Game of the Year Awards

Everybody else is doing it, so I will too!

The annual’s 2004 Games of the Year That I Have Played (and some I haven’t) Awards. It just rolls off the tongue, don’t it?

The “Best of the Best” Award:
Gradius V
Chronicles of Riddick
Halo 2 XBL
Metroid: Zero Mission
Astroboy: The Omega Factor

The “Best Games That I Need to Play More Of” Award:
Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater
Outrun 2
Metroid Prime 2

The “No Sir, I Don’t Like It” Award (is it really an award at that point?):
Ninja Gaiden
Final Fantasy XI PS2
Midway Arcade Treasures 2 (they are very loose with the “treasures” designation)

The “Awesome!! Really Good! OK. Got Old Quick” Award:
Burnout 3
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas

The “Perpetually On My ‘To-Get’ List” Award:
Paper Mario 2
Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga

The “I HATE Having To Unlock Shit In A Game That I Bought” Distinction:
Hot Shots Golf Fore

The “Best Games That I Bought But Haven’t Played Because I Know They Will Take Way Too Long And I Don’t Have The Time For Super-Long Quests And Leveling Up To Level 9999” Award:
Phantom Brave
Tales of Symphonia
(also known as the “WTF? I used to like JRPGs” Award.)

The “Best New Old School Fun” Award:
Metal Slug 3 (despite the annoying continue system)
Mega Man Anniversary Collection
Alien Hominid
Gradius V

The “Funky-Assed Theme Song” Award:
Katamari Damacy
Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater

The “It Has Vin Diesel In It And I Don’t Absolutely Hate It, How Did That Happen?” Award:
Chronicles of Riddick

The “Dumbest Most Irritating Map That Nobody Ever Wins On” Award:
Coagulation (Halo 2)

The “Games That I Haven’t Played But I Hear They’re Good, OK?” Award:
Half-Life 2
Far Cry
Paper Mario 2
World of Warcraft
(often known as the “Not-A-PC-Gamer” Award.)

“Surprise of the Year”
Katamari Damacy actually getting a domestic release and being successful with it!

The “Where The Fuck Are They Already?” Award, sponsored by Capcom:
Mega Man Anniversary Collection GBA
Resident Evil 4 (almost here)

The “Most Anticipated Game of 2005 That No One Will Buy” Award:
Klonoa 2: Dream Champ Tournament

And, lastly, Game of the Year goes too… (dramatic use of the extended entry field):

Chronicles of Riddick. Yes.

Here is a game from a new developer, on a new engine, that isn’t a sequel to an established franchise, has NO multiplayer, had little hype and expectation going for it, and has managed to overcome what is often a kiss of death: the movie tie-in. It was focused. Original, at times. Refined at others. Rewarding. Surprising. Just plain good.

I’m as surprised by it as anyone else can be, really. There were a lot of good games this year, but I make no regrets piling this one on top of the rest. It’s a shame that it came out during a quiet period and has, at the height of the hype-packed fourth quarter, been mostly forgotten as a result.

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