Game of the Year 2019 Awards and Game of the Decade 2010-2019
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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
    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.
     
    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.
  • 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 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
  • From other thread so I can remember re GotD
    hylian_elf wrote:
    Off the top of my head, mine will/may include: l
    Breath of the Wild
    Mario Galaxy 2
    Journey
    Last Guardian
    NieR Automata
    Persona 4 Golden
    Bloodborne
    Last of Us
    Into The Breach

    Could include (need a think or need to finish):
    Persona 5
    God of War
    The Witness
    Hollow Knight
    Slay The Spire Sekiro
    [Ultra] Street Fighter IV
    Dark Souls

    Need to play:
    Mass Effect 2
    Portal 2
    "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!"
  • 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!"
  • Will no doubt tinker with this incessantly, but here we go then (for some categories that's all I got):

    Game of the Year (reviews dumped from the 52 games thread, when I wasn't sure on any particular order obvs):

    1. 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]



    2. Untitled Goose Game

    Nothing but love from me.  Played this with my daughter and it effortlessly usurps the excellent Donut County as our second best pass-the-pad experience of the year (Wandersong is unassailable).  Everything from your character's ThugLife swagger to the village itself is absolutely on point.  Of course the final area is 
    Spoiler:
    ...how beautifully apt.  The puzzles are fun to solve and the penny drop moment never left me feeling short changed.  Visuals are terrific and the scallywag goose is a joy to waddle in and out of trouble with.  It's not a long game but it's not as short as I'd feared; I'd happily pay for dlc areas going forward as I'd very much like some more of the same please. One of the most pleasant surprises of this or any year.  [9]



    3. FutureGrind

    A Thursday punt pays off at last.  £1.52 this cost me, and as it came out in January, according to Google, it's game of the sodding year.  It's a course based auto runner where you grind on (or on the underside of) rails , only touching them with a wheel of the corresponding colour.  You can double or triple jump, depending on your grind mech (?), and spin the craft forwards and backwards.  That's it, the rest is just built around the near perfect basics.  At first you have to try to get through the track unscathed, then additional paramaters are added (don't touch the purple rails, for example).  The progression system doesn't give you much leeway, you'll mostly need to complete all three challenges per stage to move on.  This would be annoying in most games but I was up for doing that anyway - because it's fun - so it gets a pass.  Combine Unirally, Trials, Colour Guardians, Bit.Trip.Runner, Thumper and Olli Olli and you've got a game better than most of the other ones mentioned in this sentence.  It's constantly tricky but the tasks are always doable, even when it feels overwhelming practice will see you through as although it's mostly skill based, and can be played as such, memorisation can give you an edge eventually.  I can't recommend this highly enough, would've happily paid full whack for it. [8]



    4. Cadence of Hyrule: Crypt of the Necrodancer

    I wasn't completely up for the Zeldafication of Necrodancer going in, having bounced off the original pretty brutally on Vita, but positive reviews and irresistible allure of 2D Hyrule reeled me in.  After a shaky start - I considered throwing in the towel a couple of times in the first 90 mins - this gradually revealed itself to be one of the best games of the year.  The learning curve is steep, but the difficulty on the whole is quite forgiving.  More on that later.  Having limited knowledge of how it works didn't seem to help me as I still felt like I'd been chucked in at the deep end with iron boots instead of flippers.  If you refuse to be overwhelmed (having just paid £20 for it helps) the basics start to make sense after a dozen or so restarts.  Then the addictiveness rapidly sets in.  I polished this off in four evenings, so it joins a very small list of roguelikes I've finished (Enter the Breach and.....ummm).  Instant travel takes the sting out of most of the things I don't particularly like about the genre, although I may have been lucky by finding the required item early on.  

    I quite like rhythm games, not that I've played more than a generous handful over the years, but the genre crossover thing works extremely well.  Marginal dumbing down of the Necrodancer template coupled with how deftly they've bolted it to the Zelda franchise stands as a genuinely impressive achievement.  It really gets its claws in, with very few missteps, and even threatens to usurp Mario Rabbids as the king of unlikely third party spin-offs.  I'm not one for replaying, but it'd certainly withstand multiple runs as the layout changes with every new save file.  

    A few minor negatives: The bosses are a highlight, but they're so easy to defeat they manage to feel like a bit of a joke in the end.  In fact, once you've got the hang of it and know the location of a fairy cave/witch hut or two, you don't really need to die at all if you're careful (in a continued niceness concession the red elixier even kicks in upon death rather than forcing you to chug it in time).  The spear trumps all close range weapons, and pretty much negated their usefulness for me.  Perhaps that was just my play style, but it felt OP.  The *minor spoiler* character swapping is mostly redundant, and after the initial hour or so your diamond stash is too.  That's about it though, excellent game and a very welcome surprise.  Plus it may well be the niftiest looking Zelda game of all time.  £22.49 is maybe a bit much (a straight playthrough took me 6.5hrs), it feels like there's a there's a touch of first party News Feed Highlight tax added on there, but absolutely worth grabbing at the first sniff of a discount.  In with a minor shout for GotY. [8]



    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 Treasure Hunt where information gradually gleaned through exploration is key to unravelling the mysteries of the galaxy.  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



    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

    Gato-GIF-15.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)

    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
    Camping in the heart of Dark Bramble
  • 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.

    Camping in the heart of Dark Bramble
  • 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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