The Best Games of the Year: Our Annual Round-Up of Top Titles
3 May 2023
Yet again it’s 21 for 2021 as Technobubble Gaming makes its top computer game picks for the year.
It’s comforting to know that good, dependable video games can still help you get through tough times in a year marked by a continuing pandemic and COVID-19 turmoil. 2021 offered a nice selection of games in a variety of genres, including role-playing games, action games, shooters, and everything in between.
In 1991, the first “Super Robot Taisen” game was made available in Japan. Since then, the tactical strategy role-playing game series has been serving up popular mechs from decades of anime and the hot-blooded rock theme songs of JAM Project to robot fans of all generations for 30 years. Where else can you see mechs from Magic Knight Rayearth and Sakura Wars joining forces with robots from Mazinger Z, Getter, Voltes V, and Gundam? Seriously. There truly isn’t exactly anything more like this series out there. The fact that fans in the West had to import these games in the past makes the localization of SRW 30 even more significant. We hope that this will signal the beginning of more games with cross-licenses coming from Asia and Japan.
No complaints, here. The Great Ace Attorney games finally make it to consoles and PC via Great Ace Attorney Chronicles, six years after the popular spinoff series from the Ace Attorney franchise was released on the 3DS. Chronicles brings a fresh perspective to the Ace Attorney universe, new mechanics, and greatly improved visuals to the table. It is set in an earlier time period when Japan first began to open its borders to foreigners. The game is a cross between a visual novel, courtroom drama, and murder mystery. The story of Chronicles is also a fun ride to read thanks to funny character animations and clever writing.
There is more to great games than just pretty graphics. Sometimes simplicity is also effective. Chicory has a black-and-white world that changes color as you use your painting abilities, making it feel like you’re playing a coloring book. The game likewise flaunts exemplary gaming mechanics, for example, adventuring and investigation, puzzle-addressing and even activity by means of a few inventive manager battles. People looking for a one-of-a-kind and colorful experience will be pleased by Chicory’s adorable images and moving narrative.
One of the best aspects of the Nier’s success is: Automata in 2017 is the way it recharged interest in its undervalued ancestor. Nier, released in 2010, was a spinoff of the Drakengard series. In terms of presentation, mechanics, and its split protagonists depending on whether you got the Gestalt or Replicant version, Nier took a novel and, at times, experimental approach for an action RPG. The unconventional approach was controversial at the time, but the idea has held up surprisingly well over time, as the Nier Replicant remaster this year demonstrates. Also, don’t think this is a straightforward task for upscaling. The Nier team deserves praise for going above and beyond a simple cash grab remaster based on Automata’s success by improving combat, expanding the story, and developing new character models. It almost seems like a brand-new game here.
Yes, this is a game for 2020. And no, it did not appear on the list of the best games from last year. However, its value was not the reason it was not included on the 2020 list. The game was just delivered past the point of no return in the year to give it appropriate thought. Atelier Ryza 2, in any case, merits exceptional notice thanks to its irresistible speculative chemistry technician, fun chain-based battle and an enchanting world with amiable characters. Assuming you like Japanese RPGs and ended up missing this one final year, Atelier Ryza 2 could actually give the catalytic response you’re searching for.
Imagine purchasing a 2002 sporty vehicle like the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution, which is dependable and enjoyable to drive. Now picture that car getting a new body kit and a fresh coat of paint. Ratchet and Clank provides you with exactly this: Rift Apart serves as both a visually appealing technical demonstration for the PlayStation 5 and a recreation of classic 3D action platformers from the turn of the millennium. It’s like meeting an old crush who looks even better but still has the same likeable personality.
Another outstanding release from Arkane Studios combines Dishonored and Groundhog Day. You play as Colt, an assassin, in Deathloop. Colt is trapped in a time loop that he can’t break unless he kills eight people in one day before midnight. Yes, we don’t have pumpkin carriages or glass slippers here. Fans of Dishonored and Prey, which combine first-person shooting with the use of powers and gadgets, will recognize the gameplay. As Julianna, a rival assassin, players can also invade other players’ game sessions. Prepare yourself to die and still live. Or two. or three Or, you know, the routine.
Can a game simultaneously be charming and creepy? That’s exactly what Little Nightmares II does thanks to another solid dose of platforming action, a lot of suspense, and white-knuckle survival mechanics when things get busy. Once more you players assume the job of a small child frantically getting away from the frightening limits of an upsetting world. Imagine Prince of Persia without the floppy pantaloons, additional puzzle elements, and a very unsettling atmosphere.