What were EdEN’s best PlayStation games of 2022! If you missed the previous post for our best games of the year, you can review them right now!
It’s been a great year for PlayStation 5 owners, and with so many awesome retail and indie games, it’s hard to narrow things down to only one or two game at most, which is why along with my Game of the Year, I’ll also list some more than honorable mentions that barely missed out on the coveted slot.
My PlayStation 5 Game of the Year: Atari 50: The Anniversary Celebration
The Atari 2600 was my first home console – yeah, it’s certainly been a while – so I’ve been one to consume the many collections with a bunch of Atari classics from back in the day. I was certainly not prepared for what the Atari 50: The Anniversary Celebration was going to do to celebrate this 50th anniversary in style. Atari was founded in Sunnyvale, California way back in 1972 by Nolan Bushnell and Ted Dabney. It’s now 2022, and that means there should be a big, stylish celebration, right? Well, you’ve come to the right place, because the Atari 50: The Anniversary Celebration is THE anthology that Atari fans need in their PlayStation 5 collection right now.
This anthology has over 100 classic tiles for you to play by way of an interface that works as an interactive library that will take you through the Atari timeline as you not only play games for every single piece of hardware that Atari worked on, from arcade coin-op hardware to its many home experiences – the 2600, 5200, 7800, Atari 8-bit computers, and even, for the first time on modern consoles, the Jaguar – as well as the little machine that could: the Atari Lynx portable console!
HOW are you possibly going to have the time to check out all of those games? Well, by taking things one chunk at a time thanks to the Interactive Timelines that combine trivia, digital artifacts, documentary footage, 60 minutes of brand-new interviews, as you explore the early game concepts that lead to the development of the Atari classics we all know and love. Found a game in an Interactive Timeline that you’d like to check out? Then you play it right away! And once you’re done and want to carry on? Then you can do so right from the spot where you left.
My PlayStation 5 Honorable Mentions
It was a long wait, but it was certainly worth it! Horizon Forbidden West is the sequel to Horizon Zero Dawn, which made quite the splash on PlayStation 4 when it was released in 2017. Horizon Forbidden West is an open world action RPG set six months after the events of prequel Horizon Zero Dawn. You don’t need to play Horizon Zero Dawn and its DLC – The Frozen Wilds – to be able to enjoy Horizon Forbidden West since you’ll get a bit of a recap during the intro cutscene and as you take on the starting area – a starting area that reminded me at times of the starting area for The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, given its tutorial’s focus and the overall scope of the area you’ll be exploring.
Horizon Forbidden West is the best-looking game on PlayStation 5, making it a showcase for what Sony’s console can do and how Guerrilla Game has learned to squeeze as much extra juice as possible from the PS5. The game’s character models, environments, lighting, textures, Aloy’s hair, the foliage, the small and the giant machines, everything is above and beyond what Horizon Zero Dawn had to offer on PlayStation 4. Depending on what your TV can support, you can activate HDR to make everything pop in a different way. The game also offers two modes depending on how you want to experience this quest: you can favor performance and lower the resolution to 1080p while boosting the framerate to 60 fps, or you can favor the graphical presentation to have a 4K resolution while the framerate is lowered to 30 fps. How will you play Horizon Forbidden West?
It was a very close call between Horizon Forbidden West and The King of Fighters XV. The long-running fighting series is one I’ve been playing since when the first gam released way back in 1994, and it’s one for which I’ve played every single entry, so I was definitely up for checking out the latest entry, especially since it’s the first one to land on the PlayStation 5. There are characters from the many other SNK fighting series – such as Fatal Fury and Art of Fighting – along with characters that have been created specifically for The King of Fighters, which makes for a very entertaining experience with a great variety of fighting styles.
For The King of Fighters XV, there are 39 characters to choose from, split into 13 teams, but you can mix and match as needed. Along with three new characters for the series – Isla, Krohnen, and Dolores – the following characters are also available right from the start: Shun’ei, Meitenkun, Benimaru Nikaido, Leona Heidern, Ralf Jones, Clark Still, K’, Maxima, Whip, Kyo Kusanagi, Iori Yagami, Chizuru Kagura, Blue Mary, Vanessa, Luong, Terry Bogard, Andy Bogard, Joe Higashi, Yashiro Nanakase, Shermie, Chris, Ryo Sakazaki, Robert Garcia, King, Athena Asamiya, Mai Shiranui, Yuri Sakazaki, Antonov, Ramón, The King of Dinosaurs, Heidern, Kula Diamond, Ángel, Ash Crimson, Elisabeth Blanctorche, and Kukri. There are also extra characters available by way of DLC, either in specific packs, or by going all in and getting the Season Pass.
Persona 5 Royal oozes style, from its UI to the overall presentation, with stellar character design, writing, and solid voice acting for its great cast of characters. For this PlayStation 5 release, we’re getting the definitive version of the game. It now runs at 60 frames per second and supports a resolution of up to 4K, along with faster loading times thanks to the console’s SSD. On top of this, the PS5 version includes every single piece of DLC previously released for Persona 5 and Persona 5 Royal on PlayStation 4, which is a ton of extra value! That means your purchase will give you access to new costumes, costumes and music based on previous entries in the series, as well as new Personas!
As for the story itself? One night when heading home, Joker listened to a woman screaming. A drunk man is harassing a woman, so she screamed for help. Realizing she might be in danger, Joker rushes in and pushes the man away from the woman. Once the police show up, the man has you arrested and says he’ll press charges and will sue you. After this, you’re transferred to a new school – Shujin Academy – as a last chance to sort things out on your end and get your life back together. You’re left under the care of one Sojiro Sakura, and will live at Café Leblanc in a room upstairs that is certainly not equipped for it. The story for Persona 5 Royal is told through in-game cutscenes, as well as with animated cutscenes from Production I.G and Domerica, and it features excellent performances from the diverse cast of voice actors.
I was definitely late to The Stanley Parable party! Released on Steam way back in 2013 and it became quite the beloved hit for Davey Wreden and William Pugh. It’s now 2022, and I got to experience The Stanley Parable for the first time in the best possible way, thanks to The Stanley Parable: Ultra Deluxe! Why? Because this particular release basically packs together the original experience along with the game’s sequel – or sequels.
Without spoiling things too much, as you take on this walking sim of sorts, you’ll playing as an individual named Stanley. You’ll learn more about Stanley thanks to the game’s narrator and his interactions with him. Stanley had a simple job as employee 427: sit inside room 427 and press the buttons on a keyboard based on the instructions presented to him by way of the computer monitor. Stanley was happy with this. Then one day, things changed. After sitting at his desk for over an hour, no instructions had popped on the computer’s monitor. No one had stopped by to give him any further instructions. No one stepped in to even say hi. It was now time for Stanley to step out of his office to see what is going on.
The base game included close to 20 endings to experience, and thanks to the additional content it provides, the Ultra Deluxe version of The Stanley Parable adds over 20 endings to achieve, so there’s plenty for you to do! You could end up finishing the game for the first time in 10-15 minutes at most, depending on what you do with the instructions presented to you by the narrator. Once you get the hang of things, you’ll understand how doing this or that at specific times will take you onto a new story path, which can then end up branching up as well.
And speaking of being late to the party, was I thrilled to get a chance to take Inscryption for a spin. It’s a roguelike deckbuilding experience in which you’re dealt a hand of cards with woodland creatures that you must use to defeat your opponent. You’ll also collect items that can be used at any time during your turn – using all of them one after the other if you feel like it – to help you gain extra cards or resources.
Inscryption makes great use of most of the features for the DualSense controller. Thanks to the controller’s haptic feedback, you will feel every hit, sense when cards are being shuffled, and experience every special action in a very interesting way. The sound that plays from the controller’s speaker, the way the light for the DualSense changes depending on the region you’re exploring or what is going on, it all makes for a very immersive experience on PlayStation 5. This is on that you’ll have to experience on your own because mentioning anything else would spoil your time with Inscryption.
Did I mention that 2022 was packed? To top things off, we even got a new game in the beloved Monkey Island series! We’re getting a true-to-form point and click experience created by Ron Gilbert and Dave Grossman, along with art director Rex Crowle – from Knights and Bikes and Tearaway, alongside composers Peter McConnell, Michael Land, and Clint Bajakian, who worked on Monkey Island and its sequel, Monkey Island 2: LeChuck’s Revenge. The developer proper is Ron Gilbert’s Terrible Toybox – who you might remember from the excellent old-school infused Thimbleweed Park.
Return to Monkey Island uses a very interesting art style that helps to make every single character you meet stand out. It’s also a great choice for the locations you explore since it pays homage to the classics in the franchise while giving us a point and click adventure game fit for the 21st century. We once again get to enjoy the excellent performances of Dominic Armato as Guybrush Threepwood and Alexandra Boyd as Elaine Marley, with Jess Harnell joining the cast as LeChuck, who you’ve heard in hundreds of projects, with highlights including Wakko Warner from Animaniacs, a bunch of voices in Doc McStuffins, Crash Bandicoot, Roger Rabbit in the Roger Rabbit’s Car Toon Spin ride, and many more!
And that’s it!
What were YOUR best PlayStation games this year?