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Photo: The Game Awards
The revered Game Awards has been around since 2014, awarding the best games in categories for story, voice acting, art design, by genre, and many more. Just like other award shows such as The Academy Awards (Oscars), The Emmy Awards, and The Grammys, The Game Awards holds the most special and prestigious award for the end of the ceremony. That award is Game of the Year.
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Throughout the years, the Game of the Year title held a great honor that creates more recognition and agreement than upsets. Previous winners of the award include ‘It Takes Two,’ ‘The Last of Us II,’ ‘Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice,’ and many more. As the gaming scene, this year has had many loved games all around, the six games chosen for nomination are surprising yet expected.
Here are the nominees for 2022’s Game of the Year at The Game Awards:
‘A Plague Tale: Requiem’ (Asobo Studio / Focus Entertainment)
‘A Plague Tale: Requiem’ is a third-person action/adventure story-driven shooter. It allows the player to assume the role of Amicia. The tough protagonist navigates through a dystopian alternate version of 14th-century France where the country is suffering from an extreme version of the black plague. With waves of man-eating hordes of rats and soldiers from the French Inquisition acting as the player’s antagonist, the stakes and difficulty of the game gave players a great time on the journey of guiding Amicia’s little brother to the refuge that promised them safety during the plague.
This game was nominated in five categories in this year’s Game Awards. Nominated for Best Narrative, Best Score and Music, Best Performance (Charlotte McBurney as Amicia de Rune), Best Action/Adventure Game, and Game of the Year, ‘A Plague Tale: Requiem’ proves to be a top contender for the award, as the reception for the game was great and sold over 1 million copies. It received scores ranging from 7 to 8 out of 10 from most of the top reviewers and an 82/100 from Metacritic.
‘Elden Ring’ (FromSoftware / Bandai Namco Entertainment)
‘Elden Ring’ was a game that was undoubtedly going to be on the nomination list. With its incredibly large open world, insanely advanced graphics, and seemingly endless amounts of interactive NPCs, ‘Elden Ring’ caught the attention of gamers everywhere. ‘Elden Ring’ drops the player into the world with their own customizable character with the mission of repairing the Elden Ring to become the new Elden Lord. The game is heavy combat and exploration based with fantasy elements and a character class system.
‘Elden Ring’ had amazing reception, having been able to sell 17.5 million copies by the end of September with a release date of February 25. It is Bandai Namco’s fastest-selling game of all time. ‘Elden Ring’ was also nominated for Best Game Direction, Best Narrative, Best Art Direction, Best Score and Music, Best Audio Design, and Best Role Playing. ‘Elden Ring’ has received almost perfect scores from most of the top reviewers including a 96/100 from Metacritic.
‘God of War Ragnarok’ (Santa Monica Studio / Sony Interactive Entertainment)
‘God of War Ragnarok’ is up there with the predictability of making it onto the nomination list this year. ‘Elden Ring’s top competitor for the award is definitely ‘God of War Ragnarok.’ The game is an action/adventure game allowing the player to play as one of gaming’s most renowned protagonists, Kratos. The storyline centers a couple years after the franchise’s 2018 release. In its traditional combat-based gameplay with some puzzle solving, the player adventures with Kratos and his son, Atreus, as they approach Ragnarok, a time destined to be the end of the world or the end of times.
The exact sales of the game have not been disclosed, but the reception of the game was almost perfect. Receiving an almost perfect score of 94/100 from Metacritic, ‘God of War: Ragnarok’ solidifies itself as one of the greatest games of all time. The game is nominated for 10 awards. Aside from Game of the Year, it is nominated for Best Game Direction, Best Narrative, Best Art Direction, Best Sound and Music, Best Audio Design, Best Performance (for Christopher Judge and Sunny Suljic separately), Best Action/Adventure, and Innovation in Accessibility.
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‘Horizon Forbidden West’ (Guerrilla Games / Sony Interactive Entertainment)
‘Horizon Forbidden West’ brings the players back as Aloy in this sequel game. Taking place in the familiar post-apocalyptic setting in the United States, players find themselves in an overheated desert, a ruined landscape caused by the robot swarm. Setting toward the Forbidden West to find a cure for the plague, players take Aloy and her allies across a vast open-world, completing quests and defeating robotic animals in this action RPG.
‘Horizon Forbidden West’ had a great reception like the other nominees, averaging an 8/10 or 4/5 from top reviewers. It sold over 200,000 copies during its first month of release. The game is nominated for seven categories including Game of the Year. It meets its Game of the Year competitors in other categories too, such as Best Game Direction, Best Narrative, Best Art Direction, Best Audio Design, Best Performance (Ashley Busch), and Best Action/Adventure Game.
‘STRAY’ (BlueTwelve Studio / Annapurna Interactive)
To many, ‘Stray’ was the unexpected yet expected surprise on the list of nominees. With combat-heavy open-world games dominating the Game of the Year category, ‘Stray’ acts as the odd one out. The player is not a human this time, but of the four-legged furry species that rules the internet, a cat. It is a cute adventure game about a stray cat navigating through an underground city ruled by robots that have been looking for a way out for probably a century. Being the evidence of life outside, the player takes on the role of the stray cat from above that must lead the underground citizens to life outside.
The game received a rough average of 8.5/10 from top reviewers. The game got lots of praise for its twisted plot, for the game was suspected to be an open-world game purely exploring the world as a four-legged stray. The graphics, storyline, and soundtrack shocked gamers and led to the hype and appraisal that it has today. ‘Stray’ is nominated for five other categories, those being Best Game Direction, Best Art Direction, Best Independent Game, Best Action/Adventure, and Best Debut Indie Game. ‘Stray’ deserves props due to being the only indie game making it to the nomination list for Game of the Year.
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‘Xenoblade Chronicles 3’ (Monolith Soft / Nintendo)
The final game nominated for Game of the Year is Nintendo and Monolith Soft’s ‘Xenoblade Chronicles 3.’ ‘Xenoblade Chronicles 3’ resumes the beloved open-world series in the franchise. In this Nintendo action RPG, gamers play as Noah as he navigates the beautiful fantastical world of Aionios. The game was heavily critiqued on its graphic and performance issues as expected with an open-world Nintendo Switch game, but it received high praise in other categories such as its story, gameplay, and music.
The game was able to sell 1.72 million copies. It received scores ranging from 8 to 9 out of 10 by most of the top reviewers. It was able to receive nominations in only two other categories other than Game of the Year, those being Best Score/Music and Best Role Playing Game.
By Nino Vongphachanh
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