The demand for great sports games is a strong one.
Each year, fans across the globe yearn for their favorite sports title to improve upon its previous installment in order to provide the best experience possible. Though it doesn’t always work out that way, 2017 was a year that sports fans received pretty strong outings from a number of games both small and large.
From indie titles like Mutant Football League and Fire Pro Wrestling World to big AAA games like the returning NBA Live 18 and MLB The Show 17, there was no shortage of fun entries for the sports gamer. But what games stood out to the staff of Sports Gamers Online as the best of the best? It’s time for Sports Gamers Online’s 2017 Year End Awards starting with the best new feature in a sports game.
Best New Feature: The Neighborhood — NBA 2K18
To say NBA 2K’s MyCareer was becoming stale could be viewed as an overstatement, but there’s no doubt that change was definitely needed to keep the mode fresh. Enter The Neighborhood.
This new mode allowed players to build up their created baller anyway they saw fit. Wanted to keep your game on the streets? You can do that. Want to go play against the best in the World in the NBA? You can do that, too.
The mode did face tough competition from NBA Live 18’s “The One” career, but, in the end, we just viewed it as a much more open mode.
Best Indie Game: Fire Pro Wrestling World
After a 10-year absence, Fire Pro Wrestling came back in a big way with Fire Pro Wrestling World. Featuring numerous modes, online multiplayer and its trademark customization suite, FPWW proved to fans that the series can thrive in today’s saturated market. The game offers open-ended entertainment, and truly allows players to make the wrestling world of their dreams.
With a PS4 release on the way, a management mode and a partnership with New Japan Pro Wrestling, things are only getting better with FPWW.
Best AAA Game: MLB The Show 17
From game modes to gameplay, MLB The Show 17 is AAA sports done right. There’s literally something for everyone whether you love the thrill of online play or the relaxed feeling of offline. From Road to the Show to Diamond Dynasty, MLB The Show 17 gave fans hours of entertainment in 2017.
Best Racing Game: Forza Motorsport 7
It wasn’t the best year for racing games, but Forza Motorsport 7 continues to be the best racing sim available for players. A plethora of cars, incredible visuals and simple learning curve kept the series at the top of the racing food chain.
Best Game Mode: MyLeague/MyGM — NBA 2K18
Despite what developers and publishers may have you believe based on what gets more attention, Franchise Mode is still a major part of every sports release.
Fans love to take control of their own team and build it how they see fit with the hopes of leading them to a championship. While some games have seen the mode become stale, NBA 2K18’s version(s) of the mode is anything but. From creating your own team to seeing the league expand or change rules, NBA 2K18’s franchise mode is a living world that grows as the year’s go by.
Game of the Year: MLB The Show 17
In our review this year we questioned if MLB The Show 17 was the new sports king. It offers so much to players, that you’re hard pressed to find anything deeper this year. The players look better than ever thanks to the team at Sony San Diego utilizing the full power of the PlayStation 4 for visuals, and the number of modes at your disposal makes this game the deepest in the history of the series.