12 Best PC Games You Had To Play In 2018


Hello and welcome to Rock Paper Shotgun.
The sight of a Yakuza 0 character running
in panic can only mean one thing: yes, it’s
the crazy end of year rush where we attempt
to round-up our favourite PC games from the
last 12 months.
It’s been a manic year, so we’ve limited
each member of Rock Paper Shotgun video department
– that’s me, Alice and Noa – to four games
each.
They’re not in any order – they are just
games we personally adored.
Hopefully you’d have a good time with any
of them.
As always, a very quick thank you to Shadow
for supporting the channel.
For more info on their impressive cloud based
PC, check the link in the description.
Of course, please do share your own PC games
of 2018 in the comments below.
And we’d love it if you subscribed to Rock
Paper Shotgun.
People who do subscribe are incredibly sexy,
like this Yakuza 0 character.
Quick, let’s get onto the games before our
eyes burn.
I was looking through my Hitman 2 clips for
a favourite and I keep coming back to this
ridiculous footage of everyone in Miami turning
into a flamingo.
It’s a dumb easter egg – you have to execute
a mascot with Kronstadt’s android assassin
– but it perfectly captures Hitman 2’s sense
of humour and shows how stuffed the levels
are with things to discover.
On paper six locations may sound stingy, but
their physical breadth and mechanical depth
makes them incredible playgrounds.
Different kills completely rewrite how you
see and approach levels, whether you’re
trying to kill two people with one push, work
out how to snipe targets when there are hundreds
of eye witnesses or – and this one is brilliant
– helping another assassin do all your work
for you.
I’ve played Hitman 2 for over 60 hours and
still have a huge checklist of things to achieve
– and that’s before you get into the obsessive
world of leaderboards.
Talk your chums into picking up the game and
you’ll be competing to see who is the best
silent assassin for months to come.
Of course, if you prefer your assassins with
a bit more hair, maybe you’ll be more interested
in Noa’s next pick….
Odyssey is set in Ancient Greece where you
can choose, for the first time, to play as
siblings Alexios or Kassandra though choosing
to side with Athens or Sparta in the historical
war is a lot less restrictive – side note:
play both sides, it’s way more fun.
Though I don’t think this game deviates
too much from the AC formula we have come
to know and love (or loathe), Odyssey has
also somewhat reinvigorated said formula by
taking it in the direction of conversational
choices and role play driven by narrative.
It’s sort of Bioware-like actually.
These days it’s awfully hard to spend all
my time existing in a world that isn’t the
really real one.
But when there are no more dentist appointments,
dishes to wash or rental inspections the world
of Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is the kind
you can easily approach in manageable chunks.
The way its systems, of which there are many,
are structured and designed made it so easy
for me to simply leap in faithfully, scout
an area, clean out a camp of enemies, blow
some pirate ships out of the water, or follow
the main story.
[Map] The map may be huge but they are split
into these beautiful islets and landmasses;
not to mention that in guided mode you have
the freedom to travel and explore in the way
that best suits you.
Watching Noa play Odyssey I calculate she
put 7,564 people in hospital – personally,
I’m more interested in fixing them up.
And that’s the magic of Two Point Hospital.
You see, I loved Theme Hospital as a kid,
but it certainly had its limitations.
No rotatable camera?
What is this?
A game from the late 90s?
Tow Point Hospital gets the nostalgia factor
down to a tee, from the ridiculously named
illnesses to to the annoying tannoy announcers,
this game makes me feel… four again.
Sure it’s been updated in places, you can
spin that camera and the building controls
let you paint your build to life.
Having already come out with its first lot
of DLC, I’m excited to see where the game
takes us.
I enjoy Two Point Hospital’s ability to
create an interesting campaign and an equally
enjoyable – if not moreso for me – sandbox
mode.
With its incredibly enjoyable art and hilarious
radio station, it’s easy to lose yourself
in the world of Two Point County.
Of course, not all doctors were as well behaved
in 2018, as Noa’s next pick will explain…
This action role-playing RPG set in the grim
Victorian era is the kind of gothic video
game we didn’t really know we wanted until
it showed up, coat tails flapping about the
windy streets of plague-ridden London.
The man inside these fancy threads is Jonathan
Reid, revolutionary surgeon and now vampire
– talk about Thirst levels of moral conflict.
Good evening Doctor Strickland.
And good evening to you, doctor Reid.
Can I be of any help?
It’s a fascinating framing of the classic
Vampire myth in terms of interactive play
that I enjoyed from start to finish.
Even the role playing elements were interesting,
ranging from stone cold killer who can take
someone’s face off with one swipe of his
claws to a much more brooding power of defense
complete with blood shields and everything
– fancy!
It doesn’t get it all right (though I would
argue that nothing ever truly does) the need
for xp for example doesn’t just have to
be satiated with human blood but can be obtained
via smaller battles with enemies, which I
guess also classes as spilling blood.
But overall it is an intriguing, not to mention
grim, exercise in death, life and choice.
Yakuza 0 is the exact opposite of Vampyr.
It’s big, brash, colourful and full of life.
Well, it’s full of life until you start
smashing heads in car doors.
Here’s a game that has no interest in moral
dilemmas or choice and consequence – you’re
following a fixed story, but who cares when
that story is about dudes in awesome suits
battering the living shit out of each other
with kettles.
Yakuza’s street brawling combat is reason
enough to spend 50 hours exploring its two
city regions, digging into a real estate conspiracy
while solving ridiculous side quests.
I really feel like I’ve seen it all in this
game: I’ve helped a dominatrix whip her
nerves into shape and I had my head kicked
in by this horrible giant who wants to steal
my lunch money.
The relatively small map and its arcade sensibility
means you can’t compare Yakuza to the sandbox
cities of western games, but it has a sense
of style and humour that makes the worlds
of Rockstar and their like seem very dull
by comparison.
Come on, who needs to be a cowboy when you
could be literally salting a man’s eyes.
I rest my case.
If you get bored of decking Yakuza’s thugs,
might I suggest you take a swing at Monster
Hunter World’s giant beasts.
Capcom’s multiplayer monster-basher made
us jealous of console gamers for many years,
but this PC port is a wonderful introduction
to its world.
It boils down to an endless loop of crafting
and killing – you take down monsters and use
their body parts to make bigger weapons to
take down bigger monsters.
Repeat for hundreds of hours.
Okay, there’s more to it than that – especially
when you start digging into the different
weapon classes.
Whether you pick a simple sword, a ridiculous
lance or an actual gun turret can completely
change your approach to battle.
Multiply this by four co-op hunters and you’ve
got a deep rabbit hole of team tactics to
disappear into.
Of course, the most important thing is that
you get a battle cat and can dress him up
in little costumes.
Look, he even has a little raft for water
levels.
I want a little raft for water levels.
If you like cats, or giant swords, Monster
Hunter World should keep you very busy.
And if you want a more traditional JRPG, there’s
another one coming up in about two seconds….
In this JRPG – the eleventh in the series
and first mainline game to release on PC – you
play the role of a unassuming sixteen-year-old
hero.
He hails from the quaint moss-roofed town
of Cobblestone where a small community of
mountain-dwellers live.
And after climbing The Tor to complete an
ancient coming of age rite, he steps into
adulthood with the knowledge that he is the
reincarnation of the famed Luminary.
But with his somewhat lowkey ‘rebirth’
comes the resurrection of a dark other, and
so he (meaning you) must journey across Erdrea
with a team of loveable thieves and mages,
aaaaand I think you’ve heard enough of this
to get the jist… you likely already know
the jrpg drill if not the Dragon Quest drill,
and if you don’t it can be summed up in
one sentence: you must save the world my son!
By battling monsters and stuff.
I described Dragon Quest XI, the lazy Sunday
edition of the traditional RPG – unless of
course you select Draconian options to make
the game more difficult – as a kind of ‘video
game vacation.’
I stick by that summation.
Who needs paid holiday when you have this
game?
Even now that I have finished it, I frequently
dip back into it thanks to all that endgame
opportunity.
And I do it simply to relax and unwind!
Forget Bath salts and wine, Erdrea is where
the real chillaxing begins.
Even though you technically spend most of
your time fighting foes and travelling ‘are-we-there-yet’
distances that would certainly require a potty
stop or twenty, battles are generally straightforward
and locations packed with goodies.
Throw in some simple weapon forging, levelling
systems and an ease of pace that makes a ferris
wheel look like the Pepsi Max Big One and
you have Dragon Quest XI.
I love it.
It makes me happy.
As much as I admire the rainbow fun of Dragon
Quest, I’ll always be more at home in the
mud and misery of The Witcher.
I adore Thronebreaker – CD Projekt Red’s
standalone Gwent RPG has perfectly filled
the Geralt-shaped hole in my life.
It has the great characters, the impossible
moral decisions and loads of nasty beasts
and bastards to kill.
And the card game reshapes itself to capture
the big action moments you expect from the
Witcher.
Giant monsters are made up of smaller cards
that fly around the battlefield belching fire…
ah shite, he’s raging now!
Watch out!… and boss fights see enemies
infiltrating your ranks or hiding behind castle
walls built of cards.
The best stuff is in puzzle matches that give
you a fixed hand and very strict win conditions.
Working out how to squeeze every last buff
out of three or four cards is a great tutorial
for the main game.
It reminds me of Might and Magic: Clash of
Heroes – which is one of my all-time favourites.
It’s a tad on the easy side, perhaps – especially
if you’ve spent the last two years thrashing
people in online Gwent matches, but even then
it remains a beautifully made thing.
From the dinky world map to the ornate card
designs, it drips luxury.
Well, as luxurious as muddy battlefields can
get.
Unlike Matthew I prefer my games to be less
muddy and take place in swanky parties.
Ideally without someone trying to murder me.
You see, in Spy Party one player is the spy
trying to achieve secret goals at a shindig,
and the other person is the sniper trying
to sniff them out through a rifle scope.
If you’ve ever wanted to trick a fellow
human into believing that you aren’t a fellow
human, then this is the game for you.
Wandering around a party and pretending to
swap statues around might not sound like a
great time, but it’s amazingly tense.
The higher the difficulty the more tasks you
have to do and the more obvious they are too.
Trying to whisper the magic words ‘banana
bread’ – banana bread – to a double agent
is particularly risky.
Well, unless you start saying it at random
times to confuse the sniper.
Banana bread.
And can you find a chance to look out the
window and look at your watch to earn some
bonus time without getting a bullet to the
face?
Like I said: this is tense.
Spy Party has been in developed since 2009
and has had many years of betas, but 2018
was the year it entered steam early access,
so I think it’s fair to include it here.
And if you thought it was an odd inclusion,
it’s got nothing on Noa’s next game….
GNOG or GNOOOOOOG is a video game toy box
of fun (and really pleasing sound design)
that is fairly reminiscent of putting blocks
through similarly shaped holes… if those
shapes started singing and then unlocked another
brand new block that sprouts legs and spins
about.
In this 3D puzzle boxer of wonder, you make
your way through different levels (or monster
heads in this case) solving the little mysteries
within it by pulling on cords, spinning things,
pushing buttons, you know, what you used to
when you were a child in a toy store – just
pressing everything in sight?
Or maybe that is just me.
Only instead of a grainy snake-in-my boot
result, the sounds that prompt in this game
are really magnificent.
Every time you complete a puzzle successfully,
the monster head in question starts to sing…
…which might not sound like much of a payoff
but it is because everything in GNOG is so
tactile and therefore fun.
The game asks you to just fiddle with everything
until you figure it all out and move on and
that, in itself, is what makes it so worthwhile.
I’ve spent five minutes trying to link from
Noa’s GNOG to Forza Horizon 4 and I’ve
got nothing.
I mean, you can open the car doors and stuff,
but it’s not quite the same as getting inside
a robot’s head.
No, this is as far from indie as you get:
a big, bold brum-brum blockbuster.
It crushes a chunk of Britain into a smaller
landmass and gives you over 400 cars to tear
up its roads and fields.
It mostly builds on the good work of Forza
Horizon 3, but the rolling hills of Britain
host cross country rambles that the Australian
outback just couldn’t match.
This being Britain, it also gets a nasty dose
of weather, with a seasonal cycle that changes
the entire world state once a week – in winter
everything’s covered in snow and rivers
freeze over, and in spring the countryside
is churned to mud.
If the season outside your real window is
getting you down, boot up the game and you’ve
got a three in four chance that it’s different
here.
I also adore the new YouTuber side story inspired
by other legendary racing games.
Whether you’re power sliding around Edinburgh
in an ode to Project Gotham Racing or jumping
off hills Crazy Taxi style it’s delightful
to see a big racing star of today paying homage
to the games that paved the way…
Oh, and it’s included in the Xbox Game Pass
– I know the pass is aimed at console owners,
but Horizon is a play anywhere game, which
means you get access to the Windows 10 version
too.
A sneaky way to play one of 2018’s very
best games for very little money.
My final pick for best PC games of 2018 is
Megaquarium.
I might prefer my real-life fishy friends
to live a free and happy life in the ocean,
but in the world of videogames owning a fish
prison and making money from them is what
it’s all about.
Megaquarium draws on my love of animals and
management sims, combining them both into
one happy little game where the fish are only
mistreated if you let it happen.
And it’s not going to happen on my watch
– I’m basically the Aquaman of aquarium
managers.
But the sense of responsibility you feel for
inmates does help you invest in every move
you make.
You’ll feel an enormous sense of guilt as
you fail your fish by putting a bully fish
in with a wimp fish, or by not giving your
fish enough mates to hang out with.
If they need a rock to be happy, you give
them that rock, y’hear?
Research new sea creatures and new technology
as you create the best aquarium in town, some
might even start calling it a Megaquarium.
Hey, that’s the name of the game!
What are the chances of that?
Of course, these are only a fraction of the
amazing games we’ve played this year, so
here’s a lightning fast rundown of some
other bits and bobs we also enjoyed…
I was going to include Return of the Obra
Dinn as one of my main games, but it’s very
difficult to show the game without spoiling
it.
Short version: it’s the best murder mystery
games ever made, as you work out what happened
to 60 people on board the ghost ship, the
Obra Dinn.
It’s a staggeringly good detective game
– I’ve linked to my full written review
in the video description.
But don’t read it – just go and play it.
And who could forget Into The Breach, squeezing
deep strategic smarts into an eight by eight
grid as you pummel earth invaders with giant
mechs.
It’s a proper brain workout.
We also love Frostpunk, a game about a city
of people who slowly die of cold because you
suck at town planning.
Well, that’s what happened when I played
it.
And yet people still watch the tips video.
I found Shadow of The Tomb Raider a little
wonky in places, but it made up for it by
finally having loads of tombs for Lara to
explore.
It’s stupidly pretty in places, too.
If you prefer your adventures with more pointing
and clicking, you have to try Unavowed – it
adds brilliant player choice to the classic
formula and is one of the best of its kind
since the genre’s Lucasarts heyday.
And there’s Yoku’s Island Express, the
metroid-meets-pinball mash-up we didn’t
know we wanted until the very clever people
at Villa Gorilla went ahead and made it.
Thanks to them.
And how did we not include Dead Cells in the
main list.
I love Dead Cells.
Well, I love Dead Cells when it gives me the
toys I like to play with.
Buzzsaw gun turrets, please!
And last but not least is the mighty Slay
the Spire, which I only played for the first
time two days ago, because I’m a massive
idiot.
Why didn’t we cover this on the channel.
Please don’t unsubscribe.
And those are just some of the game’s we’ve
loved in 2018 – thanks for sticking with the
list all the way to end.
Even after we showed that creepy guy in his
pants.
And thanks again to Shadow for sponsoring
this RPS video.
Shadow is a high-end, cloud-based computer
available on any internet-enabled device.
Just like any Windows 10 PC, you can use it
to work, play or browse – it has the specs
to handle any game, and comes with an integrated
fibre connection, perfect for downloading
any game or uploading a video at the speed
of light.
For more info on Shadow – and a discount for
RPS viewers – click the link in the description.
In less jolly news, this is also our last
video with fellow Rock Paper Shotgun video
person Noa – she’s off on her own video
adventures in 2019 and we wish her the very
best.
Please say nice things about her in the comments.
And while you do that, also share your top
PC picks from 2018 – what games kept you clicking
for the last 12 months?
Hopefully you’ve enjoyed our videos this
year – we’ve got loads more planned for
2019.
I’d love it if you subscribed and joined
us on that exciting video adventure – and
even if you don’t, I hope you have a great
new year.
Thanks for watching and bye for now.

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