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Tuesday June 25, 2024
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Game of the Year Awards 2021

We once again celebrate the best games of the past year

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Introduction  |  Presentation Awards  |  Gameplay Awards  |  Genre Awards  |  GOTY

Best Story
best story 2021 Life is Strange: True Colors winner badge Life is Strange: True Colors

"It is the many great characters that make the story in True Colors so rich and rewarding. Lashings of humor bring emotional highs and darker themes demonstrate good range. The narrative is strong; Deck Nine Games have (now twice) proven capable when it comes to episodic narrative adventure games." - Ben Thomas

Runners-up: Psychonauts 2, Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy, It Takes Two


Best Art
best graphics art 2021 Psychonauts 2 winner badge Psychonauts 2

"With so many fantastical mindscapes and truly amazing character designs, Psychonauts 2 might have some of the most consistent and rewarding art styles in any game from the last few years. You visit a range of vibrant, abstract environments, like the psychedelic music-land that has rainbow-light bridges, a mini-world that Raz must sail around, and a library with giant books." - Ben Thomas

Runners-up: Solar Ash, Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy, Chorus


Best Technical Visuals
Best Graphics (Technical) 2021 Forza Horizon 5 winner badge Forza Horizon 5

"Though a cross-generational game, the title manages to visually impress on Xbox Series X. The game looks sharp, and the special effects have been dialed up such as when kicking up dust in the desert. Improvements are also found in the little things, like better draw distance, better reflective surfaces, and the natural lighting at sunsets and sunrises." - Alex V

Runners-up: Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart, Returnal, Halo Infinite


Best Music
best music 2021 Life is Strange: True Colors winner badge Life is Strange: True Colors

"The title also features one of the best soundtracks in years. The indie-folk selection features soft guitar strumming, melancholy vocals, and light percussion. Angus & Julia Stone, mxmtoon, and Keaton Henson are the artists responsible for the best songs. It is the perfect fit for the franchise and utilized so well, so often." - Ben Thomas

Runners-up: Forza Horizon 5, Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy, Riders Republic


Best Sound Design
best sound design 2021 Resident Evil Village winner badge Resident Evil Village

"Dilapidated houses creak mournfully as you search for supplies, and footsteps on the floor above indicate danger is near. When exploring the village, bushes rustle uneasily and the wind whistles down a narrow mountain path. These ambient noises go with sounds from more immediate threats, like the buzz of insects that hide a vampire or the bone-shivering cries of a grotesque beast in a house of dolls." - Ben Thomas

Runners-up: Returnal, Forza Horizon 5, Back 4 Blood


Best Atmosphere
best atmosphere 2021 Chernobylite winner badge Chernobylite

"Places from the real exclusion zone have been faithfully reproduced, like the stained-glass cafe in the Pripyat port, desolate camp buildings in Kopachi, and the infamous Duga radar tower. The environments are dripping with atmosphere and it takes quite a while before they stop being enthralling." - Ben Thomas

Runners-up: Resident Evil Village, Psychonauts 2, Little Nightmares 2


Best Voice Acting
best voice acting 2021 Life is Strange: True Colors winner badge Life is Strange: True Colors

"Humor is another reason why many of the characters are awesome. True Colors is one of the funniest games in a while, and Alex plays a major role in the best jokes. The banter is smart and delivered with some brilliant voice acting and impeccable timing." - Ben Thomas

Runners-up: Deathloop, Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy, Psychonauts 2


Most Memorable Character
Most Memorable Character 2021 Resident Evil Village winner badge Lady Dimitrescu (Resident Evil Village)

"Whereas in Resident Evil 7 the bosses were a family of yokels, living off the grid, pathetically wasting away, bosses like Lady Dimitrescu strut triumphantly. There's flair and panache to everything. This game is less about the dirt in the wrinkles of a monster's skin and more about the other-wordly force they exhibit." - Josh Hinke

Runners-up: Alex (Life is Strange: True Colors), Raz (Psychonauts 2), Nikki (Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy)


The 2021 Awards continue on the next page!


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