Best of 2013
Boy howdy, there sure were some mighty fine and dangerous new ideas during this, the year of Luigi. While our patron saint may not qualify due to his age, these fresh faces are sure to leave you impressed. Or refreshed. Or confused. Or laughing. Or angry. Or frightened. Or confused again. So many emotions.
This is the last of our 21 nominee posts. Thank Luigi.
Get ready for Monday, December 23, when the flood gates burst and all of our hot, slimy winners come slipping out. "Happy birthday," they'll screech gutturally through not-yet-formed vocal tracks as we slap them on the ass with a Destructoid seal of quality sticker, as you look on in disgust and awe. Mostly disgust.
Everything just works so well in unison. The soundtrack is delightful and odd, at times reminiscent of Paprika’s parade fanfare with its lively horns. The world, put together in paper scraps, is unbelievable in its artistry and function. Tearaway’s paper water and ripples as you walk through it are more impressive than any realistic water graphics I’ve ever seen. The level of unique detail in the world is staggering. Every moment spent immersed in it is heartwarming. Fittingly, it feels positively handcrafted.
Read the full Tearaway review
I came away from The Swapper with nothing but amazement. From the first time you see the literally hand-crafted visuals until the final moment in the game, which is sure to give you pause for thought, you will be in complete awe. Brilliant puzzles with even more brilliant solutions compliment the philosophical plotline, leaving an unforgettable experience unlike any other.
Read the full review of The Swapper.
The world's best surgery sim.
Read the full Surgeon Simulator review
Monaco: What's Yours is Mine
Monaco: What's Yours is Mine truly is a game for anyone and everyone. It is simple enough to pick up and immediately understand how things work, while at the same time offers the complexity to have multiple players spend a few minutes sitting still, devising a self-titled "Best Plan Ever" complete with tracing the plan on the screen with fingers, saying “Ready? GO!”, only to see it backfire in seconds. Regardless of whether you plan on flying solo or with some buddies, do yourself a favor and go play Monaco. I know I'll be doing the same for a long time into the future.
Read the full Monaco review
Not only does all of this create a wonderful sense of personalization, but the fact that these purchases are permanent is what really sets Rogue Legacy apart from other games with roguelike elements. Normally, any sense of progression comes from simply learning the game's mechanics and mastering them. While that aspect is still here in spades, there's also a very obvious and visible sense of progression through all of these upgrades. This allows even the worst of runs to accomplish something, making them feel as if it was all worth it.
Read the full Rogue Legacy review.
Yes, perfect is the word for Ridiculous Fishing. Everything comes together to deliver a cohesive whole that works to alternate between making you smile, making you wonder, and most of all, making you want more. Thankfully, the game is quick to offer more. Just when you think you've seen the end, there's a new area, new item, a new kick in the storyline, or new fish to savor. Ingeniously designed, continuously compelling, painstakingly crafted, dripping with personality, packed with content -- I like everything about Ridiculous Fishing.
Read the full Ridiculous Fishing review
The Stanley Parable HD
So, how do you review what has become known as The Stanley Parable HD, the full-scale reimagining of one of the most intriguing mods available online? How do you discuss it, analyze it, and recommend it?
That's quite simple.
Read the full review of The Stanley Parable HD.
You will not lose in Divekick! because your opponent is better than you at dialing in big damage combos or successfully completing complex hand motions. You will not lose in Divekick! because you haven't learned a library list of character specific moves, or how to exploit the details of a highly variable combat system. If you lose in Divekick!, it's only because you didn't make the right decisions at the right time. It levels the playing field between people who love, hate, or are just plain intimidated by the genre like few other games have. If you've ever enjoyed flying kicks in any form, Divekick! is the game for you.
Read the full DiveKick review.
It's just a wonderfully crafted, well-paced story about a family. And that's really it. There's not much else out there like it. It may not sound like much on paper, but Gone Home had such an impact on me that I'll be thinking about this game for years to come.
Read the full review of Gone Home.
Kentucky Route Zero
Kentucky Route Zero evokes the feeling of old ghost stories told around a campfire. There's the familiarity of friends and family around a warm, man-made fire, but with it comes the unnerving tale of the strange and unusual. Kentucky Route Zero is beautifully bizarre and perfectly poignant, and most of all, deserves your attention.
Read the full Kentucky Route Zero review.
Congrats to all the nominees! We'll be announcing the official winner on Monday, December 24.
Here's all the other nominee categories we've revealed so far:
In the mean time we want you to tell us which game this year was the best original concept.