NoobFeed Editor's Choice 2018

Our picks for the top games of 2018.

By Woozie, Posted 31 Dec 2018

Another year of video game releases comes to an end meaning that, as is customary, we took some time to look back on everything we played throughout 2018 and pick our favorites. Before we get into it, however, we’d like to thank our readers for sticking with us for another year. We hope we’ll give you enough reasons to return in 2019 as we cover, hopefully, more great video games. For our 2018 Editor’s Choice article we stuck to last year’s format. This means that we picked the five games that impressed us the most and included them below.

Let us know what you think of our picks and feel free to post your five favorite games in the comments.

NoobFeed,Editors Choice,2018,Best Games

Ron's Picks

5. Kingdom Come: Deliverance

When we think of a medieval RPG, we tend to immediately go to sword & sorcery; however, Kingdom Come: Deliverance offers a refreshing take on the genre betting on realism rather than fantasy. This is an RPG designed for those who love immersion through details; complex storytelling delivered at your own pace and not being on rails. The game tells the relatable story of a commoner whose simple life changed after his village was attacked, ransacked and his loved ones were slayed without mercy. A game in which, as in other staples of the genre, like Skyrim, you improve by doing and you get a huge amount of options for resolving and advancing in your quests. All merits apart, the game is also very flawed, as one might expect for a game this big. A copious amount of bugs, some of them game breaking, alongside a poor performance even with graphics set low on a computer, especially when the polygon count rises up, like in the big cities. This is a shame, especially because developers really did manage to produce a beautiful recreation of medieval Bohemia. Despite that, the game excels at what it does best and you would be better not to miss out on this one.

4. God of War

This soft reboot of a most beloved franchise turned a lot of heads during 2018. The game departed from its hack-and-slash origins, a genre which it helped perfect during its prime, and aimed towards new grounds. This is also true when it comes to its gore and over-the-top, hyper masculine tone. Now, the studio delivered a more nuanced game for a more nuanced age. Not that Kratos stopped being a badass or that blood and violence were not present, but rather we are presented with a more relatable and human approach to Kratos, who is now a father trapped in the middle of the conflict of a brand new pantheon. The game also sets the stage for sequels exploring different cultures around the world. It is likely that Kratoses god-slaying days are far from over.

God Of War, Editor's Choice 2018, Screenshot, PS4

3. Shadow of the Tomb Raider

This is the finale the modern trilogy of the series deserved. Shadow of the Tomb Raider tells a very compelling story and sheds new light to the character or Lara Croft, her motivations and flaws. There is also a shift on focus in gameplay, favoring puzzles, side quests and exploration rather than open combat and constant firefights. This is very much appreciated as Lara has more movements on her list than ever before, including rappelling and a very challenging, yet naturally integrated and smooth approach to swimming, as well as underwater exploration and puzzles. This may actually be the best Tomb Raider game in the whole franchise.

2. Detroit: Become Human

Quantic Dream’s story driven science fiction project was highly anticipated and fans of the studio were not left disappointed. Detroit: Become Human presents a strong story which will easily have you become emotionally invested in its characters. Its game mechanics are compelling too, as they exploit the sci-fi setting to very interesting levels. One can, for example, calculate the way a maneuver is going to be executed and see in anticipation how it is going to play out. These abilities also let you reconstruct a crime through the elements present in the scene. Perhaps the only downside is that combat mechanics still rely on QTEs, which can lead to frustrating scenarios. Still, another success for the legendary storyteller of a game studio.

1. Pro Evolution Soccer 2019

Another year, another PES game. Despite appearing as more of the same, PES 2019 is actually a step up for Konami’s soccer simulator. The game plays as smooth as ever and its graphic improvements are praiseworthy. Perhaps PES does not have all the flashy licenses FIFA does, but what the game lacks in official team names, logos and players names, it compensates via precise and fluid gameplay; not to mention Konami allows mods to be used freely. The ball, for example, does not feel magically attracted to the player’s feet, but rather seems as if it had its own rules and physics really act upon it. Microtransactions are present, but do not feel as rampant and aggressive as other titles, which is a relief when being so close to a pay-to-win model. In the end, soccer fans will have a very compelling way of quenching their thirst for a match in a rather superb fashion.

Pro Evolution Soccer 2019, Noobfeed Editor's Choice 2018, Screenshot


Daav's Picks

Just like last year, I’ve spent my free time taking the Overwatch rollercoaster, which has become increasingly unhinged, despite attaining a 3800 rating. So, once again, I’ve missed out on all major releases, though I’ve dabbled here and there.

I’ve also spent considerably more time catching up with streams and esports branches. I can recommend that for people who want to organically improve at their games as a service, which are still popping. Watching high level play, instead of doing it, is a good way to remedy anxiety, while maintaining intensity or so I’ve heard. Oh right, also here are my choices for Game of the Year 2018:

5. God of War

If you told me that I would’ve been interested in a God of War game last year, I would’ve rolled my eyes pretty hard. Yet, the logical conclusion of turning another billboard franchise into an open world grab bag, along with the more personal parenting approach, is exactly what this otherwise run of the mill spectacle game needed, to reach that upper echelon. It finally feels like there’s some purpose behind going around murdering the mythical world, together with your boy. Boy, it was about time. This gorgeous game also packs enough punch to be captivating, without overstaying its welcome.

4. Yakuza 0

Look, I know, but it counts! Yakuza 0 was ported to PC this August and it turns out that this game is still so very good. The world of Kamurocho and its eclectic population, the dopiness of Kiryu, the breadth of the stories within; Yakuza is a world I can dive into and literally spend five straight hours without doing anything of note, just because I love being there. The game series seems to finally be getting its due, thanks to modern conveniences of remasters. This port is still totally worth the time. Sega has been lowkey killing it lately.

Yakuza 0, Editor's Choice 2018, Screenshot

3. Dead Cells

I spent most of my time with Dead Cells in its Early Access state, but returned during its big official release. The roguelike trappings of a dungeon crawler and action game mishmash were competently built since day one, even if its difficulty curve is ridiculous. Sweating it out and trying again remains fun, thanks to an intense combat pace that aggrandizes every small victory. Oh yes, I made it out of that mob! I made it past this first boss! I never thought I’d get this far! There’s enough variety on top for this endorphin rush to stay for dozens of hours, which is rare.

2. MapleStory 2

Did you know they made a second MapleStory and it’s 3D now? Well, they did and this massively multiplayer online game hasn’t changed, which was exactly the right choice. I probably should’ve reviewed MapleStory 2 but I was legitimately too busy living in its world, pursuing a million quests, fishing and even enjoying grinding dungeons. For a while, being a cute bubbly character was all I did, day in and day out. Unlike the hell of Overwatch, I could just enjoy this video game for being a game and even most of the community shared this pure innocence. My heart was stolen by anime.

1. Radical Heights

I know! I mulled it over in my head a million times and there’s no other choice that would be more fitting for my Game of the Year 2018 than Radical Heights. Even if the game is completely broken and unfinished; even if the studio died and no one will ever play this again; the design concept for this multiplayer release is so damn cool that I’m both amazed and heartbroken that no one has stepped up to complete this “Xtreme-ly” entertaining project yet.

I adore battle royale games, but none have offset the anxiety of certain death with as many neat systems that are also just fun to work with. Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds is devolving into an increasingly more embarrassing mess and Fortnite has become so diluted that it’s one of the rare games I’ve recently uninstalled. It’s such a shame that the world couldn’t see past the construction tape of Radical Heights’ infancy, because it is by far the best design for the currently most popular game genre out there. If anything, here’s my plea to sell off the property of Radical Heights to a dedicated studio, so they can nurture a truly deserving Game of the Year title.

Radical Heights, Editor's Choice 2018, Screenshot


Adam's Picks

This year was way better than 2017 when it came to video game releases. While I found myself returning to my SNES Classic, most of 2018 was dedicated to my PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch. Microsoft, despite showing off a lot of games for the Xbox One last E3, released nothing exciting or worthwhile. Despite this, it was an amazing year so and here are my top choices for Game of the Year 2018.

5. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

I suck at fighting games and usually avoid them like the plague but not Super Smash Bros. Since the N64 days, I’ve played every installment in this beloved franchise because it was accessible. It’s one of the most complicated fighting franchises of all time, but the care and passion behind this franchise allowed poorly skilled gamers, like myself, to pick a favorite character and have fun; something that Super Smash Bros. Ultimate still maintains.

The 60+ character roster takes notorious figures from all over gaming, puts them in an arena, and has them fighting to the death in a flashy battle that is pure eye-candy. Added to the overwhelming character roster is the large amount of stages and musical tracks that serve more than just simple fan service; it amplifies the experience. Bringing it all together is a lengthy and densely packed story, which can feel repetitive, but ends in such a beautiful way that it makes all the repeated fights worth it. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is a game that anyone can enjoy, causal players and the most hardcore gamer.

4. Marvel’s Spider-Man

Creating a great superhero game isn’t easy. You’re restricted to a specific lore and creativity is limited, but some developers are able to take the mold presented to them and create something amazing with it. Like Rocksteady with Batman, Insomniac took Spider-Man and created a masterpiece.

Marvel’s Spider-Man is an adventure written by fans of the notorious hero for fans of Spider-Man. The entire journey has you taking on villains while complementing Peter Parker and Spider-Man's abilities and personality. It does suffer from a lot of tedious missions and repetitive challenges but these are small issues. The overall gameplay is so strong that it overshadows all the annoying aspects. Marvel’s Spider-Man is the Spider-Man release gamers always wanted and one of the best reasons to purchase a PS4.

Marvel's Spider Man, Editor's Choice 2018, Screenshot

3. Red Dead Redemption 2

Did anyone expect Red Dead Redemption 2 to fail? Rockstar went above and beyond once again with this prequel to Red Dead Redemption and provided an enriching tale of outlaws, killing and surviving the harsh wild west. The entire journey is full of outstanding moments of robbing trains, brutal shoot outs, and emotional moments of betrayal and redemption. The realism of having to eat, take care of your horse, and maintain your health does become vexing, but once you get into the groove of things everything bends together for game that only Rockstar could create. As always Rockstar continues to raise the bar with open world games and Red Dead Redemption 2 sets a new standard of how this genre and overall narratives will be judged.

2. God of War

Remember when games were released without microtransactions or additional content? God of War is exactly that: a complete game that doesn’t charge you extra. As a fan of this franchise since its debut on the PS2, I had a firm understanding of Kratos, an angry Spartan warrior who only cares about his own needs and taking revenge against those who have wronged him. Santa Monica not only revitalized this legendary God’s personality but built on his iconic persona. Right from the beginning, we see Kratos attempt to become someone better from what he once was and until the end the journey this quest is saturated with blood and emotionally tense moments.

God of War is a prime example of how much single-player experiences are in demand. Kratos and Atreus’ adventure is teeming with additional areas to explore, new items to obtain, and legendary creatures to defeat. It was such an enthralling experience that I never noticed the linear climbing or pathways, since each new area housed so many secrets waiting to be uncovered.

1. Octopath Traveler

Octopath Traveler isn’t about appealing to a broad audience; it’s an RPG game made for fans of RPGs. Instead of telling a tale of saving the world, Octopath Traveler focuses on 8 individual stories, where the goal is to fulfill a singular goal. They rarely interact with one another but the adventure never fumbles, with each tale building on past events, leading to an overall conclusion that ends each story with a bang.

The stories are outstanding but it’s the music, atmosphere, and gameplay that completes Octopath Traveler. Yes, it returns to the traditional turn-based combat system but maintains the challenge by forcing the player to think two steps ahead of their opponents, as you plan how to defend and attack. Octopath Traveler is an RPG fan's dream.

Octopath Traveler, Editor's Choice 2018, Screenshot


Robert's Picks

As a PC gamer, I’ve been jealously eyeing all the recent console-exclusive goodness from afar. The big releases that did make it over to PC this year didn’t really rock my world. Admittedly, I’ve yet to play Monster Hunter: World, but I’ve found myself in a similar situation for the last couple of years, where indies and “smaller” projects have managed to impress me the most. As it turns out, those spheres had some seriously good offerings this year as well, so much so that picking five choices for Game of the Year 2018 wasn’t an easy task.

5. Frostpunk

In between the harrowing decisions it asks players to make and the memorable sight of its slowly expanding, ramshackle cities, Frostpunk has a lot going for itself. It mixes city building, survival elements and tough choices into its excellent scenarios. I enforced long shifts and sent children to work in mines when coal was running low; I ruled with an iron fist, not shying away from public executions. But while that gave me more tools to stop dissidents and criminals while braving the harsh conditions, hearing the voice on the speakers encouraging people every morning to trust their Leader never stopped giving me chills. Frostpunk is the first city builder that’s managed to haunt me for a long time after putting it down.

4. Warhammer 40,000: Vermintide 2

Co-op titles aren’t built to draw loners like myself in for long, but I apparently sunk over a hundred hours this year slashing, bashing and burning Skaven and Chaos Warriors in Warhammer 40,000: Vermintide 2. It’s an example of a proper sequel. It not only builds on the first Vermintide’s foundation, providing brutally satisfying melee and ranged combat, but also offers more playstyle options by giving the five returning characters three distinct careers, each with their skills and talents.  The strong focus on teamwork is maintained, while a more rewarding loot system and daily quests give even more reasons to return frequently.

Warhammer 40,000: Vermintide-2-Editor's-Choice-2018

3. Book of Demons

Papercraft Diablo is as good a start as any to describe Book of Demons. The game wears its inspiration on its sleeve, aiming to be a tribute, parody and gateway to introducing modern audiences to the genre. It fully succeeds, too. Three bosses inhabit three multi-level dungeons beneath a cathedral; you play as one of three classes: warrior, mage or rogue. Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? But more so than just being a tribute, and in spite of its streamlined elements, Book of Demons introduces a varied roster of enemies and a good number of skills and equipment to play around with, via its card system. It might not have the endgame potential of other ARPGs, but it’s a damn fun one nonetheless.

2. Into The Breach

Essentially chess that pits squads of mechs versus giant bugs, Into The Breach is one of the tightest, best designed turn-based tactics games out there. It gives the player all the information they require and still manages to be an experience that constantly has you looking for new approaches and second guessing the move you’re about to make, even when it’s clearly the best one available. A pocket-sized bundle of brilliance from the FTL developers that anyone, even if only remotely interested in tactics games, needs to play.

1. FAR: Lone Sails and Gris

I know it’s technically cheating, but when I look back at all the games I played this year, FAR: Lone Sails and Gris are hard to separate as the ones that left the strongest impression on me. FAR: Lone Sails takes you on a journey across a drained ocean, the wasteland gradually telling its own story as you move forward. The small red figure you play as isn’t alone, though, as they brave the empty expanse in a strange vehicle. It’s delightful seeing the relationship between the two develop as obstacles appear in their path, and the journey itself provides plenty of moments to sink into its world and give yourself over to contemplation.

Gris follows a girl’s path through dealing with grief, while being the most gorgeous game I’ve played in a long while. It, too, tells its story through elements of its environment – a watercolor world of abstract shapes and beautiful hues – but also adds an excellent soundtrack to the mix, to punctuate all its significant moments. It’s an emotional rollercoaster and also a game where all its elements harmonize perfectly to provide a powerful, stylized perspective on dealing with hardship.

Neither of the two games reinvents the wheel. Instead, they use fluid, if somewhat simple, gameplay to push the player through two different stories that, at least for me, struck all the right chords, while featuring the most outstanding music, visuals, worlds and stories that I’ve experienced this year.

FAR: Lone Sails, Editor's Choice 2018, Screenshot

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General Information

God of War 4


Platform(s): PS4
Publisher(s): Sony
Developer(s): SIE Santa Monica Studio
Genres: Action-Adventure
Themes: Norse Mythology
Release Date: 2018-04-20

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