As the 2023 gaming year ends, we look back at the best games of the year. From psychological horror to superheroes to family fun adventures, 2023 was a standout for video games that explored artistic impressions and pushed their creators to limits we never thought would be possible.

Alan Wake 2

Alan Wake 2 is a sequel to a 13-year-old game that didn’t do all too well in 2010, so it’s a surprise that a sequel was even made. With the success of Control and how it reintroduced Alan Wake, the titular character, into the gaming world, fans starved for more entries involving Alan Wake and dreamed of a continuation and conclusion to the original game ending with “It’s not a lake…it’s an ocean.”

Putting the player in the shoes of not only famed author Alan Wake but FBI Agent Saga Anderson, gamers are thrown back into the Pacific Northwest piecing together clues and solving the mystery of a series of ritualistic murders. Both characters get their narrative to explore, Alan is mostly stuck to a Dark Place version of New York whereas Saga gets to explore Watery, Bright Falls, and Cauldron Lake. While their narratives are unique to them, they do converge into one story that has a much larger connective tissue than the characters or even the players realize.

Baldur’s Gate 3

How could we not include Baldur’s Gate: 3 in this best-of-the-best for 2023? It quickly crawled to the top of my hours played, surpassing titles I’ve played for years in only months. What could be better than sitting down and being pulled into the expansive beauty of a game that drenches you in custom immersion? This RPG may have had a long period in the early access age, but it flourished upon release.

From the start, BG3 has had a stunning performance on PC without skimping on details to this loved world. There are so many tiny to giant details to explore over multiple extensive maps and acts. Adventuring with my custom character was easy to get lost in, enjoying the gorgeous scenes and eye for detail the devs wove into every inch of this game. They did a fantastic job making it feel like a Dungeons and Dragons campaign, bringing humor and depth to how you can enjoy your journey to the end. The story is long, deep, and oh-so-fun to work through, with countless missions you can complete. It allows for excellent replay value, as it exceeded my expectations for the amount I paid. You can make so many minor adjustments to your gameplay to make it feel completely different with every new playthrough. Trust me, go now, play it solo or with friends (another reason for greatness), and enjoy one of the best 2023 has to offer. – Roni Dickinson

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Marvel’s Spider-Man 2

Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 is one of the most-anticipated games of 2023 and it’s wonderful. Insomniac Games delivers an epic and emotional tale of two heroes trying to find balance in their lives while dealing with a very real feeling, and that’s the feeling of loss. We get Peter trying to grieve the loss of Aunt May but not having time to as he struggles to keep his childhood home and Miles is watching all his friends go off to college, but both are struggling to be human but get distracted by the weight of the world on their shoulders.

To quote my review, Everything about Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 is either as good as or better than the previous entries. Not only do you get more heroes to play as, but you get more characters, more villains, more of the city to explore, and more ways to get around the map.

Resident Evil 4 Remake

If you ask any fan of Resident Evil what their favorite entry in the franchise is, nine times out of ten, they’ll say “Resident Evil 4.” Resident Evil 4 gets a next-gen upgrade for current-gen consoles and while Capcom has been on a streak remaking older entries of the franchise, many fans have been clamoring to get their hands on a controller and play as U.S. Agent Leon S. Kennedy once again. While the story is the same, Capcom updated the combat and controls, Leon can shoot and block as he moves and Ashley is updated to feel more like an actual partner to Leon and the player than just a character you have to pay attention to and watch.

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Star Wars Jedi: Survivor

Expectations were high for Star Wars: Jedi Survivor – given the quality of its 2019 predecessor – and it did not disappoint. This new entry was delivered as a compelling entry to the Star Wars canon and an exceptional Action-Adventure game.

Jedi Survivor, after some help from performance patches, now stuns with gorgeous visuals. Respawn yet again made a master class in immersive spectacle. No one has better captured the look, sound, and feel of wielding a lightsaber. Pair that with several stances that elevate the series’ souls-like melee combat, and you have a recipe for success. With Jedi Survivor, Respawn takes players on a journey with triumphant set pieces, quiet moments of character struggle with their characters, and some familiar faces from Star Wars canon. It helps that players can see more of themselves in Cal than ever thanks to added depth in both lightsaber and character customization. Jedi Survivor may just be the best way to immersive in Star Wars yourself in Star Wars without spending hundreds to go to a theme park. Between incredible story beats about the past, present, and future of the Jedi, we loved expanding our cantina and making playing its holotable mini-games

Super Mario Wonder

Mario has had quite the year in 2023. A record-breaking movie during the first half and a hit game to close out the year. Super Mario Bros. Wonder offers gamers a new side-scrolling adventure for the first time since 2012’s New Super Mario Bros. U. Allowing players to control Mario, Luigi, Princess Peach, Princess Daisy, Toad, Toadette, Nabbit, and Yoshi as they explore and save the Flower Kingdom from Bowser’s control, Wonder is a great game for both newcomers and older gamers. You get a fun family adventure and a nostalgic Mario adventure with updated graphics.

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The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom

It’s wild to think that Tears of the Kingdom was originally thought of as DLC for Breath of the Wild. To say Tears of the Kingdom is ambitious is an understatement. Tears of the Kingdom takes the open world of Hyrule that was introduced in Breath of the Wild and expands upon it both in the sky and underground. Once again, players control Link as he explores Hyrule and saves the world and Princess Zelda from The Demon King, Ganon. Tears of the Kingdom lets Link explore the land of Hyrule and the Sky Islands as he unwraps the mystery behind the origins of Hyrule. Tears of the Kingdom also introduces new mechanics and powerups to the game that make traversal fun and unique to Zelda. It’s pretty easy to get lost in the world of Hyrule, but every mission has its way of snaking its way back to the main quest.

These are the Best Video Games of 2023! Is there anything we missed or have you played any of these titles? Comment below and share your thoughts! 2023 was a great year for gaming and 2023 looks even more impressive!

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