While we already named our game of the year, and handed out our many year-end awards, we still have one final article to roll out. This is our numbered list of the top five PlayStation 4 games of 2017. Settling on just five titles in such a fantastic year of games led to a lot of debate, and then the actual numbering let to more squabbling internally.
After all of the arguments, though, I’m extremely proud of the list that we ended up on. These five amazing PlayStation 4 games truly show how amazing this year was for games. Check them out below!
Yakuza 0 is the game that finally brought SEGA’s quirky action series to a wider audience. Not only does it perfectly encapsulate Japan during the 80s, it also tells a shocking and emotional story. Our review said, “Yakuza 0 feels a bit like an anime that also happens to be an action/fighting game. The only problem is that the fighting feels dated, though the environmental options and multiple fighting styles to master help to spice things up a little. A genuinely entertaining and captivating story lurks in the seedy underworld of Tokyo, where a miniscule empty lot somehow sparks a massive conflict. The setting feels authentic, and naturally there are tons of different restaurants to eat at, bars to hit up, and minigames to play, each with their own types of rewards. Toss in two completely separate and surprisingly deep simulators – real estate management for Kiryu, cabaret club management for Majima – and Yakuza 0 will easily take 40+ hours of your time before you’ve seen everything it has to offer. Fans of the series will no doubt be thankful Sega took the time to localize Yakuza 0, and those looking for a good starting point for the series can begin with this excellent prequel.”
Few role-playing games can match Persona 5 in terms of polish and scale. The massive title is filled with interesting twists, great combat, and memorable dungeons to explore. Our review said, “Persona 5 is proof that few titles can compare to a truly great role-playing game. Over its 60+ hour playtime I got to forge meaningful friendships with an eccentric cast of characters, discover the secrets of Tokyo, and even managed to find some nice restaurants to dine at. The time investment might seem like a lot, but rarely is time wasted when spent with friends. It doesn’t reinvent the genre, as it largely builds upon Persona 4‘s stellar base, but it adds a level of polish that is simply lacking from its contemporaries.”
A lot of shooters played great in 2017, but Wolfenstein II‘s great campaign really helped it stand out from the crowd. It had its share of ridiculous and genuine moments, and managed to produce one highly memorable affair. Our review said, “I had high expectations going into Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus, but MachineGames managed to outdo them in every way imaginable. They’ve created one of the most ridiculous video games ever made, and one that is never afraid to be clear about its message of equality & justice. While it’s easy to focus on the over-the-top story beats and memorable scenes, The New Colossus is carried by an incredible amount of heart from start to finish.”
As Nathan Drake made his exit last year in Uncharted 4, it looks like PlayStation’s marketing is shifting to feature Aloy more and more. Horizon was an incredibly polished open-world adventure that brought a unique “the future is the past” take on the post-apocalyptic world. Coming from Guerrilla, traditionally known for the first-person shooter Killzone games, an open-world featuring robot dinosaurs was an unexpected delight. Horizon will live on as not just the best PlayStation exclusive of this year, but as one the PlayStation classics that will be well known long from now.
(Written by Chandler Wood)
Not only is NieR: Automata a fantastic third-person action game (hear about why players love it), it also regularly turns into a shooter (of the top-down and vertical varieties) and 2D platformer. It never feels out of place, though, and it all blends together to create one of the most unique action games in years. It also features a powerful story that manages to stick with players long after the amazing credits roll. Our review said,”NieR: Automata brings back the same mixed gameplay that helped make the original so enjoyable, and has improved on it tenfold. While the game is primarily played in a three-dimensional third-person perspective, it occasionally switches to either a pseudo two-dimensional top-down or side-scrolling view. Combat is significantly faster-paced than the original, owing to new series developer PlatinumGames. It also features shoot-em-up and bullet hell elements, especially during its pseudo two-dimensional sections that sometimes feature combat in flight units. All this in addition to the game’s setting make the mixed gameplay work and fit significantly better than it did in the original.”
Don’t miss the rest of the announced year-end award nominees and winners.