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Game of the Year Awards 2009

Check out our Editor's picks for the past year! See our Best and Worst Games of 2009!

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Introduction  |  Gameplay Awards  |  Special Awards  |  Genre Awards  |  GOTY


Special Awards

Best News of 2009:
PS3 Slim, PS3 Price drop
Sony knocked many people off their feet when announcing a new PS3 model with an aggressive price drop. Microsoft in turn responded and dropped the price of their Elite model bringing very cheap consoles to all. Perfect timing and the PS3 continues to do well in the sales numbers.
Honorable Mentions:
Project Natal
Deus Ex 3 may be PC exclusive
Worst News of 2009:
Although no dedicated servers brings Modern Warfare 2 on par with its console brethrens it’s a step backwards on the PC platform and a step back from COD 4. The peer2peer system offers inconsistent performance, server migration and a lack of simple features. Not to mention that PC gamers didn’t know about it until it was on a podcast only 3 weeks before official release.
Honorable Mentions:
Worst Game Everyone Played:
Modern Warfare 2 may have been good fun online and even had some decent parts in the tightly controlled single player campaign. But we don’t really feel that the overall game justifies 4.7 million copies being sold the day of release when there are many other superior games that miss out on such absurd sales numbers.

 Honorable Mentions:
The Godfather 2
Best game No-one played:
Flower is one of the best games of 2009, but unfortunately it does not have a mass appeal of something like Modern Warfare 2. Also, being avaliable only online (via PSN) and only on one platform, severely limited the sales numbers for this great title.
Honorable Mentions:
Most Over-hyped game:
Countless news articles, hoards of screenshots and videos make this a fairly clear winner in 2009. Of course full credit to the PR crew in charge of controlling, or setting free, this runaway monster train for maximum sales across 3 platforms.

Honorable Mentions:
Best port (PC):
DiRT 2 was delayed because ATI were investing some big bucks to get some DirectX 11 support and to bundle it with their 5800 series graphics cards. Delayed a few months to give PC gamers the superior version with crystal clear graphics it was money well spent.

Honorable Mentions:
Worst port (PC):
Originally Force Unleashed wasn’t released on PC because at the time (May 2008) it would require “$4,000 high-end system”. It was released over a year later and the recommended specification was a 9800GT. When the game was released the only graphical options gamers could change was the resolution. No wonder it required such a beefy machine, it was never designed for PCs and the port shows.
(Dis)Honorable Mentions:
Saint's Row 2
Most Improved Sequel:
The original Red Faction wasn’t bad, it brought geomod tech. Red Faction 2 however wasn’t that great. Guerrilla changes direction for the franchise but still keeps it well within the universe producing a solid sequel.

Honorable Mentions:
Worst Sequel:
America's Army 3
America's Army really established itself as a great free shooter with AA2. So understandably, after many years of development, players were expecting to have a great time with part three. However, tons of technical issues and a rocky launch prevented the game from ever taking off, making it this year's worst sequel.

(Dis)Honorable Mentions:
The Godfather 2
Company of Heroes: Tales of Valor
Best New IP:
Dragon Age creates another fantasy universe but with its own lore and religions. Each piece of story seems intricately crafted with seemingly unlimited potential in terms of stories and more games in the universe.

Honorable Mentions:
Worst Game Overall:
What started out to be an ambitious time-travelling epic turned into a poorly presented demo for a new engine. The game isn't downright awful, but with so much wasted potential, it is the worst game we've played all year.

(Dis)Honorable Mentions:
The Godfather 2
Chicken Shoot
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#7 Jan 10, 2010 22:02:52 (Jan 10, 2010 22:02)

I think it's best to keep in mind the fact that this was put together by all of us writers and most of us aren't able to play every game that came out over the last year or even every AAA title. I've heard only great things about Arkhum Asylum, but I am one of the contributors yet to play it so I can't accurately judge it.  We had to go off of what we played.  Before this awards list, I hadn't even heard of Cryostasis, but being the story-junkie that I am, I'm going to check it out after this.
#6 Jan 10, 2010 21:45:27 (Jan 10, 2010 21:45)

I have to say that the awards i agree with the most are the ones Modern Warfare won, thank you guys for realizing that that game is just a decent game not the second coming of Jesus Christ on a disk, it has already come and its called orange box
#5 Jan 10, 2010 17:33:28 (Jan 10, 2010 17:33)

@kamikaziechameleon: batman was a runner up in a number of categories and just missed out on a few wins. I too would have liked to have seen it win more.
#4 Jan 10, 2010 16:58:58 (Jan 10, 2010 16:58)

 Good choices all around, i'm a little surprised at Dragon Age winning best atmosphere though. 
#3 Jan 10, 2010 11:00:37 (Jan 10, 2010 11:00)

 I agree with 99% of things but I'm sad to not see Batman AA in a single catagory.  That was my favorite game.
#2 Jan 10, 2010 04:26:07 (Jan 10, 2010 04:26)

We tried our best to come up with fair winners for each category so hopefully you guys enjoy it.
#1 Jan 10, 2010 04:14:12 (Jan 10, 2010 04:14)

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