After some much needed time to reflect, I’ve realised that 2022 was a strange year for me. I had noticeably less time for gaming, falling out of the sphere for quite a large chunk of the year. There weren’t a whole lot of games that really piqued my interest and what time I did have was mostly spent rediscovering old flames like World of Warcraft or Final Fantasy XIV. Yet there were three games perfectly placed throughout the year that snagged me right back in — with two of them appearing on this list. (The third one was Witch on the Holy Night in case anyone was wondering.)
My Game of the Year:Elden Ring
The absolute madness that was the reception to Elden Ring’s release at the start of 2022 was truly a sight to behold. Developer FromSoftware deserves every bit of praise they have received for creating one of the greatest open worlds ever put to disk. Previous entries in the Souls series of games were always intricately designed and tight experiences, but the sheer scale Elden Ring has while still retaining the same level of detail makes it an absolute certified classic, and a bittersweet swansong for FromSoftware’s Souls games.
Honourable Mention:Digimon Survive
A surprise to be sure, but a welcome one. Digimon as a franchise will always have a place in my heart: growing up I was always a Digimon rather than Pokémon kind of guy (which is the objectively correct view to have!). Digimon Survive nails what it sets out to do — it’s a mature, modern take on the classic franchise and isn’t afraid to tap into the horror these digital monsters probably always should have instilled in us.
What I’m looking forward to playing in 2023:Final Fantasy XVI
I’m a simple sort: I see Final Fantasy, I buy it. Yet after the nonsense surrounding Final Fantasy XV’s release you’d be forgiven for being cautious. However, recent changes at Square Enix, coupled with some impressive (if decidedly brief) showings, have got me excited all over again. FFXV has edged out Fate/Samurai Remnant as my most hyped upcoming release, even convincing me to snag a PS5 just to be able to play it in June.