The annual Push Square Towers tradition is back, as we sit down our scribes and pester them once more for their five favourite PlayStation games of the year. With such a strong assortment of software in 2018, it’s always tough deciding upon the cream of the crop. We threatened to take away Liam's lasagne before he sent us his list.
Fifth Choice: The Missing: J.J. Macfield and the Island of Memories
If there's one thing you take away from my personal list, its that you absolutely need to play The Missing: J.J. Macfield and the Island of Memories. Not only does it introduce new gory and inventive mechanics to the 2D side-scrolling genre, it also tells a deeply personal and meaningful story. It's ending is personally one of my favourite moments in games this year, and it's also one that brings so much clarity to the experience you've just had. If self-harm and LGBTQA are subjects you think should be discussed in games, this is an essential playthrough.
Fourth Choice: Call of Duty: Black Ops 4
Had you told me that a Call of Duty game would make it into my top five at the beginning of the year, I'd still be chuckling about it six months later. But then Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 arrived, and with it, Blackout. Treyarch's attempt at Battle Royale mode has been my go-to source of entertainment for two and a half months now, and I still can't get enough of it. It's by far the most polished and fun attempt at 1 v 100, with a huge variety of weaponry to pick up and master, and items and mechanics that differentiate it from anything else. Playing the game in Duos and Quads with fellow Push Square scribes and readers has been an absolute delight. Oh yeah, the multiplayer is pretty great, too.
Third Choice: Marvel's Spider-Man
I grew up reading Spider-Man comic books, so to say I was anticipating the PS4 version of everyone's favourite superhero would be a bit of an understatement. And to my utter delight, the game absolutely delivered. The web-swinging felt just right, the story was both surprising and thoroughly enjoyable, and once you had your head wrapped around the intricate combat system, taking out bad guys almost became an art form. The open world was a slight disappointment, as it fell into the typical trappings of the genre, but that wasn't enough to stop me from having the most wonderful time swinging across New York City.
Second Choice: Red Dead Redemption 2
I have so, so many thoughts and feelings I need to unpack about Red Dead Redemption 2. It manages to be one of the most incredible games I've ever played, but also the most exhausting. I look back on my time with the game and I recall numerous amazing moments, but I continue to question if I actually enjoyed the act of playing much of it. Leading character Arthur Morgan is difficult to control, the fast travel system frustrated me, entire mechanics fall by the wayside halfway through, shooting is a chore, and it's far, far too long. And despite all that, it's my second favourite game of 2018.
First Choice: God of War
God of War spoke to me like no other game did in 2018. The introduction of the Leviathan Axe and the switch to a more cinematic camera angle were revelations for combat, while Atreus brought with him so many new dynamics to the franchise. The plot never lets up either, with utterly phenomenal boss fights that act as cornerstones for Kratos' journey to the highest peak of the nine realms. God of War sets the standard for the action adventure genre going forward, but it's one that I don't think will be bettered until a sequel comes along. It's a game that made me feel just as powerful as the menacing Kratos on-screen, a true titan of the industry.
Perhaps the biggest surprise in Liam's list is The Missing, but has he convinced you to give it a go? Get lost in the comments section below.