10 Brilliant Video Games That You Might Have Missed In 2018

Every year, we get treated to a load of fantastic new video games - and while 2018 might not have felt quite as special as 2017, there's no doubt that a handful of bona-fide all-timers have landed on consoles and computers alike.

God of War, Red Dead Redemption 2, Forza Horizon 4, Celeste, Marvel's Spider-Man... You can bet these, and more, will feature in GAMINGbible's own games of the year 'countdown', which you can follow on Facebook.

But to complement what we consider to be the very best of 2018, here are 10 more games that you may have missed, all of which are more than deserving of a little belated attention. Keep your eyes peeled for deals on these delights.

Tetris Effect (PS4)

"But it's just Tetris," scream the detractors - who haven't actually played Tetris Effect, yet. They really, really should. This new version of the classic falling-blocks puzzler is a sensory explosion that sparks with singular visual imagination and musical magnificence. Get it running on PSVR and it becomes an all-enveloping experience, never to be forgotten.

The Gardens Between (PC, Switch, PS4, XBO)

A time-manipulating puzzler with a warm heart and a surprisingly poignant denouement, The Gardens Between matches its attractive visuals to a wealth of inventive gameplay ideas - which are wheeled out in one level, only to be left behind in the next. A short game that can be finished in a couple of hours, featuring beautiful ambient music, this is perfect for some rainy afternoon escapism.

GRIS (PC, Switch)

A late release, coming out on 13 December, GRIS will have missed the cut for a host of year-end lists. But to miss out on this gentle platformer is to miss out on one of the most gorgeous-looking (and sounding) games of 2018. It doesn't offer any real challenge, but GRIS is a game about the journey, not the obstacles encountered on the way to a stunning destination.

Laser League (PC, PS4, XBO)

The greatest local multiplayer game of the year - well, it's right up there, at least - Laser League is a mavellous marriage of Tron-like visual flair and immediately accessible competitive gameplay. Wipe out the other team, and you win: simple. What's rather less simple is the array of arenas, and their wildly different laser-wall patterns. It deserves to be a major esport, frankly... if only a few more (million) players would pick it up.

Minit (PC, PS4, XBO, Switch)

This top-down adventure's USP is that your character - a curiously duck-like little chap - dies every 60 seconds. In that minute, you must collect quest-progressing items and reach the next save point, from where your journey will recommence. If it sounds a bit stop-start in comparison to your Zeldas of the world, fear not, as in practice Minit works perfectly well in bite-size play sessions and long sofa sit-downs.

Florence (iOS, Android)

A single-session story game with very, very slight puzzles, Florence is something special, but so slight and delicate as to make any description of it laden with potential spoilers. It follows the course of a young woman's relationship with a man she meets in the street, documenting their highs and lows - experiences that many players will immediately relate to. Touching music and delightful artwork make this one of the very best mobile-only games of any year.

Yoku's Island Express (PC, PS4, XBO, Switch)

Pinball and platforming - not a combination that we see in many video games. But Yoku's Island Express shows us that these two standalone pillars of gaming history can be blended with some truly joyous results. A riot of colour and sound, all pings and zings leap-off-the-screen zest, Yoku's straps an ant to a ball, makes him a postman and sits back to watch the quite-unprecedented action unfold. And as it does, it can't fail to make the player smile.

Astro Bot Rescue Mission (PS4)

The only game here that is a VR exclusive - yes, you're going to need to break out the PlayStation-branded headset that's been collecting dust in the corner for a year or more - Astro Bot is a 3D platformer that you quite literally stick your face into. Peer around ledges. Peek behind you. Grab all the collectibles, use your pad as a torch or tightrope, and get to the end of some of the most fun 'courses' you'll have played outside of classic Mario titles. Yep, Astro Bot is that good. If you have PSVR, and don't have a copy of this game, what sort of monster are you?

Return of the Obra Dinn (PC, Mac)

Lucas Pope's long-anticipated follow-up to the moving Papers, Please didn't disappoint, casting the player as a 19th century shipping company insurance adjuster (not your average gaming hero, then) tasked with finding out what fate befell the crew of the titular ghost ship. Murders abound, in the past at least, with crime scenes requiring close analysis, using a special watch-like apparatus, to deliver game-progressing conclusions: who did what to whom, where, and why. Its striking monochromatic visuals manage to make it seem both ancient and entirely cutting edge, and it plays just as uniquely, too.

Onrush (PC, PS4, XBO)

Another of 2018's better multiplayer games that nowhere near enough people played, Onrush is a racer that really isn't a racer at all. Yes, you're in a vehicle - but the objective isn't to reach the finish line first. Rather, you play in teams to better your rivals, over a series of original modes, using skill moves and hitting checkpoints to get the upper hand. There's even a 'king of the hill'-style scenario, with a moving zone to maintain control of. Breathless and brilliant, Onrush deserved better.

Mike Diver

Head of Content at GAMINGbible.

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