Note: iOS 9 + Facebook users w/ trouble scrolling: #super sorry# we hope to fix it asap. In the meantime Chrome Mobile is a reach around
hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

Best of 2011: Totally Random Awards, Pt. 2

4:00 PM on 12.18.2011 // Allistair Pinsof

Go to any media outlet this week and they'll be trumping up their best-of-the-year list. We're not so different. However, I wanted there to be a place where staff could sound off on what trends, games, and ideas captured their interest (for better or worse) this year.

I asked all the Dtoid staff to provide a mini-rant in the form of a fake award. The results are a bit random. Today, we take a look at the stupidest moment in a game, overlooked gems, and the "best" Skyrim glitch in 2011.

Matthew Razak's "Movie That Was Too Much like a Videogame for Its Own Good" Award

Winner: Sucker Punch

Normally, we complain about videogames' trying to be too much like movies, but with games' becoming a bigger medium, we see more and more influences from games in film. That's not always a good thing. There's a reason why movies and games are different things, and that reason is because THEY'RE DIFFERENT THINGS.

A perfect example of why this should always be remembered is Sucker Punch, which took the plot and goals of a videogame and stuffed it into a movie. A young, sexually appealing girl enters a series of fantasy worlds where she must defeat a series of "bosses" in order to collect a bunch of weapons to defeat her oppressors (in this case, the mental ward she's been committed). Basically, this is a movie about a bunch of fetch quests, which can already be boring enough in a game, but when you give Zak Snyder carte blanche, it gets even stupider evidently. Scenes that should be totally awesome are dull because every scene works like a game's level and not part of a movie. Game plotting is great for games, not for movies.

Runner-ups: Battle: Los Angeles, Dylan Dog: Dead of Night, Priest, Cowboys & Aliens, Spy Kids 4D: All the Time in the World

Andy Dixon's "Game That's Still Fun to Play Even with the Sound Off" Award (a.k.a. The "Happy Family" Award)

Winner: Deus Ex: Human Revolution

Gaming in a small house with a sleeping toddler is often an exercise in futility. Paper-thin walls coupled with the close proximity of the "family" room to said child's bedroom make for poor gaming conditions, and they require a very specific type of game in order to appease all parties. Features such as subtitles/closed captioning, easy jump-in/jump-out gameplay, and the ability to pause at any time become more than just boxes to tick on the back of the box -- they become necessities.

For these reasons, Deus Ex: Human Revolution is a family man's dream come true. You can pause the game in almost every scene, subtitles are enabled by default, and the slow, exploration-heavy pacing means taking a break to soothe a fussy toddler back to sleep won't throw off your mojo as it would in other games. Above all else, Adam Jensen's grating voice acting means your experience may actually improve by turning down the volume!

Runner-up: Fapping

Casey Baker's "Stupidest Moment in a Video Game This Year" Award

Winner: Pvt. Augustus Cole (a.k.a "Cole Train") has a midlife crisis and freaks the f*ck out for no real reason in Gears of War 3

While this year was filled with stupid video game moments, from any emergent (and oftentimes hilarious) glitch that has appeared in a Skyrim playthrough to the "press button to stab rat" sequence in Battlefield 3, I feel that the Cole Train's freak-out moment in Gears 3 is the single stupidest moment in gaming for this year. The biggest issue that comes with this moment, when Cole is revisiting his hometown of Hanover with Baird and Carmine, is that it comes abruptly and ends with no real meaningful ties to the greater Gears story. They decide to take a walk down memory lane through the ol' Thrashball stadium after meeting up with the Stranded, who are instantly willing to help the old celebrity and his pals, but his sudden flashback is both abrupt and of absolutely no consequence to the rest of the story, despite the fact that his behavior puts pretty much everyone including himself in serious danger.

Nothing else is ever mentioned of this moment, and the bit of backstory it provides is incredibly shallow at best. Gears of War has never been a series about a deep and meaningful story, but at least Dom's narrative in Gears 2 was created in earnest. Here we have an apocalyptic, end-of-the-world scenario where the Lambent are pretty much destroying every last vestige of humanity that hasn't already been raped and pillaged by the Locusts, and the attention is suddenly shifted to Cole Train's mid-life crisis breakdown because -- boo hoo -- he's not a celebrity Thrashball star anymore.

... what?

Runner-ups: Skyrim's NPC glitches, Battlefield 3's stab-a-rat quick time event, Cole Phelps has a flamethrower in a f*cking sewer in L.A. Noire

Jonathan Holmes's "Why Did U No Play This Thing!?" Award

Winner: Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP

This is one of the best games ever. It's on the iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad, three things that many humans own. Yet, while more copies of Angry Birds have sold than there are people in the United States, Sword & Sworcery fails to become a commercial blockbuster. C'mon people! Don't you like evading death anymore? What about three-eyed wolves or naked bear men? How about games where you don't find out that the main character is a woman until someone tells you? Are you too cool for that now, with your rainbow parties and your Hot Pockets and your Glee 3D movie sing-a-longs?

In closing, Sword & Sworcery is better than all of Destructoid's official GOTY nominees, except maybe Portal 2, but probably not.

Runner-ups: Bit.Trip Complete/Saga, Rayman Origins, Shadows of the Damned, El Shaddai: Ascension of the Metatron, Pushmo, Corpse Party, Where-is-my-Heart?, Jables's Adventure, Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Shadow Wars, Aliens: Infestation, Cave Story, Outland, Jamestown

Japanator's "PSP JRPG You Should Have Played but Probably Didn't Even Hear About Because HAHA PSP JRPGs, Am I Right?" Award

Winner: Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky

Japanator reviews editor Hiroko Yamamura says, "Trails was truly the surprise of the year for me. I took a quick glance at the semi-generic looking anime box art and dismissed it for another JRPG snooze fest. Countless fun-filled hours later, you could say that I kind of fell in love. The title shows some of its age, as it is a port of a 2004 PC game, but those shortcomings become distant memories after just an hour or so of play. What you do take away is an addictive, funny, and dramatic storyline filled with some really memorable characters. In year that had some real JRPG snoozers, it would be a crime to sleep on this PSP gem."

Runners up: Fate/EXTRA, Corpse Party

Fraser Brown's "WTF Just Happened in Skyrim?" Award

Winner: NPC madness

It might not be as epic as flying mammoths or dragons getting stuck in reverse, but the crazy antics of the residents of Skyrim are a constant reminder of just how buggy yet somehow delightful Skyrim can be. Frustrating as well, oh so very frustrating. Technically I'm cheating, since a plethora of bugs and design flaws went towards making these wonderful buffoons. Followers are, of course, the worst of the bunch. Vanishing without a trace, getting lost on mountains, knocking everything over in your meticulously ordered home, standing on every single trap over and over again. God, they are awful. Yet still, I let them follow me around, but for every NPC that gets stuck or attacks for no reason, there's another with a pot on their head and a shop that's ripe for burglary. So it all works out.

Runner-ups: Reversing dragons, flying horses and mammoths, flying player characters, poltergeists/home invaders, chicken crime stoppers

Allistair Pinsof's "Japanese Game That Really Should Have Come to the US This Year" Award

Winner: Puyo Puyo!! 20th Anniversary

More than any other year in recent memory, 2011 seems to be full of promising Japanese games that have been ignored the West. And -- surprise, surprise -- they are mostly for Nintendo platforms. Xenoblade was a shoe-in for this award until the recent U.S. release announcement, which makes me want to draw attention to a different game that has been completely ignored. In fact, most of the series has been ignored in the West. I'm talking about Puyo Puyo, one of the oldest and best arcade puzzle games. Puyo Puyo!! 20th Anniversary is an absolute gem that brings together almost every mode and character that ever graced the series into one giant package. I can't put it down. I wish other Westerners could experience this joyous time-suck of a game.

Runner-ups: Akai Katana, Ni no Kuni [DS especially], The Last Story, Pandora's Tower, Xenoblade

Allistair Pinsof,
 Follow Blog + disclosure DtoidAllistair

This blog submitted to our editor via our Community Blogs, and then it made it to the home page! You can follow community members and vote up their blogs - support each other so we can promote a more diverse and deep content mix on our home page.

 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our community fisters, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding * to your whitelists.

Status updates from C-bloggers

CoilWhine avatarCoilWhine
I really wish the slowpokes at Microsoft would add Forza Horizon to Xbox One backwards compatibility.... It's my favorite racing game. And the soundtrack is honestly flawless.
Parismio avatarParismio
Some green tea and Mario Kart w/ family is a great way to end the day.
KingSigy avatarKingSigy
Honestly, Broforce might be my GOTY. It's really fucking amazing.
OverlordZetta avatarOverlordZetta
Welp, Remote Play is coming to PCs. Calling it now, PS Now enabled toasters and glasses will be announced at the next big Playstation event alongside cute Vita coffins made of paper you can print out of your Remote Play capable printers.
Niero Desu avatarNiero Desu
How did your Thanksgiving small talk with obscure relatives go? Oh, I bonded over the ethereal experience of hydrogen peroxide in ear canals but they'd never heard of Chrono Trigger so we mostly chewed the corn-flakes-on-potato thing in silence
Amna Umen avatarAmna Umen
Don't forget [img][/img]
Mike Wallace avatarMike Wallace
I wonder how far the show would be taken out of context if the lyrics were "Go, Go Power Rangers, you Mighty Morphine Power Rangers."
Rad Party God avatarRad Party God
I just tried out Skyforge, and... [img][/img]
Pixie The Fairy avatarPixie The Fairy
Is it weird I finally want a Samurai Warriors game because I think Koshosho is super fab? [img][/img]
Gamemaniac3434 avatarGamemaniac3434
I've never cleaned my comp in the 3-4 years I have had it. Soon I will dust it. I....I dont know what I will find, hidden in the dust.
CoilWhine avatarCoilWhine
Happy late thanksgiving Dtoid. I played Doodle God and Murasaki Baby on PSVita, and am now Achievement grinding in Forza Horizon 2 Presents Fast and Furious on Xbox One. Super easy 1000G, I need it.
Pixie The Fairy avatarPixie The Fairy
Black Friday pick ups so far are Shantae and the Pirate's Curse, Titan Souls and tomorrow Devil Survivor 2 Break Record ($29.99 at GameStop).
Gamemaniac3434 avatarGamemaniac3434
This thanksgiving, give thanks for the fact that your family wasnt 1 of the 3 to have picked out a wasp filled turkey, buying a meal and becoming a meal. Next year, may not bring such.....dissapointing results.
Nekrosys avatarNekrosys
So I'm pretty sure you all should be giving thanks to Nekro. For he is the one true perfect being. Be thankful that your lives have been blessed by the addition of a Nekro. For that is the true meaning of Thanksgiving.
Solar Pony Django avatarSolar Pony Django
Happy Thanksgiving Dtoid! Here's hoping you didn't fall off a chair while hanging Christmas lights and bash your shin and foot into the concrete like I did!
Sr Churros avatarSr Churros
Listening to Pokémon SoulSilver OST while doing some college work. Suddenly I feel a great amount of guilty taking over me for loosing my PokéWalker 2 years ago... :(
OrochiLeona avatarOrochiLeona
Ok you thanksgiving motherfuckers. 5 favourite Arcade games (as in coin-op) No order necessary. Go!
Lawman avatarLawman
Happy Turkeygeddon everyone! I'd like to spend it playing something, but I'm too busy drinking instead. Alcohol is better. Alcohol mixed with games is best, but unfortunately, I'm a little too lost to the world for that right now!
CoilWhine avatarCoilWhine
I've got to try Pocket God vs. Desert Ashes. Mostly because I loved pocket god when it came out. Great memories
ikiryou avatarikiryou
I intended to say something important and relevant to how pretty Atelier Shallie Plus looks on the Vita but then I got this annoying sudden nosebleed [img][/img]
more quickposts



Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme

Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo

Back to Top

We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -