The polls are closed and we have our results! 2013 was not the strongest year for gaming choices, with the release of next gen systems a lot of studios have focused their efforts on making the transition to those new consoles. I think we can safely say that 2014 is shaping up to be a historic year for gaming, especially in the RPG genre. However, 2013 did have its standout entries and we as a community have had our chance to say which were our best titles this year.
Game of the Year: The Last of Us
This was a landslide one and it’s a hard one to deny. Naughty Dog continues to outdo themselves, unbelievably creating a new franchise that stands with Uncharted. This is a game that would stand tall in even the most jam packed gaming year.
Studio of the Year: Naughty Dog
It’s really hard not to hand ND this award and not simply because they developed the game of the year. They continue to be an example of a video game developer who does things the right way, creating games that follow their vision while also engaging the fans. Those connections between fanbase and developer are crucial to a franchise’s success and create supremely high positive associations with the gaming experience. Bravo.
Best Shooter: Bioshock Infinite
While not geared towards the typical FPS experience, Bioshock continues to be a storytelling standard that other games are held to. What is lost in the lauded themes explored are very tight and enjoyable shooting mechanics. The Bioshock series continues to create worlds that players can’t help sinking their teeth into.
Best Action Game: The Last of Us
I will save the hyperbole. Everyone knows what this game brings to the table whether they’ve played it themselves or know someone who has. Not only an engrossing and emotional story, this game has a watertight gameplay design that facilitates full story immersion.
Best Sports Game: FIFA 14
FIFA continues to nail the sport with their entries, and their spreading addiction across the globe proves that. TONS of people are playing this game, and not all of them are followers or players of the sport themselves. That’s how good this game is made.
Best Indie: Gone Home
This was a close category with The Stanley Parable coming in at a close second. Gone Home is an interesting game, and a very different experience but very memorable even for those who couldn’t develop a taste for it. It is proof that the indie development model continues to show gamers new ways of looking at games and we continue to find challenges to the gaming conventions we all have internalized.
Best RPG: Ni No Kuni
Eh, I’m going to say it. This year was dog shit for RPG’s and thank goodness for the the 2014 lineup. The charming and colorful Ni No Kuni’s release was one of the few bright spots for fans of the genre and it’s depth of content helped people survive the paucity of releases elsewhere.
Best Fighter: Injustice Gods Among Us
Good work on this one. It’s a blast seeing these seminal DC comic stalwarts battling it out in glorious 2D fashion. Marvel has had their presence in MvC for a bit and Injustice was a solid entry for DC. A companion mobile app game that was also well done really raised the consciousness of the game and there is a nice foundation to build on for the future here.
Best Driver: Grid 2
There were a few long time names on this list and Grid came out on top, just edging Forza. Falling more on the arcade side of the genre, Grid 2 did a solid job delivering a fun and addicting racing experience with its variety, detail and great sound.
Best Handheld: Tearaway
This had to be decided via tiebreaker with Zelda: A Link Between Worlds pulling dead even with it. But Tearaway takes the cake and is the first Vita entry that really ties all of the powerful handhelds unique elements together. It makes use of the full range of input options and its heartwarming premise gives Media Molecule another indelible gaming experience to put on the shelf next to Little Big Planet.
Most Anticipated Game: Dark Souls II
Umm yeah. There was going to be no contest here and Dark Souls II won by the biggest margin, taking in about 75% of votes in this category. We’ve been waiting over 2 years for this and we are 2 months away. Equal parts anticipation mixed with apprehension as we see the release of a Souls series game to marketing and hype levels unlike anything afforded to the first 2 entries. This will be the series’ debut as a AAA launch title and all eyes around the gaming world will be on it.
And now for our community specific fun awards!
Meta of the Year: 100
I must confess surprise at this. When it comes to pvp I fully expected the staunch SL120 crowd to make a statement but the increasing appealing and prevalent 100 stole the poll away and quite convincingly. It bears noting that 200 also made a game showing and was just a hair behind 120 for second place.
Exploit of the Year: Fex’s Whip
Dark Souls players love to argue. They really do. They either love an exploit or hate it. But not this one. As the only exploit on the poll that is both loved and hated (hurts so good) Fex’s Whip pulled away from the BB Glitch and Toggle Escape to take the Fexy and has become a symbol of this site. Was fealty responsible for the victory? Or was there some behind the scenes whipping that made it so? We may never know.
Agree? Disagree? Early predictions for GOTY 2014? Sound off in the comments and thanks for participating in 2013’s Fexys! We will do this again next year for sure when we crown new winners!