taylormorgan's Blog

Posted on Oct 8th 2021 at 01:10:26 PM by (taylormorgan)
Posted under The Best Games

Author Bio: Taylor Morgan is a dedicated writer for the MagicLearning blog, writing reviews of new video games in his spare time.

It is one of the most atypical years in the industry's history because of the pandemic, and the best games of 2021 have arrived after many delays and complications. The new generation of consoles is not landing with the force we expected because of the shortage of materials. The delays have left PS5 and Xbox Series X with a less brilliant initial catalog than past generations.

However, little by little, the year has been rebounding, and the truth is that we have been able to enjoy sensational games. We got our fill of great indie games during the first few months of the year, but by now, we have also seen the release of some great blockbusters that have blown us away.

Without further ado, let's get down to business. These are the best games of 2021 (for now).

Psychonauts 2

We've had to wait more than 15 years to enjoy the sequel to one of the most incredible cult Xbox games, but it's finally here. It hasn't disappointed me at all. Tim Schafer and his team have managed to adapt the gameplay of that 2005 gem to current times, offering us an original and refreshing adventure, even though it is very similar to the one we enjoyed back in the day.

The charisma of Raz and the rest of the protagonists not only remains intact but is enhanced by some great facial expressions. We have some new powers, such as slowing down time or creating a copy of ourselves, for example. The best thing is that all our skills are used in exploration or solving puzzles and in combat itself. The finishing touch is found in the impressive imagination and originality of the different levels (minds of characters in which we enter), which change the way we play in ways that are always unexpected and rewarding.   

Platforms: Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, PC, and PS4.

Tales of Arise

In this new installment, Bandai Namco's long-lived saga has taken a tremendous leap in quality, especially in its production values. Thus, we enjoy graphics, animations, scenarios, etc... that have little or nothing to envy giants of the genre such as Dragon Quest or Final Fantasy.

The story has clich to bore, but the cast of protagonists is very charismatic and endearing. The best part, without a doubt, is the battles, a truly stunning spectacle of all kinds of effects. At first glance, the actions seem only to require us to pound the buttons, but in reality, the system is quite complex and boasts many strategic elements.

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S.

Ratchet & Clank: A Dimension Apart

Another PS5 exclusive game that sneaks into the list with the best of the year. The first thing that strikes us is that the game looks like a freaking Pixar movie. Everything seems to be taken from the Toy Story factory, from the scenery and effects to the animations and facial expressions.

However, A Dimension Apart is also a great game apart from the visuals. The combination of platforming and shooting, along with a genuinely enviable variety of mechanics, makes it impossible to put down the controller. The arsenal available is tremendously original and fun and has a tangible impact on the gameplay, allowing us to adopt different strategies during battles. And then there's Rivet, of course, the saga's new heroine who has us smitten.

Platforms: PS5

Resident Evil Village

The plot may be a bit nonsensical at times, and there is no doubt that Capcom failed to foresee the incredible reception that Lady Dimitrescu would have among the fans by giving her a very brief role. Still, it's clear to us that Resident Evil Village is a sensational adventure.

As in Resident Evil 4, we find an almost perfect blend of survival horror mechanics and pure action starring a cast of villains who end up being the true protagonists of the game. There is also no lack of the classic ration of puzzles or the mythical Mercenaries mode, which extends the game's life based on shots.

Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PS5, Xbox Series X|S, and PC.


When it was released in April, we defined it as the first great PS5 exclusive, and now we almost defend it even more. After a few months, with the aftertaste of playing more and more, Returnal is reaffirmed as one of the most solid titles of the year at a playable level. We are facing an arcade shooter with a frenetic development, but do not be fooled by the hail of bullets. We are also talking about a demanding game that leaves room for us to relax.

Its rogue-like structure is tremendously addictive, even more so if we consider the great work they have done to introduce an exciting narrative with this looping development. Still, above all, it drives us crazy for its shootouts measured to the detail and that difficulty forces us to try again to prove to ourselves that we can overcome the challenge.

Platforms: PS5

The Director's Cut phenomenon and other revisions

Every time there is a generational leap, in this case, the PS5 and Xbox X Series X|S, we experience a similar phenomenon. Many companies have not yet had enough time to create new experiences that take advantage of the potential of these new consoles, so they choose to release remastered or enhanced versions of their most emblematic games.

The vast majority of the time, we find ourselves with simple visual adaptations that increase the resolution and two or three other details, such as Judgment, Yakuza: Like a Dragon or Metro Exodus, among many others. However, this year we wanted to highlight the phenomenon of Director's Cuts and releases with similar names that offer us more than just graphical improvements. This is the case of Ghost of Tsushima: Director's Cut, Death Stranding: Director's Cut, Final Fantasy VII Remake: Intergrade or Disco Elysium: The Final Cut, which also add new missions, new gameplay features of all kinds and even gigantic expansions as an incentive. So we really like the re-releases in new generation.

Platforms: especially PS5 and Xbox Series X|S

F1 2021

After Electronic Arts bought Codemasters, and the consequent departure of some of its talents, we had doubts that the saga would keep the quality level intact. But nothing to see. The British studio's commitment to expand the story mode and make it much more cinematic has delighted us. Yes, it has a lot of room for improvement, but it is a big step for the saga.

Where there are no cracks of any kind is at the gameplay level. The driving is still brutal, with a very fine control in which even certain aspects, such as contact with different surfaces or pianos, have been improved. Graphically we are also facing a warning that the new generation of consoles shines, especially in 4K and 60fps. The Professional Career mode is a great incentive, especially with the new option to play the Pilot mode with another player online. Brutal.

Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PS5, Xbox Series X|S, and PC.

Super Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury

Mario, Luigi, Peach and Toad disguised as cats! If this doesn't work for you, which we don't understand, read on. Nintendo is taking full advantage of the success of Nintendo Switch to recover the great Wii U games that did not achieve fame due to poor sales of that console. And it is doing it luxuriously, because it not only adapts the games graphically but also adds new content that justifies their purchase even if you already played them back in the day.

Super Mario 3D World was already an excellent platform game, but Nintendo has succeeded in adding online play to its multiplayer mode. The fun part is that we can play with three other friends both cooperatively and competitively. Laughter and mayhem are guaranteed.

The big new feature is Bowser's Fury, an extra adventure that we can play separately at any time. It is a small open world that drinks a lot from the great Super Mario Odyssey and that we can complete in about 3-4 hours, but it is very worthwhile.

Platforms: Nintendo Switch

It Takes Two

We told you in its review and we repeat it here: It Takes Two is the best cooperative game ever made. As the previous creation of Josef Fares, we are facing a unique proposal that we can only play with another person, either online or on the same console, always split-screen.

The story is very interesting, a kind of romantic comedy that invites us to solve the marital problems of the protagonist couple. However, the best thing is its gameplay, a torrent of mechanics of unprecedented variety that immerses us in a journey that goes from platforms, action or puzzles and twists them in a thousand ways to make each of the minutes of our game unique. A jewel that aspires to become the best of the year.

Platforms: PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S and PC.

Monster Hunter Rise

The Monster Hunter saga is not a mass phenomenon by chance. This new installment for Switch has already sold more than 5 million copies and is sure to be many more by the end of the year. The playable changes introduced by the last release, Monster Hunter World, are enhanced here thanks to more vertically designed scenarios, new options that greatly improve mobility and new adventure companions: the canine, dogs that join the classic feline (kittens) that have always accompanied us.

And all this with a recreation of the habitats of the monsters more dynamic and interconnected than ever. The fighting options have also grown thanks to the cordopter that allows us to ride on the monsters to confront them with other predators. There are also new features such as frenzy missions, a kind of tower defense that brings freshness to the whole and a huge supply of content that will keep us glued to Nintendo Switch for months. And that everything will be expanded with a multitude of free updates.

Platforms: Nintendo Switch

Persona 5 Strikers

Persona 5 Strikers has been a tremendous surprise. Understand us, we already know that Persona 5 is one of the best JRPGs of the last decade, so we were looking forward to enjoy this spin-off, but the change of genre had us worried. Developed by the kings of music, Omega Force, this new installment abandons turn-based combat and much of the social system between characters to focus on more unbridled action.

The music genre is basically a nipponada in which we face hundreds of opponents at the same time in mass combat. The system works great in Persona 5 Strikers because, at the same time that we enjoy the frenetic action without regard we must also pause the action to execute the magics that take advantage of the weaknesses of each type of enemy. An almost perfect combination of real-time combat and turn-based strategy. All this, of course, with a memorable art direction, equally cool characters and an interesting plot that can take us more than 60 hours to complete.

Platforms: PS4, Nintendo Switch and PC

Hitman 3

IO Interactive has done an outstanding job with Hitman. The saga had fallen into oblivion after some rather weak installments, but since its reboot in 2016 it has managed to return to its origins, even adding elements and mechanics of the most interesting. This third installment is the culmination of the World of Assassination trilogy, which has led Agent 47 to travel halfway around the world assassinating his targets in the most creative way possible.

Stealth is still the pillar on which the experience is based. We must disguise ourselves, sneak around and, in general, go unnoticed to eliminate the bad guys without attracting attention. This installment also allows us to import the contents of Hitman and Hitman 2 to play the trilogy in full even with PS VR, the Virtual Reality case compatible with PS4 and PS5. There is no other game in which planning our actions and carrying them out is so much fun or offers us such freedom of action.

Platforms: PS4, PS5, Nintendo Switch, Stadia, Xbox One, Xbox X|S Series and PC.

Narita Boy

The debut of the Spanish team Studio Koba has been a pleasant surprise for lovers of adventures with a classic look, but current gameplay. The nostalgia of the 80's is everywhere with a multitude of references to video games, movies, books, etc ... of that unforgettable decade. Thanks to an absolutely beautiful pixel-art art direction, the game enters through the eyes, but there is much more.

We find some very dense dialogues at the gameplay level and a somewhat complicated first few hours for newcomers. Still, the adventure takes shape as we progress thanks to an exciting combination of exploration with Metroidvania dyes, combat with much more depth and strategy than it seems at first, and a story with a great ending. Narita Boy is, in short, work as complex as it is unique.

Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and PC.

Little Nightmares II

Tarsier Studios are making a name for themselves thanks to this saga that follows the style of gems like Limbo or Inside. Thus, we are facing a 2D development platformer in which puzzles also have a lot of weight. The development is tremendously scripted, offering us the most exciting situations, although it seems too predictable. Trial and error are one of the keys to discovering what to do at all times.

The gameplay twist is found in the importance of stealth and terror, as we control a helpless child who must sneak away from horrifying beings that seek to kill us in a thousand ways. The art direction is brutal, one of the most beautiful games of the year, no doubt.

Platforms: PS4, PS5, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Stadia, and PC.


A small group of developers has turned Steam upside down. They have done so thanks to Valheim, a survival adventure set in a Viking fantasy universe. The game invites us to develop our character by searching for resources, building a shelter (or whatever else we feel like because there are already millenarian hawks and the like), and making objects to improve our protagonist's equipment.

What makes Valheim different is its commitment to combat as the central axis of the experience. To progress, it's not enough to build better weapons and armor, but that crafting is directly linked to our ability in battles, as we are forced to defeat certain final bosses to unlock new crafting options. A title with enormous possibilities that can evolve much more is already one of the must-haves of the genre despite being available only as Early Access.

Platforms: PC

Loop Hero

One of the surprises so far this year is, without a doubt, this addictive indie game sponsored by Devolver Digital. It is a game in which our hero advances through the scenarios and fights alone, without us controlling him. What's the fun then? We are "designing" the game map by placing different pieces to generate new rows, resting places, places to obtain resources, etc...

In addition, we also have to choose the equipment and manage a village where we can build new buildings to unlock improvements and new game options. Everything seems relatively simple until we discover the different combinations when placing these pieces on the map, which can lead to the most unexpected consequences. Its gameplay loop and its risk-reward mechanics get everyone who tries it trapped.

Platforms: PC

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