in this world.
Jason T’s picks:
Games I didn’t have a chance to play, but want to:
- Persona 5 (PlayStation 4)
- Nier: Automata (PlayStation 4, PC)
- Xenoblade Chronicles 2 (Nintendo Switch)
- Hey! Pikmin (Nintendo 3DS)
Horizon: Zero Dawn (PlayStation 4)
I really wanted to like this game, but the storytelling and the horrible facial animations ruined the experience for me. These issues aside, the game has great environmental designs and wonderfully animated robotic creatures. It’s one of the best looking games released in 2017. I also really enjoyed wandering around the world and hunting the machines. If anything, play Horizon: Zero Dawn just to hunt the machines.
Splatoon 2 (Nintendo Switch)
I had a ton of fun playing the original Splatoon on the Nintendo Wii U. Splatoon 2 takes everything that made Splatoon a hit and improves is ever so slightly. It could be argued that Nintendo played it too safe, but I don’t think there is any need to make drastic changes to how Splatoon plays. This one is a must have for any Nintendo Switch owner.
Star Fox 2 (Super Nintendo Classic Edition)
As a video game preservationist, I’m really happy to see this game get an official release. You can see, by playing Star Fox 2, what ideas Nintendo took from this game an applied it to Star Fox 64 and other Star Fox games. It feels very dated by today’s standards, but if you are able to take yourself back to 1996 when it was originally supposed to be released, you might find it to be an enjoyable follow-up to the original Star Fox. Definitely pick up a Super Nintendo Classic Edition if you can find one.
Windjammers (PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita)
It’s Windjammers. And a really good port to boot. ‘Nuff said!
My Top 5 Games of the year 2017!
5. StarCraft: Remastered – PC
StarCraft / StarCraft: Brood War together are a candidate for my favorite game of all time. I think it’s amazing that Blizzard took the time to redraw every sprite and background tile output all those assets at 4K resolution. They took a wonderful game and made it look better, all without modifying the original content or changing how the game plays. Being able to hot swap between 4K and original resolutions is a neat trick that further emphasizes the level of effort Blizzard put into remastering StarCraft.
4. Metroid: Samus Returns – Nintendo 3DS
I’ve been clamoring for another 2D entry to the Metroid series. Last year’s AM2R scratched the itch very nicely (it was honorable mention in my Best and Worst Games of 2016 post), but received a takedown notice from Nintendo soon after release. Metroid: Samus Returns, like AM2R, is a remake of Metroid II: Return of Samus – and a pretty good one at that. I really enjoyed how well this game plays on the Nintendo 3DS (and if you play with a decent set of headphones, the game sounds pretty awesome). Metroid: Samus Returns is a great swan song for the Nintendo 3DS and I look forward to what’s next for the Metroid series.
3. Cuphead – PC, Xbox One
Even just by glancing at footage of Cuphead, you can tell that it was a labor of love. Taking its art style from the 1930’s, Cuphead is single handedly the best looking game released in 2017. It just evokes the feel of animation of that period, right down to the scratches in the film, the voice acting, and the noise in the audio track itself. Despite the cartoon look, Cuphead isn’t an easy game by any means and is one of the most difficult games released this year. I had a lot of fun with Cuphead and really enjoyed the effort the developers put into their game.
1. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild – Nintendo Switch (tie)
1. Super Mario Odyssey – Nintendo Switch (tie)
Cry foul if you want, but I really couldn’t choose. 2017 is the year of the Nintendo Switch, hands down. Neither the Xbox One nor the PlayStation 4 had a game that could hold a candle to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild or Super Mario Odyssey. Both games took the established respective game play styles we’ve grown accustomed to over the years and upended them to give an open world style of gameplay that works beautifully.
Breath of the Wild went back to its roots in the original Legend of Zelda for the NES and gave the player just enough direction to let them go on their merry way through Hyrule. I put 120 hours into Breath of the Wild, and I still haven’t seen everything there is to see. What makes Breath of the Wild shine above other open world games is the fact that, if you see it, you can go to it. No invisible walls along the way. Just you and the environment. Explore, climb, and adventure to your heart’s content. Breath of the Wild is one of the best Legend of Zelda games to ever be released.
Super Mario Odyssey is pure magic. I don’t think I’ve had such a huge smile on my face while playing a Super Mario game since, perhaps, Super Mario World. From tossing Cappy to take control of baddies to using Cappy to make complex jumps, Super Mario Odyssey plays beautifully. It’s the most fun I’ve had playing a video game in years.
It’s been a great year for games and we hope you found our list worthy enough to check out some titles as well! We’re capping 2017 with this post but hope you’ve enjoyed our collaboration posts and opinion pieces this year. Again, from all of us here at Nerd(col)lab, have a wonderful Christmas and a great new year!
*ALL IMAGES WERE FOUND VIA GOOGLE IMAGE SEARCH
What were your favorite games of 2017? Are there any that we didn’t mention? Let us know! Please feel free to leave a comment below or on our Facebook page here or Instagram page here or our Twitter page here.