VideAU Games Feature: Best 13 Video Games of 2013!

2013 marked a lot of firsts for us at the AU, and one of the new additions to the site we've been most excited about has been our new video games section "VideAU Games". We asked our new team of contributors to tell us their favourite games of 2013, and from that, we bring you our thirteen favourite games of the year. Stay tuned for big things from the section in 2014, but in the meantime, join us in this look back to the year that brought with it record sales, new consoles and a whole lotta fun...

13. Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag

Another excellent entry into the ever popular Assassins Creed series. In Black Flag, makers involved excellent gameplay with spectacular graphics that entranced players over its multiple console versions.

12. Mario & Luigi: Dream Team Bros (Nintendo 3DS)

While not as great as 'Bowser's Inside Story' this reliable franchise is another which has found a nice little niche that is both nostalgic about the entire Mario universe, and introduces some very innovative ways to play an RPG. The humour is also very modern and accessible (and actually genuinely funny), which is one of the best aspects of the game. - Chris Singh

11. DMC: Devil May Cry

The original Devil May Cry series was one of my favourite franchises in gaming. As most, I was worried about what the reboot would do to series. However, the reboot "DMC: Devil May Cry" was a truly fantastic reimagining of the title's history. The original games had a very muddied and hard to understand story continuity and lore. The reboot better defines everything about story and lore. It also managed to keep the fast flowing, amazingly fun combat system while still making it different to the systems of its predecessors. The main character Dante actually undergoes character development, instead of staying stagnant as a cocky pretty boy who shouts one liners. Even if it wasn't well received by other fans, DMC: Devil May Cry earns my love and respect outright. - Billy Jones

10. Call Of Juarez: Gunslinger

A simple premise done extremely well. Cowboys, Indians, mine shafts, train robberies, gunslinging duels, Gatling guns - It's been done before, but rarely so well. The narrative elements are ridiculous in all senses, reworking enemies, levels, even boss fights as you're playing, leaving you with a stupid grin on your face well after you've finished playing. If you like FPSs Call of Juarez: Gunslinger is a staple of the genre that will leave you in shock and awe. - Daniel Dunne

9. Tomb Raider

The reboot absolutely nailed it, keeping the tone of the originals while developing Lara's character from one note video game cliche into a believable character, with her own fears and insecurities. The coming of age tale worked well, but it was the gameplay that set it apart, great climbing and exploration along tight shooting mechanics made this journey a thrill to play.

8. Gone Home (PC)

The less said about this game the better. Gone Home is a beautiful and fully realised microcosm of a world. Firmly placed in the 'art games' category, Gone Home shows us aching and longing in a way only interactive media can do. A strong argument for beauty in gaming and the most compelling statement of the medium in years.

7. Rayman Legends

Ubisoft Montpellier have shown us that 'Origins' wasn't any fluke; they have successfully re-vamped the long-lived Rayman franchise into something extraordinary. They use of design here is unparalleled and the creativity poured into it is consistently impressed throughout. This is every bit as frustratingly beautiful as a true platformer and focuses on the ability to time everything just right.

Again, they have nailed the soundtrack and placed it as one of the defining aspects of the game with the addition of music-themed levels that you may actually fail a few times simply because you are too distracted by how damn gorgeous everything is.

This deserves so much praise. - Chris Singh

6. The Stanley Parable (PC)

Funny, interesting and moving, The Stanley Parable is a brilliant meta-example of gaming. Showing what happens when a humdrum office life doesn't go according to plan, the short game examines the weight of decision making and consequences, both as gaming devices as real world events. For every artistic and intelligent flourish, a fun and down right hilarious moment is around the corner.

5. Papers, Please (PC)

A long overdue entry into the collection of cold war era-set gaming, puzzle game Papers, Please has the player control a low level immigration bureaucrat in a fictional USSR country. As boring as that might sound on paper, the game is surprisingly compelling as an example of how stressful life is in these situations and becomes delightfully difficult as it goes on.

4. Pokemon X & Y (3DS)

While those who never subscribed to the Pokemon craze when they were younger will never quite understand the obsession, Pokemon is a franchise that I have loved through and through. There's never been a generation of Pokemon that I've missed so far... and usually I wouldn't rate any of the Pokemon games in a top 5 list, as they never especially change much from version to version. Pokemon used to be the gaming equivalent of a soap opera. The situations changed, but the formula stays the same. Pokemon X & Y though finally made enough changes to warrant being on a top 5 list though.

They overhauled the way you can experience the game. The fighting is essentially the same, but you can now encounter swarms of Pokemon and have to fight five at once. You can interact with the creatures you catch, and you have to look after them and keep them happy and well fed. You get two starters now instead of one, and there are far more changes than I could ever list. I understand that to outside viewers these can all seem like meaningless changes when it's still the same game at the core, but Pokemon X & Y is basically what would happen if you took a soap opera but replaced it with the cast of Shawshank Redemption. To people who care, it's a massive shakeup. And it's a shakeup that I love. - Billy Jones

3. The Last of Us

The Last of Us is a completely harrowing and soul crushing experience, but it is one that I will never forget. Every inch of both the natural and built environments, as well as the impressive score, assist in establishing the hauntingly gloomy and frightening atmosphere. This, coupled with the development of the engaging yet heart wrenching relationship between Joel and Ellie, made this game impossible to put down. - Kat Urquhart

2. Grand Theft Auto V

It was always going to make any list; Rockstar will never fail their beloved GTA series and the introduction of multiple protagnists was a thing of beauty. Incredibly layered and detailed to a tee, this game throws you into some of the best missions of the entire franchise and doesn't forget the need for mindless fun so every single player will be drawn back again and again. I personally enjoyed GTA: Vice City slightly more, but this epic crime story is another successful addition in a franchise that will hopefully never leave. - Chris Singh

1. Bioshock: Infinite

Captivating you in a vibrant yet twisted setting, Bioshock Infinite is easily the game of year. The game has flaws to be sure, the combat system wasn't really all too challenging, and Elizabeth's ability to phase things wasn't really exploited too much in gameplay terms (though it was definitely used well in story terms). However, you can look past that when you look at all the other things wonderful about the game. The story, while taking a while to truly grasp it, sticks with you long after you've finished the game. The characters are some of the most intriguing in video game history, the world is just fascinating, and replayability is surprisingly high. Overall, one of the best experiences I've had in gaming all year. - Billy Jones


Stay tuned to VideAU Games in 2014 for all the best and latest in video game news, reviews, previews, interviews and much, much more...