Out with the old, in with the new. While we had to say farewell to the PlayStation 4 with some of the last of its exclusives, we also saw the Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 hit their stride. We saw the rush of a more open Souls-like experience, and a cat taught us more about humanity than we deserved. Those and so many more captured our hearts. We wouldn't be surprised if many of us found our new favorite games this year.
So settle down for the show: a rundown of all the games that filled 2022 with the hope of a new age.
Before we get to see the bests of the bests, let's make a stop at the highest-rated games from each platform. It was 21,465,162 Gamer Reviews and 17,644 Critic Reviews that helped us find each platform's top 2022 game.
It's time for the real winners and losers. Here we'll see the winning game among the warring consoles, and the chosen tributes of the Gamers and Critics.
A place for all those pent-up emotions. Sometimes there's hate and disappointment, but often, there's ardent love and pleasant surprises. Here are all the games that made us feel:
There was just too many issues in Call of Duty: Warzone 2.0. There were complaints about its terrible UI and poor PC optimization. Some users couldn't log-in. If things get better soon, we're not holding our breath for it.
What could've been the spiritual successor to Dead Space. The Callisto Protocol wasn't what everyone expected it would be. It has Dead Space's mechanics and atmosphere, and its own splash gory violence. However, those weren't enough to make up for the performance issues and uneven execution.
Critics can take themselves too seriously. Gamers can care less if they're having fun. As is the case in this open-world FPS. Critics can say whatever they want about its humor and presentation. But for gamers, and especially for its fans, this might be the best of the series.
We were supposed to get ourselves enrolled at Hogwarts, but with the numerous delays, it's been pushed to next year. Looks like we'll have to wait a few more months for our Defense of the Dark Arts classes.
This won't be the first roguelike game to show up in the spotlight. But, other roguelikes don't have Vampire Survivors' relentless “reverse bullet hell” action and power-up varieties. Chaos is inevitable and that's what gets you hooked.
Elden Ring's release took the world by storm. The maidenless journey has pierced the mainstream. It delivers on all platforms and it has satisfied those who sought out its punishing open world. So there's no wonder that you chose this as this year's community favorite.
From heart-pounding action RPGs to cozy puzzle adventures. In every genre, the competition was tough. See the winners below:
A charming blend of so many genres, Neon White shows a clear understanding of its audience. It knew what we wanted and it delivered. Starting from its challenging and highly repayable speed-running gameplay to its smooth and charismatic characters. It's definitely a one-of-a-kind experience.
Like lightning in a bottle, FromSoftware believed that turning the souls-like formula to open world would change things-And it did. The Lands Between await players with beauty and danger. From taking down the first boss, to toppling down an Eldritch god, Elden Ring's single-player journey is unmatched
The Norse Realms are rife with danger, but Kratos and Atreus are prepared to face these godly threats. This father and son duo hacks and slashes their way to prevent Ragnarok. With each of Kratos' axe swing, or each shot from Atreus' bow, taking down enemies is satisfying. Aesir or not.
Aside from the nostalgia factor, there's still so much to love. Arcade fan or no, Shredder's Revenge provides ample fun for couch co-op play. It feels like a heartfelt tribute both to 90s beat-em-up games and our favorite ninja turtles.
Elden Ring's complex RPG elements gives the player the ultimate choice of doing things their own way. The Lands Between is a playground of spectacle and chaos with seemingly limitless buildcrafting.
Simulation games have a way of making us reflect on reality. That's exactly what Not for Broadcast achieves, all while making us laugh our asses off. Who knew balancing audience wants and government interests could get this interesting? It's not just great commentary, it's great gameplay too.
As a city builder, Dorfromantik has much in common with Townscaper. Build however you want, and it rewards you with tiles that add color to your world. Ultimately, it's the limitations that set it apart. The number of tiles and the points system add weight to your actions, making it more riveting altogether.
You can expect Knotwords to inherit the timelessness of its Crossword inspirations. Especially with the simplicity of its own gameplay. The unique format almost makes you forget your whole vocabulary, and the presentation just adds to its charm.
Cellar Door Games' roguelite has a legacy, and it continues in this sequel. Like their heroes, Rogue Legacy 2 comes back with a vengeance: new skills and new heirs that keep you in an addictive loop. Endless replayability is a hallmark of a good platform and Rogue Legacy 2 has it in spades.
Xenoblade Chronicles 3 has such a rich cast and such stunning landscapes that it makes immersion easy. With well over a hundred hours of gameplay, all held together by its beautiful, self-contained storyline, this was a well-executed finale to an already beloved series.
On top of the pros of Knotwords' gameplay and presentations, it's also free to play. You can try out the daily and standard puzzles. But if you want to go a level harder, you'll have to pay. A fair enough deal for an amazing puzzler.
Who doesn't want a world they can build to their hearts content? Whether you want to maximize points, or make the prettiest combination of tiles, Dorfromantik has just that.
Reviewers keep our community going. This is a shout-out to the top whatoplay reviewers this year!
A Plague Tale: InnocenceBigby's Gaming Hand
If you've played The Last of Us, then this might be something for you. This game is set during the year 1349, a time when the second bubonic plague was at its peak. Despite seeming like a game for the horror genre, there are no jumpscares. Just a promising new IP from Asobo Studio, with your progression hinging on solving puzzles while evading, hiding from, or combating rats, or soldiers, or both.
It Takes TwoJezreel Ian Manuel
What made this game so extra special is the fact that I and the love of my life played it together. We were screaming like those kids, arguing about how to solve the puzzle, and most importantly, this is the only game she ever played with me. Thank you Hazelight studios for this game! I am still hoping to see more coop multiplayer games like this.
Life is Strange: True ColorsRobiu013
Ever wanted to play a game where like a lab rat you keep trying to survive through difficult platforming sections and a death counter mockingly tracks all your failures as they slowly grow into the double - if not triple - digits? Yeah, that's pretty much my Crash Bandicoot 4 experience. May sound rough, but it's a testament to the game's qualities that I nevertheless still stuck around all the way to the end and finished it at least in terms of story.
Marvel's AvengersMaruf Hassan
You know a game is bad when playing as Iron Man is boring and Thor's Mjolnir is a basic hammer.
It broke my heart to see how frustrating and bad this game is. This game had so much potential and could have started a parallel MCU like universe for Marvel games. The only good part of the game was the first mission where the game switches all the avengers one by one and was actually well done. After that it was like Thanos snapped all the fun out of this game.
Age of Empires IVShadow
I used to play age of Empires 2 and 3 when I was a child and after playing AOE 4 now I must say that the developers have nailed it. Gameplay remains kind of similar with some changes here and there. But you get great graphics with various different factions. If you love history then definitely try out the single player campaign of this game. It has real life cinematics explaining how the war was being fought between kings at earlier times.
Stray. Because cats.RaineMarketing Coordinator
Elden Ring is the best game I played this year. I died countless times, but I'll never forget my first and last death.ThirdyScript Writer
Strange Horticulture. It's short, and the controls are a bit wack, but it's the most fun and unique gaming experience I've had this yearNeilCo-founder
Two Point Campus. What's not fun about picking up students/staff by the scruff and tossing them wherever you please? Exactly.ClarizzaCommunity Manager
Strange Horticulture is my goty - the struggle is real this year and this game was a delightful escape for me. I get to live my witchy herbalist dreams in a quaint medicinal shop amidst a a cliche but still enjoyable occultist storyline.TylEvents Coordinator
Dofromantik - Playing this game feels like having a cat fall asleep in my lap. It's beautiful and relaxing. And behind its cute aesthetic vibe and art style, comes a puzzle complexity that tickles your brain in the best and worst ways.AnalynAdmin / Lead Data Curator
In my opinion, TMNT: Shredder's Revenge is the best game of the year because of its straightforward controls and seamless gameplay. There are no problems with slow loading or long wait times for multiplayer, making it a fantastic game overall.HazelData Curator
Shredder's Revenge - Because why not? It's fun and easy to play, even kids can play this game. Aaand it has Leonardo in it! My favorite character in Ninja Turtles! Also, this is the only game I've played released this year.AmandaData Curator
Elden Ring is the masterpiece of this year. This soulslike game is on a whole other level. If you frequently perished during boss battles, you undoubtedly enjoyed the game.Peter IanData Curator
Ship of Fools. The crew must work together to defeat the monsters on their voyage to the center of the storm that has caused havoc in the archipelago. This will test their coordination and teamwork skills.OjieData Automation Developer
Powerwash Simulator - I played it since the Early Access Days but the official release made it amazing. This is the definition of gaming for me: an arbitrary sense of achievement paired with mindmelting relaxation. Powerwash away your worries one satisfying ding! at a time.PiaUX Designer
Elden Ring - It has been my GOTY since I went down the Siofra River. Souls fan or not, the engaging narrative and challenging yet fair gameplay make it a worthwhile experience for anyone, particularly for those willing to put in the time and effort to fully immerse themselves in the game.AyadFrontend Developer
Tinykin has all what I want on a platform adventure game. It has exploration, challenge and cuteness. The game is also relaxing and not stress-inducing as other games of its genre. If there is a platform game that you wanna play that is both relaxing and rewarding, I highly recommend this one.CristianaLead Developer / DevOps
Pokemon Legends: Arceus - It's the first Pokémon game I've ever played, and I really enjoyed the quests and battles with legendary Pokémons. I chose this as my GOTY because it was the only game I played that was released this year, so yeah!AJWeb Developer
The best game released for me this year is Return to Monkey Island. The Curse of Monkey Island was my favorite point & click puzzle adventure game all-time, and this game reminds of that nostalgic feeling playing without all the worries in the world. Hahaha bitaw wala pa gyuy problem sauna elementary dawat ra balon. HahahaJehoData Curator
Elden Ring definitely is the best game released this year so far, not just because of its graphics and a very deep engaging story, but also for the very reason that its difficulty punishes even experienced players.Ian DaveData Curator
God of War: Ragnarok - Because boi is now a man.RayLead Video Editor
Elden Ring, which was released on February 25, 2022, the day after my birthday, gave me total satisfaction as my first Souls game. It exceeded all of my expectations and I would confidently say without a doubt that it is the Game of the Year.DabieData Curator
Despite everything, 2022 proves itself to be a great year for gaming. It broke records and elevated gaming with all its memorable stories and gameplay. These will stay with us even after the credits roll on the year.
Who knows what surprises are in store for us in 2023?