The past year has been a tough year for the games industry. Sales are lower than during the pandemic and gamers are going back out into the world instead of staying at home. But there were also many beautiful games.
From grueling games that test your willpower to relaxing games that make you feel like you’re snuggling up in your favorite blanket, 2022 has brought us a variety of titles for every type of player.
To that end, I’ve rounded up some of my favorite games of the year. This is not to say they are the best. There are plenty that are just as good if not better than the ones on this list. Also, not every game is perfect. I’m looking at you “Pokemon Scarlet” and “Pokemon Violet”.
Still, these are the games, in no particular order, that I think are worth getting to know a little better the next time you need some down time in front of your TV.
‘Elden Ring’ will test your skills and your patience. But hold on, and you’ll find one of the best games of 2022. (Photo: Bandai Namco)
One of the biggest hits of 2022, and I’ve put in more hours than I care to admit, FromSoftware’s “Elden’s Ring” is a huge, punishing title that will test you over and over again. Death is just as much a part of the game as survival, and every time you go down there’s a chance to learn from your missteps.
Yes, the first boss, Margit the Fail Omen, is a nightmare by early game standards, but beating her, or walking past V outside, is well worth the effort. And once you’ve landed in the wide world of The Lands Between, you can explore and develop at your own pace.
As for that optional battle with Boss Melania? It’s as heavy as you’ve heard.
Call of Duty: War Zone 2.0
‘Warzone 2.0’ brings several major changes to one of the most exciting battle royale games. (Image: Activision Blizzard)
The second installment of Activision Blizzard’s online battle royale hit, “Call of Duty: Warzone 2.0,” is just as frenetic and fun as 2020’s “Call of Duty: Warzone,” with plenty of welcome changes. From the new map, Al Mazrah, to the ability to carry more items and armor through the game’s backpack mechanics, “Warzone 2.0” is an upgrade in almost every way.
Vehicles are no longer immune to falling and running out of gas if you try to drive them around the map instead of dealing with other players. Proximity voice chat adds a whole new layer to the game, letting you know when another player is nearby, and weapons feel much more balanced, so newcomers shouldn’t feel too overwhelmed.
Oh, and did I mention it’s free?
Pokemon legends: arceus
‘Pokémon Legends: Arceus’ offers an open world experience that fans of the series are sure to enjoy. (Image: Nintendo)
“Pokémon Legends: Arceus” brings some of the biggest changes to the legendary franchise in years. An open world “Pokémon” title that lets you roam the vast forests of the Hisui region, capturing and battling Pokémon as you’ve done for years, only this time interacting with them in new and exciting ways. Will be able to communicate in manners
Sneak up on a wild Pokémon and aim your Pokéball just right, and you’ll be able to intercept it without a fight. If you get too close, you may miss your target. See an EV in the weeds? Bend down and try to catch it with a special Pokéball.
Even the fighting mechanics have changed, allowing you to switch between styles to add extra power or get extra turns. It’s not a perfect game, the open world areas pale in comparison to the open world in games like “The Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild”, but the overall improvements it brings make up for it.
Horizon: Forbidden West
‘Horizon: Forbidden West’ offers an opportunity to explore the post-apocalyptic west through stunning graphics and gameplay. (Image: Sony)
“Horizon: Forbidden West” puts you back in the shoes of Aloys, the protagonist of “Horizon: Zero Dawn”, as you traverse a post-apocalyptic version of the American West. You prepare your weapons and fight with huge mechanical versions of long-extinct animals and dinosaurs, hoping to discover the secrets of this game world.
But you can’t mention “Horizon: Forbidden West” without talking about how awesome this title looks. From the way the vegetation flutters in the wind to the beautiful look of the decaying landmarks, this title is almost as beautiful as the game itself. Play it on PS5 and you’ll get better graphics and higher dynamic range for a more immersive experience.
In ‘Stray’ you play as a mischievous cat who is looking for his lost friends. And yes, there is a meow button. (Image: Annapurna Interactive)
crazy about cats? love games? Then “Stray” by BlueTwelve Studio is for you. You play as a curious cat lost in a cyberpunk-style neon-filled city populated by sentient robots and monsters. your goal? To return to your fellow feline friends.
This is a beautifully designed game that lets you explore the world as your very own mischievous cat. You can knock objects off shelves, waltz across a computer keyboard, and, of course, scratch carpets and furniture. And yes, there is a dedicated “meow” button.
Don’t expect a long drawn-out epic here. “Maverick” is a tight game, but definitely a treat you’ll want to indulge in.
pokemon scarlet and violet
‘Pokemon Scarlet’ and ‘Pokemon Violet’ offer a larger open world experience with improved combat mechanics. But it is prone to glitches and lags. (Image: Nintendo)
The latest entries in the regular Pokémon series, “Pokémon Scarlet” and “Pokémon Violet,” take over a page from “Pokemon Legends: Arceus,” featuring an open world filled with wild Pokémon for you to catch and battle.
Unlike previous installments in the series, you can move around the world at your own pace. Want to compete against the local gym leaders? Go for it. Explore villages and battle Rotten Team Star? Your choise.
And of course, you’ll be exposed to a host of new Pokémon and abilities, including a new feature called Terrastalization, which makes your Pokémon stronger for attacks and abilities. But it’s also worth noting that “Scarlet” and “Violet” have their fair share of glitches, including cases where you can fall through the world. And there’s an unfortunate amount of lag. Hopefully Game Freak will release an update to address these issues.
Disney Dreamlight Valley
Need a new casual game? ‘Disney Dreamlight Valley’ is for you. (Image: Disney)
“Disney Dreamlight Valley” is a game you can curl up on the couch during the cold winter months and play with hot chocolate in hand and your four-legged friend warming your feet.
It has been described as Disney’s take on Nintendo’s “Animal Crossing: New Horizons”. You craft, collect items, explore and build your own little piece of paradise, but instead of “Animal Crossing” Tom Nook and his crew, you spend your time hanging out with Belle, Scrooge, Mickey and basically the whole world. . Disney animation team.
This is not a high-stakes life-or-death drama. This is the game you want to play to relax and spend time with your favorite Disney friends since childhood. And this is something that everyone can enjoy.
god of war RagnarO!K
Kratos and Atreus are back for more bloody, god-shattering battles in God of War Ragnarök. (Image: Sony)
Kratos and his son Atreus are back to take on more Norse gods and hordes in God of War Ragnarok. In the sequel to Sony’s awesome 2018 “God of War” release, “Ragnarok”, you can travel through nine realms as you pilot Leviathan Ax and the Blades of Chaos, not to mention a variety of new skills and abilities. .
You face monsters in the form of brutal battles and defeats that only “God of War” games can offer. And when you’ve done all that, you still have to shake hands with the mighty Thor.
Revenge of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Shredder
The evil green fighting machines are back in ‘Shredder’s Revenge’. (Image: dotemu)
The evil green fighting machines are back and on top form in “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder’s Revenge.” A classic old school arcade beat-em-up and 90s title for the Sega Genesis and Super Nintendo, “Shredder’s Revenge” is one of the best turtle games in years.
You can play as all four green heroes, as well as Master Splinter and newsreader April O’Neill with power-up moves, tag team attacks and truckloads of pizza dumps.
Add references to both the classic “Turtles” games and movies, and you’ve got a throwback worth your time. Cowbanga!
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