The year of our Lord two-thousand and twelve has been an incredible year for videogames. It's been a non-stop whirlwind of fantastic titles and reveals these past twelve months -- what a great time to be a gamer.
You always hear this when it comes to picking the best games of the year, but I'll say it again: this was not easy. The games industry was not f*cking around this year!
Below you'll find our nominees for our Destructoid Game of the Year 2012 award.
The winner of our Destructoid Game of the Year 2012 will be announced this Friday on the Destructoid Live show, so be sure to tune in.
In alphabetical order, here are the five nominees for Destructoid Game of the Year 2012:
If you are up for a good laugh while shooting things in the face, Borderlands 2 is a worthy game to add to your collection. Soon enough, you'll see numbers popping above people's heads in real life and will feel compelled to search every Porta Potty on the street for cash.
Read the full Borderlands 2 review
Dishonored is that game of 2012. It's the big intellectual property that comes to retail and shows up the competition by being bold, original, and -- more importantly -- brilliant. Easily deserving of its place among the BioShocks and the Borderlandses, Arkane's aggressive, non-aggressive, unsubtle, sneaky, thoroughly versatile tale of intrigue makes for the kind of game that reminds us this generation isn't all straightforward shooters and "me too" trend-seekers.
Read the full Dishonored review
Journey is a defiant bridge between art and game, managing to emotionally connect without being cloying, and succeeding in being mysterious without becoming pretentiously vague and obfuscating. Journey's interactive, visual, and aural elements work together, rather than fight with each other, in order to provide a flowing, seamless, influential, and utterly exhilarating experience.
Read the full Journey review
Mass Effect 3
When all is said and done, Mass Effect 3 is the conclusion of Shepard's career and as fine a conclusion as they deserve. The story is more fast-paced than anything BioWare has done before and still feels like it's affording the player as much time as they need to explore and discover. While some niggling issues do persist in terms of controls, the storyline is supremely satisfying right up to its climax, which contains one of the most interesting moral dilemmas found in videogames (from a standpoint of long-term implications).
Well done, BioWare. Mission accomplished.
Read the full Mass Effect 3 review
The Walking Dead
The Walking Dead: A New Day was an excellent start to the series. Despite introducing so many characters in a short space of time, Telltale has managed to plant the seeds of emotional connection; which I can only hope leads to more intense drama and difficult decisions. Its limited opportunities for interaction is probably its biggest failing beyond the bugs, but there’s a lot of potential here.
Read the full The Walking Dead review
To show our struggles in narrowing it down to the top five games of the year, have a look at our nominee runners-up list for our Game of the Year award:
Check out all our other categories and nominations: