Our Top Fives of 2013

Tops Fives
Hundreds of games were released last year and because we’re not artificial gamer-bots hell-bent on the destruction of mankind, we didn’t get a chance to try them all, but we definitely had our favorites. Today we bring you our picks for the top five games of 2013.

Mileson’s Top Five
5 – Dead Rising 3
Dead Rising 3 Banner
Dead Rising 3 was my first taste of next-gen gaming and I absolutely loved. The ridiculousness of the previous games was expanded into an entire city. The combo vehicles were hilarious and endlessly entertaining and the scale of the city was the perfect size. There were always new ways to dismember the zombies, but to be honest, I never really got bored of just aimlessly shooting undead firemen with a dildo launcher.
4 – Pokemon X/Y
Nintendo and Game Freak did everything right with Pokemon X and Y. The updated graphics and animations completely revitalized the series and I was always pumped to see one of the classic moves in 3D. The Pokemon experience we all know and love is still there, but with a outrageous number of additional features and updates. It’s the Pokemon game I’ve been wanting for years.
3 – Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch
This is easily the best JRPG I’ve played in several years. I loved it. Plain and simple. The story was beautiful and engaging and the world you played in was incredibly memorable. It’s Pokemon meets Final Fantasy, meets Disney and if you haven’t given this game a try, I’d highly recommend you clear 30 to 60 hours from your schedule and get to it.
2 – The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds
A Link to the Past is my favorite entry in the Zelda series by far and it could even be my favorite game of all time, so I was incredibly excited and nervous about the announcement of A Link Between Worlds. I would have been completely content with an HD remake of A Link to the Past, but this game provides so much more. It’s a beautifully written love letter to one of gaming’s great classics that delivers one of the best Zelda experiences ever.
1 – Super Mario 3D World
Super Mario 3D World
Even as I write this I’m shocked that this is my favorite game of 2013. I’ve always loved the Mario games, but for the last several years they’ve all felt semi-stale. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve enjoyed them, but it felt like something was missing. Super Mario 3D World proves that Nintendo still knows how to make incredibly inventive games. The level design is amazing and each stage stands out on it’s own. Thank you, Nintendo. Thank you for making me believe again.
Honorable Mentions: Rogue Legacy, The Last of Us, and Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate
Kafka Luck’s Top Five
5 – Monaco: What’s Yours is Mine

A highly stylized heist game in the vein of 1960’s Neo-Noir films. Full disclosure, I went to college with one of the artists that worked on this game, but that really didn’t influence how much I loved playing this game. This is one of those games where you have to react and strategize in a heartbeat, but you have some many characters to choose from, as well as mix and match. Anyone can find a play style that works for them.

4 – Shin Megami Tensei IV


Hard is really the best way to describe this long awaited sequel. This is a JRPG not for the faint of heart. While it lacks in the story department, it’s gameplay and setting is everything I love about the series. Like Papers, Please, the mechanics of collecting and fusing demons sounds boring on paper, but once you get into it, you find yourself constantly thinking about it, or at least I did.

3 – Papers, Please!

Papers, Please

This was one of those games I kept hearing about and kind of rolled my eyes, until I checked it out. Holy crap was it amazing. You play as a border guard in a fictional Soviet style dystopia scrutinizing the passports, work permits, entry tickets, etc. of people attempting to enter the country. It sounds boring, but I honestly sunk about three hours into this one without even realizing it the first time I fired it up.

2 – The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds


Where to start with this one? Aside from being a throwback to arguably the greatest game in The Legend of Zelda series, it manages to stand brilliantly on it’s own. This is everything you could ever want from a Zelda game. While Lorule feels a bit lacking compared to the Dark World, it by no means takes away from the game or the excellent, and welcomed, old school exploration.

1 – Fire Emblem: Awakening


This was the year I finally took the plunge and picked up a 3DS, so of course I needed to get a game. I’d never been that into turn based strategy RPG’s, but this one really blew me away. The game offers you the option of perma-death, so when your characters die in battle, they stay dead and can’t be revived. I honestly found myself getting attached to the characters more so than most games and I don’t think I could ever play through the game in classic mode.

AMGfail’s Top Five

5 – Crimson Dragon
Crimson Dragon

My addictive nature far outweighs any negative review this game has received by the press. No matter how bad the storyline or voice acting is, I can’t.. stop.. evolving.. dragons! I’m a huge Panzer Dragoon fan, so getting to swap out, level and evolve multiple dragon types in this spiritual successor was the perfect time sink for me in 2013.

 4 – Gone Home

What exactly makes a game “a game” is the topic of many a debate and no game incited more riots in that aspect than Gone Home. There is no combat, no puzzles, no terrorists to shoot and no dragons to slay, but the atmosphere and story-driven narrative stuck with me long after finishing the game. It’s not for everyone, but I enjoyed it.

 3 – Ryse: Son of Rome

Maybe I just like “bad” games or something, because I absolutely loved Ryse. It filled the mindless bloodshed void that I had in 2013 and the combat became surprisingly deep in the higher difficulty settings. In a year full of great games, it had to be something special for me to be in the middle of my third playthrough.

 2 – Bioshock: Infinite

Yet another game that seemed to divide the gamer community, Bioshock: Infinite was the first great game that I played in 2013. I enjoyed the storyline and felt Columbia was on par with Rapture, but I understand it’s flaws. I was actually so confident that I’d never have more fun with a game in 2013, but boy was I wrong.

 1 – Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon

Giant dragons smothered in Tron lights, 16-bit cyborg sex scenes, inquisitive dinosaurs that shoot lasers from their eyes and two scoops of 80’s sex appeal? Blood Dragon had it all. It took an already solid Far Cry 3, simplified the leveling system and hit all the right notes with me in 2013.

Honorable mentions – The Stanley Parable, Tomb Raider, Rogue Legacy & Papers, Please!

We hope you enjoyed our picks for the best of 2013. It truly was an incredible year for gaming. If you haven’t gotten a chance, be sure to check out this week’s round of Nerd Wars! and cast your vote for game of the year. We will be announcing the winner tomorrow!


  1. I suppose I should post a disclaimer that there were a ridiculous amount of AAA titles that I never got around to playing in 2013. This is probably why things like Super Mario 3D World, A Link Between Worlds or Grand Theft Auto V aren’t on my list.

  2. I really enjoyed Super Mario 3d World, The Legend of Zelda a Link Between Worlds, Pokemon Y, and Rayman Legends in 2013. I had never completed a Zelda game before, so that was pretty exciting. I am excited for the new Smash game in 2014!

    1. Rayman Legends was super close to making it on my list. That was such a great game. Nintendo really got their act together towards the end of the year.

    2. If you have a 3DS and you enjoyed A Link Between Worlds, I highly recommend checking out the 3D remaster of The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. They did an excellent job porting it over, and I’m biased since it’s one of my favorite games of all time lol.

  3. Excellent list from everyone! I recently picked up a 3DS XL and have been loving me some Zelda, and I will more than likely be trying my very first Pokemon game from all of the positve things I have been hearing.

    If you are all old school fans, I highly suggest trying out Drinkbox Studios excellent platformer/Metroidvania game Guacamelee.

    1. Thank you very much, sir! You definitely made a wise purchase.

      I’ve heard many amazing things about Guacamelee. I love the Metroidvania games, so it seems right up my alley.


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