December 10, 2019
As the 2010s come to a close, we are seeing a lot of rankings of the best games of the decade pop up. Metacritic has gotten in on the action and recently published its ranking of the 50 best games of the decade, according to their Metacritic scores. It probably won’t come as a surprise to readers of this site, but The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild for the Nintendo Switch tied for the top spot on the list with a Metacritic score of 97! The rest of the top five consisted of Super Mario Galaxy 2 for the Nintendo Wii, Red Dead Redemption 2 and Grand Theft Auto 5 for the Playstation 4, and Super Mario Odyssey for the Nintendo Switch. Ocarina of Time 3D and Skyward Sword also appear in the top 50, ranking 14th and 24th, respectively.
In addition to ranking the best games of the decade by Metacritic score, the article also summarizes which games have appeared most frequently in various publications’ best games of the decade lists. In this ranking, Breath of the Wild absolutely SMASHES the competition. It appears in 10 of the 13 rankings aggregated as of December 6, including a whopping SIX first place rankings!
Metacritic scores are an imperfect way to determine the best games around, but aggregated data like this really shows just how critically successful The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild was. I have no doubt it will continue to influence open-world game design for many years to come! You can check out Metacritic’s complete ranking here.