Games you played in 2020

Boy, you really approached Outer Wilds the wrong way!

I got em confused, didn’t I :-)

I updated my list

Ooops I forgot and added Immortals: Fenyx Rising to my favorites.

I played:

  • Anno 1800 - played this more than any other game. City building, plus collecting, plus incredibly gorgeous landscapes and graphics? So nice!
  • Disco Elysium - Every game with a story will feel lame compared to the narrative woven by this brilliant work of art. Best detective game ever.
  • Crusader King’s 3 - Great game but I got burned out because of extreme event repetition.
  • Surviving the Aftermath - Good game.
  • MS Flight Sim 2020 - Awesome! Need to spend a lot more time in it.
  • Endzone - As good or better than Surviving the Aftermath.
  • Battle Brothers - the new DLC was fabulous. Enjoyed every second I spent in the game.
  • No Man’s Sky - They keep making the game better and better. Love it.

I tinkered with a lot of other games, but the bulk of the time was with the above.

I was really frustrated early on with the combat, but eventually I got better. But one thing about the game, even better if you ran into a mob they would kick your ass. I figured that was some realism right there, and so I avoided mobs. :)

I ended up loving the game.

Even though I have these games parsed by month, most of these games bled over between two or more months. But, I figured since I was grabbing this list from my played games in the Weekend Gaming Update thread, I might as well list them in order.

I actually played (and talked about) a whole lot of other games this year besides the ones listed here, but rather than waste more time complaining about the ones I bounced off of (or came to realize I didn’t enjoy at all) I figured I would list only those games I genuinely enjoyed (with one particular exception I included anyway).

January:

  • Ancient Planet (Steam):
    This is a very straight forward tower defense game. Some might call it too simplistic to hold their interests, but I’m not a tower defense enthusiast and I enjoyed the time I spent with it. I just wanted a game I could relax while playing and this one delivered.

February:

  • Wolfenstein: Youngblood (Xbox GamePass):
    While I’m not going to tell all those people that hated this game that they’re wrong, I will say that I had a blast playing the game, and genuinely enjoyed the two protagonists. The game isn’t perfect, but it was a solid shooter for my money Gamepass subscription.

March:

  • Divinity: Original Sin 2 (Steam):
    Man oh man, I’ve been playing this game for years. I’ve restarted three or four times, but this year I got further than ever. I probably put 80+ hours into the game this year and I still feel like I’m nowhere near the end. Unfortunately I decided to stop playing because I reached a point where I couldn’t find an enjoyable difficulty setting. One difficulty was simply too hard and unforgiving, and the one just below it felt way too easy and dry. While i respect everything they did with the game, and I’ve had a lot of fun with it, I can’t help but feel like I’m never building my party “correctly.”

  • Monster Hunter Generations Ultimate (Switch):
    Back in March I said, “I’ve decided to start killing at least 1 new monsters a week.” That lasted about three weeks. The grind got me down, but it’s a brilliant game I always have fun playing, it’s just hard to motivate myself to pick it back up because I know how much grinding there is waiting for me here. it’s strange, I love playing but at the same time I’m also apprehensive about playing it.

  • Super Mario Odyssey (Switch):
    I completed the basic campaign mode a couple years ago when I got the game, but this year I decided to “finish” the game itself and collect the rest of the moons. Hahahahahahahahahahahahahaha. I was fooling myself into thinking I will ever collect all the moons. But I always have fun picking the game back up and finding three or four more.

April:

  • DOOM Eternal (Xbox One):
    I thought for sure this would be my game of the year. Based on DOOM 2016, I didn’t think anything else I played in 2020 would even come close. if I were to limit my favorite 2020 game to those actually RELEASED in 2020, okay, this would probably be in the top spot, but it turns out an older game (mentioned later) managed to give me the best gaming experience this year.

  • Age of Wonders: Planetfall (Xbox One):
    I love this game, I love this series, I love the expansions. This game has had a couple expansions this year, and they’re always great reasons to dive back in for another 50-60 hours before forcing myself to play something else for once. I only have this game listed for April, but that’s only because it coincides with the release of the Invasions expansion. I’ve actually been putting some serious hours into the game all freaking year long.

May:

  • Wonderful 101 Remastered (WiiU) (Switch):
    I loved the game on WiiU back in the day, and I love it on Switch. i actually prefer it more on Switch because of certain updates to the game that allow me to play better without the huge WiiU tablet controller, but I do love all versions of it.

  • Arkham Noir: Case #1 - The Witch Cult Murders (Physical card game):
    The first little spark of interest in physical board games that dominated my summer started here, with this game. I think I discovered this game after watching Tom put up Youtube videos about it. It’s a solo game.

  • Carcassonne (Xbox One Backward Compatibility):
    My sudden passion for board gaming saw me re-install my old 360 digital copy of Carcassonnne. Fun little game to play for a few minutes at a time between other, meatier games.

  • Deep Rock Galactic (Steam):
    One of the latest games I’ve played Co-op with my wife, and the first computer game (that isn’t Hearthstone) we’ve played together in a long time. Great in co-op.

June:

  • Horizon Chase Turbo (Switch):
    What an awesome little retro-racing title. I picked up a few Qt3 friends on my Switch specifically so we could compare times in this game and I could try to come out on top across the board. I haven’t loaded up the game in a few months, but last I looked I was still #1 on every map I played. I could try to deny that this is a call to arms, but I’d be lying.

  • Code Names: Duet (My kitchen table):
    More physical board gaming, but with my wife this time.

  • Grim Dawn (Steam):
    It would be fair to say that I probably put 80+ hours into this game every single year, and I still never manage to finish all expansions with a single character. Well, I tried again this year, but god damn there’s a lot of content, and man do I burn myself out trying to do everything at once. I’m sure i will be seeing this one again next year too. it still has so much to give.

  • Assassin’s Creed: Origins (Xbox One):
    This is the first Assassin’s Creed game I’ve ever seriously played, and hey, I finished it. i spent weeks on the game and enjoyed my time with it. This is a no-negativity post, so I won’t bother comparing certain small things to the Shadow of Mordor/War games which are just a little closer to my heart.

July:

  • Ghost Stories (Board Game):
    This is my favorite physical board game to play solo. it’s not strictly a solo game, but I enjoy it most when played as such. Beautiful game, too. And it dominated my summer.

  • Apocrypha (Board Game):
    I think I spent the bulk of July only playing Apocrypha (solo) day in and day out. I think I played one mission every single day through mid-August and then forced myself to set the game down and try some new things. The game took me days to fully comprehend, and by the end of it I had a pretty good routine going. I think the biggest challenge for me was table space. I learned about this game in a thread Tom created about his favorite solo board games.

  • Lost Cities (Board Game):
    Another co-op game for my wife and I. We bought and played this game a little about ten years ago, but didn’t fully appreciate it. I pulled it down off the shelf again over the summer and it turns out we love the thing. It really clicked for us this time around.

August:

  • Cogmind (Steam):
    I spent most of the month still playing a few board games already listed above, but Cogmind was my first foray back into VIDEO GAMING after being away from VIDEO GAMES for about a month or two. Cogmind is one of the best traditional Roguelikes ever made.

September:

  • Crusader Kings III (Steam):
    A Crusader Kings game I actually succeeded playing correctly. I bouncing off the prior entry of the series a few times and could never quite find that tiny spark of awesome that had everybody else enamored, but CK3 did a much better job of helping me understand what all the fuss was about. The game is so huge and daunting that, much like Monster Hunter generations Ultimate, I find myself enjoying every minute I spend playing, but I find it difficult to ever pick back up because of the monumental task I feel like I’m undertaking every time I think about it.

  • Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen (Xbox One):
    Great game with a cool combat system. unfortunately I think that ultimately the game becomes too easy as time goes on, with the most difficult encounters happening well after end-game, but by that point I had already played so much of the game I was ready to move on. I thoroughly enjoyed my time with it.

October:

  • 9th Dawn III: Shadow of Erthil (Xbox):
    A fun, inexpensive, little ARPG that I put way too many hours into. it’s no Grim dawn, but it’s super simple and easy to plow through for a few minutes here and there.

  • Return of the Obra Dinn (Xbox One):
    My 2020 gaming experience of the year. I loved my time with the game and it was the perfect spooky Halloween game for me. I can’t say enough good things about this title, from the music, to the art, to the story. Amazing.

November:

  • Sniper Elite 4 (Xbox GamePass):
    I had so much fun shooting people in the face with this game, and I know I shot them in the face because the game features a nice slow-mo bullet cam that shows me precisely how each little projectile obliterated every single target. I ended up buying a few sniper games because of this title. i will get to them soon(ish).

  • One Finger Death Punch 2 (Switch):
    What a great little game, and so inexpensive. I’m currently stuck at a brick wall very, very late in the game, but every minute of the game up until that point was pure bliss.

December:

  • Worms Rumble (Steam):
    A real-time multi-player action shooter, by Team 17, and featuring Worms! My current favorite game to play for twenty minutes at a time between other, bigger games. it earned a very quick positive review form me. It feels good, it sounds good, it is good.

  • Code Vein (Xbox One):
    I finally did it! I bought a game on sale and started playing it immediately, then I wrapped it up immediately. No backlog for this one!


In addition to Worms Rumble, at this point I expect to be playing Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3 (Switch) and one of the Tomb Raider reboot games (Xbox) throughout the rest of the year/month.

Damn, good on ya, Conquest is damned tough.

This is such a great way of putting how I feel about both these games. Perfect.

I realized I misspoke. It was the Boar clan, which is totally OP! Their Conquest is not too difficult because they a totally OP. I tried another conquest with the Wolf clan but didn’t get very far, naturally. Maybe 4 missions deep before I abandoned it. I also didn’t like their playstyle. Probably the worst clan actually. (or I didn’t get it)

Good to know. I’m still working through the story and will try conquest again once I’m done. We tried it in co-op and got our asses kicked.

Having multiple paths to victory is important and a military AKA Domination victory is among the hardest. (The wolf clans entire focus at the expense of all else)

The Boar clan specializes on the Wisdom victory but they can also easily switch to other victories as well, Trade, Fame, and including even Domination, but only late game. They start as a small snowball rolling down hill. They are all but unstoppable late game if you know what to do.

Your population increases with each territory you gain and there are no happiness penalties regarding non-upgraded houses. This is a huge pressure value release and net gain. But you can go even further: The Defensive military tree increases your population further by building watch towers in every territory…, you win by pure attrition as long as you can feed everyone.

Ohh good to know. Thank you!

Also since your population is increasing by other means you rarely have to build houses, so the ignore house penalty is largely extraneous, but still helpful, in a rich get richer sense. I think I built between 2-3 houses tops. Food is really your only concern, which is quite unlike every other clan that has to build houses and upgrade them to increase pop & maintain happiness, in addition to food. The boar clan can just ignore the former.

OP.

Furthermore one of their unique clan skill tree options is increasing production on all non-upgraded buildings, effectively upgrading all non-upgraded buildings. Ridiculous.

We hear you:) We were playing the other day and Soren said “boy! I am really happy with the game, I really wanted to continue with one more turn!” So, while yes, it is his game, we make games we want to play and continue playing. I feel this way about Offworld Trading Company!

I really enjoyed reading through all the comments in this thread, many on here suggested new games and gave feedback on games I want to play around the Holidays, the comments are highly informative. I should probably make my own list and share it, but it will be very similar to some on this thread.

I will take a moment to wish everyone Happy Holidays, hang in there, we’d love to hear your thoughts on our game, so please tag us.

This is a good dry run for the 2020 best of, so let’s go my steam and gog purchase history:

Amid Evil - it’s no DUSK. It tips a bit too far into abstract vs representational space for me, but it’s still a neat retro shooter.
Resonance of Fate/End of Eternity - Well. That was a weird take on a JRPG.
Return of the Obra Dinn - Kind of excruciatingly clever. I think I respect it more than I like it, but I still like it a lot.
Stygian: Reign of the Old Ones - It’s clearly trying to bite off more than it can chew, and the end is super truncated, but I dunno, I really liked this one?
Encased - It’s an early access purchase, but I like what I’ve seen so far.
RimWorld - I don’t know what I can say about RimWorld that hasn’t already been said.
Metro Exodus - It’s a good open world shooter, but this was the point where Silent Artyom hit the breaking point for me - talk to your wife you fucking dipshit!
Resident Evil 3 - I think it’s fine? Coming off one of the very best games of recent years, “fine” is a letdown, and every space could do with like 20% more room to breathe, but I still 100%:ed it.
Final Fantasy XII The Zodiac Age - I played a bit of this back in the PS2 days, but I forgot how extremely Star Wars Prequel it is. (In art design, not writing.) You can feel the strains of its production down to the fact tat the protagonist is just wrong for the story, but I still love it.
Onninaki - it’s a weird action JRPG that is engaging and upsetting for the first half, and then progressively falls apart.
ATOM RPG Trudograd: Another early access purchase. It’s more polished and contained than its predecessor.
Wildfire: A quasi-immersive sim stealth pixel art platformer, whose gameplay verbs lean more into Dishonored than Thief. I thought it was neat.
Persona 4 Golden: It’s Persona 4 Golden.
TROUBLESHOOTER: Abandoned Children - It’s Manhwa XCOM. It’s probably the most time I’ve spent with a game this year. The way it unfolds its narrative is so extremely clumsy I wish didn’t care about anything that happened, but when I’m playing with the charcters on the board, I can’t help it.
Immortal: Unchained - a very ok b-tier Dark souls clone.
The Surge - Also an ok Dark Souls clone…but I think I prefer the rhythms of Immortal unchained.
Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night - A compellingly tacky Castlevania clone.
Observation - Hmm. Probably more clever than good. It is very clever though.
Terminator: Resistance - The low-rent Fallout 4 clone that I like more than Fallout 4.
Final Fantasy XIII - Visually, this still hold up pretty well. Gameplay-wise, it does not. In terms of narrative, I don’t think even it knows what it’s doing.

That visual novel binge I went on:

The Song of Saya - Yikes. I mean, I really liked it, I think. But yikes.
428 Shibuya Scramble - Pretty cool, until the branch permutations you need to get through to hit the end become maddening.
AI: The Somnium Files - Neat premise, I liked the twists and turns, the qte action sequences stray a biiit too much into absurdist comedy for its own good.
Death Come True - The fact that it’s full-on FMV makes me like it more tbh, and keeps it snappy. Plus, I found the low-rent effect surprisingly effective.

The Halo Master Chief Collection Purchase

Halo: CE - I played it way back when, but it still kind of holds up, repetitive encounter design aside. It’s also probably the most functionally written of the bunch?
Halo 2 - On the other hand this doesn’t. The story is a very dumb space opera, doesn’t conclude, it’s tuned too hard, and has a bunch of “fuck you” encounter design.
Halo 3 - A return to form, and the best of the main trilogy in my book. Encounter design is back on track, the flood is the best it’s been.
Halo: ODST - My favourite of the bunch. Nathan Fillion supplies some actual charisma even if his model looks blatantly incorrect, great mood, the open world even if its anemic does wonders for the pacing.
Halo: Reach - Ehh, it’s fine. The tuning dips back into too hard territory again, it supplies some cool sci-fi imagery - launching into atmosphere will never not make me stand up and yell “Nice!” - but it’s a prequel, we know where it’s going, and Cortana showing up in the way she does makes me go wtf?

G String - A Half-Life 2 mod gone out of control, and a drunk impulse purchase. It’s not great, but also very impressive for a one-woman joint. The gameplay is awkward, but the aesthetics are extremely my jam. Ultimately though, what I will remember from it is not the annoying traversal and floor is lava puzzles, but the bit where you’re desperately trying to sprint to safety through an oncoming hurricane while the soundtrack samples some dipshit nattering about all the ways humanity has conquered nature in a moment that feels perfectly 2020.

Wasteland 3 - It’s a sequel to Wasteland 2 that’s less sprawling and more polished. It’s a fun time, and I appreciate that they shrunk down the scope and stakes.
Crusader Kings 3 - Sadly, a case of having played 200+ hours of CK2 making me pre-emptively burn out on this one.
Cyberpunk 2077: TBD, an amount of patches and a 3080 purchase later.
Blade Runner - Blade runner still rules.
Metal Gear Solid - This game totally works in so many ways, and is so awkward in so many others.
Metal Gear - This totally doesn’t though. It’s like pulling teeth, playing this.
Metal Gear Solid V - Totally fucking rules, and between this, Death Stranding and the Yakuza games, it feels weird to realize the vast majority of my favourite open world games are Japanese.
Yakuza: Like a Dragon - It’s a new Yakuza game. I always like these, but this is like the most extremely Yakuza a Yakuza game has ever Yakuza’d. It’s the goofiest these game’s have been, it’s the most earnest and urgent one of these games have ever felt. It’s my game of the year by a country mile.

So you’d recommend this game, even now? It’s been out for so many years, I figured I missed my chance. But I noticed it’s on sale for 3 more days for $10.

It’s worth $10. Graphically it does show its age, and in my opinion it becomes too easy before the game ends and the (included DLC) kicks you in the face 5x harder, but it does have a few dungeons I really enjoyed exploring, and trying out the combat system justifies the purchase alone (fighting a Chimera is just so cool).

There’s some stuff that doesn’t work for me, like the crafting, but it was worth playing.

  • A villain.
  • Must be a villain.
  • Can only be a villain.
  • Villain!!

(I laughed)

I’m going to say, in a game with a lot of dubious writing, that is straight up capitalized for emphasis Good Writing.

I’m really enjoying what I played so far. I just played (yesterday) that mission in the Prophecy Park where you meet a lot of characters (including the “Villain!” one) and I’ll say that those very short moments got me not only intrigued, but actually caring about some of the characters I saw for mere minutes. That is good writing or design or whatever. ;)

BTW, are Alisa or Ray or Irene or Bianca romantic options for Albus? Because I’m already SHIPPING THEM ALL