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Hip-Hop Wired's 10 Best Video Games of 2018

Source: Future Publishing / Getty

2018 is coming to a close and if you’re a gamer the year has been a good one for you when it came to powering up your consoles and escaping reality for a few hours.

One could make the argument for 2018 being one of the best years in video game history. It’s been a while since we seen so many critically acclaimed titles hit consoles in one year keeping gamers in front of their 4K televisions regularly.

I’ve been gaming for a long time, and I can’t recall a time when there was just so many games to play with some of them launching in the same month. In this year alone we saw the return of Kratos, web swung through the streets of NYC as Spider-Man, got the Dragon Ball Fighter Z game we always wanted, returned to the Wild Wild West in Red Dead Redemption 2, teamed up with Lara Croft to stop the apocalypse in Shadow of The Tomb Raider and so much more.

We decided to list our favorite 10 games from 2018, and no Fornite is not on it. While 2019 has some big titles to look forward to like *coughs* Resident Evil 2, and The Last of Us 2, this year has been one for the record books. Hit the gallery below to see which games got mad respect from us and which title got that number 1 spot.

Photo: Future Publishing / Getty

1. ‘NBA 2K19’ (Nintendo Switch, PS4, Xbox One)

The best basketball video game franchise was feeling themselves a bit with last year’s NBA 2K17 and had fans thinking the game was losing steam. The folks at 2K listened to 2K players concerns about the basketball game that has become a lifestyle for some and returned the franchise back to championship form.

Which is good because quietly EA has been slowly rebuilding its ‘NBA Live’ franchise back and the latest installment is solid. But 2K still sits on the throne, and we don’t see them relinquishing it no time soon if they continue to follow the formula that put them on the top, to begin with.

2. ‘DRAGON BALL FighterZ’ (Nintendo Switch, PS4, Xbox One)

Watching the lightning fast action that takes place in the popular anime franchise is Dragon Ball Z is one thing, making it translate into the video game world is another. For years fans have been clamoring for a decent fighting game featuring their favorite Super Saiyans, and Bandai Namco finally delivered one with Dragon Ball FighterZ.

Ditching the full 3D model of the Dragon Ball Xenoverse games, Bandai with the help of Arc System Works took Dragon Ball Z back to its fighting roots from the Super Famicom days by including beautiful designed 3D cel-shaded characters into a ridiculously eye-pleasing 2D world. The game delivers the fun classic three-on-three gameplay we loved playing in the arcade associated with fighting games like ‘Marvel vs. Capcom 2.’

Dragon Ball FighterZ will be played for a long time until the next iteration of game drops. Bandai Namco has finally found the perfect way to bring DBZ to next-generation consoles for the foreseeable future.

3. ‘Destiny 2: Forsaken’ (PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One)

When ‘Destiny 2’ first arrived fans were a bit underwhelmed and rightfully so. As with the first game in the franchise fans quickly grew bored with the game and the dropoff rate of players actually logged in dipped significantly. To combat those issues, Bungie dropped its Forsaken update delivering us the version of the game we wanted at launch.

While we are not fans of this practice, we still have to tip our hats to Bungie for literally delivering a brand new game thanks to significant upgrades, new play modes and a hell of a lot more to do as far as the game’s main story. Yeah, we may have lost a favorite character, but the sacrifice was worth it in the end.

4. ‘Call of Duty: Black Ops 4’ (PS4, Xbox One)

I was quite skeptical when it was announced that ‘Black Ops 4’ was not going to have a single-player campaign. I might be in the minority, but Call of Duty’s main stories in its games was one of the reasons I fell in love with the franchise. Well, apparently no single player campaign, no problem, Activision decided to focus on the game’s multiplayer aspect was a brilliant one.

Where the game really won with its fans is the introduction of its new mode Blackout which is basically Battle Royale for grownups if you don’t want to play ‘PUBG’ or ‘Fortnite.’The game has gone on to do tremendous numbers and earn its spot as one of the franchises best games.

5. ‘Shadow of The Tomb Raider’ (PS4, Xbox One)

I can’t think of a video game character who has had a better rebrand that Lara Croft. Crystal Dynamics and Square Enix decided to take us on the journey that put Lara on the tomb raiding path delivering a brand new ‘Tomb Raider’ game built from the ground up.

Two sequels later we arrive at ‘Shadow of The Tomb Raider’ which is Lara’s darkest adventure yet delivering the gameplay we have come to love from the two previous installments. Teaming up with Lara to stop the Mayan Apocalypse is an absolute blast.

Lara Croft is still in her bag, and we haven’t scratched the surface of her career as a Tomb Raider yet. We are already looking forward to the next game in the storied franchise.

6. ‘Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey’ (PS4, Xbox One)

Ubisoft’s ‘Assassin’s Creed’ franchise faced a serious issue, it was growing stale with fans. To combat this, they switch things up a bit with ‘Assassin’s Creed: Origins.’ Still not satisfied the studio decided to take the game in a whole new direction by turning it into a massive RPG without sacrificing the what made the game popular with its fans in the first place.

‘Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey’ was a big a gamble for the studio that paid off big time. Instead of linear gameplay that plagued previous titles, developers focused on the idea of choice and giving the player the ability to play the game how they wanted. The result is a fresh take on a beloved franchise that should breath new life into the ongoing battle between the Assassins and Templars.

7. ‘Super Smash Bros. Ultimate’ (Nintendo Switch)

I must admit it’s been a very long time since I played a ‘Smash Bros’ title but boy I am glad I picked ‘Super Smash Bros. Ultimate’ as a way in back into the franchise. This fighting game is massive with an insanely large roster of characters from all of your favorite video game characters to use as combatants.

It’s just amazing to see how much stuff Nintendo managed to pack into this one game that you can take on the road with you. Outside of ‘The Legend of Zelda: Breath of The Wild,’ Super Smash Bros. Ultimate can be considered Nintendo’s most significant accomplishment on its hybrid system the Nintendo Switch.

So don’t be surprised if it’s announced that because of this game Switches were flying off the shelves this holiday season.

8. ‘Red Dead Redemption 2’ (PS4, Xbox One)

Rockstar Games is really good at making video games. The studio proves that time and time again with each of its releases. The video game world was rocked once again with the release of ‘Red Dead Redemption 2’ totally exceeding all expectations that game brought when it was first announced.

The studio managed to take what made the first game exceptional and delivered an experience that fans just can’t stop talking about. The West was never this fun or looked as beautiful as players get lost in the title’s vast environments, partake in robberies, go hunting and other various activities as Arthur Morgan.

With the recent but very slow rollout of Red Dead Online, we will be talking about this game for a long time till Rockstar announces the next GTA game and you know that’s not coming no time soon.

9. ‘Marvel’s Spider-Man’ (PS4)

It’s been a long time since we had a GOOD Marvel-based video game that is as equally on par as the films. So it was to be expected when PlayStation pulled the lid off its console exclusive Spider-Man game from Insomniac Studies expectations were very high and boy did they deliver the goods.

Marvel’s Spider-Man gives its players the most authentic web-slinging experience since 2004’s ‘Spider-Man 2’.The game itself could be its own Marvel film based on its fantastic story, and the recently released DLC only adds to the games fun and immediately sets up the games sequel or continuing story if they wished to keep adding things to it.

Next, to the Batman Arkham games, PS4’s Marvel’s Spider-Man is one of the best superhero games ever and is deserving of the second spot on our list.

10. ‘God of War’ (PS4)

I battled with this decision, ‘Red Dead Redemption 2’, or ‘Marvel’s Spider-Man’ could have grabbed the top spot but ‘God of War’ is perfect. No title this year managed to pull on my heartstrings more than Sony Santa Monica’s opus. Yeah, we accompanied Kratos on his numerous adventures to get his revenge on the Gods themselves, but we have never seen the iconic character seen like this before.

Yes, he was still brutal and imposing as ever but this time around we literally got to play the role of father as well as the destroyer of those we deemed invincible, the Gods themselves. Embarking on a new epic with his son Atreus as we learn how this version of the game which focuses on Norse Mythology ties in with the previous games. A great video game like a great novel is hard to put down or in this case turn off. God of War had that effect on me, and this was one of the rare times I was emotionally invested.

Congrats to the Sony Santa Monica team on a job well done. We are patiently waiting for Kratos and Atreus next adventure.