Best games for any platform
Further down the page, you'll find lists of the year's best games so far for each individual platform. First, however, we look at the 10 best overall releases across all platforms from the first half of 2018. These are the highest-scoring new games (remasters/ports of older titles are excluded, as are compilations, episodic releases, and DLC) with at least 7 reviews from professional critics. If a particular game was released for multiple platforms, we only considered the version with the highest quantity of reviews.
Buy From Amazon #1: God of War
Part reboot, part sequel, this PS4 exclusive brings Sony's 13-year-old God of War franchise to new heights through a lengthy and emotional single-player story that incorporates Norse mythology and finds God of War's longtime protagonist Kratos developing his parenting (and battle axe) skills. It's now the #3 game of all time (ranked by Metascore) on the PS4.
Buy From Amazon #2: Celeste
Switch version (also available for PS4 / XB1 / PC)
Not bad for an indie, eh? After first impressing critics with his multiplayer archery combat game TowerFall, Matt Thorson (aka Matt Makes Games) returned in January with a very different but even better follow-up that blends very challenging 2D platforming with a delightful retro art style and even a bit of a narrative to tie everything together.
Buy From Amazon #3: Monster Hunter: World
PS4 version (also available for XB1)
Monster Hunter was always a bit of a niche proposition outside of Japan. But no longer. The fifth main entry in Capcom's fantasy action/RPG series—and the first to get a simultaneous worldwide release—is a monster hit, with critics and gamers taking to its increased accessibility, vastly improved graphics, and deep open-world gameplay. A PC version could arrive before year's end.
#4: Into the Breach
The second release from the team behind the indie hit Faster Than Light is another winner. Breach is a turn-based strategy game featuring procedurally generated levels consisting of 8-by-8 grids. Your goal is to prevent what's left of humanity from being wiped out by rather dumb, insect-like aliens who tend to telegraph their moves in advance. To do so, you employ a squad of humongous mechs from the future. Is it hard? Of course.
Buy From Amazon #5: Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire
PC version (console versions due later in 2018)
Obsidian Entertainment's sequel to 2015's very well-received Pillars of Eternity, itself a sort-of (unofficial) reboot of the Baldur's Gate fantasy RPG series, is another crowdfunded hit. Deadfire is set in the same world as the original but is far more ambitious in scope, combining an excellent story with a ton of content. If you're looking for a single-player game to keep you busy for dozens of hours, you can do far worse.
PC version (XB1 version due later in 2018)
Another indie, Subnautica hails from Bay Area studio Unknown Worlds (Natural Selection 2). Their newest (and best) title is an open world, single-player survival/exploration game set in the ocean of an alien planet in the 22nd century.
Buy From Amazon #7: Dragon Ball FighterZ
PS4 version (also available for PC / XB1; Switch version due later in 2018)
The latest fighting game in the Dragon Ball franchise is the first console/PC game in the series to come from Arc System Works, best known for their Guilty Gear and BlazBlue games. You'll experience 2D fighting in chaotic 3-on-3 tag-team brawls, with an anime art style that feels faithful to the original source material.
#8: DJMax Respect
The latest in the DJMax rhythm game series—and the franchise's very first console installment—offers surprisingly tricky gameplay and over 100 songs (with even more available as DLC).
#9: Full Metal Furies
PC version (also available for XB1)
Rogue Legacy creators Cellar Door Games return with a very different follow-up that is part co-op brawler, part puzzle-solving. Critics like the result (at least on PC), though gamers haven't seemed to catch on yet.
Buy From Amazon #10: Ni no Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom
PS4 version (also available for PC)
Level 5's delayed sequel to its charming JRPG Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch may not share that game's association with Studio Ghibli, but no matter. It's just as good, and features a similar anime visual style as it follows a boy king on a journey of self-discovery through a world of darkness.
Best games by platform
Here are the highest-scoring titles released for each platform between January 1, 2018 and June 30, 2018. The only requirement for inclusion is a minimum of 7 reviews from critics.
|1||God of War||Buy From Amazon||94|
|2||Shadow of the Colossus||Buy From Amazon||91|
|4||Monster Hunter: World||Buy From Amazon||90|
|5||Owlboy||Buy From Amazon||89|
|6||Injustice 2: Legendary Edition||Buy From Amazon||88|
|7||Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition||Buy From Amazon||87|
|8||Dragon Ball FighterZ||Buy From Amazon||87|
|9||Dark Souls Remastered||Buy From Amazon||86|
|11||Ni no Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom||Buy From Amazon||85|
|12||Moss||Buy From Amazon||84|
|13||Assassin's Creed Origins: The Curse of the Pharaohs||83|
|14||Yoku's Island Express||Buy From Amazon||83|
|15||Yakuza 6: The Song of Life||Buy From Amazon||83|
|18||Street Fighter: 30th Anniversary Collection||Buy From Amazon||82|
|2||Monster Hunter: World||Buy From Amazon||90|
|3||NieR: Automata - Become as Gods Edition||88|
|4||Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice||88|
|5||Dragon Ball FighterZ||Buy From Amazon||86|
|6||Dark Souls Remastered||Buy From Amazon||84|
|8||Aragami: Shadow Edition||84|
|10||Yoku's Island Express||Buy From Amazon||82|
|11||Far Cry 5||Buy From Amazon||82|
|12||Super Mega Baseball 2||81|
|16||The Council - Episode 1: The Mad Ones||80|
|17||Street Fighter: 30th Anniversary Collection||Buy From Amazon||80|
|18||The Adventure Pals||80|
|19||A Way Out||Buy From Amazon||79|
|4||Bayonetta + Bayonetta 2||Buy From Amazon||89|
|6||Shantae: Half-Genie Hero - Ultimate Edition||Buy From Amazon||88|
|8||Crypt of the NecroDancer: Nintendo Switch Edition||86|
|9||Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze||Buy From Amazon||86|
|10||Shantae and the Pirate's Curse||86|
|11||Night in the Woods||85|
|12||West of Loathing||85|
|15||Toki Tori 2 +||84|
|17||Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of DANA||84|
|18||Super Meat Boy||84|
|19||Just Shapes & Beats||83|
|20||Mega Man Legacy Collection||83|
|1||Into the Breach||89|
|2||Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire||Buy From Amazon||88|
|6||Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age||85|
|7||Final Fantasy XV: Windows Edition||85|
|8||Dragon Ball FighterZ||85|
|9||Batman: The Enemy Within - Episode 5: Same Stitch||85|
|10||Full Metal Furies||85|
|11||Frostpunk||Buy From Amazon||84|
|13||Total War: WARHAMMER II - Rise of the Tomb Kings||84|
|14||Yoku's Island Express||84|
|15||Dark Souls Remastered||83|
|16||The Elder Scrolls Online: Summerset||Buy From Amazon||83|
|20||Warhammer: Vermintide 2||82|
What do you think?
What are your favorite games of 2018 so far? Let us know in the comments section below.