2017 in Gaming: the Year’s Most Memorable Moments

I’ve been open in my love for this year in gaming, but it bears repeating that 2017 was one of the best years for games in quite some time. It wasn’t always that way for the culture around them, between EA’s litany of upsetting to insulting decisions and the end of American net neutrality threatening the entire industry. The games themselves, though, were often more interesting, exploratory, innovative, surprising, and ambitious on the whole than we’re used to seeing. It’s easy to imagine many of them inspiring and influencing the industry for years to come.

And along with innovative mechanics, ideas, and ambitions, this was a year of wonderful moments, some good enough to sell a game all on their own – the surprisingly emotional unveiling of Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle, for instance. Other times, they were from outside the actual games, like when Jeff Gerstmann of Giant Bomb kicked off a short trend of journalists tasting Nintendo Switch cartridges. And remember the trailer where Yoko Taro advertised NieR: Automata by rolling around on the floor, before the game became so critically and commercially successful that it may have helped save PlatinumGames? There was also that time game director Kate Barrett gave Ready Player One the adaptation it truly deserves, not as that upcoming (and inevitably poor) Steven Spielberg film, but as a game satire as contemptuous of Ernest Cline’s atrocious novel as I am; that was pretty great.

So, I decided to make a list. Below I, along with several members of the Source Gaming team, have concocted a cadre of levels, environments, sequences, dungeons, boss fights, and additional things from the broader world of gaming. These moments were funny, exhilarating, inventive, wild, and shocking, and they helped energize a year of wonderful games. Thanks to Cart Boy for edits, as well as to him, Spazzy_D, and NantenJex for contributing.

NOTE TO ALL READERS: Spoilers Ahoy. Each section will be in spoiler tags and organized by their release date, so you can read whichever sound interesting. Hopefully, they may interest you in checking out some of 2017’s offerings you may have missed.

Nintendo Switch Presentation (January 13th)
Resident Evil 7: Biohazard, Jack Baker (January 24)
NieR: Automata, Ko-shi & Ro-shi: (February 23)
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, the Great Plateau (March 3)
Persona 5, Madarame’s Museum Palace (April 4)
What Remains of Edith Finch, Lewis’ Coronation (April 25)
Source Gaming goes to BitSummit (May 20)
The Devolver Digital Press Conference (June 12)
Metroid’s Comeback (June 13)
Sonic Mania, a throwback boss (August 15th)
Super Mario Odyssey, New Donk City (October 27)
Wolfenstein II: the New Colossus, the audition (October 27)
Josef Fares’ Interview at the 2017 Game Awards: (December 7)

Of course, this only scratches the surface of games of 2017. We’ll almost certainly end up kicking ourselves months or years down the line when we play some of the stuff we didn’t include: Hollow Knight, Prey, Golf Story, The Sexy Brutale, and others. And so, that’s where you come in. What were some of your favorites of the ones we didn’t cover? Or, hell, were there games that were memorable for their not being good, things like Bubsy: the Woollies Strike Back, Mass Effect: Andromeda, or yes, Sonic Forces? Do you want to highlight other moments from games we included? What about competitive multiplayer – were you thrilled from one of Splatoon 2’s Splatfests, or Salem’s Smash For upset at Evo 2017? Write in the comments, tell us on Twitter or Facebook, but more than anything else, enjoy playing. This was a year of gaming we’ll be remembering years from now, and for mostly great reasons.



Librarian, amateur film critic, gourmet, and meshuggeneh, I've as many fitful obsessions and interests as you can count. My articles predominately focus on critical analysis of a wide range of Nintendo titles with a particular eye to the company’s ongoing history. First played the original Smash Bros. blind at a neighbor’s house, and have been fascinated with it since.

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One comment

  1. Remember in 2017 when Shigeru Miyamoto was at that party in Los Angeles, and his hair caught on fire, and he had to jump into a fountain to douse it? What a crazy guy!

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