It would’ve been nice to play more games this year but, anymore, there just don’t seem to be enough hours in the day. I feel like I played more games this year than last, but I still haven’t cleared out my backlog. Will I ever get around to playing Gears of War 3? Who knows? Here are some games I did play though. I really liked them. Maybe you should play them too.10. Splatoon (Wii U) – Splatoon is a multiplayer, online shooter that I want to play more. That’s unheard of for me. Truth be told, I only played Splatoon for a couple weekends around launch. The game has changed so much since then, I wouldn’t recognize it if I booted it up right now. That’s kind of amazing, especially coming from Nintendo. I feel like Splatoon will be remembered as the beginning of a new age for Nintendo. If I would have played this game more, I imagine it would be higher on this list. However, even with the limited time I’ve spent playing, I can tell Splatoon is something special and really fun. I can’t wait to boot it up again.9. Danganronpa Another Episode: Ultra Despair Girls (Vita) – The Danganronpa games really grab me. This game is so different from the other two, it’s hard to believe they are from the same developer. Don’t let the screenshots fool you though, this is still a visual novel at its core. I imagine Another Episode would be complete nonsense to anyone that isn’t familiar with the rest of the Danganronpa lore, and I’m fine with that as you shouldn’t play this game without that knowledge. From the story to the gameplay, this game is a slow burn and I really enjoyed it. Thanks to an amazing and ultra-stressful climax, Danganronpa has now won the Triple Crown for ending a game in spectacular fashion.8. Guacamelee! (Vita) – What an amazing name. I ran into a handful of glitches with Guacamelee! but I enjoyed it enough to keep playing anyway. It doesn’t do anything new, but it quells my constant craving for more Metroid. It also increases my craving for chips and dip. There have been some other releases of Guacamelee! and I’m curious what those add. Hopefully the issues I ran into are fixed. It took me a while to get around to this game but it was time well spent.7. Persona 4: Dancing All Night (Vita) – I keep coming back to this game. The story mode is exhausting and I think 80% of it would have been better left on the cutting room floor. Also, there are some songs that don’t work well with the rhythm game. Given all that, I still really enjoy playing P4D. The music is incredible; no surprise since it’s all Persona music in the first place. The game works with the PSTV as well, so you can get a good sound system to enjoy such remixes like this one. The party doesn’t stop when it’s a Persona dance party.6. Hatsune Miku: Project Mirai DX (3DS) – Huh, a Vocaloid rhythm game made my list. What a shocker. Project Mirai is not Project Diva. Besides the obvious character design changes, Mirai does a lot to warrant the title change. It seems to put a lot more focus on having Miku and party as Tamagotchis. That’s not really why I show up though. I want the rhythm game and the outfits. The rhythm game comes with a touch mode and a button mode. Both are fun and will give you a reason to play through songs multiple times. Being a combination of two games that previously only released for a region locked system, I’m very happy this made it outside of Japan. I almost imported a Japanese 3DS several times for this game.5. Desert Golfing (iOS) – Man… I adore this game. It’s the perfect thing when you have a couple of minutes to kill; or a couple hours. It’s simple and it just keeps going. It looks and sounds like an Atari 2600 game to boot! The only reason I stopped playing is because I hit an impossible hole.4. Her Story (PC) – There are several indie games that I want to check out. However, given that I don’t have a video card in my computer, my options are limited. Thankfully, Her Story didn’t demand too much from my machine. I spent around three hours playing Her Story and then another three outside the game doing research. The game is very open ended and thus a lot is left to interpretation. I really enjoyed reading other’s interpretations of the story compared to my own. I highly encourage everybody to check this game out.3. Yakuza 5 (PS3) – Dreams do come true. As of this writing I am around 40 hours into Yakuza 5 and I am only halfway through the story. Yakuza 5 has done a lot to quell my complaints with the previous installments in the series. Thanks to that, I’m able to really dig deep into this one and fully explore the world. It really is like being in Japan. This is the best the series has to offer, so now is a good time to give Yakuza a try. If you don’t have a few thousand dollars for a plane ticket, then Yakuza 5 is the virtual Japan trip you’ve wanted. Once you get there, feel free to beat somebody with a bike.2. Titan Souls (Vita) – This is a game of boss battles that each die in one hit. Getting that one hit is both stressful and extremely satisfying. The battles are tied together with a very beautiful world for you to explore; and the only thing to find are more things that want to kill you. Titan Souls is very focused on what it presents. It’s a lot of fun with a great mix of exploration, boss fights, visuals and music.1. Super Mario Maker (Wii U) – This is my best game of the year because of the community that has sprouted up around Super Mario Maker. It’s certainly not the first side-scrolling, creation game. It does, however, blend modern day game culture with 30 years of beloved history. I can go to YouTube right now and find hundreds of videos where people are trying to beat nearly impossible Mario levels. Even though I may not be able to beat them, I will instantly understand how they work. I find that fascinating. I have watched people build levels based off random suggestions, then they test and complete said levels, and then I played and beat the levels myself. Mario once was something I shared with my friends in elementary school. Now it’s something I share with the whole world. Thanks, Nintendo. You are, and continue to be, the reason I love video games.