I’ve made more lists than I can count talking about videogames, but I’ve never specifically listed out my favourites. After taking some time to gather my thoughts, I think I’ve come up with my 25 favourite games of all time (providing I haven’t forgotten any!).
A few rules I set for myself: I’m only allowing one entry per franchise, and I actually need to have played the game myself – so no PS4 or Switch exclusives that I watched someone else play (like The Last of Us, Breath of the Wild, Uncharted 4 and God of War).
Also, here are a few honourable mentions that didn’t quite make the cut:
- Stardew Valley
- Elden Ring
- Ori and the Will of the Wisps
- Rise of the Tomb Raider
- Resident Evil 2 (Remake)
So, with that out of the way, what are my 25 favourite games of all time?
You can check out some of my related blog posts below:
25 – Neon White
- Favourite Aspect – The Gameplay
- Least Favourites – The Story & Dialogue
As a fun little aside, I’ll be giving my thoughts on what my favourite and least favourite aspects of all 25 games are – no game is perfect, after all!
Neon White is the most recent entry on this list, and its gameplay blew me away. The premise of speedrunning but with guns is all I could have ever asked for, and the introduction of new powerups along the way meant it never got stale.
If it wasn’t for the paper-thin story and questionable dialogue between stages, this could have ranked extremely high.
24 – Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order
- Favourite Aspect – The Combat
- Least Favourite – Lack of Fast Travel
Unpopular opinion – I could never get into Soulslike games. Elden Ring was enjoyable enough to make my Honourable Mentions list, but Fallen Order has been the only Soulslike so far to strike my fancy.
The Star Wars worlds and combat are so much fun, and the story is surprisingly solid and emotional. Hopefully the sequel can be even better (and I hope they add fast travel next time!)
23 – Crimes & Punishments
- Favourite Aspect – The Deductions
- Least Favourite – Lack of Replayability
Frogwares’s Sherlock Holmes games have been a bit hit-or-miss over the years, but Crimes & Punishments is the only entry to make me feel like the great detective himself.
All six of the cases have brilliant deductions that made me feel like the smartest man alive, and the case conclusions have been burned into my mind. Unfortunately, as a result, that makes replaying it virtually impossible.
22 – Celeste
- Favourite Aspects – Soundtrack & Level Design & Themes
- Least Favourite – The Difficulty Spike
Not only is Celeste a fantastic platform with brilliant mechanics and a gorgeous soundtrack, it also has one of the most heart-felt messages in all of gaming.
That theme of learning to accept yourself and overcome your personal challenges moved me greatly. It’s a shame, then, that some of the later levels undermine this by making you tear your hair out in frustration.
21 – Paradise Killer
- Favourite Aspects – The Story & Vaporwave Style
- Least Favourite – Lack of Contradiction System
An open world detective / mystery game done right, I was instantly enamoured by Paradise Killer’s characters and vaporwave world.
Going round to collect every hidden clue was so much fun, and the final courtroom segment proved that the truth is only what you make of it. I would have liked the character interrogations to be more in-depth, so hopefully a sequel can add more features (if it ever comes!).
20 – Wii Sports
- Favourite Aspect – Replayability
- Least Favourite – Matt
Some of my earliest gaming memories were of playing Wii Sports. All of the sports were so much fun, and I got into the boxing so much that I even strained my hand!
It’s a shame there are only five sports to choose from, but they nailed the execution on each one. Matt will haunt my nightmares forever.
19 – Return of the Obra Dinn
- Favourite Aspects – Design & Clever Logic
- Least Favourite – Lack of Fast Travel
Return of the Obra Dinn may just be the cleverest game I’ve ever played. The logic is ingenious, the way all of the chapters interconnect blew my mind, and I can’t believe this was all made by one man.
Objectively speaking, this might be the best mystery / detective game of all time – it’s one of the only ones you can feasibly replay, as there’s no way of remembering all sixty fates!
18 – Halo: Reach
- Favourite Aspects – Story & Combat
- Least Favourite – It Feels Aged
I love all of the Halos (apart from 5), but the one I’ve always cherished most is Halo: Reach. It’s the first Halo I ever played, and the first game I got on the Xbox 360.
It has the best story of any of the Halo titles, and the combat is just as good now as it was back then. It’s certainly aged a bit since all those years ago, but that’s what gives it it’s charm.
17 – GTA V
- Favourite Aspect – The Singleplayer & Violent Sandbox
- Least Favourite – The Multiplayer
The most profitable piece of entertainment across any media ever, GTA V is prestigious for a reason. No other open world sandbox has reached quite the same levels of violent fun, and the singleplayer is masterfully written and acted.
Hot take time – the multiplayer isn’t very good. I’ve tried multiple times to get a bunch of friends on it, but the lack of variety always makes it grow stale after a while.
16 – FIFA 14
- Favourite Aspect – The World Cup Mode
- Least Favourite – The Kick-Off Glitch
FIFA has dropped off massively over the past few years, but the era from FIFA 11- 14 led to some of the most fun gameplay I’ve ever experienced.
FIFAs 13 & 14 were what I played most, and I have countless cherished memories of playing Pro Clubs with my brothers. The summer World Cup mode sent this particular instalment up a tier, and EA haven’t been able to match it since.
15 – Shadow Of War
- Favourite Aspect – The Nemesis System
- Least Favourite – The Endgame Grind
The most underrated game of its generation, Shadow of War was critically panned on release due to microtransactions but has since evolved into a near-perfect game.
It expands upon Shadow of Mordor’s (another game I love) Nemesis System, and the story of Talion and Celebrimbor is better than ever. It’s a shame the endgame “The Shadow Wars” is such a slog, otherwise this would have been an easy top 10.
14 – Hollow Knight
- Favourite Aspects – Metroidvania World & Charms
- Least Favourite – Difficulty & Lack of Weapon Choices
I mentioned how Jedi: Fallen Order is the best Soulslike I’ve played, but that’s only because Hollow Knight transcends the genre into something else entirely.
The Metroidvania inter-connectedness of the world is staggering, and the various charms and spells are so much fun to use against the bosses. It can be a bit too hard at times, and the reliance on the nail makes combat a bit one-note, but the overall package is phenomenal.
Also, the fact that Team Cherry released a plethora of awesome DLC for FREE makes this game a masterpiece.
13 – Hades
- Favourite Aspects – Replayability & Writing
- Least Favourite – Some Weapon Aspects Suck
The “keep dying and learning to beat the final boss” subgenre of Indie games isn’t really my style, so I was floored when Hades came along and smashed it out of the park.
Its combat is so intuitive, the writing is so fun, and I sank almost a hundred hours into nearly two hundred runs to earn every achievement. It’s a masterpiece in game design, so it’s a shame that only half of the weapon aspects were fun to play with.
12 – Factorio
- Favourite Aspect – Creating A Living Factory
- Least Favourite – The Biters
Factorio is one of my most played games of all time – me and my friends sank almost a thousand hours into both the vanilla and modded side of factory building, and we had the time of our lives both times.
The desire to build and improve and improve again is a feeling that I haven’t quite felt in any game, and that final optimisation to a part of your factory is euphoric. The feeling dwindles slightly when a group of biters come to destroy all of your hard work, but then again that added some fun urgency to the whole thing.
11 – Persona 4 Golden
- Favourite Aspects – The Style & Story & Combat
- Least Favourite – The Slow Start
JRPGs were pretty much as far away from my niche as possible, and yet Persona 4 Golden managed to ignite my interest in the genre single-handedly.
It has all the charm and quirky characters that you’d expect, with a layer of heart as well. The dungeons are all fun to explore, the combat and creature-collector side of it is rich with depth, and the murder mystery plot added tension to every scene. Unfortunately, due to the slow-paced start, replaying the game multiple times can be extremely tricky.
Fun fact – I don’t have a PS4, so Persona 5 Royal is off limits … until October 21st, when it comes out on PC! I’m sure that once it comes out, and I fall in love with the style all over again, it’ll end up easily cracking my top 10.
10 – Portal 2
- Favourite Aspects – Voice Acting & Puzzles & Co-op
- Least Favourite – It’s Too Short
The best puzzle game of all time, Portal 2 is a masterpiece from start to finish.
I can genuinely find no faults – the voice acting is hilarious, the portal mechanics are staggering, and the co-op mode is one of the best multiplayer modes of all time. I only wish the singleplayer campaign was longer.
9 – DOOM Eternal
- Favourite Aspects – Intense Gameplay & Level Design
- Least Favourite – The DLC
I immediately loved DOOM 2016 upon release, and had no faith that the follow-up would be as good. It wasn’t – it ended up surpassing its predecessor.
DOOM Eternal has the best gunplay of any game I’ve ever experienced, and the levels are so well designed that it makes replaying them a necessity. It has exactly the right amount of challenge, and the main storyline is unobtrusive yet interesting.
Hot take time again – the “Ancient Gods” DLC was a bit boring. Maybe I was expecting too much, but neither of the two parts ended up providing what I wanted.
8 – Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood
- Favourite Aspect – Story & Side Content
- Least Favourite – It Feels Aged
Even though I’m only allowed to put one entry per franchise, this spot can basically go to every Assassins Creed game – they’re all good in different ways, and it’s probably the franchise I’ve played the most over the years.
The game I replayed the most, and the one that I think is best, is Brotherhood. As the middle chapter of Ezio’s story, we get to see the master assassin in his prime. On top of that, the side content is some of the best I’ve played in any game ever, and the Borgias are some of gaming’s most despicable villains.
7 – Danganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair
- Favourite Aspects – The Style & Twists
- Least Favourite – Cases 2 And 3
All of the Danganronpa trilogy is basically equal in my eyes – since I have to pick one, I decided to go for Goodbye Despair for its phenomenal second half.
Danganronpa is a visual novel mystery series like no other, with one of the strongest premises of any story I’ve experienced – including TV and film. The twists and turns within the story are always immaculate, and the characters have stuck with me many years later.
6 – Rocket League
- Favourite Aspect – The Simple Premise
- Least Favourites – Online Teammates & Lag
The most fun multiplayer game of them all, I had no idea car football would end up consuming so many hours of my life.
The simple premise of “put the ball in the net” is what makes football such a dominant sport worldwide, and that same appeal translated brilliantly to Rocket League.
I used to be super into it, from the in-game tournaments to the live eSports events, but the lag and lack of good teammates means I’ve mellowed on it recently. For all the time I’ve spent enjoying it, though, I have to rank it near the top.
5 – Super Mario Galaxy 1 & 2
- Favourite Aspects – The Level Design & Soundtrack
- Least Favourites – The Purple Coin Levels & Motion Controls
I’m cheating a little by putting two games in the same slot, but I consider Galaxy 1 & 2 to be one complete package – I always play them back to back whenever I get the chance, and I always have a blast.
The other Mario games are obviously fantastic, but Galaxy’s soundtrack and level design has always stood out to me as being the very best. It’s a testament to the developers that I can play these games for the tenth time and still find enjoyment in nearly every level (but the purple coin and motion control ones make me want to tear my hair out!).
4 – Ace Attorney Trilogy
- Favourite Aspects – The Writing & Courtroom Segments
- Least Favourite – The Investigations
Like with many of the other games on this list, it’s the entire Ace Attorney franchise that deserves a spot on this ranking. They’re all fantastic, and a fair few of them would probably swamp this top 25 if I dropped my “one per franchise” rule.
As for my favourite, I have to go with the original trilogy (which isn’t cheating, as it’s one complete package nowadays!). Trials & Tribulations is my favourite, but the other two games ooze charm and drama as well. The characters are super endearing, the cases are always captivating, and the twists never fail to shake me to my core.
I want to give a quick shout-out to the recent Great Ace Attorney: Chronicles – it’s a phenomenal duology of games, and it very nearly took the Origin Trilogy’s spot on my list.
3 – Minecraft
- Favourite Aspect – Infinite Replayability
- Least Favourite – Once You Go Modded, You Can’t Go Back
By far the most hours I have in a single game, the replayability that Minecraft has to offer is staggering.
Once you’re done with vanilla and competitive multiplayer (so about a thousand hours down the line …), the wonderful world of modded will draw you in all over again. People have tried to replicate Minecraft’s success, but they’ve all failed to recapture the magic.
2 – Skyrim
- Favourite Aspects – Replayability & Fantasy Sandbox
- Least Favourites – Some Questlines Suck & Game-Breaking Bugs
The first game that I ever fell head-over-heels for, there’s an argument to be made that Skyrim ignited my love of gaming. It came out when I was just starting to get into the proper, less-childish stuff, and I ended up replaying it about ten times on both Xbox and PC.
It’s the best fantasy sandbox ever – you can approach any mission however you want, and the combat / magic systems and skill tree are second to none. I can see myself playing Skyrim forever … until Elder Scrolls VI comes out, that is. IF it ever comes out.
1 – The Witcher 3
- Favourite Aspects – Story & Enemies & World
- Least Favourite – Weapon Durability
It might not be the game I’ve replayed the most, it might not have the best moment-to-moment gameplay (compared to others on this list, anyway), and it might not be perfect in every department, but The Witcher 3 is hands down the best game I’ve ever played.
It has the best enemy variety, selection of characters, side quests, open world, attention to detail, and story of any singleplayer game ever. I genuinely feel blessed to have played such a masterpiece.
Aaaand that’s my list. You can check out some of my latest blog posts below:
After 80 hours of Phantom Thieving, I’ve finally finished Persona 5 Royal! It’s a phenomenal game across the board (and would probably now make my top 5 games of all time!), and it improves upon its predecessor in every way. One of the biggest improvements since Persona 4 Golden, I think, is the dungeons (orContinue reading “Persona 5 Royal – Every Palace Ranked”
Cowboy Bebop quickly became one of my favourite shows ever, and after my first viewing I created a top 10 episodes list. After a recent rewatch, I now feel comfortable ranking them all! Some episodes went up in my estimations, and some ended up disappointing me, but the quality was unbelievably high across the board.Continue reading “Every Cowboy Bebop Episode Ranked”
It’s time to ruffle some Whovian feathers! I’ve been a Doctor Who fan for as long as I can remember, and I’ve watched the show enough times to form some spicy opinions of my own – some episodes are overrated by the fandom, whilst others need way more love. To make things fair, I’ll tryContinue reading “Top 10 Underrated (& Overrated) Doctor Who Episodes”