The best video games of 2022, so far( Part 2 )
ROGUE LEGACY 2
Rogue Legacy 2 is about heroes and their uniqueness. Each new heir adds a distinct flavor to their roguelite journey, guaranteeing that no two adventures are ever the same: One Valkyrie may use a pizza boomerang to slice (lol) their way through adversaries, while their Ranger descendent flatulently pushes itself through platforms.
In this regard, Rogue Legacy 2 is exceptionally new for a roguelite, ranking with classics such as Dead Cells, Slay the Spire, and Hades. Rogue Legacy 2 urges you to discover satisfaction in playing as unexpected heroes against unpredictable odds in a genre that often demands players to pursue a distinct route or build a consistent skill. It’s equally effective in small spurts as it is in lengthy sessions, and it never ceases to amaze. —Gilliam, Ryan
Rogue Legacy 2 is out now on Windows PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X.
THE IRON OATH
The Iron Oath is a little but strong early access strategy RPG that gets the fundamentals and develops on them excellently so far.
So far, the major plot has lasted around 10 to 15 hours, and while the script is functional, the fighting and management are excellent. It all takes place in an unforgiving fantasy world on the verge of disaster, and the player manages a mercenary firm. This includes keeping your soldiers alive and happy as they work their way through dungeons, save lost souls, and combat demons. The difficulty settings are modular, and the game’s user interface is simple enough that anyone can get started right away. This is a game to keep an eye on as it evolves, but the core is solid enough to sustain hours upon hours of tactical difficulties. Casey Marshall
The Iron Oath is available on Windows PC .
LEGO STAR WARS: THE SKYWALKER SAGA
Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga is about the growth of Lego video games as it is about the eponymous Star Wars family.
What began as a basic series about pantomiming through ancient film franchises has grown into a fully spoken epic covering nine films. It has hundreds of characters and new combat that adds depth to what was formerly a hack-and-slash paradigm. It’s also a quirky joy that remixes some of cinema’s most iconic scenes to make them feel new, while still allowing players to experience the legendary Death Star trench run for themselves. The Skywalker Saga is a buffet of colors and enchantment for children who are just getting into Star Wars or the Lego games, promising oohs, aahs, and chuckles on every level.However, for their parents who grew up with a different generation of Star Wars and Lego games, it’s a fascinating experience that does far more than merely capitalize on nostalgia. —Gilliam, Ryan
Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga is now available on PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, and Nintendo Switch.
TINY TINA’S WONDERLANDS
Borderlands’ devs appear to be finally comfortable letting go of Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands, and the consequences speak for themselves. Wonderlands is a joyous journey through tabletop-RPG-inspired environments, with seemingly little changes that cause massive waves in the series’ “Diablo meets firearms” formula. You may mix and match two different character classes, navigate a board game-style overworld, and spend dozens of hours in the incredible “Chaos Chamber” conclusion. Gearbox is ready to admit that we’re not here for a script, or even a coherent storyline, and it leans into that idea with an admirably scattershot plot — it doesn’t take itself so seriously that it compromises surprise, fun, or the satisfaction of fascinating, well-earned riches. — Mahardy, Mike
Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands is available on PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, and Windows PC.
Norco is notable for several reasons: it is a beautiful, honest depiction of southern Louisiana, an imaginative and dystopian science fiction narrative, and a harsh critique of the oil industry’s blight. Norco is an interpretation of Norco, Louisiana – the genuine town whose name stands for the New Orleans Refining Company, which is home to Shell’s production complex. Norco unfolds slowly as the main heroine, Kay, returns to her childhood home following the loss of her mother. It’s a magical realism novel with mystery aspects, but it’s also firmly founded in reality – not an easy genre combination to reconcile.The narrative and basic environmental puzzles, along with a novel mind-map mechanism that functions as a character list and mental journal, contribute to a fast-paced adventure with opportunity to pause and soak in all of the tragic oddity. Nicolette Carpenter
Norco is compatible with both Mac and Windows PC.
Norco is compatible with both Mac and Windows PC.
In developer Andrew Shouldice’s action-adventure excursion, there are shades of Myst, The Witness, and the original Legend of Zelda. It’s also been compared to 2012’s Fez, a game that used its own distinctive written language to confound, lure, and eventually direct players toward its biggest underlying mysteries. Its fighting may grow tedious, especially during later boss encounters, and its level design does not always allow for easy revisiting. However, its willingness to rely on the player’s intelligence, patience, and, most importantly, appetite for knowledge makes it a superb adventure in its own right. —Michael Mahardy
Tunic is a Mac, Windows PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X game.
Numerous games have attempted to replicate The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild’s explorative wonder, but Elden Ring is the first to genuinely succeed. It’s the type of game we’ve come to expect from creator From Software: cryptic, opaque, and ultimately rewarding, with an environment that will take years to completely grasp. However, its open-world features reinterpret much of the savagery of prior games, and instead of detracting from their obstacles, favor gradual advancement over raw force.It’s not uncommon to become lost in a remote part of the world for a dozen hours, just to return to a prior task as an entirely different character, armed with better abilities and newfound insight. This game is incredible. —Michael Mahardy
Elden Ring is a PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5 game that is also available on Windows PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X.
DESTINY 2: THE WITCH QUEEN
Since its initial release in 2014, Destiny has faced several challenges, including a global pandemic and a sale to PlayStation, to mention a few. So it’s practically a miracle that Destiny 2: The Witch Queen is the finest thing to happen to the franchise in eight years.It’s more Destiny, to be sure, with a new campaign, a new setting, new weapons, and new powers. But it’s also Destiny without the qualifiers, or the talks uttered with a lot of longing: “Can you imagine how awesome this would be if Bungie did X, Y, or Z?” Bungie has spent the last several years capitalizing on the promise of their gigantic experiment, and The Witch Queen is the result. —Gilliam, Ryan
Destiny 2: The Witch Queen is available on PS4, PS5, Windows PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, and Google Stadia.
The achievement of Lost Ark is outstanding. Its superb class design and terrific ARPG gameplay would be enough to distinguish it from many other games this year, but it’s also a content gold mine. The MMO, which debuted in Korea in 2019 and was later modified for distribution in Europe and North America this year, debuted with amazing endgame content right away (a rarity for the genre). While Lost Ark is currently a compelling game in its own right, creator Smilegate RPG promises more endgame content and new classes in the near future. It appears like there is still an interesting path ahead of us. Goslin, Austen
Lost Ark is available on Windows PC.
You sell plants in Strange Horticulture. Though the plants appear to be commonplace, they are anything but: some plants make people fearless, while others lure them to their deaths. Some are designed to sharpen your attention or poison your adversaries. It’s a straightforward game that’s handled with meticulous care. Running this plant business reveals a bizarre, spooky narrative through client talk and flora discovered via an in-game map. Strange Horticulture is a short game (it took me little more than five hours to complete), but it was one of the more impactful games I played this year. Nicolette Carpenter
Strange Horticulture is a Windows PC game.
TOTAL WAR: WARHAMMER 3
There are games that are ambitious and games that are not. The latter is Total War: Warhammer 3. Its map is larger than the combined maps of its predecessors, and it debuted with eight fantastical factions, each wilder and more grandiose than the previous. It’s also quite strange, and refuses to rest on its laurels as the strategic trilogy concludes, instead pushing the edge whenever possible.
And now, Immortal Empires, an expansion that merges all three maps and every playable group from the whole trilogy, has exposed us to one of the biggest, most ambitious endeavors in video game history (I’m not kidding). It almost redefines what it means to be a “sandbox” video game, with emergent storytelling that sees nations conflict, leaders betray one another, and a large universe evolve even when the player is not looking. —Michael Mahardy
Total War: Warhammer 3 is available on PC, Mac, and Linux, as well as through PC Game Pass.
HORIZON FORBIDDEN WEST
The follow-up to 2017’s brilliant post-apocalyptic Horizon Zero Dawn is already one of the finest games of the year. Horizon Forbidden West offers a lot of what made the previous game great and expands on it by giving players more to work with: new villages, weaponry, and traversal choices. It starts slowly and takes a while to unveil some of its most inventive devices, but it improves as you earn additional tools for your arsenal. Aloy will be able to glide off mountains, swim in the deepest waters, and tour American monuments along the west coast by the end. The stunning open world of this game seems like a gift, and it’s easy to lose hours exploring every exquisite nook.Meanwhile, the character development and world-building depict a civilisation worth rescuing. Nicolette Clark
Horizon Forbidden West is a PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5 game.
Roll7’s OlliOlli World is a beautiful celebration of skateboarding and its culture. It’s fast-paced, colorful, and a true challenge. It’s also silly and sincere, with more in common with Adventure Time than Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater. I’m performing a stalefish grab over aliens dancing in their underwear one moment and racing a bear in a river tube the next. It’s amusing and funny, but it’s also quite difficult; to excel, you must learn precision-based flicks and button presses that stretch your boundaries. Nicolette Carpenter
OlliOlli World is available on PS4, PS5, Windows PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, and Nintendo Switch.
DYING LIGHT 2
The deep reward in Dying Light 2 Stay Human necessitates a significant time investment. The slow tale rhythm isn’t helped by some of the later reversals and outright nullifications. However, the first-person parkour and combat gameplay are stand-out highlights of the game. You will not be bored no matter how much time you spend in the massive, fortified metropolis of Villedor. Aiden Caldwell matures into a fascinating and strong character as a role-playing game, owing to several plot branches, actions with irreversible effects, and two perk trees that make his athletic talents even more interesting to observe, let alone do for yourself. Good, Owen S.
Dying Light 2 is available on PS4, PS5, Windows PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X.
Vampire Survivors is a basic game that should not be overlooked. One of the most riveting games in years is hidden beneath its antiquated visuals and low pricing. Vampire Survivors has only one input method – movement — and your aim is to live for 30 minutes while gathering up weapons that automatically strike for you. Every second or two, my whip slices adjacent opponents, and my character lobs axes on a timer. During each run, I select new upgrades from randomized pools and combine them with other things to create the best build that will allow me to live to the finish. This year, I’ve already done several runs and unlocked all of the new tools available.Vampire Survivors, on the other hand, is one of the few games that keeps me playing just for the sake of playing, “wasting” 30 minutes every night as bigger and more vast games pass me by. —Gilliam, Ryan
Vampire Survivors is playable on PC, Mac, and through a web browser.
POKÉMON LEGENDS: ARCEUS
To say Pokémond Legends: Arceus has taken a long time would be an understatement. In fact, I’ve totally accepted Dunkey’s joke that this is the second Pokémon game ever created. It neatly simplifies so many of the series’ laborious components (just capturing Pokémon in real time is now gratifying as hell) that it’s surprising Game Freak hasn’t done this before. It’s also the first game in which I’m truly interested in completing the Pokédex, replete with challenges and research chores for each monster. It seems more like a serious, sometimes dangerous trek into the forest to satisfy my collector’s thirst than a hamfisted series of turn-based skirmishes. —Michael Mahardy
Pokémon Legends: Arceus is now available on Nintendo Switch.
NOBODY SAVES THE WORLD
Nobody Saves the World is an odd little video game, but it has left an unforgettable impression on my mind. It’s a game about shapeshifting – gaining new abilities to transform oneself into the ideal weapon for the task, or a very specialized tool required to complete a single problem. It’s all about discovery and experimenting. It’s humorous, intriguing, and, above all, really brilliant. Nobody Saves the World’s magnitude and grind appear little in a year packed with so many massive games. But great things frequently come in little packages, and Drinkbox Studios’ newest is one I won’t soon forget. —Gilliam, Ryan
Nobody Saves the World is available on Windows PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X through Game Pass.
Wordle’s greatest strength, like Animal Crossing: New Horizons before it, is its community power. It allows us to celebrate, gripe, preach, and eventually exult over one very particular and ultimately innocuous item per day, whether on social media or at the neighborhood bar, by providing a simple word-guessing game that refreshes every 24 hours. It’s become a lightning rod for both furious debates and thoughtful debates. It has made me feel incomparably smart one day, just to remind me the next that I am, in fact, exceedingly dumb. It has also re-ignited my family’s SMS thread. Who among us will ever forget the first time they heard the phrase “vivid?” —Michael Mahardy
Wordle is accessible through a web browser here.
FINAL FANTASY 14: ENDWALKER
The first expansion following Shadowbringers had great expectations, yet Square Enix still managed to deliver. Endwalker was supposed to conclude Final Fantasy 14’s primary plot arc, yet it accomplishes so much more. It develops on people we already liked, gives context to things I didn’t realize we needed, and reminds us that, no matter how dismal things appear, there are reasons to be optimistic.
Endwalker keeps making Final Fantasy 14 a puzzling game. I want to keep suggesting it since the expansions (particularly the newer ones) are so fantastic and pay off so beautifully, but no one wants to be suggested a game that takes 100 hours to complete. However, if you have a lot of free time, I can’t suggest Final Fantasy 14 enough, especially with Endwalker included. Juliette Lee
Final Fantasy 14: Endwalker is now available on PC, Mac, PlayStation 4, and PlayStation 5.