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The Official Rllmuk Awards 2019 & Games of the Decade - VOTING CLOSED

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Game of the Year

A1. Super Mario Maker 2 - No contest with this one for me. I loved the first one, and I managed to play over 200 hours of this in the first couple of months, while only slightly neglecting my family, and recently topped out at ranked 21st in the world for Maker Points. I had to take a break when I got tennis elbow from holding the Switch too much... The new additions to the game may look a little slim on the surface, but stuff like vertical levels, scroll lock and a much more generous limit for ground blocks massively expand what's possible.

 

A2. Baba Is You - a proper puzzle game, you can scratch your head for hours over some levels only to feel like a genius when you get it. The graphics are perfect too, I love everything about this.

 

A3. Tetris 99 - This came out of nowhere and is just so good. Pure, refined, digital crack, and I've never even won a game.

 

A4. Katana Zero - It feels like it ends a bit too suddenly, but the pixel art is exquisite, the music is fantastic and the gameplay is great too.

 

A5. Untitled Goose Game - Short and sweet, but utterly charming and properly funny. HONK!

 

Biggest Disappointment of the Year (game, hardware, or anything else)

Z1. Pokemon Sword/Shield - I actually had a lot of fun playing, but my god this feels unfinished. Really needed another year in the oven. Nothing to do with BrInG bAck NaTioNal dEx!!1!!, just a lack of anything to actually do or any sort of storyline. All the house interiors in each town are identical, that sort of thing. 

Z2.

Z3.

Z4.

Z5.

 

Sound Design of the Year

S1. Sayonara Wild Hearts 

S2. Katana Zero

S3. Ape Out

 

Visual Design of the Year

V1. Sayonara Wild Hearts

V2. Ape Out

V3. Luigi's Mansion 3

 

Writing of the Year

W1. Katana Zero

W2.

W3.

 

Gaming Format (System) of the Year

F1. Switch

 

Publisher or Developer of the Year

P1. Nintendo

 

Best Supported Game (released pre 2019) of the Year

B1. Fortnite (I don't even play it anymore, but it obviously is) 

 

Your game of the year that didn't come out this year (basically what is your favourite game you played this year that came out in 2018 or earlier)

X1. Into The Breach

 

Best game character of the year

C1. The Goose

C2. Katana Zero guy...

C3. Ape Out ape

 

 

And the big one:

 

Game of the Decade

 

D1. Super Mario Maker 2

D2. Splatoon

D3. Xenoblade Chronicles

D4. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

D5. Doom (2016)

D6. Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze

D7. Into The Breach

D8. Zombi U

D9. Resident Evil 7 (VR)

D10. Baba Is You

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Game of the Year

A1. Super Mario Maker 2

A2. Resident Evil 2

A3. Judgment

A4. Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice

A5. Shenmue III

 

Biggest Disappointment of the Year (game, hardware, or anything else)

Z1. New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe

Z2. The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening technical issues

Z3. From Software continuing to prioritise difficulty with Sekiro

 

Sound Design of the Year

S1. Resident Evil 2

 

Visual Design of the Year

V1. Luigi’s Mansion 3

V2. Resident Evil 2

 

Writing of the Year

W1. Judgment

 

Gaming Format (System) of the Year

F1. Nintendo Switch

 

Publisher or Developer of the Year

P1. Nintendo

 

Best Supported Game (released pre 2019) of the Year

B1. Splatoon 2

 

Your game of the year that didn't come out this year (basically what is your favourite game you played this year that came out in 2018 or earlier)

X1. Cuphead

 

Best game character of the year

C1. Mr X

C2. Gooigi

C3. Goose

  

Game of the Decade

D1. Dark Souls

D2. Deadly Premonition

D3. The Legend of Zelda: The Breath of the Wild

D4. Bloodborne

D5. Super Mario Odyssey

D6. The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds

D7. Super Meat Boy

D8. Red Dead Redemption

D9. Cuphead

D10. Portal 2

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The one you've all been waiting for. Many thanks to Benny.

 

Game of the Year

A1. Shenmue III

 

It's awkward. It's slow. It's I see. It's have you seen any thugs around here. It's beautiful. It's bliss to be back in such an uncanny Yu-niverse again.

 

A2. Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice

 

Tight. Gameplay, lore, progress, parrying system, combat, everything. Tight.

 

A3. Judgment

 

Help KimuTaku solve murders in the Yakuza universe. A brilliant set-up, some genuinely likeable (and not so likeable) characters, a great plot, some Fighting Vipers, and one of the best-written central villains in gaming. Plus Kamurocho has never looked so good.

 

A4. Dragon Quest XI - S: Echoes of an Elusive Age

 

That warm feeling you get when you settle down on a Friday evening on the sofa in your pyjams with a hot cup of cocoa and no-one around to bother you; coalesced and packaged into a game.

 

A5. Samurai Shodown

 

Modern SNK at the top of their game. Bombastic, tactical, a blast to play.

 

Biggest Disappointment of the Year (game, hardware, or anything else)

Z1. 

Z2.

Z3.

Z4.

Z5.

 

Sound Design of the Year

S1. Sayonara Wild Hearts

S2. Shenmue III

S3. Yakuza 4 (Pure Love in Kamurocho, goddamn)

 

Visual Design of the Year

V1. The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening

V2. Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice

V3. Sayonara Wild Hearts

 

Writing of the Year

W1. Judgment

W2. Dragon Quest XI - S: Echoes of an Elusive Age

W3. Shenmue III

 

Gaming Format (System) of the Year

F1. PlayStation 4

 

Publisher or Developer of the Year

P1. Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio

 

Best Supported Game (released pre 2019) of the Year

B1. Street Fighter V

 

Your game of the year that didn't come out this year (basically what is your favourite game you played this year that came out in 2018 or earlier)

X1. The World Ends With You: Final Remix

 

Best game character of the year

C1. Goro Majima (Yakuza 4) (Majima wins every best game character of the year by default)

C2. Kyohei Hamura (Judgment)

C3. Ryo Hazuki (Shenmue III)

 

 

And the big one:

 

Game of the Decade

 

D1. Bloodborne (For all the reasons discussed ad nauseam)

D2. Virtue's Last Reward (KERBLAMMO)

D3. Yakuza 0 (Brilliant)

D4. Deus Ex: Mankind Divided (This really deserved a lot more success than it got)

D5. Journey (The ending made me cry)

D6. Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain (Find a character who controls better than Punished Snake. Go on.)

D7. Nioh (Better than Sekiro, and that's saying something)

D8. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Magical)

D9. Shenmue III (It exists)

D10. Project Zero 2: Wii Edition (The best survival horror ever made... remade) 

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Game of the Year

 

A1. Sekiro

 

A2. Gears 5

 

A3. Outer Wilds

 

A4. Slay the Spire

 

A5. Bard´s Tale Trilogy Remastered

 

Game of the Decade

 

D1. Minecraft

 

D2. Spelunky

 

D3. Hearthstone

 

D4. Forza Horizon

 

D5. PlayerUnknown´s Battlegrounds

 

D6. Doom

 

D7. Sekiro

 

D8. Outer Wilds

 

D9. Resident Evil 7

 

D10. Deadly Premonition

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Game of the Year

 

A1. ESP Ra.De. Psi

 

"In the year that I went properly down the shmup rabbit hole with a Japanese 360 and Seimitsu lever and eBay imports and learned the true meaning of Black Label Maniac Mode, it's fitting (and somewhat inevitable) that ESP Ra.De. Psi stands above everything else for me this year. An exemplary M2 port of the 1998 Cave arcade vertical danmaku shmup, never before seen on console, ESP not only represents what I've loved most about gaming this year, it's also a completely fresh experience for me. Having only ever played a handful of credits on emulation, it had always seemed quite weird and off-putting in its aesthetics and mechanics, but having finally looked up how you're supposed to play, its curious, addictive rhythm has got completely under my skin. I also now love how weird it is, with its off-anime aesthetic sitting perfectly between the militaristic bleakness of its contemporary, Dodonpachi, and the moe stylings of latter-day Cave. It's probably a top 5 shmup for me, which puts it comfortably ahead of anything else this year."

 

A2. Final Fantasy VII (Switch)

 

"Despite being one of the most formative and enduring gaming experiences of my life, I never actually finished FFVII until this year. Twice back in the day, I got stuck at the Demons Gate and while I've subsequently learned that I could have just ground it out in the Temple of the Ancients, that's largely where my experience of the game ended. I had seen further on because my brother let me use his save file. I'd seen the Highwind, the Weapons, and I'd even seen my bro attempt the final encounter with Sephiroth, but it's telling that these aren't the moments which have stuck with me. It's the Turks, the Church, Marlene, the Golden Saucer, Vincent Valentine, Don Corneo, the Lifestream, LOVELESS. More than anything, it's the music I love so much beyond analysis. I've kept these memories for over twenty years and when revisiting them, I realised not only how well the experience stands up today, but also how much it means to me. Thematically, it's never been more relevant or hard-hitting but it's the sense of adventure, camaraderie and self-discovery which stays with me above all. If it weren't trading so heavily on twenty years of affection and goodwill, this would be my GOTY in any year it was released. As it is, it's an experience above any other I've had in gaming in 2019 and I can't wait to do it all again."

 

A3. Cuphead (Switch)

 

"Another game I'd tried and bounced off years ago on its original release, it took a Switch port for me to get over the hump and I'm so glad I did. I have absolutely no doubt that my shmup experience is the biggest contributing factor here, though. Restart syndrome is often seen as a side effect of a perverse shmup perfectionism but in Cuphead, this mindset is simply prerequisite. The structure of the game is a very consistent series of peaks and troughs. You don't particularly develop transferable skills and while some patterns are easier or more challenging than others to get down, the rhythm is almost identical every time. Die, die, die, die, die, die, phase one done. Die, die, die, die die, die, die, die, die, die, phase two. Die, die, die, die die, die, die, die, die, die, knockout! And once you've got it down, that's it. The appeal of the game is, for me, entirely whether you enjoy banging your head against wall after finely constructed wall for the satisfaction of getting through it. The music and animation are absolutely sensational, of course, but they're also quite hostile and goading and they're not necessarily motivation to carry you through. It's not a game I'd recommend to everyone, but if it hits the spot for you, I think it scratches a very particular, very satisfying itch  between Bloodborne and bullet hell."

 

A4. Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice

 

" For me, this is the best disappointing game I can remember playing. At its peaks, against the final two bosses, this has the most exciting, tense and satisfying combat I've ever experienced in a game. Even after years of Cleric Beast, Ornstein and Smough, Maneater, Sif, Father Gascoigne, Gael, Ruin Sentinels, Defiled Amygdala and all the rest of the buggers, I was still not prepared for the heart-thumping intensity and roaring catharsis of what it took to beat this game. Learn the movesets, learn the tells, learn the timing and punish perfectly. There's no shortcut and there's not really any cheese. The game asks you to meet it directly on its very specific terms and when you do, and when that clicks, it's exhilarating like little else. If the whole game had this level of attention and refinement, it would be top of my Games of the Decade list. As it is, there are far too many half-baked mechanics, dull concessions to convention with skill trees and grinding and a dismally contradictory approach to game design which often throws out the fundamental stealth systems and creative approaches to level design only to dump you in one boss arena after another."

 

A5. Fire Emblem: Three Houses

 

"I've never played any of the FE games, nor do I particularly like whatever this type of strategic turn-based combat is called. I don't really like anime type of melodrama. Despite these obstacles, I loved this game at the time. I think it's probably my third most played Switch game ever behind Isaac and BotW. I especially enjoyed the characters and the story which seemed very superficial but which developed more as I sank more time into the various relationships. Some of the writing actually moved me with its everyman philosophical sincerity. The plot resolved in a very satisfying way. I thought I'd go back for a different House but having tried once, I immediately felt like I never wanted to play it again. I suspect it was probably just too soon for such a massive timesink but over the subsequent months, my desire to go back has only diminished."

 

 

 

Biggest Disappointment of the Year 

 

Z1. Sekiro (as above). 

 

Z2. RE2. "I never played the original very much and find the backtracking level design and inventory management incredibly wearing, even with the helpful map additions. I also find the idea of not shooting everything to death and conserving ammo really stressful and unsatisfying. I accept that this is my problem rather than one with the game or genre but I find this game a chore to play."

 

Z3. Death Stranding. "I think I can understand what people like about this, in the same way that I understand that collaboration in a Minecraft server is probably enjoyable or that Stardew Valley multiplayer scratches a certain itch. It's just not for me. The story (of which I've only seen the first ten or fifteen hours) went from very intriguing to mind-numbing in how repetitive the themes and dialogue became. I fully accept that there will be some amazing stuff I've not even seen and it may well all pay off in a magnificent way but my experience and memory of the game mostly involves skipping Guillermo del Toro's inane verbal diarrhoea, janky vehicles getting stuck on rocks and being swamped by black goo all the way back down a hill. Technically, though, it's a masterpiece and I suspect I'll eventually see it through."

 

Z4. Astral Chain. "It came screaming out of the blocks and then faltered under its own unwieldy mechanics and stop-start structure until it lost me."

 

Z5. Untitled Goose Game. "Funny for the first few minutes, looks and sounds perfect but the trial and error laborious stealth gameplay is excruciating to me. I never got past the second area before uninstalling. I can't tell you how much I hate the memes. I genuinely didn't know I was a miserable old bastard until this game came out."

 

 

 

Sound Design of the Year

 

S1. Cuphead 

S2. FFVII

S3. Death Stranding 

 

 

Visual Design of the Year 

 

V1. Cuphead 

V2. Death Stranding 

V3. Sekiro

 

 

Writing of the Year

 

W1. Divinity Original Sin 2 (Switch) 

"This is so far ahead of the writing in any other RPG I've played, and the game is absolutely superb. I just haven't played quite enough of it for it to usurp FE3H on my GOTY list. It'd be number six, comfortably."

 

W2. Planetarian HD (Switch) 

W3. Fire Emblem: Three Houses

 

 

Gaming Format (System) of the Year

 

F1. Switch

 

 

Publisher or Developer of the Year

 

P1. Nintendo 

 

 

Best Supported Game (released pre 2019) of the Year

 

B1. No Man's Sky

 

 

Your game of the year that didn't come out this year:

 

X1. Mushihimesama Futari Black Label God Mode 

 

The greatest feeling I've ever had in a game, months in the making, and the reason I bought a Japanese 360:

 

Spoiler

 

 

 

 

 

Best game character of the year

 

C1. Mercedes 

C2. Dorothea

C3. Manuela

 

 

Game of the Decade

 

D1. Skyrim

"This sounds like absurd hyperbole but...How does a game have soul? The story is packed with cliché. The gameplay is pure jank. The mechanics have no depth. And yet, I don't think there's ever been a world I've felt so consumed by in any game. I can feel it now. I can feel that atmosphere, the sense of place, of empty space, of exploration, of freedom. It captures a sense of adventure like nothing else, even Breath of the Wild. The music is up there with Final Fantasy VII for me as something beyond my analysis, something which I can't deconstruct and which continues to blow me away and surprise me years on, after hours and hours of listening to the same themes. I still play it regularly in bed on the fairly crap Switch version and it's as transportative and wonderful as ever."

 

D2. Dark Souls

 

D3. USF4

 

D4. BotW

 

D5. The Last of Us

 

D6. Dark Souls 2: SOTFS 

 

D7. Forza Horizon 3

 

D8. MGSV: TPP

 

D9. Bloodborne

 

D10. Super Mario Galaxy 2

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@Stanshall - can you edit the original post in the thread instead (or remove the contents from it). Edits are allowed until the deadline and it saves me accidentally counting a set of votes twice. Cheers.

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Game of the Year

A1. Tetris 99

A2. Slay The Spire

A3. Chime Sharp

A4. Baba Is You

A5. Frostpunk

 

Biggest Disappointment of the Year (game, hardware, or anything else)

Z1. Blizzard - Whole Hong Kong Mess

Z2. Bethesda - Shitting the bed

Z3. Google Stadia - Oops

Z4. Loot Boxes (Again)

Z5. Wargroove

 

Sound Design of the Year

S1.

S2.

S3.

 

Visual Design of the Year

V1. Baba is You

V2. Lonely Mountains Downhill

V3. Katana Zero

 

Writing of the Year

W1. 

W2.

W3.

 

Gaming Format (System) of the Year

F1. Nintendo Switch

 

Publisher or Developer of the Year

P1. Capcom

 

Best Supported Game (released pre 2019) of the Year

B1. Shovel Knight

 

Your game of the year that didn't come out this year (basically what is your favourite game you played this year that came out in 2018 or earlier)

X1. Tetris Effect

 

Best game character of the year

C1. Madeline (Celeste)

C2. Goose (Untitled Goose Game)

C3. 

 

 

And the big one:

 

Game of the Decade

 

D1. Puyo Puyo Tetris

D2. Tetris 99

D3. Tetris Effect

D4. The Last of Us

D5. Bloodbourne

D6. FTL

D7. Super Merio Odyssey

D8. Into The Breach

D9. Chime

D10. Bastion

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In case I don’t get round to this...

 

Game of the year.

A1. slay the spire.

I’ve just bought it on my third platform.

 

Best supported game of previous years.

B1. no mans sky

its not even close.

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Funny list from me as I have only played one game released this year.

 

Game of the Year

A1. Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown. A tremendous next-gen upgrade for the franchise, the clouds, the wind, the visuals...

 

Biggest Disappointment of the Year (game, hardware, or anything else)

Z1. Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown. They kind of squandered what they had built. The replay cameras sucked, the missions all introduced handicaps, not as enjoyable as it should have been.

 

 

Sound Design of the Year

S1. Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown. Continuing the series legacy of incredible soundtracks.

 

Visual Design of the Year

V1. Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown. It looks phenomenal at all times, not least when you are flying through thunderclouds.

 

Writing of the Year

W1. N/A. I had no idea what was going on in AC7.

 

Gaming Format (System) of the Year

F1. PS4, mostly I enjoyed earlier released games on the system, and mostly in VR.

 

Publisher or Developer of the Year

P1. Polyphony Digital. I'm not ever giving this one to money-grubbing Bandai Namco.

 

Best Supported Game (released pre 2019) of the Year

B1. No Man's Sky. Stealing it from Polyphony's ongoing GTS support with their VR update.

 

Your game of the year that didn't come out this year (basically what is your favourite game you played this year that came out in 2018 or earlier)

X1. Bloodborne. I finally started it.

 

Best game character of the year

C1. Ummmmmm... none of the characters in AC7 registered with me except Swordsman making his return from AC5. So him. lol.

  

Game of the Decade

 

I assume games from 2010 don't count? If they did After Burner Climax would be near the top. Without 2010 (and excluding HD remasters of earlier titles) there are only 15 new games I played in the last decade... I just have to drop five and order the others. I will drop Killzone 3, LBP2 and Blazblue Continuum Shift for being follow-ups to titles that already had their time to shine. Lego Dimensions gets cut because as much as I invested time and money in it, the developers abandoned it and broke a bunch of things with the final patch. Tetris Effect is basically Tetris so... sadly cut.

 

edit - OK, so 2010 counts so Transformers Devastation gets bumped out in favour of After Burner. I've also had the thought that as Dark Souls was so similar to Demon's Souls from 2009 that it doesnt really belong above No Man's Sky in the list, which is truly groundbreaking. So I swapped them.

 

D1. Astro Bot. VR came late in the decade but it was such a revolution for me, and Astro Bot such a great example of what to do with the medium, that it has to go at number one.

D2. The Last Guardian. This game amalgamated all the best parts of it's forerunners and added a whole lot more to the experience. My five year old daughter was inconsolable at the end when she watched me play it through.

D3. After Burner Climax. Distilled arcade hi-score based perfection. Honestly it's my favourite game of all time but the two titles above had a more profound effect on the scope of videogames, so I'm putting it third in the list.

D4. No Man's Sky. This game still blows my mind with the incredible scale of it. That star field you swoosh through, with seemingly countless millions of planets going by, and each one persists for every player who plays the game? What? Adding VR has changed the experience once again. I could lose myself in this universe, so I'm glad VR is still a bit rough around the edges to keep me in the real world.

D5. Dark Souls. I still maintain that Demon's Souls was better, and if I had finished Bloodborne this might go here instead, but From's winning formula deserves it's place.

D6. Tearaway. I assume people still hate on Media Molecule? For me they have a magic touch. I even made all the papercraft models from the game to give to my daughter. So much inventiveness and creativity in this game. Only let down by Daddy Pig having such an overbearing presence.

D7. Child of Eden. Honestly this would be Rez Infinite but I feel like Rez also had it's moment in the prior decade, so Eden gets it.

D8. Gran Turismo Sport. For time I've put into it, and the amount of content added, and VR support. I've given up racing online though because the matchmaking and penalties never give me an enjoyable experience, so for me it's time trials only sadly. A bit of missed potential I feel.

D9. Ace Combat 7. I waited over fifteen years for this. Infinity was great to play but a cynical cash grab by Bamco, but as much as AC7 got right it got lots wrong at the same time. More wasted potential.

D10. Polybius. Got to give it the props it's due for the fun I had with it, but I lost a lot of respect for Llamasoft with the game breaking bugs they left unpatched for way too long. They basically led to me giving up playing for high scores after earning the platinum trophy. I would have.

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Game of the Year

A1. Dragon Quest Builders 2

A2. Dragon Quest XI S: Echoes Of An Elusive Age - Definitive Edition

A3. The Legend Of Zelda: Link’s Awakening

A4. Luigi’s Mansion 3

A5. Astral Chain

 

Biggest Disappointment of the Year (game, hardware, or anything else)

Z1. Metroid Prime 4 delay

Z2. Metroid Prime Trilogy not coming out

Z3. Doom 64 delay to coincide with Doom Eternal

Z4. Animal Crossing delay

Z5. Shenmue I&II not getting a Switch release

 

Sound Design of the Year

S1. The Legend Of Zelda: Link’s Awakening

S2. Luigi’s Mansion 3

S3. Astral Chain

 

Visual Design of the Year

V1. The Legend Of Zelda: Link’s Awakening

V2. Luigi’s Mansion 3

V3. Astral Chain

 

Writing of the Year

W1. Dragon Quest XI S: Echoes Of An Elusive Age - Definitive Edition

W2. Dragon Quest Builders 2

W3. Astral Chain

 

Gaming Format (System) of the Year

F1. Nintendo Switch

 

Publisher or Developer of the Year

P1. Nintendo

 

Best Supported Game (released pre 2019) of the Year

B1. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

 

Your game of the year that didn't come out this year (basically what is your favourite game you played this year that came out in 2018 or earlier)

X1. Celeste

 

Best game character of the year

C1. Sylvando - Dragon Quest XI S: Echoes Of An Elusive Age - Definitive Edition

C2. Link - The Legend Of Zelda: Link’s Awakening

C3. The Goose - Untitled Goose Game

 

 

And the big one:

 

Game of the Decade

 

D1. The Legend Of Zelda: Breath Of The Wild

D2. Dark Souls

D3. The Legend Of Zelda: Skyward Sword

D4. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

D5. Super Mario Odyssey

D6. SOMA

D7. Alien Isolation

D8. Dragon Quest Builders 2

D9. The Last Guardian

D10. Dragon Quest XI S: Echoes Of An Elusive Age - Definitive Edition

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Game of the Year

A1. Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice - From's best combat system to date, tied to their best traversal yet. Level design is excellent as usual and the boss fights are top notch. Add superb aninimation, interesting lore and a great soundtrack and you have the best game of the year.

 

A2. Control - I really enjoyed this. With RTX on and all the physics stuf going on around you, this is probably the most next-gen game yet. It's a blast to play too, with fun combat and lots of optional stuff to explore. It's delightfully weird in places and the Ashtray Maze is one of the gaming highlights of 2019.

 

A3. Resident Evil 2 - Could have been a GotY contender if the later areas were as good as the police station. As it is, it's still an excellent game.

 

A4. Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order - A bit rough in places but luckily I didn't have too many problems on PC. Yes, it steals from multiple games, but it does it well enough to still be a blast. It also really nails that Star Wars vibe.

 

A5. Katana Zero - Short but sweet. I love the kill in one hit, die in one hit system, the pixel art is stunning and the music slaps.

 

Biggest Disappointment of the Year (game, hardware, or anything else)

Z1. 

Z2.

Z3.

Z4.

Z5.

 

Sound Design of the Year

S1. Sayonara Wild Hearts 

S2. Katana Zero

S3. Sekiro

 

Visual Design of the Year

V1. Sekiro

V2. Resident Evil 2

V3. DMC 5

 

Writing of the Year

W1. Sekiro

W2.

W3.

 

Gaming Format (System) of the Year

F1. PC

 

Publisher or Developer of the Year

P1. Capcom

 

Best Supported Game (released pre 2019) of the Year

B1.

 

Your game of the year that didn't come out this year (basically what is your favourite game you played this year that came out in 2018 or earlier)

X1. Titanfall 2 (completed it this year and it's bloody ace)

 

Best game character of the year

C1. Casper Darling (Control)

C2. Ahti (Control)

C3. Emma (Sekiro)

 

Game of the Decade

 

D1. Bloodborne

D2. Dark Souls

D3. Astro Bot

D4. Dead Space 2

D5. Prey

D6. Sekiro

D7. Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze

D8. Super Mario 3D World

D9. The Last Guardian

D10. The Witness

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On 21/12/2019 at 00:28, spatular said:

Game of the Year

A1. Dirt Rally 2.0

A2. Pistol Whip

A3. Rolling Gunner

A4. Control

A5. ** space reserved for ESP Ra.De. **

 

i've changed my vote (have edited the original) from the above to this:

 

Game of the Year

A1. ESP Ra.De. Psi

A2. Dirt Rally 2.0

A3. Pistol Whip

A4. Rolling Gunner

A5. Control

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Game of the Year

A1. Slay the Spire

"A game of incredible depth that I feel I'll never get particularly good at, but it's still brilliant even for a casual like me. I love it mainly for the same reason I love Into the Breach: The way both games are designed to provide information about enemy intent make for a more enjoyable experience than most turn-based games."

 

A2. Amid Evil

"Following last year's excellent Dusk, Amid Evil is another 90s style shooter that is right up my alley: Neverending key hunts in labyrinthine levels, and constant searches for health and ammo - I love it! The weapons are great fun, and fairly unique for an FPS as there are no firearms; in their place you'll find Heretic/Hexen style magic weapons. It doesn't have the incredibly fast movement and mad strafe-jumping of Dusk, and is not nearly as well-paced, but still good fun if you like this sort of thing."

 

A3. Katana Zero

"Best Hotline Miami game since Hotline Miami."

 

A4. Apex Legends

"Battle royale is not my kind of thing, so I haven't played Apex all that much. But it's pretty clear the quality is there, as you'd expect from the makers of the Titanfall games. The ping system is a rather brilliant addition to the genre for people like me who don't like chatting with shouty strangers online."

 

A5. Islanders

"A great example of stripping away the complexities of a certain type of game (city builder in this case), and coming away with something that has a similar appeal as its inspirations, but doesn't take ages to play."

 

Biggest Disappointment of the Year (game, hardware, or anything else)

Z1.

Z2.

Z3.

Z4.

Z5.


Sound Design of the Year

S1. Katana Zero

S2. Amid Evil

S3. Ape Out


Visual Design of the Year

V1. Amid Evil

V2. Katana Zero

V3. A Short Hike


Writing of the Year

W1. A Short Hike

W2. Katana Zero

W3. Untitled Goose Game


Gaming Format (System) of the Year

F1. PC


Publisher or Developer of the Year

P1.


Best Supported Game (released pre 2019) of the Year

B1. Shovel Knight


Your game of the year that didn't come out this year (basically what is your favourite game you played this year that came out in 2018 or earlier)

X1. Into the Breach


Best game character of the year

C1. Goose

C2. Claire (A Short Hike)

C3. The Kid (Katana Zero)

 

And the big one:


Game of the Decade


D1. Prey (2017)
"This was a bit of a slow burn, but once I got into it, I was really into it, and loved every second I spent exploring Talos 1. There is no other game I can think of from the last decade where I enjoyed everything from gameplay, setting, story and themes as much as I did here - it does pretty much everything it does perfectly, and as a bonus washes away the sour taste that Bioshock left in attempting to be a spiritual successor to the System Shock games. I'm slightly baffled tbh when I see Prey on Metacritic in the low 80s when it really should be in the high 100s - a stone cold masterpiece."  

 

D2. Spelunky (2012)
"Do 'roguelites' get any better than this? I doubt it. At least not until the sequel. And yes, this is a remake of a 2008 game, but it's a bloody amazing remake that improves everything about the original, so I'll leave it here."

 

D3. Rocket League (2015)
"My most played game of the decade (over 500 hours). I don't really play it anymore but had an amazing time with it  until everyone got too good at it for me to keep up. The playerbase also seemed to get more toxic, but at least you can disable all voice and text chat in the options."

 

D4. Into the Breach (2018)
"Turn-based tactics games don't get much better. The way Into the Breach is designed to let you see each enemy's intent make it a more fair challenge than most games in the genre, and the small scale of the maps means your time is never wasted on trivial moves."

 

D5. Dusk (2018)
"You might think this looks a bit rubbish in screenshots and videos because the graphics are pretty much exactly like Quake (1996). But it feels amazing to play, it is insanely fast (you might think Doom 2016 is fast - you should try Dusk), and it has a wonderfully inventive campaign that never lets up for a second."

 

D6. Nex Machina (2017)
"Basically the best twin-stick shooter ever made. Great soundtrack is just a bonus on top of the perfectly tuned gameplay."

 

D7. Donkey Kong Country - Tropical Freeze (2014)
"Retro Studios outnintendoed Nintendo with one brilliantly designed level after another."

 

D8. Doom (2016)
"A fantastic modern version of Doom that keeps the feel of the old games while introducing a few ideas of its own. It's refreshing that it always pushes you to play aggressively rather than hide behind a box like 99% of shooters since Gears/COD became popular."

 

D9. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, Hearts of Stone and Blood & Wine (2015-2016)
"Tbh I find the combat in this game to be mediocre at best. Yet there is so much else to love about it. The main game and Blood & Wine are both brilliant, but special mention goes to the shorter Hearts of Stone expansion, which is possibly my favourite RPG quest/storyline ever."  

 

D10. Soma (2015)
"This is no doubt the least enjoyable game on my list, as the gameplay can be a bit tedious. It is, however, a brilliantly told story about existential fear and total isolation. Horror games are not usually my thing, but this one really stuck with me."

 

 

Honourable mentions:

 

Super Mario Galaxy 2 (2010)
Dark Souls (2011)
Hotline Miami (2012)
Mark of the Ninja (2012)

FTL (2012)
Journey (2013)

Shovel Knight (2014)
Mario Kart 8 (2014)
Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes and Phantom Pain (2014-15)
Dishonored 2 (2016)
Titanfall 2 (2016)
Breath of the Wild (2017)
Hollow Knight (2017)
Xcom 2 - War of the Chosen (2017)
Hitman 2 (2018)
Slay the Spire (2019)

 

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Game of the Year
A1. Tetris 99

"The Tetris grandmasters Arika returns! I never thought myself as much of a Tetris fan and yet here I am, back again, after Tetris Effect last year putting it top of the gaming tree. Competitive Tetris was something petrified me - I like the feeling of just playing Tetris, the ebb and flow of the growth of the stack, the gaps that form and the clean-up operation to fix the mistakes and so the low stakes scenarios of other games has always suited well. However something about this concept instantly grabbed me from first seeing it on the Nintendo Direct. This game forced me to buy a Nintendo Switch and Nintendo Online and, for the first time in 30+ years - I've gotten better a Tetris. No longer chasing the Line shape my new favourite shapes are L, J, Square and of course - T."
A2. Dragon Quest XI
"Although a technical cheat - I have spent so much time playing DQXI this year (and didn't vote for it in 2017 or 2018) that I feel validated in its inclusion. DQXI is a game that has one foot firmly in the past - the world, mechanics, structure and so reminiscent of the very best SNES RPGs and one firmly in the present through the writing (by far the best english localisation I have ever witnessed in a videogame), auto-battle features, beautiful visuals, animations, and just little QOL features for western audiences such as interesting difficulty modifiers and a run button. 110 hours and still enjoying every minute."
A3. Gato Roboto
"A very cute Metroidvania with cats. Very mechanically strong and the black and white colour pallete ensures that the world has a readable visual design that works wonderfully well."
A4. Travis Strike Again: No More Heroes
"Not easily recommended - if you are looking for a No More Heroes game look away. Travis Strikes Again is a narrative-heavy deconstruction of SUDA51. The gameplay can be very repetitive but this is suprisingly theraputic to me in the manner in which you clear rooms out with a few very basic attack moves and some lethargic movement that rewards delibrate intentions (Let It Die/Dark Souls). The entire game feels like something a subsection of a subsection of a subsection of people would enjoy with references that feel purposefully cheap delivered with a subtly of a brick through your living room window."
 

Biggest Disappointment of the Year (game, hardware, or anything else)

Z1.

Z2.

Z3.

Z4.

Z5.

 

Sound Design of the Year

S1.

S2.

S3.

 

Visual Design of the Year

V1.

V2.

V3.

 

Writing of the Year

W1.

W2.

W3.

 

Gaming Format (System) of the Year

F1. 

 

Publisher or Developer of the Year

P1. Annapurna Interactive

"Although I haven't yet played all the games released by them this year they are utterly essential in the current gaming landscape. A publisher that releases Outer Wilds, Telling Lies, Sayonara Wild Hearts and Wattam in a single year deserves praise."

 

Best Supported Game (released pre 2019) of the Year

B1.

 

Your game of the year that didn't come out this year (basically what is your favourite game you played this year that came out in 2018 or earlier)
X1. Bayonetta 2

 

Best game character of the year

C1.

C2.

C3.

 

 

And the big one:

 

Game of the Decade 

D1. Spelunky
D2. Dragon Quest XI
D3. Bloodborne
D4. Sonic Mania
D5. The Last Guardian
D6. Yakuza Zero
D7. Gravity Rush
D8. Rez Infinite
D9. Deadly Premonition
D10. Bayonetta 2

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Game of the Year

 

A1. Slay the Spire
"Completely out of nowhere, a hideously addictive deck building strategy game takes #1."

 

A2. Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice
"Sekiro was everything I'd hoped for, but it was just a bit too hard in places. Like the other From games I've played it was absolutely thrilling at times, but was overly long and outstayed its welcome"

 

A3. Cuphead (Switch)
"Should be #1 really, but given this is a port I feel it should really fall behind those newer games. A tremendous achievement and a true labour of love. I loved (almost) every minute."

 

A4. RE2
"I've never played the original but enjoyed this a lot. Incredible sense of atmosphere and pleasingly short. Very much looking forward to 3 now. Remake of 4 with the evolution of this engine and next gen graphics please."

 

A5. Luigi's Mansion 3
"Outrageously charming throughout. I enjoyed it pretty much from start to finish."
 

Biggest Disappointment of the Year (game, hardware, or anything else)

 

Z1. No Pikmin 4 news

 

Z2. Link's Awakening frame rate issues. Seriously, what the fuck Nintendo? Just lock it in at 30/60 like you always used to.

 

Z3.

Z4.

Z5.

 

Sound Design of the Year

 

S1. Sekiro

S2. RE2

S3.

 

Visual Design of the Year

 

V1. Luigi's Mansion 3

V2. Sekiro

V3. RE2

 

Writing of the Year

W1.

W2.

W3.

 

Gaming Format (System) of the Year

F1. Switch

 

Publisher or Developer of the Year

P1.

 

Best Supported Game (released pre 2019) of the Year

B1. Gran Turismo Sport

 

Your game of the year that didn't come out this year (basically what is your favourite game you played this year that came out in 2018 or earlier)

X1. Super Smash Bros Ultimate

 

Best game character of the year

C1. Guardian Ape (Sekiro)

C2. Sculptor (Sekiro)

C3.

 

 

And the big one:

 

Game of the Decade

 
D1. Bloodborne
"A flawed masterpiece. It's a year since I've completed it and I've thought about it continually and longed to be back in that beautiful world. I loved almost all my time with this game, but like the other From games I've played, it was too long, and in places too opaque in its systems. But it is unlike any other experience I've had in gaming and it's one I'll return to for sure. More thoughts here:"

 

D2. Hollow Knight
"Dripping in atmosphere from start to finish. Such an incredible effort from a tiny team. The new holder of the Metroidvania crown"

 

D3. The Last of Us
"I've never really been one for story in games,  but this really gripped me and held my attention throughout. An absolutely incredible achievement and a watershed moment in the progression of storytelling in games."

 

D4. Nex Machina
"A perfect mix of fast paced action gameplay, and what felt like puzzle solving at times. As my skills improved so did my ability to spot solutions to what initially seem like impossible situations. It gave an amazing sense of achievement as your combo and score quickly improved. And an incredible sense of flow once you got in the zone. I'm not sure I've ever been so addicted to a game before."

 

D5. Cuphead
"Had the odd insane difficulty spike, but I'm not sure I've played a more all round beautiful creation. Wonderful mix of gameplay, visual and audio design."

 

D6. The Witness
"It's not going to be just about doing line puzzles I thought. There will be some deep hidden meaning I thought. Maybe there was,  but I didn't pick up on it. But it was the most sublime puzzle game I've ever played. Perfectly realised in a beautiful interconnected world."

 

D7. Splatoon
"The reinvention of the online shooter. Trust Nintendo to not only tear up the rulebook, but also get it so right first time. The paint/cover mechanic is just so incredibly clever."

 

D8. Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
"I didn't really get the whole GOAT praise for this. It was really good, but it had massive flaws which must be corrected in future attempts. Still, an utterly sublime world and the new marker for true open world RPGs."

 

D9. Slay the Spire
"Having only finished the first character once, I've barely scratched the surface with this. I had to take a break for my own health. Absolute crack gaming. Ridiculously well balanced strategy game."

 

D10. Pikmin 3
"Mission mode, where you had an insanely hard objective to complete in a tight time limit, offered up some of the best gaming of the decade. Perfect controls with Wii pointer and touchpad/map. Nintendo on its A game."

 

Honourable mentions: Dark Souls, Super Mario 3D World, Super Mario 3D Land, Zelda Link Between Worlds, Dirt Rally, SOMA, Smash Bros Ultimate.

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