2018 sits between two very good years for gaming, with 2017 seeing the launch of the Nintendo Switch, and 2019 being the final year before the release of the PS5 and Xbox Series X|S. But, that doesn’t mean that studios weren’t hard at work to make 2018 a fantastic year for gaming. In fact, gamers were definitely spoilt during this period with so many incredible games to choose from. For this list, we have used the scores from the now-defunct Game Rankings as the basis. Although many games on this list were released on multiple platforms, the only ones listed made the top 10 in the rankings and it is those specific versions that formed the basis of this list. Here are the top 10 best games that were released in 2018.
10. Tetris Effect – PlayStation 4
Tetris Effect is what I imagine the game would be like to play while on an acid trip. It has a very psychedelic feel to the visuals which can be distracting and off-putting at times. But, it is a very solid game and a great way for Tetris fans to get their fix on a modern platform.
Tetris Effect scored 90% on Game Rankings.
9. NieR: Automata – Become as Gods Edition – Xbox One
It is quite difficult to describe why you should play NieR: Automata, or any entries in the series, but you definitely should. NieR: Automata features action-packed hack and slash battles that can be likened to Devil May Cry or Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, an expansive open world, as well as masterful storytelling, and character design.
NieR: Automata – Become As Gods Edition scored 92% on Game Rankings.
8. Divinity: Original Sin II – Definitive Edition – PlayStation 4
Divinity: Original Sin 2 is a must-play RPG by the creators of Baulder’s Gate 3. Since its initial release in 2017, Divinity: Original Sin 2 has received many accolades and topped many lists as an RPG that all gamers should be checking out. Divinity: Original Sin 2: Definitive Edition is the most complete version of the game and includes all of the DLC that has been released, giving gamers dozens of hours of playtime in one package. It has been estimated that Divinity: Original Sin 2 can take upwards of 350 hours to 100% complete the game.
Divinity: Original Sin 2 scored 92% on Game Rankings.
7. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate – Nintendo Switch
Have we now seen the final Super Smash Bros games be released with Ultimate? If we have then the series went out with a bang, with it featuring almost every character ever seen in a Smash game along with some brand new characters and plenty of DLC. As the name suggests, this is the ultimate Super Smash Bros game and it will be difficult to top it.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate scored 92% on Game Rankings.
6. Forza Horizon 4 – Xbox One
The Forza series is broken up into two different series’, Motorsport which is more of a racing sim, and Horizon which has an open-world arcade feel to it. Forza Horizon 4 takes the player to the UK as they race across the British countryside in hundreds of cars. Racing games are a great way to see the capabilities of a gaming platform at that current time, and Forza Horizon 4 continues that tradition by being one of the best-looking games of the time.
Forza Horizon 4 scored 92% on Game Rankings.
5. Shadow of the Colossus – PlayStation 4
Shadow of the Colossus is a remake of the classic 2005 PS2 game of the same name, with the game being very similar to the original release, but with brand new textures and reworked controls. The game is very impressive and pushed the PlayStation 4 to its limits, with it being playable at 1440p and upscaled to 4K.
Shadow of the Colossus scored 92% on Game Rankings.
4. Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice – Xbox One
Set in the Viking age, a broken Celtic warrior embarks on a haunting vision quest into Viking Hell to fight for the soul of her dead lover in a fantastic action game developed by the studio behind Devil May Cry and Enslaved. Now would be a good time to check this game out as its sequel is scheduled to be released in 2023.
Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice scored 93% on Game Rankings.
3. God of War – PlayStation 4
God of War became a generation-defining action-adventure game for Sony and the PS4, with it serving as a soft reboot of the series heading into this next era of gaming. The game follows the story of Kratos and his son as they set off on a new adventure following the death of Kratos’ wife. This story is set to continue later this year when God of War: Ragnarok releases in November 2022.
God of War scored 94% on Game Rankings.
2. Celeste – Xbox One, Nintendo Switch
Celeste is quite possibly the best 2D platformer ever released that isn’t part of the Super Mario series. The story is incredibly charming that follows a young woman named Madeline who attempts to climb the mountain, and must face her inner demons in her quest to reach the summit. But, where the game shines is its mechanics. Celeste has a strong focus on input-specific platforming, with it often taking practice to nail the timings of the actions in order to complete the section in the game.
Celeste scored 96% on Game Rankings.
1. Red Dead Redemption 2 – PlayStation 4, Xbox One
When GTA V was released in 2013 it became an instant smash-hit, breaking numerous Guinness World Records and going on to become the second best-selling game of all time. So, when Rockstar announced Red Dead Redemption 2 fans were understandably overjoyed with the news. The Red Dead series can be likened to a wild west themed GTA-style franchise that looks and plays a lot like them, GTA: Wild West Edition if you will. It comes as no surprise that Red Dead Redemption 2 sold millions of copies upon release and is regarded as one of the greatest games of all time, as well as one of the best looking with it still being incredibly demanding for PCs today.