Hi Everyone, what another year it has been for video games. Games were again released, and some critics liked them, and some didn’t. Some video games made a lot of money for their respective companies, and pretty much all major game companies continued to shit on their employees. Unionize, people, unionize. If the first few sentences of this intro look familiar, it’s because it’s basically the same few sentences I wrote to kick off last year’s awards post. Video games are nothing, if not extremely consistent.
So, here we are. It’s time for my second annual awards show. These things are going to be fairly similar to last year, so I don’t expect too many surprises. But, I am going to give away a special Rambler this year. Let’s just say, it’s a once in a decade kind of award. I’m sure, by now, you’ve probably figured this special award to be a best game of the decade award. I guess we’ll have to see, although I can tell you now that it totally is.
Let’s give out some awards.
Award 1 – Favorite Game of 2019: Untitled Goose Game
I didn’t play many new games this year. But, I did play a few. And of those I played, few hit me quite in the same way as Untitled Goose Game. It’s a silly game, with simple puzzles, and no real stealth mechanics to speak of. But, for three or four hours, I was a horrible goose, terrorizing a small, English village. And it was fucking great. This doesn’t even take into account the cultural effects as well. I mean, the goose was on stage with the muppets at the VGAs. That can’t be discounted. Lastly, it gave us some of the best memes of this year. And for that, it easily lands at the top of my list for 2019.
Award 2 – Favorite Discovery of 2019: DISTRAINT
While I didn’t play as many new games in 2019, I did play a crap ton of older games. Across the board, few games resonated with me as much as DISTRAINT, but none of them resonated more. It’s a short game, but it’s impactful and powerful. It tells a brutally honest story of greed and capitalism in our modern age. The puzzles are fun, and if the final scene doesn’t make you sick, then you are probably reading the wrong blog. You can currently get the game on all systems for next to nothing, so I would really encourage you to do so. You can also read my thoughts on the game over here.
Award 3 – Game I’m Most Looking Forward to Playing in 2020: Final Fantasy VII Remake
I know that this goes against my personal ethos of fuck the mainstream games, indie games all the way. But, I can’t help it. FFVII is one of my favorite games of all time, and everything I’ve seen about the remake looks great. I am really, really excited to play it.
Award 4 – Game I’m Most Looking Forward to Finishing in 2020: Hollow Knight
I really, really enjoy this game. But, it’s one I have to work through slowly. I play it quite a bit every month or so, but then I take a break. It’s a great game, and one that I’m really looking forward to finishing. I absolutely love the visual design of the game, and each area really feels unique to the world. It’s a fun game to just explore. Of course, then I hit a boss, and I’m stuck for a while, because that’s the type of game I’m playing. I believe, at this point, I am about halfway through the main game, so I will probably hunker down and knock it out in the next couple of months or so.
Special Award – Game of the Decade: Celeste
I don’t have to tell anyone I love this game. I talk about it all the time. It’s probably the one game over the last ten years that I have invested the most time into, clocking in at over 200 hours at this time. Additionally, the game kind of taught me the joys of difficult games. I never really understood why people threw themselves so hard into games that just seemed to punish them over and over. But, with Celeste, I think I get it. Needless to say, Hollow Knight above probably wouldn’t have happened if I hadn’t played Celeste first. For that reason, I just can’t help but give this game my highest honor for the decade.
And there we have it, everyone. The second annual Ramblers. I think, going forward, this is a pretty safe bet. I really like taking stock of what I’ve played over the course of the year and determining what really hit me and what didn’t. I look forward to doing this again.