Yahtzee's top 5 games from 2017.

Transcript Edit

It's been quite a year: a year of hot starts and egregious ends, of Nintendo bounce-backs and EA face-plants, of reading political news through the cracks between my fingers. But as always, we can't call it a year until fifteen of the games I've reviewed have been arbitrarily compartmentalized for future reference by weirdos. Greetings, weirdos of the future! You must be feeling like you were born in the wrong era. "If only I'd been around in 2017," you're thinking. "I'd have been practically lionized for my inappropriate behavior around women."

5th Best of 2017 Edit

(overlapping tracks of Yahtzee praising a game)

My fifth best surprises even me; I thought a fucking typing tutor would get into my Top Five before a fucking JRPG did, but here we are! Perhaps it's all the ways Persona 5 distracts from it being a JRPG: the style, the soundtrack, the investment in likable characters, the high school girls in vinyl catsuits sticking their bums in the air. Hey, weirdos of the future, have you elected a patron saint yet?

5th Blandest of 2017 Edit

(the sound of a raspberry being blown)

Sorry to wound you, Volition, but be fair; you wounded me first. After the peerless Saints Row series, their next game was going to be one to watch, and while they clearly went into Agents of Mayhem full of energy and ideas, all they did to follow through on that was to rotate their wrists for a while going, "Buhpidee-buhpidee-buhpidee-buh."

5th Worst of 2017 Edit

(overlapping tracks of Yahtzee trashing a game)

Hey, I get it, games industry: Dark Souls is hot spit on a cheerleader's lower-back tattoo, so obviously, you want to make games like it. And hey, no one had done Dark Souls in a science fiction setting; the opportunity was there! But sci-fi Dark Souls that's annoying and stupid and plays like you're trying to unjam a kitchen drawer was probably too much innovation all at once, wasn't it, The Surge? It's The Surge I'm talking about.

4th Best of 2017 Edit

It's Breath of the Wild. Yeah, fanboys, I'm putting it in at 4! What are you going to do about it? You going to cry? "Ooh, mummy, call the police! He only moderately lavished it with praise! Bring me my coat that looks good from the back, 'cos I'm going to do some serious shunning!" Yeah, whatever; it's fine. Organic, looks nice, plays well, even if the protagonist could be out-charisma-ed by his fucking horse.

4th Blandest of 2017 Edit

If I were giving out Lifetime Achievement Awards for Blandness, BioWare would definitely be a hot contender: bland, obvious settings where bland characters blandly goldfish-stare their way through bland dialogue and occasionally blandly knob each other in a sequence designed by someone with very bland ideas about sex scenes who couldn't get a job at Cinemax, but I digress. More like Mass Effect Bland-romeda, am I right?

4th Worst of 2017 Edit

As we all know, the greatest indictment of a horror game is not being particularly scary, especially if it compensates by instead trying to put me off my fucking dinner. Outlast 2 covered a wide spectrum of bad: bad gameplay, nonsensical plot, and you come away from it just feeling kind of gross, like you spent the afternoon at the old folks' home sitting opposite a very talkative man eating picked beetroot from the jar.

3rd Best of 2017 Edit

The Game Awards always does this thing where they pick one prominent indie game and give it a bunch of token noms, then quickly go back to noshing AAA todger. This year, it was Cuphead, so while I'm slightly hesitant to heap further praise on it, it is unique and well-realized and monstrously hard, so the man with the jar of pickled beetroot won't keep bugging you for his turn.

3rd Blandest of 2017 Edit

I always feel slightly unqualified to criticize multiplayer-focused shooters, which are, after all, intended to be bland and for people with friends, but I can't help feeling that the best possible result of enlisting friends to help you grind through Destiny 2 would be not having to pay for as many Christmas presents. Sorry you couldn't be higher on the list, but hey, there is something appealingly ironic about coming third in a mediocrity contest.

3rd Worst of 2017 Edit

"Naughty Yahtzee! This game came out last year!" I know, but I reviewed it this year, versions of it came out this year, and I really want to give it one more kick in the baubles before the holidays are over: Dead Rising 4, a stripped-down, tarted-up holiday special of a Dead Rising game with none of what makes Dead Rising good. Even alongside the mediocre Dead Rising 3, it resembles a dog turd in a bread bin.

2nd Best of 2017 Edit

It was going to be this or Mario Odyssey, and giving it to Mario felt like writing a sports movie where the winner is the team that practiced more and had the most funding; perhaps to be expected, but nonetheless unsatisfying. I don't love Mario like I love A Hat in Time. Mario merely meets expectations; A Hat in Time is a bit wobbly and not very long, but it's fresh, it's surprising, it's charming, and I did it without needing a room full of sweatshop workers filing every last imperfection off Princess Peach's left bum cheek.

2nd Blandest of 2017 Edit

Well, it wouldn't be the Bland Five without a token Ubisoft sandbox, would it, and this year, it's Ghost Recon Wildlands for its protracted adventures in going to the icon and shooting the thing. Not Assassin's Creed Origins; that gets to go alongside games like Prey and Horizon Zero Dawn in the category of "Not Quite Bland Enough for the Bland List", which, I suppose, some might argue makes them the blandest games of all.

2nd Worst of 2017 Edit

Sega really don't learn their lesson, do they? You can have all the great ideas in the world for fixing Sonic, but they are naught but ash in the hands of Sonic Team themselves. Sonic Forces starts with the good ideas of a custom protagonist and plot curveball, but I guess something spooked Sonic Team, and like a nervous badger, they darted back to their comfort zone of shitty characters, horrible physics, and masturbation.

Best Game of 2017 Edit

Don't think I'm supporting the view that your long-running series might come back around to being good if you just keep plodding along; rather, I'm supporting burning your series to the ground on a regular basis to make snowmen with the ashes. Resident Evil 7 is a successful change of tune that also manages the balance between disturbing and knowingly camp that marks Resident Evil at its best. Well done, Capcom; looking forward to seeing how you fuck it up this time.

Blandest Game of 2017 Edit

I know it's the loot box controversy that still haunts this game like the ghost of an albatross, but let's not forget it also had a single-player campaign; an entirely obvious single-player campaign composed from flakes of rust that peel off the grinding wheels of the corporate machine, every inch focus-grouped to most efficiently trick the audience into finding the same nostalgic bullshit as always as valuable as new ideas. I'm not even going to say the name; it knows what it did.

Worst Game of 2017 Edit

But after righteous anger, I want the worst game to be something so bad that I come back around to feeling positive about it; something so fucking pathetic, all you can do is laugh. And for that, it's Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3: ugly, boring, badly optimized, and with a story straight from a twelve-year-old boy locked in the bathroom with a Tom Clancy-themed pinup calendar and severe familial issues. Still, at least it has a positive message on diversity: there's a place in the games industry even for complete morons, and not just holding up the archery targets.

Addenda Edit

  • Old Man Winter: Ben "Yahtzee" Croshaw
  • Pyre was an honorable mention but in the end I've just never been that big into team sports
  • Fingers crossed for that giant killer meteor in 2018
2007 - 2010
Q3 The Darkness Demo · Fable: The Lost Chapters · Zero Punctuation (Episode) · Heavenly Sword and Other Stuff · Psychonauts · Console Rundown · BioShock · Tomb Raider: Anniversary · Manhunt · Peggle
Q4 Halo 3 · Tabula Rasa · The Orange Box · Super Paper Mario · Medal of Honor: Airborne · The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass · Clive Barker's Jericho · F.E.A.R. Perseus Mandate · Assassin's Creed · Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock · Mass Effect
Q1 Super Mario Galaxy · Silent Hill: Origins · Crysis · The Witcher · Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles · Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare · SimCity Societies · Yahtzee Goes to GDC · Uncharted: Drake's Fortune · Devil May Cry 4 · Burnout: Paradise · Turok · Zack & Wiki: Quest for Barbaros' Treasure
Q2 Army of Two · No More Heroes · Condemned 2: Bloodshot · Super Smash Bros. Brawl · God of War: Chains of Olympus · Mailbag Showdown · Grand Theft Auto IV · Painkiller · The World Ends With You · The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion · Haze · Metal Gear Solid 4
Q3 Webcomics · Lego Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures · Alone in the Dark · Age of Conan: Hyborian Adventures · The E3 Trailer Park · Ninja Gaiden II · Prince of Persia Retrospective · Soulcalibur IV · Braid · EVE Online · Too Human · Spore · XBLA Double Bill
Q4 Mercenaries 2: World in Flames · Star Wars: The Force Unleashed · S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky · Silent Hill: Homecoming · Saints Row 2 · Dead Space · Fable II · Fallout 3 · Guitar Hero: World Tour · Mirror's Edge · Left 4 Dead · Sonic Unleashed · The Year in Review - 2008 · Prince of Persia
Q1 Awards for 2008 · Tomb Raider: Underworld · Far Cry 2 · Gears of War 2 · LittleBigPlanet · Thief: The Dark Project · Skate 2 · F.E.A.R. 2 · Spider-Man: Web of Shadows · The House of the Dead: Overkill · 50 Cent: Blood on the Sand · Resident Evil 5
Q2 X-Blades/Halo Wars · Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars · MadWorld · Tom Clancy's H.A.W.X · Siren: Blood Curse · The Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena · Valkyria Chronicles · Velvet Assassin · Duke Nukem Forever · Bionic Commando · InFamous · The Second Annual E3 Hype Massacre · Prototype
Q3 The Sims 3 · Ghostbusters: The Video Game · Overlord 2 · Red Faction Guerrilla · Wii Sports Resort · Call of Juarez: Bound in Blood · The Conduit · Silent Hill 2 · 2.5-D Hoedown · Tales of Monkey Island · Wolfenstein · Batman: Arkham Asylum · Beatles Rock Band & Guitar Hero 5 · Darkest of Days
Q4 Scribblenauts · Wet · Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story · Brutal Legend · Washington D.C. · Uncharted 2: Among Thieves · Dragon Age: Origins · Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 · Assassin's Creed 2 · Left 4 Dead 2 & New Super Mario Bros. Wii · Demon's Souls · Holiday 2009 · The Saboteur
Q1 Awards for 2009 · Torchlight · Darksiders · Bayonetta · Dark Void · Borderlands · Mass Effect 2 · Dante's Inferno · BioShock 2 · Aliens vs Predator · Heavy Rain · Battlefield: Bad Company 2 · Final Fantasy XIII
Q2 April Fools 2010 · God of War III · Red Steel 2 · Just Cause 2 · Silent Hill: Shattered Memories · Splinter Cell: Conviction · Nier · Dead to Rights: Retribution · Monster Hunter Tri · Alan Wake · Red Dead Redemption · Alpha Protocol · Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands · E3 2010
Q3 No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle · Super Mario Galaxy 2 · Singularity · Crackdown 2 · DeathSpank & Limbo · Shadow of the Colossus · Split Second: Velocity · Transformers: War for Cybertron · Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days · Mafia II · Metroid: Other M · Video Game Voters Network · Amnesia: The Dark Descent
Q4 Halo: Reach · Dead Rising 2 · Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions · Castlevania: Lords of Shadow · Enslaved: Odyssey to the West · Fallout: New Vegas · Star Wars: The Force Unleashed II · Call of Duty: Black Ops · IPhone Games · Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood · Splatterhouse · Epic Mickey · Holiday 2010
2011 - 2014
Q1 Top 5 of 2010 · World of Warcraft: Cataclysm · Fable III · Minecraft · A Shadow's Tale · Dead Space 2 · DC Universe Online · MindJack · Two Worlds II · Bulletstorm · Killzone 3 · Kirby's Epic Yarn · Dragon Age II
Q2 Pokémon White · Yakuza 4 · Crysis 2 · Nintendo 3DS · Portal 2 · Castlevania: Symphony of the Night · Mortal Kombat · Brink · L.A. Noire · The Witcher 2 · Hunted: The Demon's Forge · Duke Nukem Forever (for real this time) · InFamous 2
Q3 Alice: Madness Returns · Shadows of the Damned · F.E.A.R. 3 · The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D · Call of Juarez: The Cartel · Bastion and From Dust · Catherine · Red Faction: Armageddon · Deus Ex · Deus Ex: Human Revolution · Driver: San Francisco · Dead Island · Resistance 3
Q4 Gears of War 3 · Hard Reset · Rage · Kinect · Batman: Arkham City · Battlefield 3 · Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception · Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 · The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim · Saints Row: The Third · Assassin's Creed: Revelations · The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword
Q1 Serious Sam 3: BFE · Top 5 of 2011 · Super Mario 3D Land & Rayman Origins · Sonic Generations · Star Wars: The Old Republic · Amy · Resident Evil: Revelations · Darkness 2 · Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning · NeverDead · Syndicate · Mass Effect 3 · Twisted Metal
Q2 Yakuza: Dead Souls · Ninja Gaiden 3 · Silent Hill: Downpour · Kid Icarus: Uprising · Fez and I Am Alive · Prototype 2 · Risen 2: Dark Waters · Sniper Elite V2 · Diablo 3 · Max Payne 3 · Dragon's Dogma · E3 2012 · Lollipop Chainsaw
Q3 Quantum Conundrum · Spec Ops: The Line · Walking Dead · Inversion · The Amazing Spider-Man · Half-Life · Wreckateer and Deadlight · Steam Roundup · Sleeping Dogs · Darksiders 2 · DayZ · Guild Wars 2
Q4 Borderlands 2 · FIFA 13 · Resident Evil 6 · Dishonored · XCOM: Enemy Unknown · Medal of Honor: Warfighter & Doom 3: BFG Edition · Assassin's Creed 3 · Halo 4 · Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 · Hitman: Absolution · Far Cry 3 · ZombiU
Q1 Top 5 of 2012 · Paper Mario: Sticker Star · Black Knight Sword & Hotline Miami · Anarchy Reigns · DMC: Devil May Cry · The Cave · Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch · Dead Space 3 · Aliens: Colonial Marines · Crysis 3 · Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance · Tomb Raider · SimCity
Q2 The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct · BioShock Infinite · Lego City Undercover · Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon · Injustice: Gods Among Us · Star Trek · Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon · System Shock 2 · Metro: Last Light · Next Gen Buyer's Guide · Fuse · Remember Me · E3 2013
Q3 The Last of Us · Deadpool · Animal Crossing: New Leaf · Ride to Hell: Retribution · Dark · Mario & Luigi: Dream Team · Rise of the Triad · Papers, Please & Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons · Pikmin 3 · The Bureau: XCOM Declassified · Saints Row 4 · Killer is Dead · Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs
Q4 Grand Theft Auto V · Lost Planet 3 · Beyond: Two Souls · The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD · Batman: Arkham Origins · Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag · Call of Duty: Ghosts · Exclusives Showdown · Ryse: Son of Rome · Dead Rising 3 · Super Mario 3D World
Q1 Top 5 of 2013 · Knack · Killzone: Shadow Fall · Survival Special · Broken Age · Might & Magic X: Legacy · The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds · Dark Souls · Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII · Strider · Thief · Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 · Dark Souls II
Q2 Titanfall · InFamous: Second Son · Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes · The Elder Scrolls Online · South Park: The Stick of Truth · FTL: Faster Than Light · Child of Day-Light · The Amazing Spider-Man 2 · Tesla Effect: A Tex Murphy Adventure · Wolfenstein: The New Order · WATCH DOGS · E3 2014 · Murdered: Soul Suspect
Q3 Tomodachi Life · Enemy Front & Valiant Hearts: The Great War · Shovel Knight · EarthBound · Transistor · E.T. · Firefall · Sacred 3 · Risen 3: Titan Lords · Daikatana · Lichdom: Battlemage · The Sims 4 · Destiny
Q4 D4: Dark Dreams Don't Die · Hyrule Warriors · Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor · Alien Isolation · The Evil Within · Bayonetta 2 · Sunset Overdrive · Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare · Assassin's Creed: Unity · Far Cry 4 · Dragon Age: Inquisition · Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric · Top 5 Games of 2014
2015 - 2018
Q1 The Talos Principle · Elite: Dangerous · Five Nights at Freddy's and This War of Mine · Lords of the Fallen · Saints Row: Gat out of Hell · Dying Light · Grim Fandango · Evolve · The Order: 1886 · The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask 3D · Resident Evil Revelations 2 · Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number & Ori and the Blind Forest
Q2 Battlefield: Hardline · Bloodborne · Half-Life 2 Update · Axiom Verge & Stealth Inc 2 · Mortal Kombat X · Grand Theft Auto Online · Broken Age: Act 2 · Wolfenstein: The Old Blood · Cyberpunk Double · The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt · Splatoon · Hatred · E3 2015
Q3 Alone in the Dark: Illumination · Batman: Arkham Knight · Yoshi's Woolly World · Cave Story · Godzilla · Rocket League & Tembo the Badass Elephant · King's Quest: A Knight to Remember · Nom Nom Galaxy & Freedom Planet · Everybody's Gone To The Rapture · Volume · Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain · Mad Max · Gears of War Ultimate Edition · Until Dawn
Q4 Super Mario Maker · SOMA · Rock Band 4 · Assassin's Creed Syndicate · Halo 5: Guardians · Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 · Rise of the Tomb Raider · Fallout 4 · Star Wars: Battlefront · Just Cause 3 · Fatal Frame: Maiden of Black Water
Q1 Top 5 Games of 2015 · Devil's Third · Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam · Assassin's Creed Chronicles · Xenoblade Chronicles X · The Witness & Bombshell · Gravity Rush · XCOM 2 · Firewatch & Layers of Fear · Far Cry Primal · Stardew Valley & SUPERHOT · The Division · Salt and Sanctuary
Q2 Republique · Shadow Warrior · Quantum Break · Dark Souls III · Ratchet & Clank · Star Fox Zero · Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door · Uncharted 4: A Thief's End · Doom · Homefront: The Revolution · Overwatch & Battleborn · Mirror's Edge: Catalyst · E3 2016
Q3 Mighty No. 9 · Inside & Shadow of the Beast · The Technomancer · Furi & Song of the Deep · I Am Setsuna · Headlander & Quadrilateral Cowboy · Quake · No Man's Sky · Grow Up · Deus Ex: Mankind Divided · Metroid Prime: Federation Force · The Curious Expedition & Mother Russia Bleeds · ReCore
Q4 Capcom Five · Clustertruck & Lichtspeer · Paper Mario: Color Splash · Mafia III · Gears of War 4 · PlayStation VR · Battlefield 1 · Titanfall 2 vs Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare · Dishonored 2 · WATCH DOGS 2 · Final Fantasy XV · The Last Guardian
Q1 Top 5 Games of 2016 · Let It Die · Dead Rising 4 · Hitman · Gravity Rush 2 · Resident Evil 7 · Yakuza 0 · Nioh · For Honor · Nintendo Switch & Breath of the Wild · Horizon Zero Dawn · Nier Automata · Ghost Recon Wildlands
Q2 Mass Effect Andromeda · Yooka-Laylee · Persona 5 · Remastered Editions · Outlast 2 · Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3 · Prey · Wilson's Heart · The Surge · Injustice 2 · Vanquish · E3 2017 · Strafe
Q3 Get Even · Hollow Knight / Dead Cells · Fifth Console Generation · The End is Nigh, and Yonder: Cloud Catcher Chronicles · Pyre · Splatoon 2 · Hellblade · Agents of Mayhem · Sonic Mania · Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle · Destiny 2 · Metroid: Samus Returns
Q4 Knack 2 and SteamWorld Dig 2 · Cuphead · Hob and A Hat in Time · Middle-earth: Shadow of War · The Evil Within 2 · Super Mario Odyssey · Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus · Assassin's Creed Origins · Sonic Forces · Star Wars Battlefront II · Hand of Fate 2 · South Park: The Fractured but Whole
Q1 Top 5 of 2017 · Okami HD · PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds · Fortnite and Dusk · Doki Doki Literature Club! · The Inpatient and Doom VFR · Monster Hunter World · Subnautica · Kingdom Come: Deliverance · Metal Gear Survive · Hot Coffee · Hunt Down The Freeman · Ghost of a Tale
Q2 A Way Out · Far Cry 5 · Ni no Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom · Extinction and Attack on Titan 2 · God of War 4 · Yakuza 6: The Song of Life · Silent Hill 4: The Room · Conan Exiles · House Flipper and FAR: Lone Sails · Detroit Become Human · Agony · E3 2018 · Vampyr
Q3 Jurassic World Evolution · Resident Evil 4