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gamrReview 2010 Game of the Year Awards - Overall Part Two - News

by Nick Pantazis , posted on 24 December 2010 / 13,107 Views

It's kind of scary how many great games were released this year. We thought 2009 was the best year ever, and 2008 before it, but 2010 may really top them both. It was an incredible year for all platforms, with exclusives and multiplatform titles of the highest quality which every home console, handheld, and PC gamer could possibly ask for. Blockbusters abound, new IPs flourish, and the gamers rejoice in the bounty of incredible games across the genres. However, while it was tough, we have narrowed down our final votes for our favorite games of this astounding year. This list includes our overall picks for the specialty awards, and of course our pick for the best game of 2010. We look forward to hearing your (hopefully respectful) feedback, and hope you've enjoyed our Game of the Year Awards. And without further ado, I present the final part of the gamrReview Game of the Year awards in 2010.

 Best Downloadable Game: LIMBO

Rock Band 3

It's hard to describe LIMBO, because it's almost more of an experience than a game, but most of the (fortunately) many who played it can tell you that experience is forever burned into their minds. It's haunting, engrossing, and shockingly deep. We really can't recommend it more. LIMBO will enthrall you for every moment you spend in the game, and you'll wish it never had to end. It platforms its way into our favorite downloadable game of 2010.

Runner-up: Shantae: Risky's Revenge

Reader’s Choice: Scott Pilgrim vs. the World

Best Graphics Technology: God of War III

In the smallest of details, God of War III may not be that impressive, but taken as a whole, it's real-time graphics on a scale which has never been seen in gaming. A truly astounding achievement, God of War III operates on a scope that will simply leave you in awe. The events really do feel like they are on a scale of the entire world, and they are executed in an awe-inspiring manner which will make passing friends and family stop and stare dumbfounded at the glorious gore. God of War III easily takes our award for the best Graphics Technology.

Runner-up: Mass Effect 2

Reader’s Choice: God of War III

Best Art Direction: Kirby's Epic Yarn

It was a tough battle with the hauntingly gorgeous LIMBO, but the bright and incredibly unique Kirby's Epic Yarn won out. This is absolutely an example of artistic excellence completely removing any sign of technical limitations. There are few games in existence more enchanting than Kirby's Epic Yarn, no matter the console. This light and fluffy game stole our hearts and our award for Best Art Direction of 2010.

Runner-up: LIMBO

Reader’s Choice: Final Fantasy XIII

Best Original Music Score: Mass Effect 2

Mass Effect 2

If you're a movie fan, you know that the right music score makes a big difference in how immersive a film is, and nothing immerses you in its world like Mass Effect 2. Ranging from haunting to adrenaline-inducing scores, Mass Effect 2's music feels alien and wondrous, and is just one of many things that make it an incredible experience from start to finish. It blends extremely well with the universe, and it's got our favorite Original Music Score in 2010.

Runner-up: Halo: Reach 

Reader’s Choice: Final Fantasy XIII

Best Licensed Music Score: Rock Band 3

Well, maybe it's not a big surprise, but Rock Band 3 really did deliver the excellent track list we were expecting from the now champion music franchise. Jamming to your favorite tunes has never been better, and with new DLC constantly pouring in, Rock Band looks to maintain its crown with the most extensive music-game library in existence. With excellent scores from excellent artists, it's hard to fault the audio design of Rock Band 3.

Runner-up: Gran Turismo 5

Reader’s Choice: Rock Band 3

Best Use of Motion Controls: Sports Champions

A new award for changing times, Sports Champions takes home our first ever Best Use of Motion Control award. While there was quite a lot of competition on all consoles, Sports Champions provides an incredibly smooth, polished, effective, and most-important fun motion gaming experience. You'll be hard-pressed to find a better showcase of the potential of motion controls on the market today.

Runner-up: Dance Central

Reader’s Choice: Sports Champions

Most Innovative: Tie - Super Scribblenauts and LIMBO

Rarely have there been two games tied for the same award which were so opposite one another in design. Super Scribblenauts bursts with innovation through the incredibly impressive use of adjectives to really push the limits of your imagination, while LIMBO boasts dark yet simple ambiance in a puzzle-platformer design the likes of which has never been seen. The power to do anything and the weak and powerless collide as Super Scribblenauts and LIMBO tie  for our Most Innovative game of 2010 award.

Runner-up: Heavy Rain

Reader’s Choice: Heavy Rain

Biggest Disappointment: Metroid: Other M

The cheers when Metroid: Other M was announced a year and half ago were deafening. Metroid developed by Team Ninja with incredibly awesome CGI cutscenes? Yes, please. Unfortunately, the final result isn't what fans expected. A weak and overly feminine Samus shoehorned into a submissive role is not the bounty hunter we grew to love over the original 2D entries and more recently the incredible Metroid Prime trilogy. This is not what Metroid fans have come to expect from the franchise, and it's a pretty big departure in style from previous entries. Metroid: Other M is by no means a bad game, but it is a disappointing one.

Runner-up: Final Fantasy XIII

Reader’s Choice: Final Fantasy XIII

Best Game No One Played: No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle

No More Heroes 2 fixed everything frustrating about the already enjoyable original No More Heroes... except the sales. Coming in at less than half the life to date sales of its predecessor, No More Heroes 2 is a sadly under-appreciated epic gem in the Wii's 2010 library. Crazy anime antics and epic battles and insane humor make this quirky Suda title one that should not be missed. Shame on you Wii owners for letting this game fall to our Best Game No One Played in 2010.

Runner-up: Valkyria Chronicles II, BlazBlue: Continuum Shift

Reader’s Choice: Vanquish

Best New IP: LIMBO

I can't really rant about LIMBO anymore. No, wait, I can. But really, just go buy it. If you don't have a 360, go buy one, then buy it. It's an incredible and unique experience, and I cannot impress upon you enough how much it stands out among other games. The word "unique" gets thrown around a lot in gaming, when things rarely are, but believe me, in this case it's appropriate. I can't wait to see what else we get from the incredible indie talent behind LIMBO, and it's our favorite new IP of 2010.

Runner-up: Heavy Rain

Reader’s Choice: Heavy Rain

Most Anticipated Upcoming Game: The Last Guardian

Did it really win a second year in a row? Yes. Yes it did. If you aren't incredibly hyped for this game, you probably didn't play ICO and/or Shadow of the Colossus. If you did play them and aren't incredibly hyped for this game, I hate you, and all fans of the franchise will join me in collective looks of scorn. Haunting, gorgeous, original, and clever, the games of Team Ico stand out in any environment, and we can't wait to see the fruits of their latest labor of love. Please just don't delay it another year. Please.

Runner-up: LittleBigPlanet 2

Reader’s Choice: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

Game of the Year: Mass Effect 2

If you've been following our other awards, this probably isn't that much of a surprise, but let me be clear: Mass Effect 2 is something special, and I don't mean special like that kid who sat behind you on the bus and ate things stuck under the seat. It's the kind of game that's really better referred to as an experience. It is an incredible unification of masterfully executed gameplay, rich lore, enthralling design, and near-perfect pacing which leaves us ravenous for the conclusion of this epic. It stands out among a year of incredible releases on all platforms, and Mass Effect 2, you are our Game of the Year for 2010.

Runner-up: Red Dead Redemption, Super Mario Galaxy 2

Reader’s Choice: Mass Effect 2

Be sure to check out our other Game of the Year Awards here!

More Articles

cromeros (on 26 December 2010)

Disagree with a lot of the winners... :(

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SecondWar (on 12 May 2011)

I still dont get that Commander Shepard quote joke. Also betting that Mass Effect 2 makes an appearance in 2011 game of the year awards... as biggest disappointment on PS3. Don't think I heard a positive comment about it when it released on that platform.

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haxxiy (on 07 January 2011)

I'm commander Sheppard, and this is my favorite game of the year.

Just in case no one said it yet.

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z101 (on 05 January 2011)

Other M is okay. But Alan Wake was by far the biggest disappointment of 2010.

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Kennyheart (on 02 January 2011)

agree with other m. Major disapointment.

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namdo (on 28 December 2010)

A big lol.... at this site.

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outlawauron (on 27 December 2010)

insert whining here

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scapegoatsqueal (on 27 December 2010)

terrible list. and why is final fantasy the readers choice in half of these categories?! you people are insane

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ryuzaki57 (on 26 December 2010)

Let's sum the FFXIII case up :

Runner up for best PS3 RPG
People's choice for best PS3 RPG
People's choice for best overall JRPG
People's choice for best overall Art direction
People's choice for best O.S.T

PS3 biggest disappointment
people's choice for PS3 biggest disappointment
people's choice for X360 biggest disappointment
runner up for overall biggest disappointment
people's choice for overall biggest disappointment

Divisive is the word! But why stress the negative side? And for starters, what's the point of the whole disappointed thing? That's not the best way to have people enjoy the GOTY. I mean GOTY should AWARD and not PUNISH.

It seems to have been hard on Other M fans (although you precised it was not a bad game, FFXIII didn't deserve such care I see) but for FFXIII fans (there might be one or two left here) this is intense suffering...

I don't own a 360 but I am not displeased to see ME2 taking the supreme award. It's one more reason to try it when it releases on PS3 next year/month even though I'm not into western RPGs at all.

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--OkeyDokey-- (on 26 December 2010)

@ nsanity

Then you are strongly in need of eye surgery.

@ Lord

And what else released this year was so new and mindblowing that it deserved 3rd place over Heavy Rain?

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Aiddon (on 25 December 2010)

whee, another article going "WAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!" over Other M. Screw you, just because Samus isn't some boring, estrogen-allergic "strong" female doesn't mean she was bad. And by the way, if you're going lie about Samus, at least do it better. She was NOT A character before Other M, she was a Mary Sue, a big, blank block for the player to project on.

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Teo (on 25 December 2010)

Reader's Choice is absolute. Just because you didn't like FFXIII, it doesn't mean it didn't have the best art direction (which it did in my opinion, since I buy new IP's based on this primarily). The talent behind FFXIII's score is unscathed that it's embarrassing to be nominated. The fact it won RC most disappointing game and best jrpg just shows that it's a new game and not some sequel. Did Mass Effect get any bad press because I don't like shooting games? No. Fallout and Mass Effect are just as alienating as FFXIII is.

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GuyDuke (on 25 December 2010)

Pretty decent list IMO, but Super Mario Galaxy 2 should AT LEAST have been nominated in best original score.

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hunter_alien (on 25 December 2010)

Pretty decent list actually. especially when we compare it to the bigger sites. Tough people should stop hating Other M. It was a great game, hell I would consider it good even by Metroid standards...

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Boutros (on 25 December 2010)


You definitely didn't understand Heavy Rain or you'd know how innovative the game felt.

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zarx (on 25 December 2010)

wait Mass Effect 2 best technical graphics over Call of Pripyat and Metro 2033?

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haxxiy (on 25 December 2010)

Mass Effect 2 right on your ass! Haha!

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goddog (on 25 December 2010)

im cool with this list since DR2 did not get set with set with biggest disappointment.... that really burned me on the 360 thread.... so should have been crackdown2. and its that i hate crackdown 2, i own it and one, and love both, but it is not all it could have been... not by a long shot

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Rob-Ot (on 25 December 2010)

@Siko & Jumpin

I disagree Other M was way worse.

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Killy_Vorkosigan (on 25 December 2010)

I strongly disagree with ME2 all over the place. IMHO, it's a regression from the first one in term of gameplay, levelling, ressource gathering and inventory in comparison to ME1.

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binary solo (on 25 December 2010)

I'm cool with all those awards. While I may prefer some games over the official winner I think each of the winners is a top game in their own right. And Brilliant for MNR winning best racer. It's such a great game, and underrated by many.

VCII beating SCII to tie for best strategy. AWESOME but depressing at the same time (not because of SCII coming in 3rd, but because the platform VCII is on.

  • 0
Rath (on 25 December 2010)

Yeah to be honest ME2/SMG2 makes for a fantastic year - very different games but both very good experiences.

  • 0
gergroy (on 24 December 2010)

Have you even played mass effect 2?

  • 0
Siko1989 (on 24 December 2010)

fuck off ... while Metroid other m was a little dissapointment (even though i enjoyed its gameplay and shooting) Final Fantasy 13 is Way disappointing than that.. its considered shit

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Wagram (on 24 December 2010)

Man VGChartz just can't give 13 credit for anything. M.E.2s soundtrack isn't that good but 13 still lost.

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MARCUSDJACKSON (on 24 December 2010)

mod nation racers is most innovative game of 2010, while heavt rain was more of an innovative way to tell a story and play a game. i can agree with the rest.

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Jumpin (on 24 December 2010)

FF13 easily let down WAY more than Metroid Other M; and FF14 probably as well (although as soon as I heard it was going to be online, I ignored its existence, so I wasn't really disappointed).

Mario Galaxy 2 is the best game this generation so far, seeing it listed below Mass Effect 2 just seems very wrong.

No More Heroes 2, I can't really comment on it being the best game that no one played; but after 2 hours of the first game, I had enough. It is kind of like how I would watch maybe an hour or two of Beavis and Butthead, but wouldn't buy the next movie.

  • 0
LordTheNightKnight (on 24 December 2010)

@--OkeyDokey-- Who says I'm mad at the game? Even back then I was going off people thinking this was anything new or mind blowing.

But here, I'm just pointing out it's not innovative. And if you think the winners aren't either, then a better response would be to just point out the award shows a lack of knowledge of what innovation means overall.

  • 0
Nsanity (on 24 December 2010)

Strongly disagree with Best Graphics Technology award.

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SecondWar (on 24 December 2010)

Limbo was good but I dont think it was quite that good. Still would say Alan Wake outdoes Mass Effect 2 in terms of graphics. And would go for Halo for the music.

  • 0
fwap (on 24 December 2010)

The most legitimate award here is Best Art Direction. :-)

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non-gravity (on 24 December 2010)

"If you did play them and aren't incredibly hyped for this game, I hate you, and all fans of the franchise will join me in collective looks of scorn.

Reader’s Choice: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim"

lol :p

Fair picks though

  • 0
--OkeyDokey-- (on 24 December 2010)


Seriously? You're complaining about Heavy Rain being a runner-up to TWO games, neither of which are all that innovative either? You need to stop being so mad about this game.

  • 0
DrPollit0 (on 24 December 2010)

Why is Mass Effect 2 so overestimated? I liked so much the 1st game of the series, but the 2nd part is much worse in the big points of the 1st.

  • 0
Rob-Ot (on 24 December 2010)

Metroid Other M was definetely the biggest disappointment. I can't believe Nintendo released that game.

  • 0
alfredofroylan (on 24 December 2010)

Metroid Other M is getting a lot of hate from you guys. Final fantasy XIII and specially Final fantasy XIV were bigger failures.

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Michael-5 (on 24 December 2010)

BTW Some people will hate this list, but they really need to play games outside their home console (doesn't matter which one it is). This is a very proper list of awards. Black Ops won Nothing, Mass effect 2 won GOTY, God of War got best Action and Best Graphics, Heavy Rain got best Adventure, Halo got best FPS and Red Dead still got best Third Person shooter.

Whine all you want, but VGChartz did a good job, and mentioned most of the big games. I'm a little disappointed Alan Wake didn't even get runner up to any award because I really enjoyed that game, but over all, an exceptional list.

  • 0
KillerMan (on 24 December 2010)

Otherwise decent list but lack of Nier in Best Original Music Score section bothers me. In this matter I prefer Gaf taste. =P I really hope that it wins this section at least in one videogame site/magazine. It completely deserves it.

  • 0
Michael-5 (on 24 December 2010)

Damn straight Mass Effect 2 wins GOTY. Best HD game to date on both platforms, best Western RPG to date, and maybe even best game ever made, or at least one of the best ever.

As for Most Anticipated, no Mass Effect 3? Your crazy, it should have at least made runner up.

Soo disappointed at Metroid, great list. Only thing I disagree with is best Motion game, it should have been Dance Central.

  • 0
elmerion (on 24 December 2010)

Terrible list, seriously Sports Champion is the best example of the potential of motion controls, hahahaha, its basically Wii Sports Resort (a game that came out a year ago) with slightly better controls

And cut off the LIMBO crap, that is just another artsy game, every single videogame out there is an experience

  • 0
LordTheNightKnight (on 24 December 2010)

Um, Heavy Rain was considered innovative? It's just a visual novel with a lot more quick time events. Even replacing the still pictures with polygon models is just a presentation change, which hasn't been an innovation since 1998. I'm not calling on the other awards it got or was nominated, just that one.

  • 0
Boutros (on 24 December 2010)

Not as good as Part One :/

  • 0
pariz (on 05 January 2011)

Mass Effect 2 was my game of the year too.
Red Dead Redemption, Galaxy 2 and DKC Returns made this a hell of a year.

  • -1
zzamaro (on 27 December 2010)

Great list. I agree with Metroid, this is also my key reason Metroid Other M makes it a dissapointing game.

" A weak and overly feminine Samus shoehorned into a submissive role is not the bounty hunter we grew to love over the original 2D entries and more recently the incredible Metroid Prime trilogy. This is not what Metroid fans have come to expect from the franchise..."

Mass Effect 2 deserves to be the game of the year. Funny Alan Wake didn't get any award, I knew it, it's overrated. It should haven been the most dissapointing game...tie with ff13.

  • -1
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