While I’m certainly not the most talented gamer and I never play online, I do enjoy playing a good ole’ viddy game. I’m mostly a casual gamer but when I play a game, boy, do I freaking get into it. From December 25th until January 2nd, I barely left the area in front of my TV, playing Assassin’s Creed until my fingers bled.
Even though I don’t play a ton of video games over the course of the year, I tend to get really in depth with the games I do play.
Games I Actually Finished
Super Mario Odyssey – Nintendo Switch
While I’ve always had a good, healthy respect for the old Italian plumber, I haven’t actually played much Mario – my most in-depth knowledge of him and his pals coming from Super Mario 64, Super Smash Bros. Brawl, and Luigi’s Mansion. With that being said, let me tell you something about this game. It’s one of the BEST GAMES I’VE EVER PLAYED. I have played for hours and hours and I’m still not done with it. Sure, I beat the main storyline, but I still have yet to even come close to finding all of the 999 moons hidden throughout the game.
Each level is so fun and full of secrets to find that it’s hard to leave one world behind and move to the next. This game is a casual, easy play that anyone can get into regardless of their typical style of playing. (My 7 year old cousin just beat it herself.)
Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild – Nintendo Switch
What more can you possibly say about the game voted Best Game of the Year at the Game Awards? This game is my lifesblood and I will probably play it once a year until I die.
The story is sparse, which at first made me feel a bit lost, but it let me fill in the blanks. Honestly, there’s so much to do in the world, you don’t even notice. I didn’t leave the Great Plateau, the tutorial area of the game, for almost a week and a half because I was having so much fun.
Weapons that wear out is a new concept for someone who grew up with Lara Croft’s unlimited ammo pistols. It teaches you to be smart about where you’re swinging your stick, especially when the Master Sword, the actual best weapon in the game, shatters like an icicle after a few too many whacks.
I’d recommend forking over the extra $20 for the DLC packages too. They include a ton of extra quests and some missions that add to the storyline of the champions.
To be completely honest, I hate this game. It has ruined my life because I’m so scared that I will never find anything else that makes me feel like this again. Just play it, already.
Oxenfree – Nintendo Switch
This one was a bit of a weird buy for me. I honestly have no idea what compelled me to actually purchase it, but it turned out to be an excellent choice. A side scroller with believable characters, Oxenfree is all the best parts of an 80s horror film, soundtrack included, that gives you the ability to choose what happens next.
You play as Alex, a teen on a summer trip to a nearby island with a party of high school friends and her brand new step-brother in tow. The island is a wee bit haunted and you spend the game exploring the island’s secrets after some eerie things start to happen. Never trust what you’re seeing because there are a few tricky events that will make you say, “Didn’t I just do that?” I thought the game file was glitchy the first time it happened and second guessed myself every other time.
If you’re like me, when you have the choice, you’ll try to be kind to everyone in a game lest the crippling guilt of ACCIDENTALLY KILLING THAT HORSE THAT ONE TIME (Also, RIP to the baby penguin from Mario 64) follow you around for the rest of your life. Unfortunately, you may have to make a few decisions that won’t allow you to walk away with your conscience intact.
Voice acting isn’t usually a strong point of video games, but the voices of Oxenfree (it’s very conversation heavy, so I’d recommend headphones) have an emotional depth to them that you just can’t find in other games *cough* Breath of the Wild *cough*.
If you don’t own a Switch, I found Oxenfree on the Apple App Store too.
BONUS: Games I Started But Never Actually Finished
Stardew Valley – Nintendo Switch
Just like Chrissy Tiegen, I started this game and became overwhelmed with my options before putting it down and not picking it back up. I’m sure I’ll try again soon.
Assassin’s Creed Origins – Xbox One
The only reason I haven’t finished this game yet is because I’ve gotten so caught up in the side quests. I’m not terribly interested in the storyline, but I’m deeply invested in my camel, Gene. I would cross a thousand deserts for him.
Pokemon Ultra Moon – Nintendo 3DS
I am a lifelong Pokemon junkie, so I was psyched to hear that another game was coming so soon after Sun & Moon. That is, until I realized that this game is basically the same as Sun & Moon with a little extra story crammed in. I’ll finish it eventually, I just have to bring myself to care first.
MarioKart 8 – Nintendo Switch
I preordered this game because, at the time, I only had Breath of the Wild for the Switch and wanted to have something else for when I finished that beauty. Since I’m not much of a multiplayer gal, this game was not for me as there was no story mode to speak of. I promptly sold it back to Amazon.
What was your favorite game of 2017? Have any recommendations? Please, please, please share them with me!