DSOGaming – Here are our Games of the Year 2019

There have been a lot of great games for the PC this year. As such, and contrary to all previous years, we’ve decided to share with you today our Games of the Year 2019. In this list, you’ll find the games that DSOGaming’s writers enjoyed the most. Do note that this isn’t our “Top 10 Most Optimized” and “Top 10 Worst Optimized” lists; these lists will be published next week. So without further ado, here are our best PC games of 2019.

 – Red Dead Redemption 2

My game of the year is Red Dead Redemption 2, simply because the game wipes its ass with every other open-world game out there. This Western ‘simulator’ provided me with a grand array of feelings throughout its very long single player story, and what a glorious story it was. Arthur Morgan might be the best developed character I ever played.

I laughed, I raged, I robbed, I saved, I killed and I died, time and time again. I lost my way an infinite number of times in this game. Going from A to B had never been so hard in a game before. There are so many things to do, that sometimes you even forget what you were suppose to do in the first place.

And now having the game on PC is a bless. Playing the game on sixty frames feels almost like a completely different game. The perfect gift for Christmas!

Happy holidays and merry Christmas DSOG readers.

Mortal Kombat 11

When thinking about the games I played this year, I noticed that most were either sequels or remakes for pre-existing franchises. Honestly, I wanted to choose my GOTY from new IP’s since our industry desperately needs some freshness with this sink or swim climate. As such, I decided that this had better be a sequel or remake that took its franchise to new levels. It had to sustain its longstanding identity, and yet improve on every single aspect from visuals to gameplay. There was only one such candidate for me in 2019: Mortal Kombat 11. Ed Boon and his team had made, in my opinion, their best fighting game ever. The fatalities had never felt more visceral, the story provided the perfect excuse to reintroduce some old-school MK, and the mechanics introduced a playing style that focused more on strategic fighting than lighting-fast reflexes. Truly an excellent accomplishment for Netherealm, and without any doubt the best I played in this year.

Spencer – Halo: Reach

I’m selecting Reach as my Game of the Year, it’s new on PC and the fact is this is absolutely how this game was meant to be played. A couple years ago Sega’s Rez came out on VR and I said it felt like Tetsuya Mizuguchi had designed this Dreamcast game as a VR title long before VR was an actual mass consumer product — but VR added so much to the experience that it made that title feel reborn.

It’s the same story for Halo, this is a franchise that has belonged on PC since its inception but was limited by the console hardware that hosted it so that Microsoft could use the strength it lends as an IP to move hardware. Understandable! But not so great for us PC gamers! Well thankfully Microsoft has decided the IP would be better off coming to PC as well as its Xbox line of consoles. Reach is the first arrival from the Master Chief Collection, which will include Halo CE, 2, 3, ODST, 4 and Reach.

The addition of mouse controls adds a fluidity that was never there on a dual analog gamepad and it feels like the premiere modern FPS franchise has come to occupy its rightful position on the premiere FPS platform.

The PC release, much like the MCC isn’t perfect. The compilation suffered from issues on Xbox One and I imagine it will on PC but it cannot be argued that these are some of the strongest games on offer in this industry and that this compilation is one of the best gaming values out there, ever. Some of the issues I’ve noticed on PC for Reach: muffled audio, crouch doesn’t seem to work correctly and occasional front end menu crashes.

In time I’m confident these issues will be ironed out but in the meantime this is a playable and definitive version of one of the best FPS games released in the last 10 years. Mouse aiming is a revelation, the multiplayer is excellent and the campaign is depressing and somber making you feel vulnerable and doomed even as a Spartan war machine. At the end though, Reach is reborn in our world as well as 117’s.

Here’s to Halo on PC, keep it coming.

Anno 1800

Given the limited time I had to play games in 2019, my game of the year choice is less about a definitive selection and more about my personal slice of gaming. Therefore, the 2019 release I loved the most was Anno 1800, and my 100+ hours of playtime proves it!

I’m a long-time Anno fan, and 1800 was a homecoming for the franchise. It delivered the hallmark mix of soothing city-building, vast empire management, and complex economic simulation while also being the most graphically astounding and technically impressive entry in the series.

Moreover, now is the best time ever to play Anno 1800. The developers deserve kudos for steadily releasing significant patches to improve the game and add free features like a day/night cycle and much better empire statistics screens.

Another reason to jump in now is the Season Pass content is now completely released. I’m morally opposed to paying early for promises, but just last week I’ve purchased the Season Pass at half-price and look forward to enjoying the three excellent content additions to the game.

In conclusion, there’s a time and place for high-energy, scripted story games, but Anno 1800 is my fallback game when I need to sit down for a couple hours and do nothing more than leisurely expand my empire-wide bread production chains. Ah, it’s good to taste life’s simple production pleasures!

PS: As far as other “could have been GOTY if I’d played them” titles, I will mention Control, Disco Elysium, and Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order. All three seem outstanding and worthy of consideration!

John PapadopoulosThe Outer Worlds

2019 was a great year for PC gaming as we got a lot of amazing games. And, to be honest, it was pretty difficult deciding my GOTY 2019. I really loved Resident Evil 2 Remake, Gears 5 and Devil May Cry 5. A Plague of Tale: Innocence was also a stunning title, and Metro: Exodus was awesome. Still, there was “something” missing in these games.

Ultimately, I was left with three candidates. These three games were: Red Dead Redemption 2, Control and The Outer Worlds. RDR 2 is Chris’ GOTY 2019 so I believe I should choose another game.

So, The Outer Worlds or Control? To be honest, I enjoyed both of them. The Outer Worlds is a great RPG which even lets you kill anyone you want without receiving a “Game Over” screen, and avoid combat via the dialogue tree. Contrary to Fallout 4, its combat mechanics are amazing and it was a truly amazing experience. Yes, there are some shortcomings here and there, but I really, really enjoyed it.

And then there is Control. I’ve always been a huge fan of Remedy’s games and despite a lot of players, I really enjoyed Quantum Break (I love “time travel” so give me more of these ideas/scenarios please). Control is easily one of Remedy’s best games to date. Not only that, but it’s pretty fascinating witnessing its older IPs, like Quantum Break and Alan Wake, appearing in the very same universe. It’s a game you should definitely play as it has a lot of special moments, like the Ashtray Maze or what happens to Jesse towards the end of the game. However, its ending did not satisfy me ( it’s obviously building towards a sequel). And perhaps this is something in which The Outer Worlds excelled at.

When I finished The Outer Worlds, I felt a weird satisfaction. I didn’t get any “The game ended? That’s it? It was really short. But what about this?” feeling. The game felt complete. Moreover, the game allowed me to play the way I wanted. I was a total asshole with some characters and a really good person with others. It was my experience. Not only that but while writing all of this, I was constantly recalling my experiences in The Outer Worlds rather than in Control. Therefore, my GOTY 2019 is The Outer Worlds.

Merry Christmas everyone and happy holidays!