Backlog Club: Nintendo Life’s Games Of Not-This Year Awards 2022

Photo: Nintendo Live

The thing about the Game of the Year awards is that it presupposes that we’re all adults with plenty of free time to keep up with the ever-growing stream of game releases. You would think that game journalists, of all kinds of adults, would be more on top of this than most…and you’d be wrong! Like everyone else, we get in the way, drift, put off, and pile up, spending hours playing this hot new thing called Skyrim instead of checking out the Elden Ring.

If you’re familiar with the semi-regular Backlog Club series, you’ll know that we’ve spent a good portion of this year playing games other than the 2022 games. So, in honor of the games that dominated the 2022 games, but aren’t eligible for this year’s GOTY, we present to you the terrifying title “The best non-2022 Switch game we’ve played in a whole bunch” 2022 Game Awards is not this year. Let’s go!

Jim Norman, staff writer

Feature: Nintendo Live
We suppose this is the real awe

Winner: Metroid Dread

Realistically, my answer to that question would be Metroid Dread – a little indie game that I’m sure you haven’t heard of. Except, of course, you’ve heard of it. everybody has. I was pretty late to the party at this event and didn’t pick Dread up until November of this year, so I kind of feel like I’m saying “Oh, have you ever played Breath of the Wild? It’s really good!So I’ll wrap it up quickly before talking about something else: great game, one of the best games on Switch, best Metroid game ever?

If I were to dismiss the awe based on the fact of it Of course this is really good, then I’ll have to go to Owlboy instead. How on earth have I not played this before is completely beyond me! It had everything I look for in a video game. Stunning art style, interesting combat system, man in a green hat. If I could make it last longer, I would in an instant, but the few evenings I spent playing this title were some of my best gaming memories of the year. It may not quite match up to Metroid Dread in terms of The best games on Switchbut I know which one made me cry the most…

Kate Gray, Staff Writer

Feature: Nintendo Live
It’s so wild that a game can be so amazing it also includes shots like this

Winner: Slaughter Spire

This year’s GOTY is Metal Gear Solid V, a game I steadfastly ignored when it came out because of the awful way it treats women (or, well, “women,” since there’s really only one). But oh my gosh, it’s a wonderfully cool thing after all – a masterpiece of “I wonder if this will work” systems design. Shame on sexism.

If we’re talking about Switch games, 2022’s no-brainer GOTY is easily Slay the Spire. I played it on Steam when it first came out, and I played it a Much At the time, but getting it on Switch easily tripled my hours in the game. It’s a perfect pick-and-play game, and I think this type of game gets overlooked on GOTY lists because it’s just so dumpy. It’s very good, and I’d love to be able to rediscover a game like this.

Gavin Lin, editor

Feature: Nintendo Live
Spelunky? More like spe-ooky

Winner: Spelunky

Earlier this year, I was perusing my Switch slate determined to tick something off my backlog to make myself feel better. Something short, something sweet, something quick that I can complete in just a couple of hours to get my dopamine surge going when you get something off the list.

Stupidly, I saw Spelunky sitting there and eavesdropping on that. Having enjoyed a few roguelites, I thought it was time to go back to the one that began indie devs’ love affair with the genre – at least on consoles – a decade ago. it is good. It’s really good. You already know that, but if you’ve somehow ignored it for the past 10 years like I’ve done, I can vouch that Derek Yu’s Spelunky video game is a good video game. I haven’t finished it yet, and when I do, I have Spelunky 2 waiting for me. By the time you’re done that I could have ticked off a dozen other games from the backlog… but none of them would be Spelunky.

So first things first, right? Yu may have finished developing UFO 50 By the time I get past them!

Alana Haggis, Staff Writer

Feature: Nintendo Live
Put the thing next to the other thing

Winner: Dump

I feel like it’s cheating to put a game that came out in the last few months of 2021 here, but oh my gosh, I wish I’d played Unpacking when it first came out.

Actual and real unloading is stressful. One moment you’re packing your life into perishable cardboard boxes, then the next you’re trying to find new places for it in a brand new wrapper. Unpacking (the game) removes tension but still maintains inflection – it’s a game that manages to tell a story without words. For ten hours I unpacked carefully at various times, filling the racks and examination rooms, paying attention to changes both in the type of house and things–what was missing and what was left–and mood. It’s a beautiful game and it made me more optimistic and positive for my next life-changing move.


What is GOTY-that-wasn’t-actually-TY? Give us your catch-up candidates in the comments!


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