This post sums up my top picks from 2023, covering various categories with a brief review or description for each. For the most part, this list is limited to things that came out this year.
- Dead Space (2023) - This year, I played Dead Space for the first time, and it was a perfect gaming experience. The game’s unique atmosphere, along with fun gunplay and gameplay loop, kept me hooked the entire time. The progression and upgrades feel satisfying. It’s one of those games you can’t stop thinking about even after it’s over. I’m planning to play it again next year with New Game+.
- Super Mario Bros. Wonder - I finally got a Nintendo Switch this year and played SMB Wonder early on. It’s just delightful. Every animation is spot on, and the game pays attention to detail with its cool environments and enemies. I wish all games were so perfectly crafted. I believe it is worth buying a Nintendo Switch just for this game.
- Honorable mention: Starfield - My initial experience with Starfield during its first week of release was a bit rocky. I encountered numerous bugs, and the overall optimization (though reportedly worse for PC players), left much to be desired. Even without technical hiccups, Starfield falls short of perfection. The abundance of cutscenes and loading screens can be irritating, a stark contrast to the seamless experiences Rockstar Games delivered in the PS3/360 era. While the main storyline is good but not exceptional, I still invested over 60 hours exploring the Starfield universe, and I have no regrets. There’s a captivating quality to the game that keeps drawing me in. Whether it’s the quest for better gear, encountering new creatures, or simply marveling at the beauty of the galaxy.
- Call Me If You Get Lost: The Estate Sale by Tyler, The Creator - This already incredible album became even more so when Tyler released an enhanced version in March 2023, featuring four new singles. Accompanying music videos added an extra layer of delight. I eagerly anticipate more musical masterpieces from Tyler.
- The Super Mario Bros. Movie - A must-see for all Nintendo fans. The 92-minute movie is loaded with Nintendo game references. The soundtrack is great — I still listen to it. I really hope we will see a sequel, which considering the movie’s commercial success is very likely.
- Mastodon - While I joined Mastodon at the end of 2022, it wasn’t until 2023 that I truly embraced it, using it almost daily. Distinct from any social network I’ve used before, Mastodon boasts a vibrant community for tech enthusiasts. Despite missing some content I followed on Twitter, particularly football-related updates, I appreciate the variety of clients created by indie developers. Throughout most of the year, I favored Mona and Elk, but I’m currently testing Mammoth, the latest discovery in my Mastodon journey. Click here to follow me on Mastodon.