Once again, congratulations to Celeste for taking home the prestigious In Third Person Game of the Year award! Though there can only be one winner, there were a number of fantastic games that were “thisclose” from taking the crown. Let’s take a moment to tip our hats to some of my favourite games of 2018!
What criteria do you use when determining your Game of the Year? Is it the game you played the most? The game with the best story? The game you spent hundreds of hours mastering every nuance of? For me, many factors are at play, including those just mentioned. But the one defining thread between all of them is the sense of lingering impact they gave me in the moment and beyond. In many cases, those games still have an active presence in my mind and heart and aren’t going away.
Mass Effect 2 might have had to share the spotlight with Super Street Fighter IV in 2010 when I used semantics to try and give both the nod in their own way, but I still remember the former fondly as being one of the single greatest adventures I ever embarked on in a game, while the latter was a phenomenal fighter that served as a turning point for my fighting game career. Skyrim was the consensus pick in 2011, but I don’t regret honouring Catherine instead. The latter still holds a special place in my heart for its novel gameplay and a mature story about infidelity; a subject almost never covered in games. Overwatch is a fantastic shooter that has made a resurgence in my life in recent months, but in 2016, Pokemon Go was the easy Game of the Year choice for me based on how much the game shifted my in-game and real life. I don’t write about the game much now, but I still play Pokemon Go every day with a fervour to catch ’em all.
In 2018, there were a number of games that excelled in many different ways. But when I think about this one particular title, it ultimately stood above the pack for the profound impression it left on me. Long after playing it, I still think about the joy I felt in the moment, as well as the message it conveyed through its experience. My Game of the Year in 2018 is…
Kris and Rachel from Double Jump make their Boss Rush debut! Games discussed include Spider-Man, Pokemon Fire Red, Skyrim for Switch, The Sims 4, Stardew Valley, Street Fighter EX3, Destiny 2, Hollow Knight, and Blossom Tales: The Sleeping King! Also, in the game show segment, the crew inducts video games into the hall of fame for shot at the Boss Rush championship belt!
Throughout the course of my history as a gamer, there are two game franchises that are my kryptonite: Dark Souls and Metroid. The former brutalized me with its unforgiving combat and its need for players to really study the nuances of it all in order to scrape by. The latter exploits my inability to memorize directions. To this day, I’ve still never beaten a Metroid game for that reason, even though I own most of them.
Hollow Knight is the twisted child of those games mashed together. With a labyrinthian cave to explore with limited navigation guides, methodical combat that will punish button-mashing, and a limited save system that will regularly cause you to lose many minutes of play by virtue of not being able to locate the next save point in time, I initially had no plans to play this one at all. Never say never I guess, as the rave reviews and a sizable discount inspired me to give this one a go.
A confusing climb to the top led me to a deadly gauntlet! Do I have what it takes to eek by the first challenge in the Colosseum of Fools? About 11 hours in and I’m still liking Hollow Knight a lot! Even in moments when it crushes my soul like this one 😦
Working my way through the Greenpath until I square off against Hornet in Hollow Knight!
These spooky caves in Hollow Knight sure can be confusing. Thanks to the chat for the help! I still have my concerns that this game isn’t going to be my cup of tea, but let’s keep pressing forward until I inevitably get stuck!