The awesome and alluring RPS Advent Calendar 2017

We like to have our eyes fixed on the future here at RPS, celebrating those games and creators that push things forward, but from time to time, tradition can be a fine thing and the RPS Advent Calendar is our grandest tradition. Here’s how it works.

As December begins, we round up our favourite games of the year and trap them behind the doors of a giant calendar/dungeon. Every day, we open a door and allow the game behind it to emerge, bewildered, into the cold of winter. Don’t worry – there’s plenty to keep them occupied while they’re locked inside the calendar, including a bottle of pop, a half-completed Witcher colouring book and a cracked snowglobe. The final game to leave is our absolute favourite game of the year, but they’re all great games so do greet their emergence with applause, cheers and kind words. Perhaps you could bring them a warm blanket and a cup of cocoa?

Now is the time to bookmark this page because it is where you will find the calendar. Every day, a new door will unlock, allowing you to click on it and discover the bounty inside. Don’t try to open any of the doors before they’re unlocked though. The calendar is a living thing and has been known to bite.

We’ve done this many times before, including in 2007 when the calendar was a photo of a fairtrade advent calendar, and then again in 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013. In 2014 we did the RPS Bestest Bests which were the exact same only it wasn’t based around a calendar. This was clearly inferior, and so the Horatian calendar returned in 2015 and last year’s edition was a roaring success.

All entries should be considered equally brilliant, though the later a game appears the more of our writers voted for it. And, yes, the game behind door number 24 is the best game of the year. No arguments. If you think we’re missing some other, excellent games, you are certainly right. Twenty four doors could not contain all of 2017’s greats, so do let us know about your favourites below.

And now, settle back, join us for the big reveal at 5pm UK time every day from now until Christmas Eve, and enjoy the countdown.

29 Comments

  1. A Gentleman and a Taffer says:

    There hasn’t been a more nailed on winner in the history of the great RPS advent calendar than that there Divinity Original Sin 2. I will eat my Santa hat if it isn’t behind door 24.

    Merry Horace Season everyone! May he spare us all!

    • Premium User Badge

      subdog says:

      I’ll take the long odds on 24 being Prey.

    • Premium User Badge

      Aerothorn says:

      I hope you made that prediction in the RPS Advent Calendar Guessing Game thread!

    • DarkFenix says:

      My personal 24 would be Nier: Automata, but I suspect it’ll feature somewhere else in the list. It’s not often a game leaves a lasting impression on me like it did.

    • Nauallis says:

      Plot twist: door 24 will have a loot box behind it, it will be a supporter-only article that you trifling commonfolk can’t reach until you pay your due measure. There will be much sobbing and wailing.

      The lot of us snobby supporters will have our exclusive cake, lord it over you PC peasants, but later wonder if perhaps we actually got fleeced.

    • caff says:

      Merry Horace to you too! But you are Wrong with a capital W. It should be What Remains of Edith Finch with a capital WROEF.

    • Crafter says:

      I am waiting

  2. Vandelay says:

    Ah, the RPS advent calendar beginning is the true sign of Christmas being on its way.

    Good luck to all who have entered this year’s guessing game.

  3. Stugle says:

    Infinity snowman, infinity bird… At least the trees still confirm to Euclidean geometry.

    Happy Advent Calendaring everyone! I’m not sure I’ve played any 2017 games, so it’ll be an interesting journey.

  4. Freud says:

    It’s been a weak gaming year where additional revenue streams for publishers and developers take a bigger part of game design, leading to grindy games that mostly want you to log in every day and possibly buying stuff.

    Hopefully 2018 will be better.

    • Ghostwise says:

      This “weak gaming year” has produced more excellent games than I could hope to play properly if I had five years to do it.

    • and its man says:

      Yeah really, come on, it was a good year.

    • tafoya77n says:

      You’re kidding right?

      At the bare minimum the year was saved by the switch and the kickass games there.

      If you are PC only the year was still great, we got Divinty Original Sin 2, Cuphead, Total Warhammer 2, Destiny on PC, Resident Evil 7, Wolfenstein, a Renewed AC game, Call of Duty going back to it’s roots. It was also a good year for just plain updates to existing games, Blizzard proved WoD really was just a phase by expanding Legion every 77 days, Dwarf fortress got artifacts, Elder Scrolls online, Guild Wars 2, and FF IV all got awesome expansions, Rainbow Six Siege has really turned it around. That’s not to mention the colossal success of PUBG.

      • and its man says:

        And Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice, and Edith Finch, and Night in the Woods, and The Long Journey Home, and Bokida, and Darkwood, and Everything, and Rain World (and Rain World and Rain World), and Future Unfolding, and Don’t Make Love, and Snake Pass, and Jettomero, and the story mode of The Long Dark,…
        … and Tender Loving Care was made available on Steam!

        • SuddenSight says:

          Just to further underscore how great a year this is, my list of favorite games released this year doesn’t overlap with either of yours.

          Hollow Knight, Hat in Time, Tooth and Tail, Pyre, Solar Settlers. All are definite winners in my opinion!

          • and its man says:

            and Scanner Sombre, and Midnight Ultra, and The Mooseman, and That Blooming Feeling, and Fugl, and SPACEPLAN had its Steam release, and there was always something nice to take a look at, and there were those cool games that RPS didn’t write about like Saucer-Like, and Legend of Hand, and Milkmaid of the Milky Way, and Emporium, and-John-wrote-an-article-about-House-Party!

            It was fun. Like every year.

    • MeanMonsoon says:

      I’ve been coming to this site for years but never posted. Created this account just to say you’re fucking nuts. This is easily the best year in gaming in some time. Switch has the game of the decade and a handful of stone cold classics. We’ve had Hollow Knight, Steamworld Dig 2, CrossCells, Prey, Wolfenstein II, Nier, Resident Evil 7, Torment, etc, etc, etmotherfuckingc. Not to mention all the really neat indie games like Sexy Brutale and such. Oh and Horizon for the PS4 folks too. I have more games to play than I have free time. Just crazy talk man. Crazy talk.

    • Merus says:

      This is a year where big-budget AAA games became increasingly untenable, but even then it’s been one of the best years in history for games. Part of the reason why EA and the like haven’t been able to get away with their pap is that there’s never been more fantastic games you could be playing instead.

      In contrast, witness how much PUBG has been able to slack off this year.

  5. Premium User Badge

    particlese says:

    I just found myself simultaneously disturbed and comforted and delighted and left with a “server not found” message, but then the back button found its way under my thumb and I am now here. Must’ve dialed a wrong number…

    You all are the best.

  6. Hmm-Hmm. says:

    …it’s not as good as the Witcher 2. Just saying.

  7. Ejia says:

    Aww, Horace does not look at all pleased to be turned into an endless snowbear.

  8. icarussc says:

    Horace is unendingly unhappy.

  9. dare says:

    I still wish the article title didn’t give away the name of the game. At least for the first 2-8 hours I’d like it to be a surprise. But even if it isn’t, I still love these Horacetide calendars.

  10. Dan Griliopoulos says:

    All the doors are locked? :(

  11. Jonfon says:

    Hmmm. Looks like the click areas of the calendar doesn’t scale down to mobile. When I click you can see an orange box (the image map link I guess) which covers a 2×2 section of the actual calendar.

    So a list of links at the bottom of the article would make some sense.

  12. hfm says:

    I got to the 9th and the doors were locked past that. WHAT FRESH HELL IS THIS.