The 10 Best Video Games of 2013

Apartment Therapy Game Room

This year in gaming has brought us expansive sequels, next-generation hardware, and interesting new properties from studios both big and small. For those on the lookout for even more gift ideas for gamers, these picks are guaranteed to be a welcome surprise this Holiday season.

Grand Theft Auto V

The best selling game of the year is also the most controversial. However Grand Theft Auto 5 is RockStars most ambitious project yet, giving players a living, breathing city (and a rural landscape) to explore and interact with.

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First Person Shooters tend to be over the top without any substance. That's not the case with Bioshock Infinite from Irrational Games which takes place in a city in the sky. Players will fall in love with the side character Elizabeth who is helpful to the plot and during combat.

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When playing Last of Us, you’ll notice the stupendous graphics and engrossing storyline. From start to finish you’ll want to see Joel and Ellie through to the end of their journey through post-zombie apocalypse America to an ending you can’t predict.

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Nintendo has made some smart design choices with the latest iteration in the Pokemon franchise. An enhanced graphical style, improved new Pokemon designs, and the region based on Northern France all make X & Y refreshing compared to older versions.

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When the Wii U was first being demoed, Pikmin 3 was the main attraction. Now that the game has seen release critics are blown away by what Nintendo’s new system can do with hundreds of Pikmin on screen in beautifully rendered terrain.

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Albeit short but sweet, Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons is a shining example of what small game studios are capable of. Travel through mystical lands controlling two brothers who are searching for the cure for their sick father, all of which is expressed through wordless interaction.

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Mario has never looked this good! Making his true debut on the Wii U platform, Super Mario 3D World is a fun and glorious single and multiplayer experience. The real challenge is safely traversing a level from beginning to end without destroying any friendships.

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Another Indie hit that has critics singing its praises is Gone Home for the PC platform. This one’s more for the open minded gamer who appreciates unorthodox and creative storytelling as they explore home sweet home that appears empty and abandoned.

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Another franchise to get some much love on Nintendo’s portable is the Legend of Zelda. Rather than remaking the classic Link to the Past, this version is a sequel (kind of) which has the same top-down perspective and emphasizes exploration and puzzle solving rather than combat.

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As Japanese Role Playing Games go, the Shin Megami Tensei series is one of the best. SMT 4 looks absolutely stunning on the 3DS, combat is both fun and addictive, and the path-branching storyline leads to multiple endings (which means multiple playthroughs.)

(Image credits: Last of Us / Legend of Zelda / Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons / Shin Megami Tensei IV)

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