God of War Ragnarok has surprisingly snatched the top spot on TIME’s Best Video Games of 2023, ahead of Elden Ring which sits on the list in fourth place. Despite FromSoftware’s epic adventure receiving top marks from critics and fans, both The Quarry and Horizon Forbidden West sneaked ahead in the rankings as well. Meanwhile, four PlayStation-exclusive games made the list, showing the strength of PS5’s catalog this year.
Every game in TIME Best Games of 2023 list is available on PS5
Here’s the full list of TIME’s Top 10 Best Video Games of 2023:
- God of War: Ragnarok
- Horizon Forbidden West
- The Quarry
- Elden Ring
- The Last of Us Part 1
- Resident Evil Village: Shadows of Rose
- LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder’s Revenge
The listicle doesn’t provide a clear explanation for why Elden Ring, which won Game of the Year in the Japan Game Awards 2023, is all the way in fourth place. That said, the description for God of War Ragnarok says that it’s “an epic and emotional saga.” Likewise, the article praises Horizon Forbidden West for “its emotional heft [and] memorable characterization,” while highlighting The Quarry’s “likable characters you want to see survive the night.” So it would seem that this TIME list favors games that have more traditional characters similar to those in film and television.
PS5 exclusives have also dominated the nominations for The Game Awards, with Stray, Horizon Forbidden West, and God of War Ragnarok all nominated for Game of the Year.