You can have the greatest narrative in the world and sprinkle memorable characters and scenes throughout a game, but all of it's for naught if your mechanics can't shine through. As the great Irving Mills once wrote, "it don't mean a thing if it ain't got that swing."
These nominees spotlight the best of games that transcend the simple title of "functional" and instead go for the gold when it comes to making things feel absolutely solid. Pulling off combos is akin to wrapping yourself up in a silk robe. You never have to fight these games in order to complete objectives. They're all titles you'd be playing over and over even if the other aspects were lacking. They simply feel right. We all know I'm talking about Bayonetta 2, but here's a list of other games, I guess.
It's impossible to pinpoint exactly what it is that makes for great narrative design. It's just something you know when you see. It's more than an outstanding story (although, that's certainly a requisite). It's the melding of game mechanics with narrative to create an experience that's elevated beyond those two parts individually.
But, the thing is, there's no formula to ensure it'll work in perfect harmony. All too often, games that excel at telling a story fall somewhat flat with gameplay, or vice versa. It takes a special title to work hand-in-hand with itself to create that seamless whole.
When that happens, it's a wondrous feeling. We're left with the games that can keep us on the edge of our seat in delight, or slouched as deep in the couch as possible, gutted with despair. We're left with the games that we can't stop playing, or that we can't stop thinking about when we're not playing. We're left with the titles that cement the idea that videogames are a transcendent medium.
These are Destructoid's nominees for Best Narrative Design of 2014.
Friends can make any game worth playing. Growing up, couch play was a staple in my household. I would often have videogame themed birthday parties, inviting all of my buddies over to have fighting game tournaments and, one time, a Tenchu II level editor challenge.
While a great single-player game can always elicit strong emotional reactions within oneself, a great multiplayer game lets you share those emotions with your loved ones. These are the games that made us feel special this year. The ones that had an impact on our lives as we gamed into the late night hours with the best of company.
These nominees have mechanics specifically designed to facilitate engaging interactions with others, which inherently differs from the design choices found in solo experiences.
Another year has come and gone and holy sh*t were a lot of videogames released in 2014. Did you folks play any this year? I played a few, but mostly I just watched Netflix because it has achievements now.
Anyway, some of you were bound to have played a videogame or two in 2014, and if so, we want to hear which one you thought was the best! To participate, just vote for your personal game of 2014 in the poll below, and then let us know your choice in the comments so we can all argue about it because, well, this is the Internet god dammit.
In the coming weeks, the Dtoid staff will be unveiling our own awards (we're doing things a bit differently this year, so stay tuned for details!), after which we will count up the votes and unveil the official Destructoid Game of the Year 2014 Community Choice Award!
Congratulations once again to Naughty Dog, as The Last of Us is our Game of the Year for 2013. It also won our best console exclusive, and more importantly it won the community choice award as voted by you.
Here are all the rest of our Best of 2013 categories so you can find out exactly what game won this year in each section!
And now we present the award for best character of the year. The options this year were as interesting as they were broad, and narrowing down our list just to the nominees was painful enough, let alone the brow-furrowing whic...
I like to think of adventure games as the games that make you think. They are the ones that keep you awake at night not because your pulse is pounding but because your brain is on fire.
Here are the nominees for 201...
No Persona 4: Golden this year? Well, it wasn't all bad. The year certainly wasn't slouching when it came to doling out 50+ hour time sinks. It started out strong with Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch all the way back i...
The frustrating thing about these game of the year posts is they all follow the same format. First I'll tell you about what a great year 2013 was for games. Then I'll briefly talk in vague terms about the category in question...
There weren't a whole lot of fighting games this year, but the ones that did make the cut were mostly beloved by the community. We finally have a winner, but let's take a look at all of the hopefuls first.
Here are the n...
Unless you're filthy rich and have all the consoles, chances are you've missed out on a hot exclusive here or there. You probably would have loved to get your hands on that blockbuster du jour, if only you owned that other sy...
From the moody and mysterious to the sublimely depressing to the hilarious and endearing, there were a lot of games this year that tickled our minds as much they drove our fingers through dextrous gauntlets.
Hey gang, remember 2013? I sure (mostly) do! It was a wild and crazy year not just for video games, but for the video game industry as a whole. So here are my Top 10 Things And Stuff That Happened In 2013.
It was a great year for consoles. Not only did we get two new ones, but the Wii U steadily gained a killer library of software. That's not even including the strong year for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, which offered up tons of great titles to fill up your time with. But at the end of the day, we had to choose just one game.
Here are the nominees for 2013 console exclusive of the year.
Oh my god this was an amazing year for gaming. There were so many extraordinary releases from studios big and small that I may never have a chance to play them all -- talk about a wonderful, lucky "problem" to have!
But of course, at the end of the day, only one game can take home the coveted Destructoid Community Choice Award. So after a week of intense voting, debating, and a surprising lack of name-calling, we are finally ready to unveil your pick for the best game of 2013. ARE YOU AS EXCITED AS I AM?!
Boiling a year's worth of content down to ten top picks, as we did with our nominees, is taxing enough. Picking one as our Game of the Year? It's not easy.
We covered a large swath of titles in our nominations, from the triplest of A to a turn-based strategy RPG to an indie adventure game made by a few people, and still there were plenty of amazing games left off. Tearaway. Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon. Everything else you'll be complaining got snubbed in the comments.
But pick we must and pick we did.
Here are the nominees for the 2013 Game of the Year: