Arguably the best ever decade in gaming, what will be number one?
The 2010s were good for a lot of things, but for gaming they were revolutionary. The 2000s may have been the huge leap in graphics, but the 2010s introduced some of the best narrative storytelling in gaming and the most revolutionary gameplay. There are a couple of lists that I have made previously to this that are about my favourite games: TOP 20 VIDEO GAMES OF ALL TIME and Top 10 Games on PS4, so check those out too. First up are some honourable mentions:
Deadly Premonition (2010)
Evil Within 2 (2017)
Dead Space 2 (2011)
Super Meat Boy (2010)
Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 (2011)
Katana: Zero (2019)
Dragonball Fighterz (2018)
Sekiro Shadows Die Twice (2019)
20. Doom (2016)
The Doom series is among my favourites and the 2016 sequel/reboot is outstanding. The gameplay is super fast paced, hyper violent and never gets boring. I am really excited for Doom Eternal in a couple of months and I’m hoping it’s as good or even better than the amazing 2016 Doom.
19. Mortal Kombat 11 (2019)
If you have ever seen my blog you know that Mortal Kombat is my favourite franchise of all time and I was extremely excited for when Mortal Kombat 11 came out last year. It is one of the best in the series and if it wasn’t for nostalgia for the other games, it could have potentially been ranked much higher. With that said, it was my second favourite game of last year and easily ranks in my top 20 of the decade. The gameplay was perfection, the story exactly what we wanted and it featured the best Krypt mode Netherealm has ever designed.
18. The Last of Us (2013)
I’m going to be honest, I am not a gigantic fan of The Last of Us, at least not as much as everyone else seems to be, but there’s no denying that this is one of the best games ever made and I still really enjoyed it. It had the scares of a horror game, but the fun action-packed gameplay of the Uncharted series. It also had a fantastic story which kept you engaged throughout.
17. Crash Bandicoot N’Sane Trilogy (2017)
The original Crash Bandicoot games are my favourite platforming games of all time. The remake in 2017 was every bit as good as them, but better because the gameplay and graphics were brought forward for this generation. I’ve replayed this game countless times over the last two and a half years and I will probably replay it again very soon.
16. Spider-Man (2018)
Spider-Man was one of my favourite experiences that I have had in the 2010s. It took the fantastic gameplay from the Batman Arkham series and had a brilliant open world. You felt like Spider-Man and the story is better than most of the Spider-Man movies.
15. God of War 3 (2010)
There is no other game I can think of that is as epic as God of War 3. The beginning level when you are fighting Poseidon on Gaia is just the start of the epicness. The standout level for me is pictured above – the fight with the Titan Chronos. The game still stays in my head these 10 years later with some truly awe-inspiring moments stuck in my memory.
14. Cuphead (2017)
Indie games really took off in the 2010s and Cuphead ranks as one of the best. Just the art style is enough to understand why this is on my list, it feels like you are playing a classic 20s cartoon. It is one of the most beautiful games of all time and has very inventive and addictive gameplay to keep you hooked throughout your playthrough.
15. Mass Effect 2 (2010)
The Mass Effect trilogy was an important trilogy last decade. For me, Mass Effect really showed off just how good a narrative can be in a game (I know Bioshock and Half-Life 2 did too, but Mass Effect was on a grander scale). Mass Effect 2 was easily the best in the trilogy, it had some of the best side characters in any game and the story was a fun Seven-Samurai Esque narrative which built to an extremely climactic finish.
14. Bloodborne (2015)
The Souls series really took over this decade, with a ton of clones and similar games coming out with the rise of Dark Souls’ popularity. Bloodborne is the best in the series after Dark Souls, some may even say it is better. The gameplay was changed to a faster pace and the enemies were more styled after HP Lovecraftian horror mixed with Victorian aesthetics rather than dark medievil fantasy. The game was as beautiful as it was tough and it is easily one of the best of the decade.
13. Resident Evil 2 (2019)
Resident Evil 2 Remake has been wanted since the RE Remake in the early 2000s. When RE2 Remake finally came last year, it lived up to every expectation I had and more. It was scary, fun as hell and beautiful to look at – potentially being one of the best looking games ever.I am super hyped for the RE3 remake to come out in a few months, Resident Evil is back guys and it’s a great time.
12. Bioshock Infinite (2013)
Bioshock 1 is one of the most important games ever made, it was one of the first to have such a strong story and had insanely creative first-person gameplay. Bioshock Infinite was not as good as the original, but it was a fantastic sequel. The new world that you’re playing in is very interesting and the story could arguably be better than the original. The gameplay was perfected, but I did miss the horror themes in the original, which is why this isn’t higher on the list.
11. Resident Evil 7 (2017)
Resident Evil 7 brought back the Resident Evil franchise. After the disappointing 6th game and some very bad spin-offs, Resident Evil 7 changed the gameplay to first-person and brought back the horror and themes from RE1 and made in my opinion one of the best horror games of all time. The reason it ranks higher than RE2 for me, is that it felt very different to the rest of the series, but kept the best elements from the original. RE7 without a doubt deserves to be in the top 20 of the decade.
10. Batman Arkham City (2011)
The first two games in the Arkham series are the best superhero games of all time. Arkham City inspired a ton of open-world games that came out after it and its combat is still being copied in games today. It was some of the most creative gameplay ever made in Arkham Asylum and City just did that but on a much larger scale. The story is also one of the best Batman stories ever written.
9. Red Dead Redemption 2 (2018)
Red Dead Redemption 1 was a great game, but Red Dead Redemption 2 is the most ambitious game ever made. It showed the maturity that Rockstar had built up throughout its two decades of making games and made you feel like a real cowboy living in this dangerous time period. There are stretches of the game that can drag a little bit, but when the story gets going, it fires from all cylinders and doesn’t let go until the very end.
8. Fallout: New Vegas (2010)
A lot of people actually prefer Fallout New Vegas to Fallout 3 and for good reason. The open-world set in a dystopian Vegas was amazing to walk around in and the amount of different decisions you had to make felt like they impacted the story a lot more than most RPGs before or even after. I’ve put hundreds of hours into this game and have 0 regrets in doing so.
7. God of War (2018)
If God of War 3 was one of the most epic game experiences I’ve ever had, then God of War is one of the best gaming experiences I have ever had. As soon as you start the game, you know you are playing something important. It took some gameplay elements from the Souls series and put AAA budget behind it. The graphics are among the best I’ve ever seen and the whole experience is amazing from start to finish.
6. Grand Theft Auto V (2013)
I love the GTA series, but GTA V was just on another scale, there was so much to do in this game, that even 6 and a half years later I can still remember a lot of the missions and little easter eggs in the game. The online has kept the game relevant today, which is both a good and bad thing, good that the game has lasted so long, but bad because we haven’t got a sequel in such a long time.
5. Hotline Miami (2012)
Hotline Miami is an art piece put into a pixelated retro game. I still remember every single level in this game even though I first played it in 2012 and every year or so I go back to it. The gameplay is highly addictive, the art style is super cool and the best thing is the music. The music is bar-non the best soundtrack ever put into a game and could probably compete with any movie or TV show. When I first played this game I was addicted and was even dreaming about it. It inspired a ton of great indie games including two of my favourites: Hotline Miami 2 and Katana Zero.
4. Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt (2015)
The Withcer is the best game in this gaming generation and has only built in populairty thanks to the new TV show and the books. The game features the best side quests in any RPG, one of the best open worlds and a fantastic lore than is so interesting you will want to read and research everything you can about the world. This game made CD Projekt Red instant stars in the gaming world and inspired every open world game after it heavily inspiring the newest Assasins Creed games particularly.
3. Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (2011)
There is no denying the relevancy of Skyrim. It is the fifth game in the mammoth game series of Elder Scrolls, but Skyrim introduced the masses to the world of fantasy RPGs and inspired this whole generation. There’s no dispute that there have been a ton more western RPGS since this game and although some (Withcer 3) have done a better job, for it’s importance in gaming history and just it’s sheer fun and scale; Skyrim needs to be in the top 3 games of all this past decade.
2. Mortal Kombat (2011)
Am I being bias? YES! Do I care? NO! No game has ever hit me with all the nostalgiac feelings that I got when playing MK9. It retold the first three games in an interesting time travelling perspective. The fatalities were the most brutal we had ever seen and it featured all of our favourite characters. MK11 is probably the better game all around, but MK9 just came out at the right time for me and I still play it from time to time because it just makes me feel good.
1. Dark Souls (2011)
What can I say about Dark Souls that hasn’t already been said? There is no other game that inspired our whole decade like Dark Souls had. “The game is the new Dark Souls” Is a phrase tossed around nearly every month these days, but in my opinion, no game has ever made me feel the way that Dark Souls did and I’m not sure if anything ever will. It took me months to get over the feeling to actually start enjoying other types of games again and I’m still not sure if I ever fully got over it. Dark Souls 3, Bloodborne and Sekiro are technically better games, but for its relevancy and its huge inspiration for over 8 years now; Dark Souls deserves to be number 1, just talking about it has made me want to replay it again.
There we have it, my favourite games of the 2010s. There were hundreds of fantastic games and I would say it was the best decade for games ever, very similar to TV which I ranked here: Top 15 Favourite TV shows of the Decade. The 2020s has a lot in store for us, just this year there’s a ton of games coming out, some I spoke about here: 10 MOST ANTICIPATED RELEASES OF 2020. Let me know which ones were your favourite and thanks for reading!