We’re already a fourth of the way through the year, but that doesn’t mean we are lacking notable game releases. As we look forward to more releases this year, let’s take a second to reflect on the best games already released this year. If there’s any that we missed, be sure to share your top game in the comments below.
Metroid Prime Remastered
February 8, 2023 – Switch
Released out of nowhere (despite some rumors before), the remastered edition of Metroid Prime was made with so much care and polish that some were even confused if it was actually a remake. However, Samus Aran’s classic adventure through Tallon IV just got the facelift and quality-of-life changes it deserved to give a new generation of players a chance to experience this fantastic adventure.
Paranormasight: The Seven Mysteries Of Honjo
March 9, 2023 – Switch, PC, iOS, Android
Square Enix dropped one of the most surprising hits of the year pretty early with the release of Paranormasight: The Seven Mysteries Of Honjo. This mystery adventure has a narrative that twists and turns until its final moments. The cast of characters has excellent chemistry that highlights their unique personalities, adding to the immersive experience as this strange Storyteller dude feeds you hints on how to progress the challenging puzzles. Sure, you’ll meet a few bad ends along the way, but this is one experience all fans of visual novels and mystery adventure should experience.
Dead Space Remake
January 27, 2023 – PS5, Xbox Series X, PC
How to make one of the best survival horror experiences better? Completely remaking it, adding in a voice for the once silent protagonist, and fixing some of the more mundane moments of the original is a great place to start. Dead Space Remake blew us away with its atmosphere and setting. The reworked narrative gave the entire experience a better flow, and the updated game mechanics, such as being able to float around in zero gravity, made it a blast to experience, even if it gave us nightmares.
January 25, 2023 – Xbox Series X, PC
How long has it been since we last saw a game release soon after it was announced? When Hi-Fi Rush hit the scene at the XBOX Developers’ Direct, it completely floored everyone because not only was it incredibly different from what the developer, Tango Gameworks, was known for, but it was also surprisingly priced well for a game of its caliber. Furthermore, the whimsical cast featuring Chai and the hilarious corporate jokes throughout Vanderlay is just the icing on the cake when it comes to the rhythm-timed gameplay of this title.
Fire Emblem Engage
January 20, 2023 – Switch
Following the success and departure that was Fire Emblem: Three Houses, no one was quite sure what to make of Engage, a seemingly lighter-hearted adventure hearkening to the classics, especially with the inclusion of previous game characters as the supporting cast. However, it ended up being a brilliant tactical experience as it honed in on the strong decision-making gameplay the series initially became known for and adopted some of the simulation mechanics Three Houses dipped its toes into. As a celebratory project, it did its job perfectly; plus, it shared some new rad character designs.
Atelier Ryza 3: Alchemist of the End & the Secret Key
March 24, 2023 – PS4, PS5, Switch, PC
Here’s to one final adventure with Ryza and her crew of friends. It’s tough to say goodbye, especially to those thighs… I mean good friends. Ryza 3 delivers a grad finale that accumulates the best systems found in the previous entries. The entire world is connected with vast environments to explore and collect materials. The battles have also been sped up by blending ATB mechanics with fast action button inputs and a system that allows Ryza to summon keys to the battle for added strength. Does this mean we’ll see her in Kingdon Hearts? Probably not, but this is a significant and much-deserved entry in the Atelier series.
Theatrhythm Final Bar Line
February 16, 2023 – PS4, Switch
The Theatrhythm series has always been a universally loved one, with the previous Final Fantasy spinoff outing being on 3DS. But a new entry has finally graced modern platforms and consoles for the first time in Final Bar Line and has been met with considerable praise. A genuinely absurd amount of content is presented here, with the base game alone having 385 songs. And when counting the sheer number of characters and represented games, this title is every Final Fantasy fan’s collectively cherished dream.
Octopath Traveler II
February 24, 2023 – PS4, PS5, Switch, PC
There’s nothing quite like the feeling of a JRPG adventure. You have the whole world in front of you with tremendous obstacles to overcome. Octopath Traveler II manages to do this for eight protagonists with different objectives that all come together for a joint effort. Every moment of this game encourages exploration as you make your way across the huge in-game map taking advantage of each character’s unique skills and learning more about what drives them. It’s a game that will have you playing from sunset until sunrise as you push forward with each discovery.
Resident Evil 4 (Remake)
March 24, 2023 – PS4, PS5, Xbox Series X, PC
Leon is based; I’ll just go ahead and say it. The emo-haired protagonist finds himself in Spain to rescue the president’s daughter from a cult in Resident Evil 4. As a remake, Capcom has pulled out all the stops and made this experience nearly identical to the game flow of the original. However, they’ve taken another stab, pun intended, at the narrative to provide a deeper insight into this new outbreak and clear up a few plot holes on the way. Much of what you remember about the experience returns, which makes this for the fans as much as for new players who have yet to play. We’re still holding out for Code Veronica, but this is a standout entry in the Resident Evil series made better by this Remake effort.
The Future Radio and the Artificial Pigeons
February 17, 2023 – PC
Imagine a future in which worldwide communications are lost and humankind has lost all access to the sky. Suddenly, thrown back to local communities and communication methods once thought obsolete, human debris makes people feel wary of technology, stuck in a limbo of monotony. This is the premise of this visual novel created by Laplacian and translated by NekoNyan, which has an intriguing plot and a great art style. The character writing and pacing fuel this grand plot to be one of the most stand-out visual novels we’ve played in quiet some time. But, of course, professor Tsubaki is also a hot babe, we know.
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