Game Of The Year Editor’s Pick, 2023

Dredge. Dave the Diver. Paranormasight. Octopath Traveler 2. These all have two things in common: They’re all fantastic games, and I haven’t played any of them.


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But what I have played are the big games that absolutely everyone has heard of, and yet I still struggled to make a nice round ‘ten games’ that I’m completely happy with. Is every game here a standout? A revelation? No. Is every game here an all-round great game? Also debatable. But they do deserve accolades in some capacity, for one reason or another. Speaking of one reason…


Forspoken

Forspoken Cover Art Frey on Purple Background

Yes, I know. I juggled putting Spider-Man 2 here instead, but I have to be completely honest: Spider-Man 2 felt expected, uninspired, and like a third part to a game I had already played twice. Yes, it’s the third game in the series, and I loved the first couple, but there’s only so much thwipping and thwacking I have in me before it fails to entertain.

So Forspoken sits here in its place. Is it incredible? No. But it’s unique, gorgeous, and has cool magic to mess around with. But the real ‘one reason’ it takes the cake is that – unlike Spider-Man – Forspoken gave me refreshing traversal in a refreshing world. I wish Forspoken could have done a lot more, but I also believe it does deserve a place for the things it did right.

Every year at TheGamer, each editor will list out their personal top ten games, along with their game of the year. Afterwards, these will be tallied up to provide TheGamer’s top games of 2023, and our official Game of the Year.

Final Fantasy 16

final fantasy 16 clive cover

I’m not of a wholly determined stance on this game just yet, as I’m still currently playing it, and remain a while away from being done. However, from my experience so far, this game does plenty of noteworthy things.

Between the somewhat repetitive combat and not-so-great looking environments is absolutely amazing combat and so-much-greater-than-great looking environments. It’s a roller coaster of quality, and FF15 was similar in that regard, but the shiniest high points make it a game that is so much more than the duller moments in between.

Resident Evil 4

Resident Evil 4 Remake Leon Kennedy with the village in the background

Before this, I had never played a Resident Evil game, but for some reason, in the spur of a good March, I decided to jump into the Resident Evil 4 remake.

A few knife-breaks and edgy-boy roundhouse kicks later, I found myself having a great time. Even as a newcomer to the series, RE4 just feels like a classic video game that you don’t have to take too seriously, but it’ll provide a fantastic time nonetheless.

Star Wars Jedi: Survivor

Cal Kestis walks through a barren planet with his lightsaber

In a world where a childhood Star Wars fan like myself is finally sick of the many films, standalone series, spin-off series, tie-in spin-off series… it can be rare to enjoy these things anymore.

Aside from Andor, the Jedi games are the only remaining Star Wars thing I really care for, and Survivor gave me yet another story from best boy Cal Kestis that I thoroughly enjoyed. How could I not cast a vote to BD-1 and to finding hairstyles in containers?

Diablo 4

Diablo 4 Lillith on Red Background

I never played much Diablo until Diablo 3 came out on Nintendo Switch, so Diablo 4 was quick to draw me in without the years worth of nostalgia to grant me any expectations.

I don’t think I played it entirely correctly, as my solo self had hit an early level 50 in Act 3 because I could not leave a side quest un-quested… but I had fun continuing on and refining my character.

I still haven’t played a season though, but it’s nice to know more content will be waiting for me when I return to Sanctuary.

Teardown

Teardown - A van with explosions and chaos around it

Teardown finally landed on consoles in 2023 after I’d played it for years on PC, and it deserves its place on this list, as well as much more appreciation from the wider public.

Break stuff, plan heists, play around with physics, and puzzle your way through some environments that are in good need of some old-fashioned sledgehammer-ing. Need I say more?

The Legend Of Zelda: Tears Of The Kingdom

The Legend Of Zelda Tears Of The Kingdom - Link standing on the edge of a sky island

My most anticipated game of 2023 is here… at number four. And I kind of feel like Teardown could still move up.

I love the Zelda series, and Breath of the Wild remains one of my favorite games of all time. Tears of the Kingdom built on that game in so many ways, with even more to discover – but it also lacked the surprise of innovation, the excitement of something new. It did new things, but it itself was familiar, leaving it enjoyable but less revolutionary.

Lies Of P

Pinocchio's legion arm holding a flame of Blue Ergo amid the backround structures of Krat as appearing on the game's cover art.

As soon as I heard about a Pinocchio Dark Souls game, I was on board. The secret sleeper of my anticipated games, Lies of P had the potential to offer one of the best experiences this year.

It’s gorgeous, it’s challenging, and it tells a new version of the known tale that is entirely engrossing. And again, it’s Pinocchio Dark Souls.

Starfield

Starfield isn’t the next Skyrim, or anything even close. It’s a Bethesda RPG through and through, but in today’s standards of gaming, that means it feels outdated in many ways. However, Starfield still has a special place in my heart.

As a huge fan of sci-fi, Skyrim, and No Man’s Sky, it just feels like Starfield was made for me – the people who make those classic RPGs making a big space game? Yes please.

I never wanted to get my hopes up though, and in the end, I enjoyed this new universe that had been created, discovering the secrets it held, and going on all those menial quests and adventures in my rust bucket of a ship. It’s certainly not GOTY material in the objective sense, but it is one of my personal subjective favorites of 2023.

Baldur’s Gate 3

Obviously.

GOTY 2023 Editor's Pic Sam Baldur's Gate 3 with Astarion, Shadowheart, and Lae'zel

I mean, where do you even begin? Baldur’s Gate 3 went above and beyond in bringing D&D to an approachable format, telling a tale of gripping characters, plenty of mystery, and so many secrets that a second, third, and seventh playthrough are all justified.

This game is the latest and greatest title to set a new standard, and revolutionize RPGs for the entire industry. Everything has a purpose, everything has a consequence, and everything offers complete freedom in who you want to be. You decide what it is you want to do, and the game only has one question: how do you want to do this?

Great. Starfield feels even more outdated.

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TheGamer Game Of The Year Hub – 2023

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