As the year draws to a close, we're looking at our site stats to determine what our community have been up to since January. We're starting with a look at new games with the most players in 2018.
Despite lacking in much innovation and in fact sitting at virtually the same aggregate review score as FIFA 18, the annual footballing franchise still troubles even the TT community's top 10 list, and was the only game to outsell Red Dead Redemption 2 in physical charts earlier in the year.
One of my favourite games of the year. While it's true that I am a known Assassin's Creed apologist, even I had my doubts that this year's entry would keep my interest. The introduction of a fantastic female protagonist, multiple story strands, dialogue choices and a truly gorgeous Ancient Greece setting quickly blew those concerns out of the water.
When Bluepoint announced that they were not remastering the PS2 classic Shadow of the Colossus, but remaking it using the original game's code, some were understandably concerned. The game's placement in this year's top 10 despite a blockbuster year for PS4 exclusives proves those concerns unfounded. The studio's ingenuity and faithfulness to the original game has produced one of the most beautifully nostalgic returns to hallowed ground in this age of remasters — and it's a great experience for newcomers too.
The announcement earlier this year that the next Call of Duty wouldn't have a single player campaign turned a few heads, but the vast majority of COD's audience didn't care. Multiplayer is where COD has always excelled and Black Ops 4 is no different. The introduction of the only Battle Royale mode to give PUBG and Fortnite a run for their money has only helped boost the credibility of the occasionally tired-seeming series.
Look, if you're not a fan of David Cage's approach to video game storytelling, Detroit isn't going to change your mind. But it did produce a genuinely engaging buddy-cop bromance between plucky android Connor and grizzled anti-robot detective Hank, which is the subject of many a Tumblr blog to this day. It's also a great technical achievement, both in terms of it's visuals and the sheer variety of choice and consequence available to the player. We have a full walkthrough on site which will help you hit those tricky choice-related trophies, and also see a broad swathe of the narrative branches the game has to offer.
Far Cry 5
Despite a lacklustre critical reception claiming that Far Cry 5 is simply more of the same, the game still won over a big chunk of the playing public. Likely partly because of Far Cry's inherently addictive formula and the allure of taking the fight to a familiar rural setting, some charismatic characters and a bunch of wacky DLCs also made the fifth entry feel entertaining enough. Ubisoft clearly think it's worth pursuing: at this year's game awards they announced a direct sequel, a series first. Even the setting of Far Cry New Dawn is a bit of a spoiler; you have been warned...
Possibly the most pleasant surprise of the year. Series fans were worried that mainstream audiences simply wouldn't "get" Monster Hunter, or that the experience would be diluted beyond repair. While World certainly makes some drastic changes in the name of streamlining the experience, the result is both wonderfully faithful and refreshing. Monster Hunter World was a surprise smash hit in the early months of the year and even made it to the Game of the Year nominations in The Game Awards this December. It's on my long list of games that I've only given an hour to this year — I'm looking forward to giving it a proper shot.
There's not much more to be said about the most talked-about game of the year (well, maybe after Fortnite). It will suffice to say that Rockstar have surpassed their own impeccable reputation with a detailed, dynamic world and their most poignant story to date. It's not often that one can say a prequel is so good that it makes the original better just by existing, in any medium. This will be the game of the generation for many, and it's hard to argue against that claim.
In my opinion, Spider-Man has one of the best openings of the generation. I'm not talking about the fight against Fisk; I'm talking about the first 10 seconds of gameplay. The game launches you straight out of Peter Parker's window and has you webbing at exhilarating speeds through a beautifully realised New York. This is probably the best superhero game to date, and while there's some pacing issues in the game's second half, the sheer joy of slinging around Manhattan never goes away — not even during the near-essential story DLCs that concluded just before Christmas.
It's clear that video game directors are growing up and tackling fatherhood — the best games of the last two generations go a long way to prove it. A few years ago it would be impossible to believe that the unabashedly shlocky God of War could be reinvented as a melancholy tale of a father and son dealing with loss, but this year's most played game managed it — and did so without "rebooting" the character into something completely new. This is still Kratos, just grown up — and it's a trend I hope continues into the next console generation. (Could we get some badass video game moms, though? A grizzled 50 year old Lara Croft? Just a thought.)
So there you have it — the TrueTrophies community's most played games of 2018. What do you think? Any surprised in there for you? Let us know in the comments!
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