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Change YoY: =   My Rating: 9.4 / 10

Not sure if this is a controversial statement or not, but Nier: Automata is easily the best game PlatinumGames has ever made. It is also the first game where the game's director and writer Yoko Taro had the budget to match his storytelling vision. I've been a fan of both for a long time, but neither one has done anything else on the level of this game before or since. Nier: Automata is one of the rare examples of a story that could only really be told in a video game. There are elements of the story that I won't spoil, which would not really work in any other medium. Part of the reason is because those elements are also part of the gameplay, so taking one out would also impact the other. The story itself is also excellent in general, dealing with themes such as existence, humanity, the value of life, and many other often rather dark subject matters. 

One of the main reasons Nier: Automata is this high on my list, besides the exceptional gameplay, great story, and one of the best video game soundtracks of the last decade, is the sheer emotional impact it had on me. Though there were numerous moments throughout that will likely remain with me for a very long time, there is also a specific scene in this game that basically forced me to take a break from the game. Again, I won't spoil it, but this makes Nier: Automata one of exactly two games that have had such a resounding impact on me that I've had to put down the controller for a while and just reflect on what just happened and try to accept it.