GOTY 2019 (now with added badness) and GOTD 2010-2019 - voting closes end of January
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  • So I'm going to combine GOTY 2019 and GOTD 2010-2019 into one big vote. And there are some additional things you can vote for for the year.

    I'll be counting everything up from Feb 1st 2020, so get votes in by the end of January 2020.

    For votes to be counted, copy and paste the full template below into a post. You don't have to fill in every category, but I'll only count posts that include the full template. If you want to make changes after you've posted, either edit the original post, or post the whole thing again. I won't count anything before the deadline, so I'll just take the last version you post.

    For Game of the Year, sound design, visual design, writing and character, only games released in 2019 in the UK (or your home territory if different) count. These should be standalone games, not DLC that requires a separate base game. Remakes (e.g. Resident Evil 2) and rereleases (e.g. Ori and the Blind Forest on Switch) are fine, but not rereleases via emulation (e.g. SNES games on Switch online. Only emulated games that weren't previously available in the UK count, e.g. Trials of Mana). Games released in early access this year also count.

    You should of course only vote for stuff you've played. And only vote for a rerelease if you actually played the new version, not just because it's an old favourite (e.g. not because you really liked Ori when you played it on the XBone a few years ago).

    For Game of the Decade, rereleases don't count. The game must have been released for the first time in the UK (or your home territory if different) between Jan 1st 2010 and Dec 31st 2019. Remakes don't count unless there's a substantial difference from the original (e.g. Spelunky HD).

    Do leave comments/mini review below each vote. I may even make a post for each of the top games including these comments when I display the results (depending if I can be arsed).

    Any questions or uncertainties, just ask.

    So here is the template:

    Game of the Year
    1.
    2.
    3.
    4.
    5.
     
    Best sound Design
    1.
    2.
    3.

    Best visual Design
    1.
    2.
    3.

    Best writing/story
    1.
    2.
    3.

    Best character
    1.
    2.
    3.

    Best ongoing game released before 2019 (anything that received further support, a major expansion/update etc. this year)
    1.
     
    Best game you played this year that didn't come out this year
    1.

    Worst/most disappointing game
    1. 
    2.
    3.

    Game of the Decade
    1.
    2.
    3.
    4.
    5.
    6.
    7.
    8.
    9.
    10.
  • And any chance we can sticky this?
  • EvilRedEye
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    I don't like the emulated games rule. I feel it needs an exception for games first released in Europe this year through emulation (for example, Trials of Mana, Darius for Mega Drive, etc.).
    "ERE's like Mr. Muscle, he loves the things he hates"
  • EvilRedEye wrote:
    I don't like the emulated games rule. I feel it needs an exception for games first released in Europe this year through emulation (for example, Trials of Mana, Darius for Mega Drive, etc.).
    Yeah, that's fine. I only really meant it to cover rereleases. Will clarify.
  • Halo
    "But enough talk. HAVE AT YOU!"
  • Yossarian
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    Excellent work, but (there had to be a but, obvs and sorry), it’d be great if there was provision for those of us who don’t think quite so hard about ranking games but who’d like to be involved anyway.

    For instance, IIRC, I think I’ve named 8 games in the game of the decade thread, but I’ve not placed them in any order and nor am I likely to.

    By my calculations, there are 55 points available to those who rank games from 1-10. 55/8 = 6.875.

    Is it possible that my 8 games could get 7 (or even 6 if you’d rather just round down to make life easier) points each based on an unordered list?

    Just a thought for those of us less keen on ranking our games.
    Don't prepare for appointment.
  • b0r1s
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    I’d just like to add that 1st Feb 2020 is my birthday so I should get double points or some shit
  • Yossarian
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    I cannot be remotely fucked.
    Don't prepare for appointment.
  • b0r1s
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    b0r1s wrote:
    I’d just like to add that 1st Feb 2020 is my birthday so I should get double points or some shit
    Yossarian wrote:
    I cannot be remotely fucked.

    How rude!
  • Not even with the power of the cloud?
    I'm still great and you still love it.
  • Yossarian wrote:
    Excellent work, but (there had to be a but, obvs and sorry), it’d be great if there was provision for those of us who don’t think quite so hard about ranking games but who’d like to be involved anyway. For instance, IIRC, I think I’ve named 8 games in the game of the decade thread, but I’ve not placed them in any order and nor am I likely to. By my calculations, there are 55 points available to those who rank games from 1-10. 55/8 = 6.875. Is it possible that my 8 games could get 7 (or even 6 if you’d rather just round down to make life easier) points each based on an unordered list? Just a thought for those of us less keen on ranking our games.
    Just put them in some kind of rough order. It'll take seconds.

    FWIW I won't do scores from 1-10 in GOTD as it weights things too heavily in favour of top votes. I don't think one 1st place vote should be worth ten 10th place votes. Instead I'll probably go from 3-12, so order won't be quite as important.
  • acemuzzy
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    b0r1s wrote:
    I’d just like to add that 1st Feb 2020 is my birthday so I should get double points or some shit

    Well 2nd Feb 2020 is my 40th birthday so fuck you Boris I get quadruple points
  • Game of the Year
    1. Sekiro. An epic game full of wonderful combat and fights, amazing bosses, great audiovisuals that help create a convincing setting and characters and story. Some slight issues with camera and a couple of the bosses can seem frustrating until you realise that it’s you who is shit, but otherwise faultless. [10]
    2. Slay the Spire. So many hours spent on this and still scratching the surface. I’m a bit rubbish to get the most out of it, relying too much on luck maybe, but hasn’t stopped me from enjoying the game. [9]
    3. Devil May Cry 5. A good return to the series and Dante is as great as ever. Nero is a good change and his new abilities can be fun, but V can be a bit tedious and unenjoyable even if at first he seems a good change of pace and tactics. Some great bosses, and mechanics are as sound as ever. [8]
    4. Sayonara Wild Hearts. Quirky art and music, comes into its own once you’ve learnt the levels and aim for all gold and cards, and chasing higher scores. Good use of changing styles and perspectives. [8]

    Best sound design
    1. Sayonara Wild Hearts. A fairly well-made sound-based game with nice sound and some good tunes.
    2. Sekiro. A great soundtrack, and SFX that From seem to do so well.
    3.

    Best visual design
    1. Sayonara Wild Hearts. Lovely trippy stuff.
    2. Astral Chain. Some great visual effects and cartoony looks.
    3. Sekiro. Just looks wonderful.

    Best writing
    1. Sekiro. For the story and characters.
    2.
    3.

    Best character
    1. Genichiro Ashina. A fairly deep and conflicted character, and so cool.
    2.
    3.

    Best ongoing game released before 2019 (anything that received further support, a major expansion/update etc. this year)
    1.

    Best game you played this year that didn't come out this year
    1. Bayonetta 2 (Switch). I love me the Platinum brawlers and I could play them once a year forever. Bayo 1 on normal last year, Bayo 2 on normal this year. Want to go back and do all platinum medals on normal. Maybe. And then get cracking on harder difficulties.

    Game of the Decade
    1. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. Whilst at first I was disappointed with the lack of traditional dungeons and what seemed like a samey environment, I soon leaned to love the world and just wandering around and exploring. Losing myself in the world and just living it, taking my time to take every corner of the map in and absorbing my surroundings. It didn’t take that long to become my greatest game and I forgive it’s shortcomings. I could wander around forever. Obviously the actual gameplay is great too. The dungeons are decent, there are some fantastic well-designed and ingenious shrines, plenty of collectibles and secrets and side quests, good combat, and so much scope for improvising and experimenting with the inventory and play mechanics. It helps that it’s also and absolutely beautiful game in both sound and visuals. All this makes the overall package the best game ever.
    2. Super Mario Galaxy 2. The tight design of the levels and the ingenious use of the gravity mechanics make this the best Mario game, although I probably put the original higher cos of impact and the hub (I love a good hub). Recently the kids started watching some gameplay videos of the Galaxy games which just reminded me how great these were and how Odyssey was just a tad disappointing that it wasn’t as good.
    3. Journey. The greatest two hours of my gaming life. Journey is different things to different people, including being the worst thing for some, but it deeply resonated with me. That ending / credits section with the accompanying song is possibly my greatest gaming experience ever. Never been so happy to just press and hold up to win.
    4. Persona 4: The Golden. Where to start? One of the greatest soundtracks ever, a great setting (I do love me some Japan), and a great whodunnit story with the great and bizarre characters and friendship building and relationships and all the different world religion and cult and fantasy lores in the personas and the dungeons and battles and EVERYTHING. SO MUCH IT OVERLOADS ME. By the end of the game I actually got quite attached to the characters and that tipped into GoaT status even more for me.
    5. NieR Automata. The battle mechanics are functional at least and can be good if you delve deep enough, but never really tested except one or two fights. But it’s the dystopian world and setting, the amazing OST, and the shifting play styles that that all work together and make it all worth it. Then you have the twisting and turning narrative and the way it all fucks with your head. I don’t tend to use the word subversive much, but this is it. So much feels too, which is always a plus. Glory to Mankind!
    6. The Last Guardian. And even more feels. I’m one of the lucky ones who managed to download a digital copy that didn’t have any bugs or control issues. Trico is the greatest character created in any game. A friend, a companion, a saviour, so full of life. Going through the game with this creature, you build a bond and by the end, you’re emotionally attached and committed to it. One of the greatest achievements in games.
    7. Bloodborne. My favourite of the (recent) From games, due mainly to the faster and more polished battle mechanics and a dark non-fantasy setting, and less weapons and items and bloat than the Souls games. Some of the best bosses and fights around, and a real challenge, and that together with the lore makes this an utterly unforgettable game.
    8. The Last of Us. This nails the post-apocalypse setting which I love. Some parts of the gameplay aren’t great (oh look another conveniently placed ladder/bin/pallet etc), but the shooting is fine. But it’s the quality of the storytelling and characterisation that elevates this to GoaT status; the acting is unparalleled and of a quality that seems to be Naughty Dog’s forte and is very convincing to the point where I think it’s better than most movies. This helped a great deal in convincing me of the relationships between characters and caring about them which was essential in enjoying the game.
    9. Hollow Knight. Finally, Super Metroid has a challenger (but not quite there). Oodles of atmosphere, an intriguing set of weird and wonderful characters, plenty of dark lore. But it’s the sprawling map and how you slowly unravel the world with new abilities, the joy in wandering around, finding secrets, going back to previously inaccessible paths, the satisfying and precise controls and combat: a perfect mix, so polished, and all works so well together. Delightful.
    10. Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice.

    Almost/could’ve made it:
    Into The Breach
    Tetris Effect
    God of War
    Halo Reach

    Not in due to limit on one per series:
    Dark Souls
    Skyward Sword
    Mario Odyssey
    "But enough talk. HAVE AT YOU!"
  • For GotY, so far my list is:

    Sekiro
    Slay The Spire
    DMC5

    Still playing/might play:

    Astral Chain
    Sayonara Wild Hearts
    Untitled Goose Game
    "But enough talk. HAVE AT YOU!"
  • b0r1s
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    acemuzzy wrote:
    b0r1s wrote:
    I’d just like to add that 1st Feb 2020 is my birthday so I should get double points or some shit

    Well 2nd Feb 2020 is my 40th birthday so fuck you Boris I get quadruple points

    40? 40?? Pah! I was 40 when you were still in nappies.
  • So you turned 40 recently too then?
    "But enough talk. HAVE AT YOU!"
  • b0r1s
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    Bad-dum!

    Yep ;-)
  • NB.  I don't seem to be able to 'unbold' the text for Shovel Knight and Outer Wilds and I'm fed up with trying.  

    1. Heave Ho!

    Madcap same room cooperative multiplayer game that exploits its core mechanic flawlessly.  Each player controls the arms and hands of a...face with arms and hands.  The analogue stick stretches/flails both arms around in any given direction, the left trigger clutches onto surfaces with the left hand, the right trigger grabs hold with the right.  From there it's all about manipulating the character by any means necessary to reach the goal.  If you're holding the correct button as your hand brushes a surface, it sticks regardless of momentum.  Swing, fling and climb your way to victory, either while assisting or hindering other players, shouting encouragement at each other and/or screaming at the ceiling in frustration.  Once one player reaches the goal they can call a balloon for the other players.  Take ten minutes to finish a stage and you'll be assisted in some way by additional poles.   Because of the amount of consistent fun we all had with it each and every session every session, plus the fact that it retails for less than a tenner full price, I'm going all the way to [10] with this if played with three or more players.  Most definitely GotY 2019 for me.  I can't believe how good it is, and how good my 5yr old daughter is at it, was an absolute joy to play through with her and Mrs. Geeza even got involved here and there.  An absolute hoot, I don't think I've had this much fun with same room mp since Monkey Target (and I LOVE Nidhogg & Towerfall Ascension). 



    2. Supermarket Shriek

    More than just a pleasant surprise, this was one of the best games I've played this year.  The rather odd premise is as follows: You control a man and a goat sitting in a shopping trolley, and movement is entirely governed by shrieking.  The analogue triggers make your characters scream, which rotates the trolley either left or right, and holding both triggers makes the cart go forward.  That's it, and it's one of the most perfect, pure gaming control schemes in recent memory.  With practice you could get obscenely good at this game, would love a forum comp but I'd presumably have to pay anyone to play it.  Hey ho.  Your job is to guide the trolley through pun-laden supermarket obstacle courses in as brief a time as possible.  Occasionally you'll have to collect items en route to the goal, or win a head-to-head, or smash cans of baked beans to maximise your score, but it's mostly just a question of whether or not you can make it to the end.  

    Progression is gated behind an overly strict star system.  Between one and three stars are dished out for a successful run, you'll pretty much need two or more on every stage in order to see the late game, and some of the three star requirements are damn tricky.  It's a tough game, extremely so in places, but I'm glad I pushed through.  I can hurtle through the earlier stages now, thanks to the superb handling model and the fact that the game demands constant improvement for success.  Forget o0o Ascension Muzzy, this is a far better game.  [9]



    3. Lonely Mountains Downhill

    A late surge for game of the year.  In many ways it shares similarities with Supermarket Shriek, which it narrowly failed to leapfrog on this list.  It can be played as high concentration burst gaming, and it requires/expects the player to improve constantly.  For such a simple game - guide your bicycle to the bottom of a long descent without falling off it - there's a lot going on.  It's part part checkpoint progress/route learn frustrate 'em up, but it can also be a wonderfully serene and laid back affair. The way it incorporates non game breaking elements of DIY route finding push it over the line into extra special territory.  It's a fine game if you stick to the beaten track, but it becomes brilliant once you dare to venture off it.  Shortcuts are essential if you're chasing anyone's time, and they're of a far more free-form nature than in something as ultra designed as Trials.  In that you'd plot your precise route and look for ways to shave tenths of seconds off here and there (or 'cheat', by watching and mimicking top ghosts), but there's far more scope for improvisation in this.  Chuck your bike off a ledge in the right place and you might hit terra firma at an angle and speed that doesn't bounce you off, shaving 12 seconds off a run (see gif).  And if you miss it by inches, the likelihood is you'll want to try it again.  It's not as clinical as the 'this is the shortcut' feel of, say, Mario Kart 8.  I haven't checked to see if this has leaderboard ghosts yet, but I'd hope it doesn't; local seems enough to keep things interesting.      The pastel visuals and throwback flat shaded character models are great, and although it chugs in places on the busier mountains it's a mostly smooth experience.  It's tricky, but the requirements to unlock all areas aren't particularly tough.  I did like the way it absolutely required an off-piste approach to the speed runs towards the end though.  Super stuff. [9] 



    4. Shovel Knight: King of Cards

    The journey is over.  It's no secret that I love the original game (it's a straight [10] for me), and the first two DLC campaigns were a mixed bag well worth delving into.  The final freebie is easily the best of the additional quests; King's barge into twist move works far better than the core mechanics of either Plague or Spectre, and the levels built around these moves are superb.  It felt intuitive from the get go and it packs a ton of variety into its stages, plus almost all of the magic items are worth either using regularly or messing around with.  There's an emphasis on secret exits to the stages this time, most of which only contain a single restart point.  It's one of the easier campaigns, mainly thanks to the liberal dishing out of hearts and manual health boost perk, which allows bosses to be bruted a bit more than previous entries, but also because the bubble move is a bit of a get-out-of-jail card.  In addition to the platforming there's a pretty enjoyable card game chucked in the mix too.  Not my sort of thing as a rule, but it won me over as the campaign progressed and I ended up really enjoying the single move puzzles in particular.   The ending to this one is super stronk and as usual the post game challenge mode is great fun.  The quest is probably the longest too, roughly on par with Shovel Knight and weighing in close to 10hrs if you're not actively avoiding secrets.  A fitting swansong for my favourite platformer of all time.  I loved it.  [9]



    5. The Outer Wilds

    Not to be confused with The Outer Worlds, despite the fact that it looks like both sets of developers did precisely that when naming their wares.  A truly remarkable gaming experience that deserves to be pushed into the limelight when the end of year lists appear.  Part of the reason I'm typing this in my pants at home is the fact that I was up playing it at 3am and I've ended up chucking a good old fashioned sickie.  

    Taking elements of the narrative FPS types (I'm fed up with referring to them as 'walking sims'), Majora's Mask and No Man's Sky, it's a laid back intergalactic episode of Treasure Hunt where information gradually gleaned through exploration is key to unravelling the mysteries of the solar system.  I've admired NMS from afar, but I'd rather inhale infinite helmetfulls of specefarts than actually participate in its proc gen quintillion worlds shtick.  Despite having no desire to play it, it's one of those games that makes me wish I wasn't me so I'd have a chance of enjoying it, y'know?  Enter The Outer Wilds, which is meticulously designed to within an inch of its life.  It only contains a handful of planets, each of which contains pertinent information that can be discovered in an order decided by the player.  The information gradually makes sense of the interplanetary goings on and will eventually guide you toward the endgame.  Here's the rub: playtime exists in a 22-minute loop, where everything you've interacted with resets once the sun goes supernova.  The ship's log acts as Guy Pearce's chest, thankfully, so every tidbit you discover is locked into your on-board computer.  There's very little hand holding so it was more than a little overwhelming for me at first, given that I usually focus on games that could be labelled 'Action' on the corner of a Master System cart.  The controls keep it grounded to an extent; it's a game I enjoyed playing but the fundamentals aren't much cop - it's a first person narrative type with added manoeuvrability, so the mechanics won't win prizes - but that's not why you'll take this particular trip and it's all fit for purpose.  

    I don't want to reveal any more of its workings and intricacies as discovery is key to the experience, but at the same time I feel like a few paragraphs doesn't bang the drum enough.  Top tier indie gaming, credits have rolled and it's still in my head [8]. o/ @FranticPea



    And some more while I'm here:

    6. Untitled Goose Game [8]
    7. FutureGrind [8]
    8. Blood & Truth
    9. Cadence of Hyrule [8]
    10. Katana Zero [8]
    11. Ape Out [8]
    12. Trials Rising [8]*
    13. Blazing Chrome [8]

    *Grindiness kills it, could've been top 3 as the tracks are there.[/spoiler]

    Best sound Design

    1. Ape Out



    2. The Outer Wilds



    3. Cadence of Hyrule: Crypt of the Necrodancer



    Best visual Design

    1. Katana Zero

    ec5ab053040c574399cbabb727aeb085.gif

    2. Ape Out

    SafeSafeHarborseal-size_restricted.gif

    3. Gato Roboto

    ezgif.com-crop.gif

    Best writing

    1. The Outer Wilds
    2. Katana Zero
    3.

    Best character

    1. The Goose (the GOAT)






    2. The Ape
    3. The Goat

    Best ongoing game released before 2019 (anything that received further support, a major expansion/update etc. this year)

    1. Mario Tennis Aces

    Best game you played this year that didn't come out this year

    1. Statik (PSVR)

    (apologies to Monster Boy)

    Most disappointing game.

    1. Creature in the Well. 

    Pretty good really, but that wasn't what I was after. Pinball Furi should've been an [8] or above. 

    2. Trials Rising 

    It's the front end that sucked, the game is still superb. The progression system didn't need to be messed around with and the changes turned what should have been a near perfect game into a chore. Easily my most played game this year across two consoles but the annoyances are enough for it to get a mention. 

    3. Baba is You 

    Was disappointed I didn't like it, but I'm sure it's great for galaxy brains.

    Game of the Decade

    1. Trials Evolution
    2. Hollow Knight
    3. Shovel Knight
    4. Super Meat Boy
    5. Hotline Miami
    6. Fire Emblem Awakening
    7. Mario 3D World
    8. Astro Bot
    9. Ori in the Blind Forest
    10. Fez
    Joustus is served.
  • Wtf is supermarket shriek really
    "But enough talk. HAVE AT YOU!"
  • acemuzzy
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    It's really not GotY
  • Might give it a go in Waitrose later but could get chucked out by security I guess
    "But enough talk. HAVE AT YOU!"
  • regmcfly
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    Desperate to do other parts and write them up, but can't really until 3 other games get released this year.
  • hylian_elf wrote:
    Wtf is supermarket shriek really

    It's unlikely to be everyone's cup of tea.

    Joustus is served.
  • Ape out. Love it.
    I'm still great and you still love it.
  • I thought something like visual design would be an easy one, but looking at what I've played there are plenty of contenders, with quite a few I still haven't played yet.

    Katana Zero
    Sekiro
    A Plague Tale: Innocence
    Resident Evil 2
    Astral Chain 
    Sayonara Wild Hearts
    Zelda: Link's Awakening
  • regmcfly
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    It's the bottom two.
  • That pixel art on KZ really is something though. And the lighting and environment detail in Plague Tale.
  • Does the animation of goose game feed into “visual design”
  • acemuzzy
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    I'm not sure I can enter all the categories, but here's goty link ftr

    http://thebearandbadger.co.uk/discussion/comment/1661386#Comment_1661386

    And games I've finished, where I don't think any are 2019 releases... http://thebearandbadger.co.uk/post/quote/2275/Comment_1555241

    Ones I've played a chunk of:
    - Sekiro

    Ones I might play a chunk of:
    - Goose game
    - A Plague Take
    - Ape Out
    - Gears 5
    - FutureGrind
    - The Outer Wilds
    - DmC 5
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