Games of the Year

RPGFan Games of the Year 2022 ~ Editors’ Awards: Bob Richardson

RPGFan Games of the Year 2022 Editors' Awards

This is the first year — maybe in the entire time I’ve written for the site — in which I felt I played enough high quality new releases to warrant a Top 5. What a banger year for gaming overall.

5. Triangle Strategy

If Triangle Strategy had the same tenacity and punch in the first half of the game as it did the latter, then this one would be ranked higher, for sure. As disappointed as I was out of the gate, Triangle Strategy pivoted hard as the story, its decisions, and strategic gameplay ramped considerably halfway through. The music, characters, and atmosphere may be reminiscent of an era, but Triangle Strategy is a stellar title that stands on its own. I’m still eyeing it in my library, biting my nails as I consider New Game+, something I never do.

4. The Quarry

An interactive horror movie not just in atmosphere but visuals, The Quarry guides players through a foggy summer camp under ominous moonlight. One player may turn left while another turns right, and that can mean the difference between life and death. To some extent, choices matter, but what matters more than anything else is the pacing and mystery behind this technical marvel. Once The Quarry gets going, it doesn’t stop, and neither could I.

A woman in darkness with a light behind her in The Quarry


This is what indie’s all about. The level of detail in every environment, person, and acid-induced trip brings NORCOs deep, heartfelt story to life. Inspired by true events, NORCO‘s tale of big business crushing a community is always relevant, but especially these days. Yet, as serious as the subject matter is, it’s somehow lighthearted and funny at the same time. In fact, as deep and thought-provoking as this title is, the humor is surprisingly base at times, but still tastefully executed and always well-timed.

2. Roadwarden

Somehow reviving an entire genre doesn’t land Roadwarden the number one spot. Really? A text-based game is the second-best game of the year? You bet your hiney it is, sonny and/or lassie! In truth, the genre hasn’t “died,” but we haven’t seen anything like Roadwarden in a hell of a long time. The music, world-building, and flawless balance in description and getting to the point are on another level. Everything about this game is satisfying in the most deliciously depressing way possible. If you’ve an inclination toward sociology or venturing into the unknown, Roadwarden‘s your game this year.

1. Elden Ring

Game of the year? Try game of the decade (maybe). Game of my lifetime? Elden Ring might be the most technically “perfect” game I’ve played to date with few, quibblable flaws. Is it my favorite game of all time? No, but it’s close. I personally love titles like To the Moon and Final Fantasy Tactics because of how they’ve moved me personally, while Elden Ring is just raw exceptionality that didn’t exactly hit me in the feels. A world that took my breath away visually, artistically, and just in terms of unbridled fun, Elden Ring‘s level design and pristine combat elevate gaming to another level for everyone. Thank you for helping the industry do better, FromSoftware.

Screenshot of Elden Ring, one of many RPGs to win big at the Game Awards 2022

Music Track of the Year: Grand Norzelian Mines (Triangle Strategy)

This was an instant favorite as soon as I heard it. It relays the emotions of the scene each time while also touting itself as a gripping battle theme; Triangle Strategy‘s Mines theme boasts bells and chorus, two of my favorite musical devices. Whether writing reviews or just chilling and spacing out, I can’t help bobbing or jamming out to this theme–it speaks to my heart!

Soundtrack of the Year: Roadwarden

Triangle Strategy may have my favorite track of the year, but Roadwarden‘s entire soundtrack is mind-shatteringly spectacular in a somber sort of way. Nick Roder expertly shows off how to maintain a style and mood no matter the situation, be it a quiet town, melancholic encounter, or grim battle. I’ve had this soundtrack playing on loop several times this year on my Spotify, and I’ve only grown to appreciate it more.

Jerry Williams

Jerry Williams

Jerry has been reviewing games at RPGFan since 2009. Over that period, he has grown in his understanding that games, their stories and characters, and the people we meet through them can enrich our lives and make us better people. He enjoys keeping up with budding scholarly research surrounding games and their benefits.