A victory lap for the FIFA franchise on current generation hardware, FIFA 21 manages to combine every positive addition to the series and triumph. Despite it skewing towards Ultimate Team and microtransactions, the on-pitch gameplay is the best it's ever been.
Despite its inconsistent difficulty, Crash Bandicoot 4 is still a blast. With a focus on fun and with a heavy dose of challenge, even in it's most rage-inducing moments it can't be denied that Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time is excellent. It may even be the best the bandicoot has ever been.
Solid tactical RPG gameplay set in a varied world filled with incredible characters and 'water-cooler' storytelling. Glaring issues aside, Wasteland 3 shines as the pinnacle of this genre and as one of the best games released this year despite its issues.
Much like BOT C facing up against the trials inside the mountain, the few hurdles Creature in the Well faces doesn't stop it from being an outstanding game. Challenging, rewarding and (mostly) a pleasure to play, it is the epitome of creativity in the indie game space.
Devil May Cry 5 is a wonderfully ridiculous game that rightfully returns the series to the spotlight. In many ways it feels very safe, but by willing to take a few risks and do more than satiate an existing fanbase, Capcom has injected new life into this once dormant franchise with a stylish and worthwhile addition.
Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection uses the PlayStation 5 hardware to make two of PlayStation's modern classics even better. It's a must play for those new to the series whilst also being fresh enough for returning fans to warrant an overdue replay.
Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart is an over-the-top thrill ride that showcases the power of the PlayStation 5 whilst having the most fun possible. Fast, fluid and filled with outstanding set pieces and the series' absurd arsenal of weapons, this game takes Insomniac's action-platformer to another level.
Ghost of Tsushima is a wonderful homage to classic Samurai movies. It's not a historically accurate epic, but it's not claiming to be. What the game lacks in a fresh core story and an occasional lack of polish, it more than makes up for with engaging gameplay, a gorgeous world to explore, an exciting setting and characters you'll grow to love.
Death Stranding is a game about connections, common understandings and hope. It's also a game where the earth can swallow you up and you can be attacked by a giant tar monster. It manages to do both of those things whilst maintaining a consistent story and tone on its way to being one of the most compelling games of the generation.
Wandersong is a modern classic that is only held back from masterpiece status by some small but significant shortcomings. Still, few games this generation have compelled me to gush like this. Each of the game's core elements — story, characters, gameplay, soundtrack, and visuals — combine with near perfect execution and the result is a game that you just have to play.