Editor's Choice Awards 2018, Part Four - Gaming

Up-front, keen-eyed readers may notice a handful of conspicuous absences when it comes to our picks for the best games of 2018.

God of War, Spider-Man and Red Dead Redemption are not featured. This isn’t because we think those games aren’t good. It’s because none of these games are available on PC yet - and we are PC World Australia, after all.

Even in a list that doesn’t consider the above blockbusters, 2018 included no shortage of incredible games to play. Here are our favorites.

Best Game of the Year

Winner: Monster Hunter - World

Though all four of the above games are absolutely worth your time, the case for why Monster Hunter: World is our favorite isn’t hard to grasp.

Where past entries in the franchise have been intimidating and indecipherable to Western audiences, World is the first Monster Hunter game to truly succeed at making the series’ unique style of RPG gameplay palatable to newcomers.

Secondly, the sprawling environs in the game are both stylistically striking in conception and visually gorgeous in their rendering. Monster Hunter - World is that rare game that can actually push your PC hardware to its limits on higher settings, and looks good enough in motion that - for some - it’s actually going to a game be worth upgrading your PC to play at its best.

Lastly, Monster Hunter - World offers up an incredible amount of value for a AAA release. You first playthrough of the game will probably take you well over fifty hours - whether you’re playing solo or with friends - and Capcom have built on this in strong form through post-release content.

If you’re gonna play one game this year, make it Monster Hunter - World.

You can read our full review of Monster Hunter - World here.

Runner Up: Dead Cells (review here)

Best Single Player

Winner: Thronebreaker - The Witcher Tales

Of all the categories, this one kills me the most to write. If you like single-player games, every single entry  on the list above is probably going to be worth your time and money. However, if I had to single out a single title, it’d probably be CD Projekt’s Thronebreaker.

Thronebreaker - The Witcher Tales spins The Witcher 3’s collectible card minigame Gwent into its own epic, and it’s an absolute delight to behold. The production values and design here hold their own in equal measure and the writing is top-notch.

More than just an excuse to return to the world of The Witcher, Thronebreaker is one of the year’s best single-player experiences.

You can read our full review of Thronebreaker - The Witcher Tales here.

Runner Up: Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire (review here)

Best Multiplayer

Winner: World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth

As more and more franchises tilt towards and begin exploring the world of live service games, it says something that one of 2018’s best multiplayer experiences was an expansion to the the game that arguably laid the foundations for this current trend.

As said in our review of the latest expansion to the titan of the MMORPG genre, “A good World of Warcraft expansion is about the pilgrimage and the homecoming. The journey and the destination. Blizzard’s point with Battle for Azeroth, cloying though it may be, is that the game survives because the real heart of Azeroth was in each of us all along.”

You can read our full review of World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth here.

Runner Up: Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 (review here)

Best Sequel

Winner: Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire

There are sequels that offer more of the same and there are sequels that take risks and cut right to heart of the matter, and Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire is one that exemplifies the qualities of the latter.

As we said in our review, “Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire comes as an incredibly-accurate encapsulation of what tabletop roleplaying feels like. What’s more, it feels closer to that ideal tabletop experience than maybe even some of its most highly-venerated ancestors do. There’s banter, there’s exploration, there’s combat - and almost-every aspect of that experience feels meaningful.”

At times, Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire feels like a classic in the making.

You can read our full review of Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire here.

Runner Up: Life is Strange 2 (review here)

Best Gaming Mouse

Winner: Logitech Pro G Gaming Mouse

Logitech’s Pro G Gaming mouse might just be an extension of the esports-heavy branding the company have been dabbling with in recent years, but if you’re going to buy a high-end gaming mouse - it makes a pretty strong case for itself. It’s super lightweight, incredibly responsive and features super-long battery life. It can even pair up with the company’s PowerPlay wireless charging system.

It’s a little pricey but, if you’re after a wireless mouse without compromise, the Logitech Pro G gaming mouse is the way to go.

You can read our full review of Logitech’s Pro G Gaming Mouse here.

Runner Up: HP Reactor (review here)

Best Gaming Keyboard

Winner: Razer Huntsman Elite

Even for a brand like Razer, known for their overkill when it comes to RGB-laden aesthetics, the Razer Huntsman Elite feels a little excessive - but if you’re going to spend this much money on a gaming keyboard, that’s probably exactly what you want.

The Razer Huntsman Elite is the first mainstream opto-mechanical keyboard and it’s a delight to bold and to use.

You can read our full review of the Razer Huntsman Elite here.

Runner Up: HyperX Elite FPS RGB (review here)

Best Gaming Headphones

Winner: Logitech Pro G Gaming Headset

Like its wireless mouse counterpart, Logitech’s new Pro G gaming headset brings together pretty much everything you’d want. It offers solid sound, feels super-comfortable to wear and is built to resist the tears of everyday use.

As we said in our full review, “if you’re looking for a dead-simple gaming headset that delivers solid results, the Logitech G Pro Gaming Headset isn’t just an option. It’s one of the best.”

You can read our full review of the Logitech Pro G Gaming Headset here.

Runner Up: Plantronics RIG 500 Esports Edition (review here)

You can find the full list of 2018 Editor's Choice nominees here


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Fergus Halliday
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