I’m sure you don’t need me to tell you that a lot has happened within the last 12 months, certainly not in the context of the real world at least. That being said, a lot has changed here at DualShockers in the last year.
But I’m sure the reason you clicked this article wasn’t to hear about my life and instead, to be nosey at what my favourite games that I played this year were.
So, without further ado, this is the top 10 games that I played in 2021.
Spiritfarer is a delight. While its themes range from dark to dreary, the setting, art style and gameplay mechanics are pretty unique and many of the characters really well written. Plus, it’s a real tear-jerker.
9. Dicey Dungeons
I didn’t get to play as many indie games as I’d have liked this year but of the ones I did, I put the most time into Dicey Dungeons.
I’m a sucker for a good roguelike deck-builder game and this really fitted the bill. The game has a good sense of humour, plenty of variety and an addictive gameplay loop. It’s definitely worthy of a slot on my top 10.
8. Sega Picross/Picross S
I’d always seen people raving about Picross but never understood the appeal. However, I found myself at a loose end with some free time so decided to check it out. I realised the praise was substantiated.
A relatively simple, yet extremely addictive puzzler became my pre-bed addiction for a good couple of months and made its way into my top 10.
7. RE2 Remake/Resident Evil 7/Village
2021 was a good year for filling in some pretty notable blind spots in my gaming history.
Having never really played a Resident Evil game before, aside from an hour or so of the first game, I dived into not one, not two but three this year and very much enjoyed them all.
I started with Biohazard and, a few weird story beats aside, had a blast. I then loved RE2 Remake and am currently making my way through Village, seemingly halfway through Heisenberg’s factory.
The series is exactly what I’m looking for in video games right now, a compact yet compelling story and some really solid gameplay. I’m definitely glad I jumped in.
6. New Pokemon Snap
I allude to it again later but the N64 is my favourite console of all time and the original Pokemon Snap is one of my favourite games on the console, so when I saw the reveal for New Pokemon Snap, I let out an audible gasp. It didn’t disappoint.
While it’s not the most technical game in the world, it filled that Animal Crossing-shaped void. It’s a relaxing, addicting and therapeutic title that I sunk hours and hours into.
What a fantastic game. Although there are some minor performance issues, I loved Bloodborne.
I’d never played a “Soulsbourne” game before and figured this was a good place to start. I was right. While I nearly gave up on a couple of occasions, including the very beginning, I’m glad I stuck with it.
Now, Demon’s Souls beckons.
4. Final Fantasy 7 Remake/Intergrade
Yet another series I’d never really touched before.
When I first played Final Fantasy 7 Remake at the start of this year, I “liked it, I didn’t love it.” The further I’ve got away from playing it, the more I want to go back.
I loved the characters, the world was great, it looked beautiful, the battle system was challenging and it was an all-around great time. Playing Intergrade in the summer really helped to cement these feelings.
Although I have a backlog as long as my arm, I think I may go back and replay this over the new year…
3. Monster Hunter Rise
After getting addicted to Monster Hunter World when it first released, I told myself I wasn’t going to get Rise. I failed but it was worth it.
Rise reminded me of exactly what I loved about World, however, this time, it allowed me to connect with a friend I’d not seen for over a year due to the pandemic. Bring on the DLC.
I reviewed Deathloop for DualShockers and gave it a 9.5/10, the highest score I’ve ever given a game.
It’s a perfect blend of stealth and chaos, filled with engaging, yet easy to dislike characters. The gameplay is slick, mechanics clever and the story a heck of a lot of fun, only let down slightly by the ending.
In another year, Deathloop could have easily topped my list, such is the quality of it. Unfortunately, for Deathloop at least, there was one game I enjoyed slightly more.
1. Metroid Dread (Honorable mention, Super Metroid)
If you’ve read my work before, you’ll know I’m a big Nintendo fan. The N64 is my favourite console ever, I played 1000’s of hours on my GameCube, still own every handheld and currently play my Switch more than any other console. Considering all that, however, up until September, I’d never played a Metroid game.
With Dread approaching, I decided it was time to change that and completed Super Metroid, a game that still holds up phenomenally well. Then, following that, I played through Metroid Dread and I was hooked.
Although it was a little overwhelming at first, once I learnt the map, started grabbing the power-ups and destroying the E.M.M.I’s it became clear that this was something special.
Check out the rest of DualShockers’ staff Top 10 lists below and our Offical Game of the Year Awards winners:
December 31: Game of the Year Awards 2021 Official Winners Revealed