2013 is coming to a close and it was a wonderful year for gamers. With next generation console releases, fantastic games, and many exciting announcements in the industry; 2013 was ground breaking for video games. I’ve decided to put together a list of my top ten video games for the year 2013.
10. Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn (PC, PS3)
A few months ago, I wrote an article on why I kept coming back to the renowned MMO World of Warcraft. I reconnected with one of my old friends and she told me to try out Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn. I was, of course, hesitant because I was already so invested in World of Warcraft and was paying a monthly subscription of $15. I found out that the first month of FF:XIV was free and the game was fairly cheap since it had been out for several months. So I went out, bought the game, and installed it. As an avid fan of the Final Fantasy series, I was surprised at how many iconic FF references I came across. From the gorgeous music composed by Nobuo Uematsu, the beautiful art, the battle mechanics, and even some familiar characters like Moogles and Chocobos; after a few weeks of playing, I cancelled my World of Warcraft subscription and subscribed to Final Fantasy XIV instead. World of Warcraft has been established for about 9 years now so it’s always hard for any new MMOs to compete with it but Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn was a breath of fresh air with so many interesting aspects that I was able to easily transition from a game I was so familiar with to something that was completely new.
9. Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon (Nintendo 3DS)
I was actually very surprised with Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon. I have always been a huge fan of Luigi’s character and his mannerisms always made me smile as he was such an unexpected hero especially in the Luigi’s Mansion series. The game almost reminded me of a point-and-click adventure where you had to poke and fiddle with items in each room to discover the hidden ghosts and surprises. For my in-depth review, check it out here.
8. Fire Emblem: Awakening (Nintendo 3DS)
Fire Emblem: Awakening was my introduction to the Fire Emblem series and after playing this game, I actually went and tried to find some of the older games in the series. This RPG was incredibly unique as characters in your party got better from improving relationships with other characters in the party. This feature was so in depth that characters could even marry and have children and the children could inherit the parents abilities and stats. So if you were serious about having the best characters in your party, you could strategically plan out certain characters and progress their relationship in the battlefield so they could have the ideal child with fantastic stats and awesome abilities. For my in-depth review, check it out here.
7. Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch (PS3)
Hayao Miyazaki films are loved by so many around the world. Princess Mononoke, Spirited Away, My Neighbor Totoro, and Howl’s Moving Castle are just a few of Miyazaki’s masterpieces. When I found out that the same studio that makes these movies were working on Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch, I was instantly intrigued. This game was like playing one of Miyazaki’s movies and the combat system was an interesting mix of real time battle with the use of companions. RPG fans would be doing themselves a disservice by not trying out this fantastic game exclusively for the PS3.
6. Pokemon X/Y (Nintendo 3DS)
The newest installment to the Pokemon series surprised Pokemon fans new and old. Introducing a new generation of great Pokemon, a new type, and the use of the 3D mechanics for the Nintendo 3DS system; the game was easily one of the best Pokemon games to be released in a long time. Players had the choice of new starters and later on in the game could choose an additional Pokemon from the original starters. Battle stayed the same but the game introduced a new ability called mega evolution that really changed how some fights ended.
5. Super Mario 3D World (Nintendo Wii U)
Nintendo really changed the way gamers looked at the iconic red plumber and his pals with the release of Super Mario 3D World. With the addition of new power ups and a new world to explore; Super Mario 3D World brought something new but still very familiar to the Wii U system. Check out my in depth review right here.
4. The Last of Us (PS3)
I would be lying if I said I didn’t enjoy most apocalypse style video games or fiction for that matter, however, I am totally able to admit that the zombie and end of the world scenario is becoming quite old and overdone. I was incredibly surprised by The Last of Us as it was in an apocalyptic setting but the characters were captivating and the enemies were definitely not your typical undead walker. Check out Effigy’s in depth review right here.
3. Bioshock Infinite (PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
I was pretty hesitant about this game when I found out that there would be no return to Rapture. Now don’t get me wrong, Bioshock is one of my favorite video game series but the original city where it all started was where my heart was. After playing Bioshock Infinite, I was quite surprised at how much I actually enjoyed the game. There were so many aspects that made the game unique like using the Skyline hook to travel around Columbia and the introduction of vigors which replaced Bioshock’s original genetic “magical powers” called plasmids. My favorite thing about Bioshock Infinite, however, was the story which made me think and want to re-play certain parts of the game just to experience the story all over again.
2. Tomb Raider (PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
The original Tomb Raider games were one of my favorites as a kid. I have so many fond memories of playing the original Tomb Raider with my dad on our old television and actually utilizing the hint call line because we continuously got stuck in the game. Experiencing the re-boot of the series in 2013 was a real treat. Square Enix did such an amazing job of making Lara Croft into a “real” person.
1. The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds (Nintendo 3DS)
My number one game of the the year 2013 was, of course, The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds. Those that know me pretty well know that The Legend of Zelda: A Link to The Past is actually my favorite game out of the Zelda series so I had long awaited the release of ALBW. Even though I was excited about the game, I was still a little nervous. ALBW was definitely not going to be a re-make but rather a new adventure in a familiar universe. I was still worried about the game not living up to my expectations or my beloved a Link to The Past. I realized that after I was done playing the game that ALBW lived up to my expectations and more. For an in depth review, check it out here.
2013 was such an incredible year for the video game industry and gamers. There were so many other games that were released in 2013 that were amazing but this is just my personal top 10. So now I’m curious… what are YOUR top 10 video games for the year 2013?