2022 oprainfall Awards: Best Console Exclusive

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Previous Winners
2018: Super Smash Bros: Ultimate
2019: Fire Emblem: Three Houses
2022: Shin Megami Tensei V

It’s time once again for our yearly oprainfall Awards. This year in the best exclusive category Nintendo dominated, with our staff picking their titles for all three of the top spots. Though in fairness, Nintendo did drop a bunch of great first party titles this year, so let’s see which three the staff thought were the very best.

Xenoblade Chronicles 3

2022 Best Console Exclusive | Xenoblade Chronicles 3

NA Release Date: July 29th, 2022
Platform(s): Nintendo Switch

Xenoblade has a very special place in our hearts here at oprainfall, so it’s no wonder Xenoblade Chronicles 3 would be in the running for our top exclusive of 2022. The memorable cast, amazing music, and epic story make this one of the best RPGS of last year, and a must play for Nintendo Switch owners. The upcoming story DLC looks like it will be pure fanservice for series fans, adding icing on this already delicious cake.

Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes

2022 Best Console Exclusive | Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes

NA Release Date: June 24, 2022
Platform(s): Nintendo Switch

Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes is not only a great Musou game, it’s a fantastic entry into the Fire Emblem franchise as well. The game takes an alternate telling of what happened during the time skip of Fire Emblem: Three Houses in which you control a young warrior named Shez, who seeks revenge on Byleth for killing their mercenary friends. They too are aided by an otherworldly being named Arval, but is this being helping Shaz out of kindness, or are there other motives to consider? It’s great to see all of our favorites again while playing through each of the game’s routes, so Musou and Three Houses fans alike shouldn’t pass this one up.

Splatoon 3

2022 Best Console Exclusive | Splatoon 3

NA Release Date: September 8, 2022
Platform(s): Nintendo Switch

Splatoon 3 is the latest entry in a still relatively new Nintendo franchise. Some fans thought it should be a DLC add-on to Splatoon 2 rather than its own game, but there’s a ton going on that made it worthy of a whole new game. You have a brand new mode with Tableturf Battles, brand new customizable Splashtags and even a whole new Splatfest mode with Tricolor. We’ve nominated Splatoon 3 for being a fantastically fun new entry in Nintendo’s extremely aesthetically pleasing shooter series. It certainly has earned its spot among the other nominees.

And this year’s best console exclusive is…

Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes!

I felt like this one was a bit of an upset, since I figured the staff would go with Xenoblade Chronicles 3. Though, I feel like Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes is a very solid pick for this award, as well. The gameplay is solid, and the Three Houses cast are just a pure joy, so spending more time with them is always a win.

Special thanks to Brandon Rose for creating the featured images for the Awards on short notice. You should check him and his works out over on Twitter.

Also thank you to Jenae for writing a new blurb for the Splatoon 3 section of the article. Something likely went wrong with WordPress when it was scheduled and somehow the Three Hopes nomination blurb got doubled and Splatoon’s vanished.

About Steve Baltimore

Steve started with oprainfall not long after the campaign moved from the IGN forums to Facebook. Ever since, he has been fighting to give all non-mainstream RPGs a fair voice. As the site admin, he will continue to do this and even show there is value in what some would deem "pure ecchi." He loves niche games and anime more than anything... well, except maybe Neptune.