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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 Shooter
Best Shooter 2021 Halo Infinite winner badge Halo Infinite

"The shooting is trademark Halo, having the same refined feel and weapon variety that fans have come to expect from the series. With two weapons available at a time, your arsenal features everything from the Bulldog shotgun and VK76 Commando, to the Mangler hand cannon and satisfying Sentinel Beam. Every gun feels satisfying to use, and your ammo is still limited, so you'll have to constantly cycle between the entire arsenal as enemies drop their guns on the battlefield." - Alex V

Runners-up: Far Cry 6, Returnal, Back 4 Blood

 

Best Action Game
Best Action game 2021 Returnal winner badge Returnal

"Returnal’s third person combat is extremely solid, with the shooting as fast and frantic as you’d expect from a Housemarque title. Equipped with a dash that is invulnerable to most enemy attacks and a handy jump, Selene can easily rush around a room destroying anything in her path. There's also an adrenaline level that increases with enough kills, granting you handy buffs such as an enhanced overload and an upgraded proficiency rate." - Dylan Blereau

Runners-up: Resident Evil Village, Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart, Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy

 

Best Racing Game
Best racing game 2021 Forza Horizon 5 winner badge Forza Horizon 5

"Forza Horizon 5 is the most enjoyable and accessible racing game around, thanks to superb car handling and the feel of the terrain. Whether it's barreling down the highway in a hypercar, or pushing through the forested areas in a huge truck, the vehicles are simply fun to drive. The handling model has been tweaked and improved slightly, with a more noticeable difference between high-rated and lower rated cars beyond just their speed and acceleration." - Alex V

Runners-up: WRC 10, Riders Republic

 

Best Strategy Game
Best strategy game 2021 Age of Empires IV winner badge Age of Empires IV

"If you're a fan of the franchise, Age of Empires IV will feel distinctly familiar to returning players and it is accessible enough for new players, just as long as they enjoy an RTS with an older sensibility. A bigger focus on historical campaigns is enjoyable, alongside great Skirmish and multiplayer modes." - Daniel Nichols

Runners-up: Humankind, Loop Hero, Cozy Grove

 

Best Adventure Game
Best adventure game 2021 Life is Strange: True Colors winner badge Life is Strange: True Colors

"Unlike Before the Storm, True Colors is a fresh start. It has a slew of new characters, a different and interesting superpower, and an original setting. The connection to the previous games is mainly thematic, with the biggest link being a side character from Before the Storm, and their presence turns out to be the equivalent of rolling a 20." - Ben Thomas

Runners-up: It Takes Two, Psychonauts 2, Road 96

 

Best RPG
Best RPG 2021 Shin Megami Tensei V winner badge Shin Megami Tensei V

"It's hard to go wrong with Shin Megami Tensei V. The layered combat engine seems daunting at first, but as you experiment with it, the options afforded to you are staggering. Every encounter carries weight, and the boss battles are immensely satisfying to tackle. It's an excellent RPG, and one of the best exclusives currently available on the Switch." - Eric Hall

Runners-up: Monster Hunter Rise, Bravely Default 2, Chernobylite

 

Best Sports Game
Best sports game 2021 FIFA 22 winner badge FIFA 22

"FIFA 22 is still a good football sim that's highly authentic and has plenty of content to get involved with – from offline career modes to FUT. It's not particularly flashy, flawless or totally immersive. It's just solid – that's a compliment to the quality that the series has managed to keep up for the past few decades." - Alex V

Runners-up: Riders Republic, MLB The Show 21, NHL 22

 

Best Platformer
Best Platformer 2021 It Takes Two winner badge It Takes Two

"The multitude of abilities that Cody and May have each feel unique, while the platforming, combat and gameplay experience at large controls very nicely, and is a far cry from the somewhat clunkier controls in Hazelight's previous game. There are even moments throughout It Takes Two where the game shifts genres entirely, and not once did it feel like the experience was hindered as a result." - Dylan Blereau

Runners-up: Psychonauts 2, Little Nightmares 2, The Artful Escape

 

Best Puzzle Game
Best Puzzle game 2021 It Takes Two winner badge It Takes Two

"Levels consist of various puzzles and platforming segments that must be done cooperatively, with both Cody and May often having their own unique abilities. Cooperating with your partner and discovering how to combat each puzzle scenario with your given abilities is the key to success. Boss Fights at the end of levels also provide a lot of fun, serving as places for you to get the most out of your level-exclusive weapons and abilities." - Dylan Blereau

Runners-up: Little Nightmares 2, Looking for Aliens, Unpacking

 

Read on to find out which title won our 2021 Game of the Year!

 

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