Here at The Koalition we are extremely proud and excited for what 2013 has brought us, but are also looking forward to 2014 more and more with each passing day. While this year saw tremendous improvements over 2012 for us in many ways, we are always aiming to improve and increase that even more as time continues to pass. To give you a hard number comparison, our overall hits for the year of 2013 increased by a tremendous amount of 41% total! As a result of our accomplishments this year, we wanted to share that with all of you. I’ll now break down what some of our proudest moments as a site have been in terms of convention coverage, and then count off the top 5 most popular reviews on the site, as well as the top 10 most popular posts.
Let’s dig in!
A website or blog’s ability to consistently attend and provide coverage of gaming conventions is one of the key barometers of success in this highly competitive world. Every other blog and gaming site can tell you – you get a lot more hits in June around E3 if you can cover the event and that proves true every single year. Unfortunately, not everyone can go to E3 and even fewer get the opportunity to attend as members of the gaming press as they continually raise the requirements each and every year. Thankfully, in 2013, we were able to send 4 members of our team, from around the world, to the convention in June. Not only did they have a great time, but they met a lot of people, fostered existing relationships and secured valuable hands-on preview time with some of the hottest upcoming games. We plan to make an even bigger splash at E3 this coming year in 2014!
E3 is of course not the only convention in the universe, as we attended several throughout the year. If you happened to be at any of the following, you might have ran into one of us. I made a quick list of the most popular post from each convention below:
Granted, I just made that list quickly and we very well may have sent one or two people to other conventions for coverage and representation over the course of the entire year. Overall, we did a pretty solid job of attending a wide variety of conventions across the nation. Some were heavily focused on video games, whether it be AAA or indie, others were more community oriented and others still were anime or other geek-culture topics, but we feel that we did a good job of spreading ourselves out this year. Do you have any suggestions for conventions we should try and attend in 2014? Let us know!
Now for what you really came for – to see which reviews and posts were the most popular over the course of the entire year!
The Koalition’s Top 5 Most Popular Game Reviews of 2013
Not too surprising here – it’s one of the most popular animes in the world right now and shows no real signs of slowing down any time soon. I wrote this review and while I cannot call myself a big fan of the series, I enjoyed my time with the game overall. I also especially enjoyed my time making that gameplay video you see up above – I am particularly proud of how that one turned out in the end. Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 is a fun, fast and furious game that I would definitely recommend to fans of the anime, or fans of chaotic fighting games in general.
This one really doesn’t even need any explaining. Bioshock Infinite was not only one of the highest praised and best-selling games, many people are clamoring for it to be the overall game of the year. In fact, many have argued on our site in favor of this very sentiment. The game is absolutely beautiful and concludes with one of the most intriguing and truly thought provoking endings of all-time, rivaling some of the best Hollywood blockbusters. Obviously our review for this game got a lot of hits because, frankly, so many people played it!
Another one that is far from surprising is my review for Neverwinter. From the start of the year, I knew this would be a huge game and I had been covering it all year long. While it may not be the best MMO on the market, it’s certainly in the upper tier, especially in terms of free-to-play offerings. Never before has a game truly captured what I imagined a D&D video/computer game could be like – without being slow and boring. Equal parts action and role-playing, Neverwinter pushes a lot of the right buttons.
Now we are getting into the surprising ranks. Granted, the game is quite good for fans of the genre, but it’s far from what we expected to rank among the most popular reviews on our site for 2013. Not only is it an incredibly niche genre that only the most hardcore of grand-strategy gamers truly enjoy, but it’s an expansion for a game – not even a full, new release! With that being said, our writer, Chris Macaulay, swears by this franchise and if he isn’t playing CKII on Steam, he’s probably looking up mods to play CKII on Steam or studying for his PhD in Political Science so he can teach people how to play CKII on Steam.
Not all great things are good things, and that’s proven especially with FIFA 2014. In the end, Mr. Kennedy’s review did not hold back on criticisms of the game and franchise as a whole, pointing out several of the flaws within the game itself and ultimately awarding it a 58% – not an awful score on our scale, but quite low for one of the most popular game franchises in the world. He continued with this distaste for the most recent installment with 14 reasons he wanted a refund. Sometimes love hurts, but other times it downright humiliates.
The Koalition’s Top 10 Most Popular Articles of 2013
For this list, I’m not going to provide a paragraph of commentary for the post – most of these speak for themselves in the titles alone (you will notice a lot of lists ended up here – people love clicking on lists!) so I will instead just hyperlink to each post individually within the list. Also, I got tired of typing about just 5 reviews, so 10 more about articles sounds like too much. Shh…
Thank You, Everybody!
There you go, that was 2013 at The Koalition in a nutshell. We went to conventions, we played games, we wrote reviews about those games and then we made lists about stuff. That pretty much covers our free time – what about yours? Do you have any big plans in the gaming world for your 2014, or do you maybe have ideas on how we can improve even further? Please give us a shout out in the comments below, hearing from all of you is what keeps us motivated!
Oh and here, have a gallery of picture of us doing our best gaming journalist impressions: