It’s award season at Stealth Optional, and this time we’re crowning our prestigious Game of the Year! Watch out, The Game Awards, next year we‘ll have a confused Al Pacino as well!
If you’re looking for the best of the best games to play, these are three of the sweetest experiences of the year. You may disagree, but this is subjective, and we’re not listening anyways.
Without further ado, these are the Stealth Optional Game of the Year Awards! Do-do-do-dooooo! (That’s the sound of a trumpet!)
Lewis' Game of the Year 2022 — Vampire Survivors
An indie darling of epic proportions, Vampire Survivors is Castlevania meets Binding of Isaac meets Earth Defence Force. Available on PC, Xbox, PlayStation, Switch and mobile, this is a must-play title for any gamer.
In Vampire Survivors, you battle swathing hordes of undead foes, gathering XP and unlocking weapons and buffs. If you’re a fan of Roguelites like Nuclear Throne, you’ll instantly slide into this game’s addictive gameplay loop. It’s not just pick up and play, it’s pick up and never put down.
Available for just a few quid, or free on mobile, Vampire Survivors is also insanely cheap. For just a few quid, you’ll be able to get hundreds of hours out of this infinitely replayable gothic roguelite.
Nico’s Game of the Year 2022 — Chained Echoes
What would happen if Final Fantasy 6 and Chrono Trigger had a baby? That baby would be Chained Echoes, the surprise indie RPG of the year. Released on December 8, Chained Echoes is the definition of an end-of-the-year surprise, one that any JRPG-loving fan should play.
Somehow, near the end of 2022, Chained Echoes managed to make turn-based battles feel fresh again. The game doesn’t have a traditional level up system, with stat bonuses coming after major events and boss fights, so players have to be on their toes and make every action count. It’s not too difficult either, as the party’s HP and MP are restored after every fight, striking that perfect balance of old-school and modern JRPGs.
That’s not to mention the beautiful pixel graphics and a compelling story that will make SNES era Final Fantasy fans happy. Chained Echoes is a captivating experience and the fact that it was made by lone developer Matthias Linda makes this achievement even more impressive. Definitely worthy as Game of the Year.
Jesse’s Game of the Year 2022 — God of War Ragnarok
The continuation of the angry man and boy saga, God of War Ragnarok surpasses the original in every area. All of the background characters we heard about in the first game come out to play, making it one huge Norse mythology love letter.
The gameplay and mechanics are expanded, too. Atreus has also grown up and stopped whining about everything, so that’s a plus in my books. Wait… was I the angry dad the whole time?
In any case, God of War Ragnarok is a slow burn. You can explore its very vast world at your leisure, then get back to the narrative god bickering when you feel like it. You can also smash enemies’ heads in with your axe in a brutal manner, which always helps vent your frustrations.