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The Besties Podcast's Games of the Years

The Besties is a podcast about video games with a focus on a Game of Year format. Although episodes do cover new games like other podcasts, much of the content builds towards yearly Game of the Year shows, and head-to-head showdowns for best games in a series (Zelda, Grand Theft Auto and so on).

"It's Game of the Year meets King of the Hill as four of Earth's best friends – Griffin McElroy, Justin McElroy, Chris Plante, and Russ Frushtick – rank and review their favorite video games. Because shouldn't the world's best friends pick the world's best games?"

This is a list of the games that they have picked for their final game of the year show from 2014 to 2021. In some cases we didn't have the game on the database, but generally this is a good representation of their picks over the time of the show.

This list includes 73 games from the last 30 years, with 2,593 likes. They come from a range of different genres and play-styles and are all good games if you want to .

DetailsList Details

PEGI Ratings: PEGI 3 to PEGI 18
ESRB Ratings: ESRB EVERYONE to ESRB MATURE 17+
Australian Ratings: G to R 18+
Genres: Action, Adventure, Fighting, Narrative, Open World, Physically Active, Platform, Point-and-Click, Puzzle, Racing, Rhythm, Role-Playing, Shooting, Simulation, Sports, Stealth, Strategy and Turn-Based
Total Likes: 2,593
 

 

Loop Hero

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Release Date: 03/02/2021

Platforms: PC and Switch

Genres: Puzzle, Role-Playing and Strategy

Accessibility: 17 features

Developer: F Qteam (@_FQteam)

Players: This is a single player game

Loop Hero is a dungeon exploring adventure game where you use cards to create a world for your character to survive. Rather than control the hero yourself, you take the role of designer (or Dungeon Master) who use cards to create a world that is hard...

Halo (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 16

Skill Rating: 10-16 year-olds

Release Date: 15/11/2001, updated in 2020

Platforms: Android, Mac, PC, Xbox, Xbox 360, Xbox One and iOS

Genres: Action, Fighting, Narrative and Shooting

Accessibility: 20 features

Developer: Halo (@Halo)

Players: You can play with 4 players in the same room and up to 16 players online

Halo is the longstanding sci-fi shooting video game series that started when Halo: Combat Evolved launched alongside the Xbox in 2001. The franchise has featured on every Xbox platform since then, with Halo 5: Guardians serving as the latest entry in...

Sea of Thieves

Content Rating: PEGI 12

Skill Rating: 12-18 year-olds

Release Date: 20/03/2018

Platforms: PC, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Genres: Action, Adventure, Fighting, Open World, Role-Playing, Simulation and Stealth

Accessibility: 26 features

Developer: Rare Ltd (@RareLtd)

Players: You can play this with 24 players online

Sea of Thieves is an online game where you are a pirate searching for treasure and adventure. Cast into a large open sea you work with other online players to crew your ship and find treasure. The game has a main story but really focuses on creating...

Journey

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Skill Rating: 11-16 year-olds

Release Date: 14/03/2012, updated in 2019

Price: 50% off

Platforms: PC, PS3, PS4 and iOS

Genres: Adventure, Open World, Platform and Puzzle

Accessibility: 8 features

Developer: That Game Company (@ThatGameCompany)

Players: This is a single player game. You can play with up to 2 players online

Journey is an adventure game set in a desert. Exploring the eerie sand-scape, you discover a world abandoned by the race that created it. The sense of space and scale evokes feelings of aloneness and being lost. But then the game pairs you with other...

Subnautica (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Skill Rating: 10-16 year-olds

Release Date: 11/04/2016, updated in 2018

Price: 35% off

Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Genres: Action, Adventure, Open World, Simulation, Stealth and Strategy

Accessibility: 14 features

Developer: Unknown Worlds (@UnknownWorlds)

Players: This is a single player game

Subnautica is an open-world adventure where you explore the ocean on an alien planet after crashlanding. You collect resources and fight creatures to survive. This enables you to establish an underwater base, gain new craft and equipment and explore...

Hades

Content Rating: PEGI 12

Release Date: 06/12/2018, updated in 2020

Platforms: Mac, PC, PS4, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Genres: Action, Fighting, Role-Playing and Shooting

Accessibility: 29 features

Developer: Supergiant Games (@SupergiantGames)

Players: This is a single player game

Hades is a shooting game where you battle your way through dungeons to escape hell and the clutches of Hades. You play as Zagreus, the son of Hades and through the game you'll meet many recognisable greek gods like Zeus, Athena and Posiedon who will try...

Alto's Odyssey (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 3

Skill Rating: 4+ year-olds

Release Date: 19/02/2015, updated in 2018

Price: Free

Platforms: Android, Mac, PC, PS4, Switch, Xbox One and iOS

Genres: Action, Platform and Racing

Accessibility: 13 features

Developer: Built By Snowman (@BuiltBySnowman)

Players: This is a single player game

Descend beautiful mountains, dunes and canyons on a snowboarding journey full of serenity and secrets. All you have to worry about is tapping to jump to avoid chasms, rockfall and other hazards. It’s simple and moreish due to the stunning landscapes...

Marvel's Spider-Man (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 16

Skill Rating: 12+ year-olds

Release Date: 07/09/2018

Price: 60% off

Platforms: PS4 and PS5

Genres: Action, Adventure, Fighting, Narrative, Open World and Stealth

Accessibility: 18 features

Developer: Insomniac Games (@InsomniacGames)

Players: This is a single player game

Marvel's Spider-Man is a series of superhero adventures where you swing through an open-world city fighting crime and advancing a film-like story. There are also many side quests and missions you can take along the way.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath Of The Wild

Content Rating: PEGI 12

Skill Rating: 11-18 year-olds

Release Date: 03/03/2017

Platforms: Switch and Wii U

Genres: Action, Adventure, Fighting, Narrative, Open World, Simulation and Stealth

Accessibility: 12 features

Developer: Nintendo (@Nintendo)

Players: This is a single player game

This game departs from the previous Zelda formula with the scale and depth of its world. You walk, fly, ride and climb your way through a landscape that varies in climate, terrain, inhabitants and vegetation. Weather and the passage of the sun and moon...

Animal Crossing (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 3

Skill Rating: 9-16 year-olds

Release Date: 14/12/2001, updated in 2020

Price: 26% off

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, DS, GameCube, Switch and Wii

Genres: Open World, Role-Playing and Simulation

Accessibility: 28 features

Developer: Nintendo (@Nintendo)

Players: You can play with 4 players in the same room and up to 8 players online

You live on a small island teeming with life. Insects, fish, trees, vegetation and fossils are represented with cute cartoon visuals. Rather than the scale or grandeur of other game worlds, it’s the interconnected drama of the world and characters...

Among Us

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Release Date: 16/11/2018, updated in 2020

Platforms: Android, PC, Switch, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S and iOS

Genres: Action and Role-Playing

Accessibility: 29 features

Developer: Inner Sloth Devs (@InnerSlothDevs)

Players: You can play with 10 players in the same room and up to 10 players online

Among Us is a strategy game where crew-mates prepare their space ship for launch by completing tasks. However, one of the players is an impostor intent on sabotaging the ship and killing the crew. As the game progresses in real time the impostor...

A Short Hike

Content Rating: PEGI 3

Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds

Release Date: 05/04/2019, updated in 2021

Platforms: Mac, PC, PS4, PS5, Switch and Xbox One

Genres: Adventure and Open World

Accessibility: 26 features

Developer: Adam Gryu (@AdamGryu)

Players: This is a single player game

In A Short Hike you play penguin-like character Claire, who needs to climb a mountain in a beautiful national park to receive an important phone call. Presented in cute pixel graphics, the game invites you to explore the park, help other animals, find...

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 3

Skill Rating: 3-10 year-olds

Release Date: 27/08/1992, updated in 2018

Price: 26% off

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, DS, GameCube, Switch and iOS

Genres: Action and Racing

Accessibility: 27 features

Developer: Nintendo (@Nintendo)

Players: You can play with 4 players in the same room and up to 16 players online

Mario Kart is a go-kart racing game on Nintendo systems. You race against other Nintendo characters around different circuits, picking up power ups, attacks and speed boosts. It is frantic and chaotic, but still requires skills to do well at.

Stardew Valley

Content Rating: PEGI 12

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Release Date: 26/02/2016, updated in 2018

Platforms: Amazon Fire, Android, Mac, PC, PS Vita, PS4, Switch, Xbox One and iOS

Genres: Action, Adventure, Narrative, Open World, Simulation and Strategy

Accessibility: 24 features

Developer: Concerned Ape (@ConcernedApe)

Players: You can play this with 4 players online

Stardew Valley looks like a farming simulator. That’s partly what it is, but you must also develop relationships with the other townsfolk and delve deep into the mines. Its quirky labyrinthine attention to detail is as inviting for young players to...

Super Mario Odyssey

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Skill Rating: 5+ year-olds

Release Date: 27/10/2017

Price: 27% off

Platforms: Switch

Genres: Action, Adventure, Open World and Platform

Accessibility: 15 features

Developer: Nintendo (@Nintendo)

Players: You can play with 2 players in the same room

Mario has stared in running and jumping Super Mario games on Nintendo hardware since the Nintendo Entertainment System in the 80's. The formula remains unchanged. Explore a level, jump on enemies, collect coins and get to the flag at the end to inch...

Ori and the Will of the Wisps (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Release Date: 11/03/2015, updated in 2020

Platforms: PC, Switch and Xbox One

Genres: Action, Adventure, Narrative and Platform

Accessibility: 26 features

Developer: Moon Game Studios (@MoonGameStudios)

Players: This is a single player game

Both Ori and the Blind Forest and Ori and the Will of the Wisps place you in control of a diminutive elfish spirit called Ori. You run, jump and solve platforming challenges to progress through the world. As you do new powers are unlocked that allow you...

Overwatch

Content Rating: PEGI 12

Skill Rating: 10-16 year-olds

Release Date: 24/05/2016, updated in 2019

Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Genres: Action, Fighting and Shooting

Accessibility: 19 features

Developer: Blizzard Ent (@Blizzard_Ent)

Players: You can play this with 12 players online

Overwatch is a shooting game but with the focus on teamwork and skill rather than violence. Along with games like Rocket League it has professional e-sports competitions where players compete for prizes.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 12

Skill Rating: 10-16 year-olds

Release Date: 21/01/1999, updated in 2018

Price: 23% off

Platforms: DS, GameCube, Switch and Wii U

Genres: Action and Fighting

Accessibility: 19 features

Developer: Nintendo (@Nintendo)

Players: You can play with 8 players in the same room and up to 8 players online

Super Smash Bros. in its various versions offers real-time brawling battles. The tens of characters are drawn from other video games and each has bespoke moves to learn and perfect.

Paradise Killer

Content Rating: PEGI 16

Release Date: 04/09/2020

Platforms: Mac, PC and Switch

Genres: Narrative, Open World, Point-and-Click and Puzzle

Accessibility: 41 features

Developer: Kaizen Game Works (@KaizenGameWorks)

Players: This is a single player game

Paradise Killer is a detective game set in the open world of Paradise Island. It's a strange place with quirky characters and an alien obsessed, demon worshiping world. You are an exiled investigator brought back to solve the mass murder of the island's...

Hollow Knight (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Release Date: 12/06/2018, updated in 2019

Platforms: Mac, PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Genres: Action, Adventure, Fighting, Narrative and Platform

Accessibility: 19 features

Developer: Team Cherry Games (@TeamCherryGames)

Players: This is a single player game

Hollow Knight is a game where you run, jump, and battle your way through the underground kingdom of Hallownest. It’s not uncommon for platform games to invest in the environments through which you pass, but the haunting depths in this game contain...

Inscryption

Expected Content Rating: PEGI 16

Release Date: 19/10/2021

Platforms: Mac and PC

Genres: Adventure, Narrative, Puzzle and Turn-Based

Accessibility: 25 features

Developer: D Mullins Games (@DMullinsGames)

Players: This is a single player game

Inscryption starts as a card-based adventure where you build a deck of cards to take on adventures and battles. To this, it adds escape-room style puzzles, both in the card game and in the room in which you are playing. The result is a psychological...

Cuphead

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Release Date: 29/09/2017, updated in 2019

Platforms: Mac, PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Genres: Action and Platform

Accessibility: 21 features

Developer: Studio MDHR (@StudioMDHR)

Players: You can play with 2 players in the same room and up to 2 players online

Cuphead is a running, jumping and shooting game that looks like an old Mickey Mouse cartoon. You play on your own or with someone else and work across the screen, jumping gaps, shooting enemies and avoiding projectiles.

Outer Wilds

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Release Date: 11/12/2018, updated in 2019

Platforms: PC, PS4 and Xbox One

Genres: Open World and Simulation

Accessibility: 1 feature

Developer: Mobius Games (@Mobius_Games)

Players: This is a single player game

Outer Wilds is an exploration space mystery about a solar system trapped in an endless time-loop. After 20 minutes of game time, you must start again – but each time brings a new opportunity to learn how you ended up on the planet and solve the...

Ratchet And Clank: Rift Apart

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Skill Rating: 10-16 year-olds

Release Date: 11/06/2021

Platforms: PS5

Genres: Action, Adventure, Narrative, Platform and Shooting

Accessibility: 25 features

Developer: Insomniac Games (@InsomniacGames)

Players: This is a single player game

Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart is a running, jumping and shooting game. The latest in the series, Rift Apart focuses on jumping between parallel worlds.

Celeste

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Release Date: 23/01/2018, updated in 2018

Platforms: Mac, PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Genres: Platform

Accessibility: 27 features

Developer: Exok Games (@Exok_Games)

Players: This is a single player game

This is a platform game that requires players to use jumping and climbing moves to ascend an increasingly challenging two-dimensional mountain. You play Madeline, who is, perhaps unsurprisingly, haunted by self-doubt at the task in hand. She presses on...

Red Dead Redemption 2 (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 18

Release Date: 18/05/2010, updated in 2019

Platforms: PC, PS3, PS4, Stadia, Xbox 360 and Xbox One

Genres: Action, Fighting, Open World and Shooting

Accessibility: 28 features

Developer: Rockstar Games (@RockstarGames)

Players: You can play this with 32 players online

Red Dead Redemption is a series of open world adventures with a wild west theme. The rich world offers many things to do along with a main story line. It's this living breathing world that attracts players, both in its diversity and beauty.

Horizon Zero Dawn

Content Rating: PEGI 16

Skill Rating: 14-18 year-olds

Release Date: 01/03/2017

Platforms: PC and PS4

Genres: Action, Adventure, Fighting, Narrative, Open World and Shooting

Accessibility: 29 features

Developer: Guerrilla (@Guerrilla)

Players: This is a single player game

Horizon Zero Dawn, and the follow-up game Horizon Forbidden West, has a post-apocalyptic feel familiar from movies like Planet of the Apes. It plunges you into an overgrown landscape with now-crumbling remnants of modern life where animalistic machines...

Descenders

Content Rating: PEGI 3

Release Date: 08/05/2019, updated in 2020

Platforms: Mac, PC, PS4, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Genres: Racing, Simulation and Sports

Accessibility: 12 features

Developer: Rage Squid (@RageSquid)

Players: You can play this with 8 players online

Descenders is a downhill mountain biking game with a focus on skill. In each downhill run, your goal is to score as many points as possible by completing skill based challenges and executing as many tricks and flips as you can, all while you try to...

Return of the Obra Dinn

Content Rating: PEGI 16

Skill Rating: 14+ year-olds

Release Date: 18/10/2019

Platforms: PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Genres: Narrative and Puzzle

Accessibility: 21 features

Developer: Dukope (@Dukope)

Players: This is a single player game

You play a shipping company agent assessing what happened on board a fictional East India Company ship where all the passengers have all mysteriously died. Exploring the ship, you can revisit the moment of death for each body in order to identify each...

Superhot

Content Rating: PEGI 12

Skill Rating: 11-16 year-olds

Release Date: 25/02/2016, updated in 2019

Platforms: Mac, PC, PS4, Stadia, Switch, Web and Xbox One

Genres: Action and Shooting

Accessibility: 17 features

Developer: Superhot The Game (@SuperhotTheGame)

Players: This is a single player game

Superhot is a shooting game with a twist. Time only moves forward (bullets, enemies, damage) when you move your character. This is still a violent game, in fact, in slow motion, it feels more violent.

Pokemon Go!

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Release Date: 06/07/2016

Price: Free

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Action, Adventure, Fighting, Open World, Physically Active and Turn-Based

Accessibility: 16 features

Developer: Niantic Labs (@NianticLabs)

Players: You can play with 2 players in the same room and up to 20 players online

Pokémon Go is a game you play by walking outside. You play on a smartphone so it can use the GPS to locate, capture, battle, and train virtual creatures, called Pokémon, which appear as if they are in the player's real-world location.

Shadow Of The Colossus

Content Rating: PEGI 12

Release Date: 18/10/2005

Platforms: PS2, PS3 and PS4

Genres: Action, Adventure, Fighting, Narrative, Open World and Simulation

Accessibility: 8 features

Developer: Sony Japan Studio (@SonyJapanStudio)

Players: This is a single player game

You play a young man who enters a forbidden land to defeat sixteen massive beings to restore the life of a girl he cares about. It sounds like any other video game, although in fact, Shadow of the Colossus stands apart in many ways.

Assassin's Creed Odyssey

Content Rating: PEGI 18

Release Date: 05/10/2018

Price: 77% off

Platforms: PC, PS4, Stadia, Switch and Xbox One

Genres: Action, Adventure, Fighting, Narrative, Open World, Simulation and Stealth

Accessibility: 28 features

Developer: Ubisoft MTL (@UbisoftMTL)

Players: This is a single player game

Assassin's Creed Odyssey is an action role-playing game set in the years 431–422 BCE during a mythological history of the Peloponnesian War between Athens and Sparta. You play as a male or female mercenary fighting on both sides and attempting to...

God of War

Content Rating: PEGI 18

Release Date: 20/04/2018

Platforms: PS4

Genres: Action, Adventure, Fighting, Narrative, Role-Playing and Shooting

Accessibility: 24 features

Developer: Sony Santa Monica (@SonySantaMonica)

Players: This is a single player game

You play super-strong Norse fantasy hero Kratos as he takes his son Atreus on a brutal quest in the wake of his mother’s death. The exploration, puzzle solving, climbing and fighting gameplay intertwines with a mythological family drama played out in...

Forza Horizon 4 (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 3

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Release Date: 25/09/2018

Price: 12% off

Platforms: PC, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Genres: Open World and Racing

Accessibility: 28 features

Developer: We Are Playground (@WeArePlayground)

Players: This is a single player game. You can play with up to 72 players online

Forza Horizon 4 is a thrilling racing game where you race all manner of vehicles across a wide range of landscapes. This fourth iteration is set in the United Kingdom, with Edinburgh’s narrow streets, the Lake District’s hills and rainfall and the...

The Witness

Content Rating: PEGI 3

Release Date: 14/12/2015, updated in 2018

Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One and iOS

Genres: Narrative, Open World and Puzzle

Developer: Thekla inc (@Thekla_inc)

Players: This is a single player game

The Witness combines maze puzzles in an abandoned world with its own mythology, secrets, themes and story. It’s a game with puzzles at the core, but the real mystery is solving what has happened in the world you find yourself in.

Luigi's Mansion (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds

Release Date: 19/10/2018, updated in 2019

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, GameCube and Switch

Genres: Action, Adventure and Puzzle

Accessibility: 16 features

Developer: Nintendo (@Nintendo)

Players: You can play with 8 players in the same room and up to 8 players online

The three Luigis Mansion (Nintendo 3DS, Nintendo Gamecube or Nintendo Switch) games each challenge you to investigate a haunted mansion. As longstanding Nintendo character Luigi, you play a ghostbuster to capture various mischievous ghouls. The puzzles...

Battlefield (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 16

Release Date: 19/10/2018

Platforms: PC, PS3, PS4 and Xbox One

Genres: Action, Fighting and Shooting

Developer: EA DICE (@EA_DICE)

Players: You can play this with 64 players online

Battlefield V is the latest in a series of first-person shooting games set in various locations, such as Norway, France and Germany, during World War II. Like Call of Duty this aims to recreate the adrenaline, excitement and...

Control

Content Rating: PEGI 16

Skill Rating: 14+ year-olds

Release Date: 28/08/2019

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5 and Xbox One

Genres: Action, Narrative and Shooting

Accessibility: 28 features

Developer: Remedy Games (@RemedyGames)

Players: This is a single player game

This game is an outlandish paranormal fantasy where you are swept into a role as the new director of the Federal Bureau of Control agency of the ‘paranatural’. With impressive cinematic visuals and storytelling, your interactions involve exploring,...

Resident Evil Village (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 18

Release Date: 22/03/1996, updated in 2021

Platforms: PC, PS3, PS4, PS5, Stadia, Wii, Xbox 360, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Genres: Action, Narrative and Puzzle

Accessibility: 19 features

Developer: Capcom USA (@CapcomUSA_)

Players: You can play this with 6 players online

Resident Evil Village is a survival horror adventure. It follows on the narrative of Resident Evil 7: Biohazard and the first person perspective. As in the other games, you play Ethan Winters who is searching for his kidnapped daughter in a village...

Taming Gaming Book Written by parents for parents, the database complements the in-depth discussion about video game addiction, violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. We are an editorially independent, free resource without adverts that is supported by partnerships.

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