With the arrival of the Nintendo Switch, huge blockbuster games, and indie games, there has never been a better time to play video games. 2017 has seen some of the best games ever released. We’ve been playing games all year long, but now is the time for us to choose our favorite games of the year. Here’s a look at ToyBuzz’s Game of the Year for 2017 and the runner ups.
Game Of The Year 2017
And the Winner is . . .
1. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo, Switch/Wii U, Rated E10+)
While there are many open world games, Breath Of Wild takes us back to the roots of the Zelda franchise and it feels like a breath of fresh air. With the classical Nintendo charm, this is not just another open world game. The biggest difference? The game encourages you to explore as you fill out and mark your map. Once Link leaps into the great unknown from the Great Plateau, the game gives players every tool they need to complete their adventure and an unrivaled sense of freedom.
As ambitious as the open world is, it’s even more amazing that Nintendo has built a robust physics engine on top of everything. Fire will propagate through bushes and Hyrule is grounded by realistic physics that mirrors the real world. Thanks to the “open air” design, every player will have their own story to tell.
You can climb every object, cook up different recipes, go in any direction, and fight the final boss at any time. Using towering visual magnets, Nintendo’s designers have created a magical world that carefully nudges the player to explore every nook and crevice while constantly rewarding players. It’s the game we always thought we were playing when we first stepped into the world of Hyrule over 30 years ago and one of the most influential games in the last decade.
2. Super Mario Odyssey (Nintendo, Switch, Rated E10+)
Super Mario Odyssey is a triumphant return to the Super Mario 64 formula. Nintendo hasn’t just created a sequel to one of our favorite Mario games, but it has improved it in every way possible. Whether you are doing back flips, speeding down a hill as a ball, or hopping off your cap, Mario has never felt so acrobatic. Using his gymnastic skills, Mario will have to collect moons to power up his spaceship called the Odyssey.
With secrets and fresh ideas around every corner, each world feels like a miniature playground that is designed for Mario to play in and explore. This time Mario is not alone. He is bringing a new friend with him, a sentient cap named Cappy. The coolest part? When Mario throws his hat at enemies, he can take control of everything from Bullet Bill to a humongous T-Rex dinosaur with a mustache on it. While often wacky, Odyssey lives up to its name. It’s Super!
3. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe (Nintendo, Switch, Rated E)
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe delivers the definitive Mario Kart experience for the Nintendo Switch. Not only is it the best Mario Kart to date, it is also one of the greatest multiplayer games, period. It’s loaded with a swathe of characters, courses, and the best Battle Mode to date. The game runs silky smooth and looks like a cartoon with colorful, brilliant graphics that dazzle.
The courses are brilliantly designed and incredibly fun to race on and the racing mechanics are absolute perfection. Watch out for those blue turtles! Racing and battling with your friends is insanely fun and addictive. The game also offers local multiplayer as well as online racing and the ability to play on the go! A must-own for any Switch owner.
4. Splatoon 2 (Nintendo, Switch, Rated E10+)
Need a splash of color? Splatoon 2, a Switch exclusive, improves on its predecessor in every way imaginable with a rock-solid single-player campaign and multiplayer experience. It’s like a game of paintball with two teams of four players. It’s all about blasting ink to cover the majority of the arena with your team’s color.
You’ll have to evade the opposition’s blasts to minimize respawns and work as a team. The game is accessible even for newbies and it’s super competitive and insanely addictive. Nintendo proves you don’t need intense violence to create a satisfying shooter that gamers of any age can thoroughly enjoy.
5. Snipper Clips (SFB Games, Switch, Rated E)
Get ready to snip and clip! In this zany puzzle game, players have to communicate and work together to cut out pieces from their characters to solve puzzles. By intersecting your character’s body with another player, you can snip and clip out pieces from their body to form new shapes.
While the basic concept is simple to understand, some of the puzzles are wonderfully constructed. One puzzle has players working together to pass a ball to each other and dunk it into a basketball hoop. With support of up to 4 players, this unique puzzle game will have everybody on the floor laughing. It’s no wonder why it made the “cut” on our list.
6. Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle (Ubisoft, Switch, Rated E10+)
Mashing up the world of Mario with Rabbids sounds crazy, right? But Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle turns out to be one of the biggest surprises of the year. It’s the game you didn’t know you actually needed. It’s a turn-based strategy game à la XCOM exclusive to the Nintendo Switch. Unlike XCOM it’s really fun and accessible while also being very smart and challenging, too.
Each character features unique abilities and Mario and friends are equipped with cool weapons. It’s Mario like you’ve never seen him before! It’s one of the best games on the Switch – an absolute winner that deserves your attention!
7. Sonic Mania (Christian Whitehead , Nintendo Switch/PlayStation 4/Xbox One, Rated E)
Sonic Mania is a rare gem that represents the game Sega has been aspiring to make for over twenty years. It’s a blast from the past as fans can relive the glory days of gaming! This is how a classic should be reborn for a new generation of players and long-time fans of the series. The game continues to surprise throughout its campaign with fresh ideas and fun Easter eggs.
The 3D games never really captured what made the original Genesis Sonic games so incredibly fun. In contrast, this game co-developed by a die-hard fan, Christian Whitehead, clearly demonstrates full understanding of what makes a great Sonic game.
8. Metroid: Samus Returns (MercurySteam , Nintendo 3DS, Rated E10+)
Metroid: Samus Returns delivers a worthy Metroid game for long-time fans of the series. It represents a triumphant return to form. Although it is not a brand new Metroid adventure, it almost feels like one with the reboot of Metroid II: Return of Samus. First, the game’s graphics look gorgeous in full 3D on the Nintendo 3DS. Furthermore, there are new areas to explore, powerups, enemies, and more.
It sets a strong foundation for future Metroid games. The Aeion abilities are a really cool new addition and the levels are really well designed. We especially love the melee counter because it makes combat all the more gratifying. Not only is Metroid: Samus Returns our best 3DS game of the year, but it is also hands-down one of the best games for the 3DS.
9. Forza Motorsport 7 (Turn 10 Studios , Xbox One, Rated E)
Forza Motorsport 7 delivers the definitive sim racing game of the year. This Xbox One exclusive showcases the power of the new Xbox One X console, running silky smooth in full 4K glory at 60 frames per second with HDR. The graphics and lighting effects blow every racing game out of the water – even on the standard Xbox One S. Sorry, Gran Turismo Sport!
But, more importantly, Turn 10 has delivered an incredible racing sim that replicates the performance of real-world cars and allows you to build an incredible collection of more than 700 dream supercars. The controls feel precise and braking and mods add considerable depth to the game. The game offers the series’ signature rewind feature as well as assists to make the game more accessible to newcomers who want to partake in racing gaming glory.
10. Cuphead (Studio MDHR , Xbox One, Rated E)
With some of the most gorgeous hand-drawn animations ever in a video game, Cuphead looks like an old-school 1930s Max Fleischer cartoon brought to life. The game brings back the addictive gameplay of 8-bit and 16-bit action hits like Contra, Gun Star Heroes, and Metal Slug. Don’t let the overly cutesy graphics fool you – this is a difficult game that may frustrate kids.
While there are several side-scrolling levels, the game really shines when you are battling a boss that can take on multiple forms. If you love great graphics and challenging old-school gameplay, Cuphead may just be your cup of tea.