Best Switch RPG
Xenoblade Chronicles 2
|Best Switch RPG
A lot of us here at RPGamer didn't think there was any chance that Nintendo and Monolith Soft would be able to get the highly anticipated sequel to Xenoblade Chronicles out before the end of the year, but somehow they did it with only a month to spare. Xenoblade Chronicles 2 was worth the wait, topping off what has to be one of the best first years for a new console in history.
There's a lot to love about Xenoblade Chronicles 2. Its world is expansive and cleverly laid out, making it as fascinating to look at as it is to explore. The enjoyable main story is punctuated by an impressively large array of additional story-driven side quests. Its combat system has seen a number of much-needed improvements over its predecessor, and the whole game features an amazing soundtrack that never ceases to impress. Despite a few notable flaws and some hefty competition on the platform, Xenoblade Chronicles 2 stands apart as the Switch's best game of 2017.
Tasked with giving Zelda a fresh start while still feeling familiar and being a huge open world game polished and ready for the Nintendo Switch launch, it seemed likely that The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild would slip in at least one of those areas. Thankfully, this turned out to be far from the case. Stripping away much of the baggage that had limited the series from going in new directions, Breath of the Wild not only proved to be a bold new take on Zelda, but also one of the best open-world adventures going. Some of this came at the expense of the already limited RPG elements of the series, since Link can now go take on Ganon straight away if the player is skilled enough. In the end though, Breath of the Wild is an incredibly massive and sprawling adventure with a world teeming with life that proves to be a joy just to explore. A new take on dungeons splits up the exploration experience, and a fun cast of characters keeps players interested in not just exploring the world, but learning more about those who live there. Breath of the Wild's impact is likely to be felt on games for years to come.
Few, if any, imagined a game like Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle before it was announced. Certainly, in a world where Dynasty Warriors combines with The Legend of Zelda in a compelling way, anything is possible. Yet, out of all possibilities, the idea of combining Mario, Rabbids, and XCOM seemed about as unlikely as Mario joining Sonic to race at the Olympics. Yet, here we are. Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle not only brings these characters and game designs together, but it does so with excellence and style. This original premise, combined with tight gameplay, helps drive the somewhat shallow story forward. Do not let the silly antics fool you, though, as the game starts off easily enough, but later battles and post-game content will challenge even XCOM veterans. If you enjoy tactical RPGs and seek a fresh take on the genre, look no further.
by Adriaan den Ouden, Michael Apps, Phillip Willis