Cody's Top 25 Games of 2017 - Part 3 (5-1)

We've finally made it! We're down to my top 5 games of 2017! To anyone who's already read part 1 and part 2, I appreciate you sticking with the series. As I mentioned, this list was so difficult to put together because there was so many great games this year. I even put together another blog post of the games I wish I was able to play this year but never got to, so check that out if you haven't. Without further ado, here we go - My Top 5 Games of 2017!

5 - Nier: Automata

Nier: Automata is a relatively difficult game to discuss because there's really nothing "traditional" about it, and you certainly can't really compare it to anything else. Such is the magic of Yoko Taro, the game's creator. Nier's gameplay is fast paced eye candy, and watching the likes of 2B and 9S dash around swinging massive weapons and fighting monumental enemies is enjoyable enough. The real appeal of Nier is the incredibly powerful narrative that presents some seriously existential concepts and creates this impressively immersive atmosphere. The game requires a certain amount of patience to get through...multiple times, but I guarantee every minute is worth it.

4 - Injustice 2

I've written about Injustice all year, but I'm happy to reiterate - I LOVE this game. I'm the type of person that can get pretty wrapped up in a fighting game, but Injustice 2 has captivated me unlike any fighter before it. I love the roster, the gear system, the plethora of game modes and most importantly how the game feels and looks. Even if it's against a computer I get excited loading into each and every match thanks to NetherRealm's presentation. Whenever I start to burn out a little bit a new character releases or I rediscover an existing hero/villain and I'm back in it all over again. I think Injustice 2 has the unique ability to be playable by anyone and everyone and the roster helps get new players hyped. My one and only complaint about NetherRealm's creation is the legendary multiverses, and how unfair the requirements are to individuals who like to play the entire cast, I feel like it was a massive oversight. Alas, it won't stop me from playing the best fighting game I've played in quite a while.  

3 - Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

I don't think anyone is surprised to see this title in my top 5, if anything some people may wonder why it isn't even higher. Not only did Breath of the Wild win Game of the Year at the official TGAs, it won GOTY for Ign, Polygon and Gamespot. I think Nintendo's fresh take on such a legendary and classic series was incredibly bold, and they certainly deserve these awards. Breath of the Wild is a very easy game to lose yourself in, both in mind and body; I once played it for 9 hours straight on accident! Nintendo had an impressively strong showing this year with Zelda at the helm, and I cannot wait to see what's next. 

2 - Divinity: Original Sin 2

Divinity: Original Sin 2 is certainly something special. The game is designed like a modern day take on classic RPGs such as Baldur's Gate, and is by far the strongest kickstarted RPG I've ever played. The game is absolutely massive, which is impressive in its own right, but the way you can interact with said world is what blows my mind. Players have a choice of race and starting class, but can continue to customize their characters as they see fit throughout the 100+ hour campaign. Start off as a warrior but want to dabble in some necromancy later? THAT'S FINE. I had the distinct pleasure of playing the entire campaign from start to finish with some of my best friends, which made the experience ever better. Recently "open world" games have the unfortunate tendency to be bloated and filled with false depth, but that definitely does not describe Devinity; I think what Larian has created should go down in history as one of the greatest RPGs of all time.

1 - Persona 5

It's funny that the first description of Persona 5 that comes to my mind is "life consuming" and "sleep deprivation" but I suppose that's not really fair. Persona 5 is (obviously) the fifth installment in Atlus' long running Persona series, which is part of a much larger franchise known as "Shin Megami Tensei". Whether or not you've played the other games in the series/franchise is honestly not important when it comes to P5, but I will say it feels like every game up until now was simply a learning experience for Atlus. Persona 5 feels like the culmination of everything Atlus has shown us in the past, which has led to one of the best JRPGs I've ever played in my entire life. The game is generally described as "high school sim" meets dungeon crawling, which is a pretty basic description but is not entirely incorrect, but the final product is greater then the sum of its parts. The time you spend on "high school" things such as part time jobs, studying and spending time with friends directly effects your effectiveness in the dungeons and provide an excellent reprieve from the tactical combat. The narrative is top of its class and kept me intrigued and completely invested from start to finish, thanks to the developed and fleshed out characters (both allies and enemies alike). While some people may think P5 isn't their style, I would still recommend the game to anyone, it has something for everyone. In fact, P5 almost makes me kind of sad; I'm worried no JRPG will ever be able to stand up to it, or at least in the same way.    
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