To help look back at the year that was 2022, as part of GamesHub’s Game of the Year festivities we asked a variety of guests to share their fondest game-related memories from the year. In this article, regular GamesHub contributor Nicholas Kennedy gives us his Top 3 games for 2022.
NORCO, the first game from creative team GeographyOfRobots, raises the bar for narrative point-and-click adventure games.
As a portrayal of a place, it is exceptionally detailed and evocative. As an investigation of a mystery, it is unpredictable, vivid, and resonant. As the interrogation of the modern American psyche, it is deeply, overwhelmingly sad.
Read: NORCO Review – Refinery Eyes
Flitting between an unflinching high-beam tour of a population utterly unmoored from reality (and those among them that continue to cling on), and a gorgeous, experimental portrayal of the Louisianan communities that the game’s creators were born out of, NORCO has few equals.
In the realms of original, biographical storytelling in video games, NORCO breathes rarefied air, and envelops players with smoke on the exhale.
No game this year – or in recent memory for that matter – feels as good to play as Webbed. The fact that Sbug Games’ spider simulator nails the fundamental design of their bouncy, physics-based world, while layering on its astoundingly pleasurable movement systems and effortlessly charming bug kingdom means that Webbed is one of the best platformers you can play right now.
Read: Webbed review – Effortlessly playful
The addition of laser eyes, dedicated dance buttons and musical spider-silk also show that the pursuit of pure, unadulterated joy in game design can still lead to original, fantastical places.
It’s one thing for a game’s attention to detail to impress based on some pre-conceived scale already determined by other games. What Pentiment achieves with world-building, characterisation, and theme, is entirely its own triumph.
An ambitious, wide-ranging, and deeply considered story, Pentiment references historical periods and religious perspectives with a specificity that we just don’t see in games very often. It harnesses them as framing for both a mysterious whodunnit, and one of the most compelling portraits of pre-renaissance Europe you’ll ever play.
Read: Pentiment review – Making history
Rendered in a gorgeous period-specific wood-cut printed art style, Pentiment slips itself gracefully into the very layer cake it seeks to portray, creating an astounding, cyclically artistic experience unlike anything you’ll play this year.
Read some of Nick’s great writing on GamesHub from 2022:
- The Callisto Protocol review – We’ve seen this gore before
- The Dark Pictures: The Devil in Me review – Drag me to hell
- Madison builds a palpable sense of impending doom – Review
- The Quarry Review – A supermassive achievement in horror
- Opus: Echo of Starsong Review – A thoughtful rumination
- Gibbon: Beyond the Trees Review – A simple message
- Weird West Review – Everything for nothing
- Citizen Sleeper Review – Wake up to yourself
- NORCO Review – Refinery Eyes
- Martha is Dead Review – Grim Giallo
- Shadow Warrior 3 review – Groan of blood
- Webbed review – Effortlessly playful
For more on the top games of 2022, explore the rest of our game of the year coverage:
- Cult of the Lamb wins GamesHub’s Game of the Year 2022
- The Best Nintendo games of 2022
- The Best PlayStation games of 2022
- The Best Xbox games of 2022
- The Best PC games of 2022
- The Best mobile games of 2022
- The 5 best indie games of 2022 you definitely didn’t play
- Edmond Tran’s Top 10 Games of 2022
- Leah Williams’ Top 10 Games of 2022
- Emily Spindler’s top 10 games of 2022
- Meredith Hall on 2022 with God of War, Card Shark, and RMIT
- Award-winning developers Fuzzy Ghost on their favourite games of 2022
- Umurangi Generation developer on the impactful moments of 2022
- Tempopo developer Sanatana Mishra’s favourite games of 2022
- Kelsey Gamble’s Top 4 Games of 2022
- David Wildgoose on his Game of the Year for 2022: Elden Ring
- Wayward Strand dev Goldie Bartlett shares her favourite games of the year
- Cult of the Lamb developers share their favourite games the year
Stay tuned for more curated lists from GamesHub staff and special games industry guests.