Sorry, Super Mario 3D World. Hundreds? Hell of a game. You were grand, Tearaway. I liked so many games in 2013 that I can't put all the great ones on my Top 10. But I can put, uh, 10. (Actually, I'm going with 11.)

Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag

Pirates! More modern-day stuff that only I and four or five other people seem to really like. Ship battles! Repetitious sea shanties... hmm. No. Beautiful graphics!

Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons

I know what you're thinking: not as many playable characters as Grand Theft Auto V, but come on! Real emotion and the most interesting controls of the year. Bring on a sequel about triplets, please.

Fire Emblem: Awakening

War. Marriage. Children. More war. More marriage. More children. Fifty hours on the play clock and counting. Must not let anyone die. Restart!

Grand Theft Auto V

Polished. Rough. Gorgeous. Nasty. The best interactive ensemble drama I've played since... Trauma Team and/or Eternal Darkness. Excellent fun/minute ratio, if you want to be all scientific about it.

The Last of Us

The scenes in the snow. The bits in the college. The ending! The fact that I finally found a stealth game with an arsenal so specifically and finely varied that I actually used every tool in its arsenal.

The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds

Nothing's better in my gaming world than an excellent Zelda dungeon. This game had a bunch of the best. Cool music, too. I listened to all of it.

Monster Manor

Wha? Who? It's a 3DS StreetPass game that's part Tetris and part turn-based RPG with random loot and lots of leveling up. I'm obsessed over here. Must paint the floor all one color...

Papers, Please

Not just the best game about stamping passports in the last five years, but the 2013 game with the greatest number of difficult decisions—difficult decisions that might reveal things about yourself, such as... why was I so mean to all the reporters in the game? Personal runner-up for year's most interesting controls.

Ridiculous Fishing: A Tale of Redemption

A game that lets you machine-gun the fish that you just hooked and foisted in the air. That's top 10-worthy enough, but this is also a popular mobile game that doesn't involve physics puzzles or three-starring anything. Gotta encourage that.


Take popular game genre. Cut out any excesses. Cut out some more. And again. Wind up with minimalist real-time strategy and... my second vaguely-Tetris-influenced game on this list. Weird trend. Magnificent game.

Bonus 2012 Game I Loved In 2013: Professor Layton & The Miracle Mask

The story's silly, but the puzzles are a delight. Especially the extra daily puzzles. Grab all 365 before they shut the servers off.

If a game you loved in 2013 didn't make my list, you can assume it just missed making the cut.


To contact the author of this post, write to or find him on Twitter @stephentotilo.