Game of the Year 2018 – Day 2!

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Our GOTY content continues, with discussions on the Best Soundtrack, our Best Surprise, the Best VR game and our Most Anticipated title for 2019!

BEST SOUNDTRACK

This one was split two ways, with Gari opting for Spider-Man’s orchestral bombast – saying: The soundtrack for Spider-Man really is one to behold. From the epic opening orchestral score to music that feels like a mixture of The Amazing Spider-Man theme mixed in with other entries from the Marvel universe, the score really hits you in the feels. Alongside the score changing and adjusting depending on what’s happening in the world, it really pulls you in to make you feel like you’re part of the world that you’re controlling. A score that will stick with me for a very long time and for it to beat God of War for my “Best Soundtrack”, that says it all about how incredible this made me feel being a huge Spider-Man fan since a very young age.

However, taking home the title to join it’s other win in the best looking game category, the winner is…

WINNER: RED DEAD REDEMPTION 2

Red Dead’s soundtrack is a wonderful blend of jangling western guitars, subtle acoustic lilts and outright furious tones at times, with a fantastic score underpinned by a collated OST that adds to some of the most incredible moments of the game. “May I Stand Unshaken” and “That’s the Way It Is” hold their heads way above anything in most other games this year thanks to some emotionally powerful scenes that stick in your mind well past the closing credits.

Robin: The sound design as a whole is thoroughly impressive throughout RDR2. The music, speech and sound effects all combine seamlessly to add to the depth and atmosphere of what is one of the most impressive achievements in gaming in recent memory. RDR2 is a real living, breathing world, and one where its excitement and emotion is heightened by the authentic, evocative soundtrack.

BEST SURPRISE

Some tough choices this time out, with a number of games taking a spot on the list – but there was one winner that edged out all the others…

Robin: Being a huge fan of couch co-op games – a genre which has sadly been an a steep decline over the last few years – A Way Out was a breath of fresh air. Ok, it may not have the most original storyline, or boast any particularly impressive gameplay innovations, but the title was built from the ground-up to be a shared experience and in that regard it succeeds immensely. Culminating in a twist ending that you will either love or hate, this is a real friendship maker and/or breaker.

Gari: I loved the Spyro trilogy as a kid and although I had a feeling that it would get remastered at some point, I did not expect developer Toys for Bob to do such a stellar job. built from the ground up, the work and craftsmanship put into the game are evident from the moment you start playing. Tighter controls, beautiful animations and to top it off, it’s a stunner to look at. With 3 games included, there’s enough content to keep you happy. With a game that both adults and kids will love, you can’t go wrong with the Spyro Reignited Trilogy if you’re after that retro style 3D platformer with a modern lick of paint.

Jonny: Metal Gear Survive was something that should have been the original Fallout 76, in terms of hanging survival mechanics on an existing IP just to plug a release schedule gap, in fact turned out to be perfectly enjoyable and enjoyably silly.

WINNER: TETRIS EFFECT

If you’d told me that a new Tetris game would feature in my top ten games of the year list way back in January, I’d have told you to get lost. However, Tetris Effect was unveiled at E3 and a part of my tiny little mind began to melt. A wonderful game from Mizaguchi and his team, Tetris Effect reinvents what it means to drop blocks into holes, and does it with the style that only he knows how to do. The best version of one of the best games of all time.

Kieran: Another Tetris game? I thought. How naive. When I sat down and watched Tetris Effect unveil itself before my very eyes I found myself entranced. Tetris shouldn’t be this encapsulating yet somehow the masterminds behind the game have managed to evoke so much emotion from it. I’d only witnessed the game in a small burst but it was such an incredible experience and one that completely blindsided me.

BEST VR GAME

This one was split between two, with Nick going for Beat Saber, saying VR is still trying to find its place in the gaming world, with full releases such as Fallout and Skyrim VR trying to flesh out and bite size experiences that flod the market. However, Beat Saber proves that when they’re done right, they’re more at home in virtual reality than anything else. Immersive, addicting and oddly empowering somehow, Beat Saber is perhaps the first game you’ll want to boot up when donning the head set every time.

However, it’s a double whammy for…

WINNER: TETRIS EFFECT

Take everything I’ve said above about Tetris Effect and amplify it by about 100 when you put on the VR headset. It’s a transformative experience, and one that almost surpasses Rez Infinite as my favourite game on the PlayStation VR. “But it’s just Tetris” I hear you cry, and you’d be wrong. So, so wrong. Get a good pair of headphones, a PSVR, block the world out and just immerse yourself in one of the most overwhelming (in a good way) games on the platform.

MOST ANTICIPATED GAME

Another one that split the team almost to a person, the most anticipated category is one that always throws up a ton of games…

Gari: The announcement of Luigi’s Mansion 3 for the Switch is a huge deal. One of my favourite games of all time is Luigi’s Mansion all the way back on the Gamecube and to see that I’ll be able to play another instalment of Luigi’s Mansion on the Switch in 2019 gets me super excited. Another Nintendo series that is a ton of fun to play and to think I’ll be able to do it on the go with the Switch makes me an extremely happy gamer!

Kieran: Untitled new Pokemon GameAlright, we don’t know anything about this yet but after the release of Pokémon Let’s Go I can barely contain my excitement. Pokémon has found a resurgence over the last couple of years due to the release of Pokémon Go and ever since then I’ve been getting twangs of childhood memories spent playing the old Game Boy games. If we get that full, classic, Pokémon RPG experience with the same visual fidelity as the latest Pokémon Let’s Go I’ll be heading straight down to the nearest shop and picking up a Nintendo Switch. Actually, that’s a lie, because my closest shop is a Co-op but you get the idea.

Deb: Though there are many stunning games set to release in 2019, there is only one thing my heart has been longing for ever since I picked up my Nintendo Switch. Animal Crossing! It may not be the most graphically demanding or action packed title to release next year, but what I have really missed this year is a good relaxing game that I can just pick up every now and then and just have that time to wind down and relax, talking to my animal friends and de-weeding the town with a nice cuppa tea! Though Pocket Camp has kept me somewhat content, I am really looking forward to getting stuck in to another Animal Crossing experience that will become my new daily addiction!

Robin: Shenmue 3 – The HD re-release of Shenmue 1 & 2 this year only whet the appetite even more for a game almost twenty years in the making. Ok, expectations should be tempered somewhat by the fact that this is a Kickstarter game and not a full triple-A release, however the fact that Yu Suzuki and so many other key team members from the development of the first two game are on board, does allow for some optimism. But to be honest, I’d be excited for this game no matter what.

However, the winner is…

WINNER: DOOM ETERNAL

Just give me more Doom please. Much the same as Hitman 2 was “just more Hitman” this year, I’d be more than happy to see this game be a ton more shotgun shells into demon faces, and I imagine there will be a ton of people that will be right alongside me. Give it to me now, please. Thanks.

Jonny: DOOM. MORE DOOM. The sequel to the best game of 2016, but with grappling hooks. Only the new Wolfenstein could possible come close as most anticipated of 2019.

And that’s it! Join us tomorrow for day 3, when we’re talking about the games that ALMOST made our Top Ten list… What will they be?!

Editor-In-Chief - NGB Started writing for NGB in 2013, 3 years later I was running the show. I love what we do here, if you want to get involved, get in touch! PSN/Xbox LIVE/Steam - Winstano

@winstano

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