Tobold's Blog
Sunday, December 20, 2015
Tobold's Game of the Year Awards

In some recent discussion a fanboi, enraged by the fact that bigger media outlets thought his favorite game was kind of crap, argued that all "Game of the Year" awards are equal, and thus everybody can make his favorite game "Game of the Year" by simply handing out such an award himself. In the spirit of that, I am hereby announcing Tobold's Game of the Year awards:

Game of the Year: Thea - The Awakening
This game really stood out for me in an ocean of triple-A sequels and buggy indie games. While somewhat reminiscent of Civilization, Thea - The Awakening is a completely original game, combining genres like Civ's 4X with Rogue-like and trading card games. Priced like an indie game on Steam, Thea nevertheless has very high production values and no significant bugs.
Honorable mention: Armello, another good quality, original indie game

MMORPG of the Year: There were no MMORPGs in 2015
Honorable mention: World of Warcraft, for this year's introduction of the WoW token

Sequel of the Year: World of Warships
For me World of Warships is showing the way how sequels should be done: The game clearly is a sequel to World of Tanks (and the not-so-successful World of Warplanes) and functions with the same backbone of tiers, tech trees, and modules. But it is also clearly a very different game, because ships play very differently than tanks. It's the best of both world, the familiarity of a sequel combined with the novelty of a new game.

Biggest Disappointment: Magic Duels
At some point I considered this the best computer version of Magic the Gathering since Microprose. Then the game developed a bug which made it completely unplayable on the iPad. And it took WotC nearly 2 months to fix that bug, during which time the game remained dead weight, and it wasn't even certain that I'd recover my card collection afterwards (fortunately I did). While the game is playable again now, and has an expansion, I now have understandable trust issues. Not good for a game that finances by selling you cards.

Best Pen & Paper Roleplaying Product: Heroforge
People who believe that 3D printing is the future of manufacturing are deluded and haven't understood the economics of mass production. However 3D printing most certainly is the solution for very individual products where price doesn't matter so much. Like figurines for your pen & paper roleplaying game. I was especially impressed by the "steel" figurines, which are very solid and look good even unpainted. If you play a game using figurines, why not create a figurine *exactly* like the character you described on your character sheet?

"a fanboi, enraged by the fact that bigger media outlets thought his favorite game was kind of crap, argued that all "Game of the Year" awards are equal, and thus everybody can make his favorite game "Game of the Year" by simply handing out such an award himself."

I think that was more of a strawman of your own creation rather than something he actually said.

I strongly agree with your assessment of World of Warships. It's a really fun, well-done game. As a professional mariner though, I can't help but bring up the fact that I cringe every time I see a non-nautical gameplay element. E.g., ranges given in kilometers rather than nautical miles, speeds listed as 1/4, 3/4, and full rather than 1/3, 2/3, standard, full, flank.

I'm not sure WoW deserves an honorable mention simply due to a new payment and/or RMT scheme. The only real innovation, the garrison, turned out to be not that fun after the initial newness wore off. Just this man's opinion, but the raids weren't really that interesting either - I had much more fun in Icecrown Citadel and Siege of Orgrimmar.
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Glad you gave an award to a game copying EVE Online, that's nice of you to finally realize who actually moves the genre forward.

I'd ask for sources of all your silly initial claims, but well, it seems you already have one comment on that, and I can only guess what the deleted comment said.

What will be fun is when I give out the 'biggest idiot statement' award to you when F4 wins GotY from any number of sources. Pretty rare for someone to win that award twice, but that "CCP will be bankrupt in 2013" was just an amazing prediction that this years statement will fall right next to.
I am sure that you can only ever be right about that, seeing how you are willing to accept "any" Game of the Year award from any source. As long as you aren't willing to say from which source or sources you consider such an award legit, you can always MAKE yourself be right by giving out the award yourself.

Personally I'll consider you wrong after the D.I.C.E. awards, because that is the last significant one, and all the other known ones already failed to deliver your prediction.
Tobold I'm stepping in before the flames devour the blog ;-) ... Just to wish you great Christmas and an amazing 2016 to you and to your wife. A bit early maybe but I am not sure I'll be able to surf the web before Christmas. Cheers and thanks for the great reading over the past years.

I don't really understand your initial premise. It's unequivocally, unarguably factually correct to state that "everybody can make his favorite game "Game of the Year" by simply handing out such an award himself". How is that even contestable?

Your "Game of the Year" awards are as valid as anyone else's, surely? Are you suggesting you don't know what your own favorites were? Or that because more people, or people with a bigger web presence, think something different that their views are more "real" than your own?

You seem to be hoist on the petard of your own, oft espoused, "it sold more so it must be better" philosophy, but opinions do not conform to market logic.
No MMOs of the Year, how sad! =)
I think between Heavensward, HoT and Wildstar going f2p, there were some interesting things going on in 2015, most worthy expansion for me personally being Heavensward. It obviously matters a great deal what we're playing, I am still surprised at your mention of WoW though given the state of WoD. ;)
As you said, the only interesting things going on in 2015 were expansions and changes of business model. No EQ Next or any other major new MMORPG releases. I agree that it is a sad state of affairs, but we need to face the reality that MMORPGs isn't where the smart money is these days.
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What part of my "You aren't allowed to call Tobold names on his own blog" comment moderation policy is so hard for you guys to understand? Insults and swear words are the rhetoric tools of those who don't have any more poignant ones.
I feel like this was an epic troll post, but quite entertaining nonetheless! I'll be posting my own Games of the Year for my blog soon. Interestingly (yes, believe it or not!) despite loving Fallout 4 with almost stalker-like affection it may not make the cut. We'll see.
My deleted comment contained neither insult nor swear word and did not call you a name. It was an award that reflected my response to your first paragraph. Too close to the truth I guess.
You called me a liar. In what universe is that not an insult? The whole discussion is about Syncaine saying "Also if F4 isn't game of the year on PC for 2015, there is some serious corrupt voting." and me replying "Corrupt voting? Fallout 4 doesn't have a chance in hell against The Witcher 3 and Metal Gear Solid V. Metacritic lists Fallout 4 as only the 8th best PC game of the year. And that is just by the critics score, the users give it a rather lousy 5.1 out of 10. Unless somebody makes a game of the year award in which you are the only voter, this simply won't happen."

Yes, the last phrase was rhetoric hyperbole. And Syncaine never specified *which* Game of the Year award he had initially talked about. But whenever there is a big Game of the Year award and I mention that Fallout 4 of course hasn't won, Syncaine insists that *that* one doesn't count, and that my "prediction" of Fallout 4 not winning the Game of the Year award would be proven as "idiotic" if at some point in time somebody decides to give Fallout 4 such a reward. Even if that somebody would be It should be obvious that when I said that Fallout 4 wasn't going to be Game of the Year, I was only talking about the major events, like The Game Awards 2015, or the D.I.C.E. awards, or the Golden Joystick. Up to now I'm totally right on this one, and Syncaine and you are just splitting hairs to make my right prediction look wrong.
Sorry, but I couldn't get even 20 minutes into Thea. There was this horrible creature thing trying to be some sort of adviser, and the voice acting seemed to me like some pedophile dude in his 30s trying to convince a 12 year old to come meet them for their first adventure. It was utterly creepy, and I immediately uninstalled.

It's strange how just a small, simple thing can ruin a game entirely for me.

Sometimes games just completely throw me off and I can never get back into them. Like Mass Effect 3, everyone was upset about the story, but I quit that game in the first 10 minutes, because I just couldn't deal with watching the main character walk down a corridor in the opening cinematic. I couldn't even tell you now what the problem was with it, but I found the animation just incredibly wrong, repulsive even. Like she was walking around with a full set of football pads on or something. Was ok with the animations in the first two, but in the third, just no.
"You called me a liar. In what universe is that not an insult?"

In your main post, you refer to a commenter as a "fanboi" - a pretty clear insult. If you're going to sling mud, I suggest you be prepared to have some thrown back at you.
I am prepared! With an anti-mud "comment delete" button. :) They can insult me on their blogs, I don't read those anyway. (And frankly it is a mystery to me why they are my most faithful readers.)
Any game award ceremonies and initiatives are totally fine since they bring games to my attention. Thanks for doing it, matey!

PS: Have a look at Rochard. Quite a fun little game on Steam.
Posting on here just to have a laugh that Fallout 4 ended up winning and GOTY award after all. :p
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