To complement our Game of the Year episode, the New Game Plus cast and crew have prepared some of their own GOTY lists, which we will be publishing throughout this week. Firstly, the face of our Facebook, Jamie, presents his top three games of 2013.
2013 wasn’t the greatest year in my mind. Don’t get me wrong, there were plenty of cool games, but unlike 2012 there are very few that I feel that I’d like to go back to. I’d like to think it’s due to the new generation of hardware and resources focused towards that, so perhaps 2014 will be different. Until then, here’s my top three of the year.
While I had always been interested in giving Sony’s MLB: The Show series a shot, it never really clicked to me just how just how big a deal it was. And while I dug the game quite a bit, it took a trip to AT&T Park in San Francisco to ‘get’ what makes this series special. It’s the little touches, from how stadiums are recreated, to animations and specific player features are captured — it’s unlike most sports games.
The game itself is also rewarding as all hell. Hitting the ball is one thing, hitting it well is another. Getting a good game where you’re getting hits can’t be matched. Not to mention that dream scenario of the last inning, bases loaded, hitting a homer and winning the game — it’s unbelievably satisfying.
I was so impressed with this game that I’m making the next instalment my first PS4 game. inFamous may be cool and all, but the upcoming MLB 14: The Show is my reason for grabbing a PS4
[Watch New Game Plus’ 2013 Sports Wrap (5:00)]
For a few years now, the NBA 2K series has easily been my sports game of choice. It’s got the right level of complexity and an obscene attention to detail that few sports games can manage. Last year’s game was a misstep in many regards, thanks to a lot of pointless and badly implemented changes and additions — all of which are fixed in 2K14.
The biggest addition is a slew of new defensive moves that reward you extensively for learning them, not to mention a fun mode theorising the future of cover athlete LeBron James. The rest of the feature set is still top notch, and MyPlayer is still the best single player mode in a sports game.
It also looks to be one of the best sports series on current generation hardware, with insane new modelling and animation tech that fundamentally changes the game. I cannot wait to see how NBA 2K15 changes all this up.
[Watch New Game Plus’ The Last of Us review]
After the lacklustre Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception, it’s great to see Naughty Dog bounce back with a game that, from start to finish, just grabs you and keeps you captivated.
What makes the game work for me is twofold. Firstly, I love how the game plays; it’s very open and approachable with how you take scenarios. While stealth is almost always the better option, when you do get caught and having to fight enemies, improvising combat solutions is fun in its own right.
And then you have the dynamic between Joel and Ellie. Both characters play off each other and compliment each other perfectly well, and the game is paced well enough that you’ll grow to know them over what feels like a natural period of time — especially given some of the situations the two get themselves into.
Without a doubt, The Last of Us is the one game I enjoyed the most this year. I am very interested to see where Naughty Dog take this universe in the future.
Come back tomorrow for more games of the year from the NG+ cast and crew