Games of the Year

RPGFan Games of the Year 2023: Game of the Year

GOTY 2023 Game of the Year Baldur's Gate III

Winner: Baldur’s Gate III

Though it had been floating around in early access for a couple years, Baldur’s Gate III still felt like it snuck up on us, partly because we didn’t expect it’d be this great. BGIII caught the essence of Dungeons & Dragons at an opportune time, coinciding with a new hardware generation that could handle Larian’s grand ambitions to match the feeling of gathering around the table with friends, D20 in hand. Most of all, it captured what people love most about D&D: Asking the DM, “What if I do this?” BGIII not only lets you attempt your wildest, most ridiculous ideas but is responsive to them as soon as you start playing. 

Besides becoming the quintessential D&D game, BGIII features a unique story with a groundbreaking open-ended structure, an unforgettable setting in the Underdark, a nuance-filled translation of D&D’s combat, and top-shelf voice-acting talent breathing life into fascinating characters, all of whom you’d like to get to know (and possibly kill). 

by Abraham Kobylanski

GOTY 2023 Game of the Year Runner-Up The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom

Runner-Up: The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom

In a year of incredible games, even the likes of The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom faced tough competition. Link’s latest (massive) adventure thoroughly impressed many of us. Link’s new abilities created unparalleled freedom in letting you tackle situations any way you can dream up — so long as you can glue all the pieces together — and made for a game that could deliver a different experience for everyone playing it, which is refreshing, fascinating, and above all, just plain fun.

by Mike Salbato

Readers’ Choice: 2023 Game of the Year

Winner: Baldur’s Gate III (37.9% of votes)

Runner-Up: Octopath Traveler II (16.6% of votes)

Abraham Kobylanski

Abraham Kobylanski

Abe's love for RPGs began when picked up Earthbound for the SNES in 1995, and it hasn't gone out since. He grew up with the classic 16-bit RPGs, like Chrono Trigger and Final Fantasies, though he's gravitated more toward Western and Strategy RPGs lately. His passion for the genre was especially reinvigorated in the past few years with amazing games like FFVII:R, Persona 5 and Yakuza: LAD. He's always on the hunt for cool, smaller obscure games as well.