Best games of 2023

Patrick Dane
Marvel's Spider-Man 2 Link from Zelda and Baldur's Gate 3 in Dexerto's Game of the Year

It’s hard to remember a time when so many great games have been released in a single year – these are our picks for the top 10 best games of 2023.

2023 has been one of the most notable years in gaming in recent memory. Starting with the Dead Space remake in January, all the way up to Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora in December, big new releases across a range of genres demanded our attention every month. Fighting games, action games, even remakes of classics that you never thought you needed, there really was something for all players.

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It was a lot to keep up with – perhaps even impossible. For just about everyone who plays games, that ‘pile of shame’ they hope to get to one day grew. With that in mind, hopefully, we can help you decide which are the essential games that you shouldn’t miss from this year.

Below is a top 10 list of Dexerto’s best games from the year as chosen by our gaming writers across the globe.

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10. Street Fighter 6

street fighter 6 tournament uses nude chun li modCapcom

Street Fighter 6 is, at its core, a high-speed game of chess. It also completely refines a tried and tested formula. Behind the flashy fireballs, and occasionally goofy characters of the latest game in the legendary fighting series, lies a test of skill.

Street Fighter 6 specifically equips you with all of the tools you need to improve and climb the online ranks much better than any other game in the series. Fighting games can be incomprehensible, but Capcom aced the onboarding that has been desperately missing from previous entries. With a robust single-player campaign to lull you in alongside redesigned, newbie-friendly controls, it’s Capcom’s most accomplished fighter yet.

Author: Sayem Ahmed

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9. Assassin’s Creed Mirage

Assassin's Creed Mirage LengthUbisoft

Assassin’s Creed Mirage took a step back from its modern framework and honed in on the success of older titles. Ubisoft returned to the Middle East, placing you in the shoes of Basim in Baghdad. This was a tighter experience than the likes of Valhalla or Odyssey, with the developer instead focusing on one location and a smaller scope.

That proved to be an amazing choice, thanks to Mirage’s perfectly-sized world, compelling characters, and renewed importance on the act of assassination. It manages to create a sound bridge between the Assassin’s Creed many once knew, and the best parts of newer entries.

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Author: Jess Filby

8. Super Mario Bros. Wonder

An image of Mario as an elephant in Super Mario Bros. Wonder.Nintendo

Nintendo’s biggest surprise this year was Super Mario Bros. Wonder. Clearly inspired by the community-led lunacy of Super Mario Maker and the increased expression of The Super Mario Bros. movie, Wonder is a game that does what every great Mario game does – takes what works and twists it. That twist came in the form of Wonder Seeds, a new item that Mario would pick up that would drastically remix levels, from Mario becoming an elephant or where pipes started spewing water into the level.

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Mario and the gang control fantastically, wild new powers elevate every second of gameplay, and from level design to audio, everything feels expertly placed by developers filled with decades of experience.

Author: Nathan Ellingsworth

7. Diablo 4

diablo 4 Season 3Blizzard Entertainment

Thanks to a compelling campaign, generally satisfying gameplay, and a cast of characters well worth going to Hell and back for, Diablo 4 more than earns its spot amongst the year’s best games. It failed to stick the landing in some other respects, however, as divisive monetization practices and the inconsistent quality of post-launch support left players worried about its long-term future.

Fortunately, the advent of Season 2: Season of Blood marked Blizzard’s first steps towards righting that course. New gameplay features reinvigorated what some viewed as an increasingly stale combat loop. Meanwhile, balance adjustments, improvements to the Renown system, World Bosses, and other features even offered the most skeptical users a reason to dive back in. And the future looks brighter still, especially following the recent announcement of the Vessel of Hatred expansion. While Diablo 4 has hit numerous obstacles, the overall experience has proven unforgettable.

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Author: Brianna Reeves

6. Resident Evil 4 Remake

Leon kennedy inCapcom

Resident Evil 4 is one of the greatest games of all time, and it holds up to this day. That’s why Resident Evil 4 Remake was a risky move by Capcom. While do-overs of RE2 and RE3 have been successful, they were revamps of much older games into modern trappings. It made sense for those to see remakes – that logic doesn’t hold for Resident Evil 4.

However, by updating systems, taking a few surprising twists, and making a stunning-looking game, Capcom somehow managed to not only honor what came before but also take it to new heights for a new generation.

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Author: Sam Smith

5. Octopath Traveler 2

An image of Octopath Traveller II artwork.Square Enix / Aquire
Octopath Traveler 2 is the sequel to 2018 classic inspired JRPG.

The original Octopath Traveler did a brilliant job of taking elements of classic SNES-era JRPGs and infusing a modern twist – all while introducing the HD-2D art style that Square Enix has brought back for games like Triangle Strategy and Live A Live’s remake.

Octopath Traveler 2 takes everything fans loved about the first game and improves it. All the elements of its unique battle system and storytelling are here, enhanced by quality-of-life changes and even more opportunities for its new cast of eight heroes to interact with each other. In a year packed with great games, it’s not surprising this February release was largely overshadowed, but Octopath Traveler 2 is well worth any RPG fan’s time.

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Author: Noelle Corbett

4. Marvel’s Spider-Man 2

Peter Parker and Miles Morales in Marvel's Spider-Man 2Insomniac Games

An exciting sequel that goes above and beyond expectations, Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 is one of the very best games of 2023. Insomniac Games has crafted an excellent follow-up, all set in a magnificently built New York City. With the introduction of iconic characters like Kraven The Hunter and Venom from the comic book franchise, the story takes a darker turn, challenging Peter and Miles at every step.

Feeling more fluid and dynamic, the web-swinging and gliding web wings mechanics immerse you while navigating the open world. Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 is a must-play for fans of the friendly neighborhood superhero as it truly embodies the spirit of what it means to be a hero.

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Author: Rishabh Sabarwal

3. Alan Wake 2

Alan Wake 2 DLCRemedy Entertainment

Alan Wake 2 is a remarkable achievement for Remedy Entertainment and stands out as an iconic entry to 2023’s volume of breathtaking single-player releases. Beneath its surface level of solid action gameplay and creative survival horror qualities is an unparalleled, dark, twisted story and surprisingly-meta analysis of the arts industry. 

Remedy’s sequel,14 years in the making, is one of the most unique single-player action games you are likely to play, as it continuously brings clever surprises and mindblowing details into its wider narrative. The final result is a rollercoaster experience that shocks and delights you in only the best ways possible.

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Author: Olly Smith

2. The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom

legend of zelda movieNintendo

Overcoming the exceptional quality of Breath of the Wild was never going to be an easy feat, but The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom has done just that. It not only surpasses Breath of the Wild with its time-traveling story and lovable cast of characters but also rejuvenates the well-trodden land of Hyrule, making it feel fresh and new.

This is largely due to Link’s new Ultrahand ability – a mechanic that rewards players for their creativity and willingness to experiment. Whether it’s soaring through the skies in a rudimentary airship or facing off against Gleeoks within the confines of a hulking mech, “Tears of the Kingdom” consistently wows players with exciting possibilities, making it hard to put down.

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When combined with the deadly array of new enemies, a massive map expansion, and game-changing abilities, you have the recipe for an incredibly thrilling adventure. Tears of the Kingdom embraces the foundations laid down by its predecessor and builds upon them, pushing this beloved action-adventure series to ever-greater heights. Zelda fan or not, you owe it to yourself to play this Switch game.

Author: James Busby

Dexerto’s Game of the Year – Baldur’s Gate 3

Baldur's Gate winning Dexerto's Game of the Year

Baldur’s Gate 3 is a once-in-a-decade type game. The Witcher 3 and Mass Effect come to mind when it comes to RPGs that shifted the landscape. Larian Studios hit those heights when it single-handedly revived the cRPG genre earlier this year.

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Putting you in the shoes of a traveler thrust into a world-ending situation, this is the best DnD campaign you’ll ever play – and all in the convenience of a 200-hour-long video game. If you’ve ever loved the RPG genre, this is a must-play, as the game allows you unparalleled freedom and a cast of genuinely unforgettable characters.

No game exceeded expectations like Baldur’s Gate 3 this year. It came out in August and it’s still impossible to log on to X/Twitter and not see a beautiful piece of fan art of Astarion or Karlach. In terms of cultural impact, it’s hard to argue that anything hit quite like it. It’s all deserved, too. Larian proved it is the new standard when it comes to role-playing video games.

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Author: Patrick Dane

Join us throughout the week as we reveal Dexerto’s Best Multiplayer Game, Best Ongoing Game, and Best Season/DLC.

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About The Author

Patrick Dane is Dexerto's Gaming Editor. He has worked as a professional games journalist for over a decade, writing for sites like TechRadar, IGN, PC Gamer, GamesRadar, International Busniess Times and Edge magazine. He has over 2000 hours in both Overwatch and Destiny 2 and has spent far too long in too many live service games.