With several games falling into the Action-Adventure category which we covered earlier today, we were then left with some amazing titles that were more exclusively about action-filled gameplay. Whether it was a reality-traversing Lombax, and anime-fueled RPG romp or figuring out the perfect run in a shooty, time-repeater there was a lot to love this year if you are a fan of Action games. However, one rather unique title stood out…
The masters of action at Housemarque came in firing this year, taking a game genre normally limited to smaller budgets and giving us an electric trip into the sci-fi world of Returnal. Dripping with Greek mythology and a smattering of new weird, we follow our heroine into a time loop and try to break the cycle. Sounds, special effects, and even the way the controller vibrates and emits sounds are all used to convey important cues to us to help us survive on a planet where death is possible in every room. Frantic, frenetic action keeps you on your toes the whole time, while a few clever design tricks stop you from repeating the first level ad nauseam, a problem in many roguelike titles.
We are happy to give Returnal action game of the year and hope that at least one Selene finds peace.
Runner-Up: Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart