Kotaku’s Console Game Of The Year — The Results Are In!

Kotaku’s Console Game Of The Year — The Results Are In!
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Two weeks ago we asked for nominations, A week ago we asked you to vote. Now, we’re revealing the winners. [Begins drum roll…]

Reader’s Choice


And the winner is… The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

Hardly a surprise here. It’s definitely the most talked about game here at Kotaku — by both the writers and the readers — but ultimately I think it’s well deserved. Above anything, Skyrim is an incredible achievement and, thus far, it’s definitely been my favourite Elder Scrolls game to date.

No other game legitimately came close to Skyrim, although the battle for second place was tight, with Skyward Sword, Dark Souls and Arkham City all coming extremely close. At the death, however, Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception came in at the last minute to take out second place.

Winner: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
Runner Up: Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception

Editor’s Choice


Mark: This is ridiculously difficult for me. I’ll freely admit that I haven’t played Skyward Sword yet, despite it being the game I was most excited about this holiday period. So there’s still a legitimate chance that game could usurp the one I’m about to choose — The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.

If you had told me at the beginning of the year that a Bethesda game would be my favourite of the year, I would have picked my nose, flicked the booger in your general direction and laughed in your face. I skipped Fallout 3, didn’t really enjoy Oblivion — in fact the last Bethesda game I put any time into was Morrowind. That was a long time ago.

But there’s something about Skyrim that has just hooked me in the worst possible way. The best way I can describe it is that the minute to minute mechanics of the game were fun enough to drag me into the real meat of Skyrim, which is the exploration side. Once that investment is made it’s difficult to let go and that’s what so compelling about Skyrim. It’s a place I want to visit, and exist within. So far, it’s my game of the year.
Winner: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
Runner Up: Portal 2


Tracey: I don’t care how big the world is. I would rather all characters be completely mute. I don’t want a choice of weapons, and if I wanted crisp graphics I would look around me and see that my world (and Mark Serrels’ ginger moustache) is far crisper than a 1080pi display. What I care about is the way a game makes my brain and heart swell with the feeling you get when sherbet first touches the tip of the tongue. Sackboy wasn’t just cute, he was joyous – watching him flop about, open-mouthed and dopey-faced as I jumped on sponge cakes and popped huge bubbles of goo made my heart feel enormous. It didn’t matter that the game didn’t look the best, or offer me a million weapon choices. It didn’t matter that it wasn’t an epic cinematic experience. LittleBigPlanet 2 made me smile and left me smiling long after my Sackboy’s tongue had stopped wagging. So this is why it’s my console game of the year.
Winner: LittleBigPlanet 2
Runner Up: Batman: Arkham City

Comments

    • Even though it sold quite well, Dark Souls is probably still too niche to win a popularity contest.

      My favourite game this generation is Demon’s Souls, but I’m enjoying Skyrim more than I did Dark Souls. Weird, huh.

    • OMG!! What is it with people and multiplayer?? I would seriously just prefer Bethesda focus on producing strong 100+ single player games then focusing on also incorporating multiplayer. Not every game HAS to have multiplayer, Dark Souls is a pretty sweet game but not because of its multiplayer

  • Mine is definitely Portal 2, regardless of how good Skyrim is… it’s probably my runner up. Played them both on PC though since y’know… superior race an’ all.

  • I considered Skyrim and Portal2 to be PC games. If this category was made up of console-exclusives it would be interesting to see the results then.

    Also, I’m guessing Skyrim is going to take out a few of these, but I wonder how much of it is just because that’s what people were playing and loving when they voted.

      • I don’t think ports should be included in these comps.
        All four runners up are better representations of console games.
        To truly experience Skyrim, you need a computer.
        I’d give it to Skyward Sword, seeing as how it was barely out yet still held its own with those which had been released for quite a bit longer.

    • I consider Skyrim and Portal 2 to be on the aether platform. They are on all platforms but at the same time are on no platform. I could spend some time drawing a venn diagram for you, but it’d simply blow your mind with its amazingness. They’d appear to overlap in 2D but you’d switch to 3D and they’d be mutually exclusive.

      Having said that, if we want to talk about exclusives. The PC would have like no games. Boom-tsk.

      • Witcher 2. Better than nearly any console exclusive this year. Obviously won’t be PC exclusive for much longer though.

        Next year will be different with Diablo 3, DOTA 2 and SWTOR being released. And possibly SC2: HotS.

    • Wasn’t Skyrim developed for Consoles? I remember the lead producer of Skyrim saying ‘consoles are our lead skew’ when developing the game, so I think Skyrim would still win, unless your comment was lets just filter all games from the competition until the game you want wins

      • I’m playing Skyrim on a console, but I still think of it as a PC game. Probably because of all the talk about mods making it better.

        And for the record, Skyrim is actually tied for my personal GOTY with Dark Souls, so no, it wasn’t about which game I wanted to win. 🙂

  • I’m waiting for PC game of the year.

    Winner: Minesweeper
    Runner Up: Solitaire
    Reader’s Choice: Free Ski (32bit)

  • It was probably inevitable that Skyrim would take this out, it is a really good game. Having said that, after playing Skyward Sword for the past week, it’s definitely become my GOTY (overtaking Portal 2). It’s just an excellent game.

  • I haven’t played Skyrim a lot, but it was fun, I voted Zelda and even if I’d played both games, I’d still pick Zelda. Not just being a fanboy of the series, but it’s extremely enjoyable and feels immensly satisfying. Congrats though to Skyrim.

  • It’s a shame that you passed on Fallout 3. It has a much better story, and a way more interesting world. Skyrim is dry fantasy at is most banal. It’s pretty, but ultimately unrewarding. Definately not a bad game, it’s a good game. But hyperbole is the flavout of the century.

    • I think I agree…. and then Skyrim pulls me back in. I’ve been planning on joining up with the mage collective since level 5 – i’m now level 19 and haven’t made it. The game seems dry initially, but it is crazy immersive. Lots of, “i’ll go where I was planning in a minute. I’ll just check this out…”

  • Looks like Skyrim is going to sweep every award that it’s eligible for around these parts.

    Seeing as I haven’t played it (and don’t plan to, Elder Scrolls games just aren’t my thing), I wonder how much of this comes from it being amazeballs and how much of it comes from it being a very recent new release. If Portal 2 had come out the same week, would the results be different?

    It’s something that bugs me a lot about gaming. The games are viewed as disposable, their shelf life is rather short and people lose interest rather quickly. So a game that came out months ago will not be viewed as favourably as one that is only a week old because of that shiny new toy smell.

    Not saying Skyrim isn’t worthy, it probably is, just wondering if things could have been different.

      • Both of which managed to stay in the spotlight with high profile DLC (I’m only slightly grasping at straws to stick to my theory here :p).

        They were also much bigger stories that managed to stick with people. I can’t think of another game this year that was on the same level as those two.

        I imagine that the time factor is more important if the games are roughly equal. Had Mass Effect 2 come out early in the year and RDR was a holiday season release, they might not have been seen as equally.

        Or I could just be making all of this up as I go along :p

        • I think the fact that last year was pretty weak sauce in terms of christmas releases, and the fact that ME2 and RDR are legit game of the generation contenders was something to do with it!

          • I’m trying to use poorly thought out logic here, I don’t appreciate your fancy style of logic that actually makes sense. :p

          • Yeah early 2010 was like late 2011… so many fantastic releases in a short amount of time. Being an avid gamer with too little time to play so many games is pretty much the ultimate first world problem.

    • If I’m remembering right, there were a lot of people calling for Portal 2 as GOTY all throughout April/May, it was definitely something that was hyped up (and deservedly so). Kinda sad to see it fade into the background, but at least Mark gave it runner up!

    • Same with Xenoblade, I’m assuming. I’m guessing I was the only one to vote for that. Even having played skyrim (which is 2nd) i love Xenoblade just that tiniest bit more

      • Your not alone there, I enjoyed Xenoblade Chronicles a whole lot more than I have in Skyrim, took me over 100 hours to finish the main storyline in Xenoblade while doing side missions, and only like 40 hours in Skyrim doing the same thing.

  • I went with Uncharted 3, but I could see how some might take issues to a few aspects of the third game for it not to win out. Plus Skyrim fever is becoming a pandemic of our times. 😀

  • Portal 2 is my GotY. Only game this year to do everything right (no bugs, no issues, no bad story or ending), and the story and characters really made it shine and different from every other game out there.

    Dark Souls would have been my GotY but Blighttown was so full of issues. It’s a shame because the game would have been a perfect 10 if it weren’t for BT. The issues in there were beyond bad, they were downright cheap and made the game nigh-unplayable.

    • Hmm, it’s interesting i’ve read a whole lot of hate for the blighttown section but I don’t know, I didn’t have too many issues with it. With the exception of the frame rate (which was terrible) I didn’t find it too horrible, sure I died forty bagillion times but no more than any other area I think… Except for the time some poopyface invaded my game JUST BEFORE THE BOSS… and then things got all stabby.

      Although sen’s fortress-axe-swinging-platform-boulder-lightningsnakeguard sections were a more hilariously vicious piece of game design I thought 🙂

  • Biggest problem I have with Skyrim is the story.. for me personally, it’s incredibly boring. Only a couple of missions have been interesting, the main quest is dull and the lore seems extremely generic. After about 30 hours I ended up turning down the audio, putting subtitles on and catching up on Mad Men, Breaking Bad and The Walking Dead as I played. I only ever did that with WoW, but while the environment and everything is beautiful in Skyrim, the lore to me is incredibly dull. This from a guy who loves getting in depth lore on games he loves such as Mass Effect, Warcraft, Starcraft etc.

  • Skyrim is a fantastic game and should definately win most of the awards this year. Its a marvel of an achievement that is leaps and bounds above any other rpg or freeroam game made by the way everything flows so well together within the game. Good choice people!

  • im still yet to play Little Big Planet 2, one of the reasons I bought another ps3 actually. But with all the new releases lately & xmas shopping, havent been able to yet. Its next on my list along with Dark Souls

  • After clocking up my first 10 hours on Skyrim this week, I’d have to say that Arkham City is way more fun. So is Revelations.

  • Both Skyrim & Portal 2 seem like the two that should win the PC choice. I would’ve given it to Uncharted & Batman. Skyrim is a huge, epic, game so we’re not complaining.

  • For all I’m sinking a crapton of hours into Skyrim, I think it’s definitely benefitting in these awards from being the most recent release.

    As a PS3 player, my voting is:
    1. Deus Ex
    2. Portal 2
    3. Uncharted 3
    4. Skyrim

    Skyrim is the triumph of quantity more than anything. Portal 2 and Uncharted 3 have the quality but are both short. Deus Ex, to me, had both the quantity and open gameplay and also the quality. I cannot see how anyone puts Skyrim above Deus Ex unless open world trumps everything for them. Deus Ex’s combat, writing and characters are orders of magnitude above Skyrim’s, the world is at least as immersive (to me anyway) the graphics are comparable and you’re seriously hard to please if Deus Ex doesn’t have enough hours and replayability in it for you…

  • Good job to Skyrim, it deserved it (despite the annoying stream of Skyrim based articles :P)

    Uncharted 3 is definitely worthy of runner’s up.

  • ask me in feb.
    i would have been able to play these games.
    portal 2 was great.
    by the time i got deus ex i had 0 time to play any games so Ive not gotten very far at all.

    i finished uncharted and it was good but frustrated me in parts and never truly amazed me.

    zelda was always going to be my favorite but in all fairness it took a good 5 hours to warm to it, i now love it to bits but it took a while to warm to motion controls.

    ive played 1 hour of batman, it looks like it will be awesome

    rayman has been some great co-op platforming

    and i will never have the time for skyrim and ive not liked other bethesda rpg’s but i still would like to give it a go but im sure i wont.

    then there is super mario land 3d which i expect to be under my Christmas tree.

    actually picking a GOTY in November is completely unrealistic

  • I wholeheartedly concur 🙂

    Skyrim’s amazing. Deus ex was also great. As was Portal 2, and LA Noire. Arkham City was awesome. Even Dragon Age 2 was pretty entertaining. Come Christmas, I’ll finally get Deadspace 2 and Assassin’s Creed Revelations.

    What a GREAT YEAR. Seriously, I’m tearing up here 😉

    • Yeah, it was a great year. Deus Ex, Portal 2, Uncharted 3 and Skyrim were all serious GOTY contenders for me, and all above ME2 which I had to grudgingly call GOTY last year despite seeing it as inferior to ME1. Heck, I’d have DA2 above ME2 too. Then add other good games like LBP2 and LA Noire and it has been a seriously awesome past 12 months just on PS3. Plus the yearly versions of CoD and Battlefield, and stuff like Arkham which I haven’t got around to playing, and Nintendo exclusives, and seriously. Old Republic still to come for the MMO fanatics, too.

  • Haha, I bloody well called it. I knew Skyrim would destroy the competition, mainly because it came out right before the polls, and it is amazing. And even if it isn’t amazing, it was amazing long enough to get the votes.

    Me, I’m loving it. On the PC, of course.

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