Mid-Year Awards for the Gaming Industry
Can you believe we are already more than halfway through 2007? The mind boggles. This year has been an amazing one for gamers, with the next-gen systems finally starting to spread their metaphorical wings. 2007 has already seen some amazing releases, but the best, it seems, is yet to come.
I mean, I am not sure if you have seen the ridiculous lineup awaiting us for the rest of this year. I use the term “lineup”, but consider this upcoming holiday season as more of a ravenous beast, bent on eating your wallet for breakfast. All you have to do is quickly list the titles that will be out in the next few months, and your nerd muscles basically explode with joy.
Titles like (deep breath) Halo 3, Super Mario Galaxy, Super Smash Bros. Brawl, Grand Theft Auto 4, Assassin’s Creed, Metal Gear Solid 4, Metroid Prime 3, Bioshock, Heavenly Sword, Crysis, Hellgate: London, Mass Effect, Alan Wake, World in Conflict, Skate, Army of Two, and many more. (Whew) I cannot recall in recent memory a holiday season with this level of magnitude.
It’s a lot to get excited about, but I am getting ahead of myself. First, let’s take a look back at what we have been through so far in 2007. Here are the awards for excellence (and negligence) in the gaming industry for 2007 thus far:
Best Reviewed Game of 2007: God of War II (PS2)
Notes: No big surprise here. God of War II has sold a bazillion copies, and anyone who has played it understand the reasons why.
Worst Reviewed Game of 2007: Pimp My Ride (PSP)
Notes: The handheld game based off the console game based off the show based off a rap song. What could go wrong?
The “John Romero” Award: David Jaffe
Notes: Calling All Cars is released. Just kidding! No wait, seriously this timeÃ¢$¦ Fooled you! What’s that on your shirt? Two for flinching!
See the rest of the awards after the jump:
Most Improved in 2007: Nintendo
Notes: The Wii is selling like crazy, and Nintendo’s “gamble” has paid off in spades. Coupled with the unrivaled success of the DS, Nintendo will be printing money for the foreseeable future.
Least Improved in 2007: Sony
Notes: While the PS2 continues to hold up well, everything else is falling fast. Horrible PR moves, coupled with a lack of high-profile game releases have made 2007 a tough year for Sony.
The “Give Them a Raise” Award: Microsoft Interns
Notes: If you have not downloaded “Aegis Wing”, a free XBLA title created by the interns at Microsoft, do yourself the favor. Now go get my coffee.
The “Fire Them Already” Award: Sony’s Marketing Team
Notes: Even when the PS3 has shown signs of promise, another crazy “dead goat carcass” press story has shown up and completely overshadowed it. Sony is slowly starting to come around, but 2007 has been a rough year for them.
Most Annoying Trend of 2007: Countdowns
Notes: Countdowns to trailers. Countdowns to teasers of trailers. Countdowns to count down how many countdowns we can have. Make it stop.
The Most Surprising Game(s) of 2007: Sam and Max Episodic Series (PC)
Notes: Call me convinced. After a “so-so” Episode 1 release in late 2006, the Sam & Max series has really hit its stride. Thank you Telltale Games, for doing this right. Group hug.
The Least Surprising Game of 2007: Spiderman 3 (X360, PS3)
Notes: Vanilla was the flavor of choice for Spidey this year. The mediocrity in this one can’t even be blamed completely on the movie. The game was bad on its own merits.
The “Cheers” Award: 2K Games
Notes: The fans of Bioshock wanted a Limited Edition release of the game, so they signed a petition. 2K Games accepted, and even let the fans design a custom box for the release. Thanks 2K Games, for putting your fans first.
The “Jeers” Award: Microsoft
Notes: I understand you want to make money, but forcing Epic Games to charge for Gears of War content they wanted to release for free is a bit over the top.
The “Biggest Splash” Award: Starcraft 2 Announcement
Notes: Regardless of how you feel towards Starcraft, it remains as one of the most loved titles on any platform, ever. Just watch video of when Blizzard announced the title to a giant stadium full of gamers, and you get the general idea.
The “Daikatana” Award: Vanguard Ã¢$” Saga of Heroes (PC)
Notes: This “World of Warcraft killer” was all over the news before it was released earlier this year. Innovative gameplay mechanics, and the team that brought you Everquest? This HAS to be awesome! The release brought an unfinished product to the market, and the gaming world let out a collective yawn.
Worst Developer Website of 2007: www.smashbros.com
Notes: What gives it even more distinction is that they had a countdown for it. Thanks Nintendo, I have always wanted what amounts to an Angelfire page with literary gems such as “Run! Fly! Move boldly! For such moves are the essence of Fox!”
Best Developer Website of 2007: www.starcraft2.com
Notes: Hey developers, take notice. This is how you launch a website. From the instant Starcraft 2 was announced, blizzard had a wealth of videos, concept art, and updated game information. The moral of the story is, don’t announce a game until you have something to show us.
The Most Hilarious Kitten Picture Award: See above.
Notes: Im in ur interwebz steelin ur awardz