The Escapist's Game of the Year 2012

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I'm disappointed ME3 won. It was a good game all the way through (I liked the end) but it does not compare to The Walking Dead or Spec Ops or Journey.

Imagine the writing wasn't bad(along with very very good bits) all the way through, that most of the exposition hadn't been told through three people standing around a table and that they'd given you a reason to care about earth other than it being Earth. Then it still isn't game of the year material because it didn't using it's gameplay innovatively. Here is a question, what do the RPG mechanics convey in ME3? In KotoR and KotoR2 they were about powerful people slowly rediscovering power from isolation and represented an increased connection with the force. In Planescape levelling up was about becoming stronger as you understood your person. In FFX levelling was about Tidus growing more used to the world and more capable in it (FFX is a great example because each characters ability in battle reflected thier personality, Auron was a heavy hitter, Wakka a fun loving guy taking down lighter foes, Yuna a healer, Rikku couldn't fight well but was fast and had flexibility). Even FFXIII understood this and levelling was about giving in to the Fal'cie and excepting more of their gift.

But in Mass Effect? Levelling is just a thing that games have.

Whereas The Walking Dead and Spec Ops understood everything about their mechanics, what every choice, every hint, every screen flashing red meant and used it to enhance their goals and the narrative.

I reckon ME3 won because more people played ME3 and most people won't vote for a game they haven't played

ME3 for the most part is a good game, but when you have a horrendously botched ending, that should have excluded it as GOTY.
No, its just not a bad ending, its a horrendously botched ending.

The ending was fine stop whining it was still better than about 95% of games endings. Also if you want to complain what about the side-quests in the citadel or the bugs. The game didn't feel complete in just a technical sense.

Proudly voted for Spec Ops. I might have gone for Mass Effect 3 if I had played it. I am pleased that BLOPS2 came last. But it wont change anything, there will be another next year and it will sell more than last... (as time has proven)

Bah. Oh well.

I'm still not sure what my personal GOTY choice is. I'm currently playing through Spec Ops: The Line. o_o

Mass Effect 3 was a great game but it just didn't stand out as exceptional to me.
The game had a major tone shift taking it from Indiana Jones in space to something far more serious and depressing.

Not a poor choice for GOTY by any means though. Mine is easily Diablo 3.
A game which doesn't deserve the award from a critical standpoint but earned it though my 800+ hours of devotion.

Well I know my vote (The Secret World) wasn't gonna get many votes. My second choice would have been between ME3 & Walking Dead so i'm happy still :).

I've loved every game I've played this year :D
And ME3 obviously wasn't that bad, otherwise it wouldn't have won :D

Mass Effect 3 was a great game but it just didn't stand out as exceptional to me.
The game had a major tone shift taking it from Indiana Jones in space to something far more serious and depressing.

Strange, I never got that feeling playing the series

The series always was very serious and could be vary dark at times, for me the thought really started in the first one where the vast empty and barren planets made me feel so small, especially in a universe apparently inhabited with eldritch abominations older than anything else in the galaxy

Sorry I'm on the side of the walking dead. I like the mass effect series, but I have always felt it was a bit over-rated personally.

People who enjoyed things rarely bother to post on forums about it, unless they have something unusual or unknown to discuss.

That's pretty much how it was with me back in ME3 came out. I was disappointed in the ending being so abrupt, not out-right raging like a number of other players though. I didn't necessarily try to defend the game, but rather just tried to get people to see that it wasn't as bad as they were making it out to be, and that the ending certainly didn't negate the fact that the rest of the game was damn good.

Though I did write an essay 6 days after the game was out in which I extrapolated possible logical outcomes of the three endings...and I'll be damned if the Extended Cut didn't come out and prove everything that I guessed to be dead-on accurate. That above all else was why I voted for ME3 as my GOTY.

Seriously, check the record, on March 12th I made a post in which I predict the EC endings before the EC was even being discussed! >:D

But gloating aside, I must say I'm VERY surprised that this game won, I thought for sure that it would likely be somewhere 11-20 at best. But like Kross said, evidently there's a silent majority (though a very small one, going by that graph) that fully enjoyed ME3 compared to the vocal minority that didn't. Or another way to look at it is that the ME3 fans are simply the largest minority of the various fandoms this graph represents.

I voted for The Walking Dead but I can't be too disappointed with the winner considering I've never played it.
In fact, I only played two of the games in the top 5 (Dishonored being the other).

Too many games. Just too many games.

Sweet. I voted Mass Effect 3 and I won. I honestly didn't expect it due to the petulant whining whenever it comes to Bioware and/or EA.

ME3 for the most part is a good game, but when you have a horrendously botched ending, that should have excluded it as GOTY.
No, its just not a bad ending, its a horrendously botched ending.

To be fair, most games in recent years have botched endings. It was just more upsetting in ME's case because it's a story in which the player develops a character and a story over three games and can get very invested in. My 2011 favorite, Deus Ex: Human Revolution also had a botched ending. If you want to see one of the worst endings in recent years, check out Rage's ending - that one made me angry.

I guess AAA studios have problems sticking to the schedule and budget, and since apparantly only 20% of the people who own a game will finish it (I still wonder where that statistic came from), the ending gets botched. At least Bioware fixed ME3's ending post release.

OT: I voted for X-COM but I don't mind ME3 being GOTY. I think more people should play FTL though.

am i the only one who seen mass effect as a generic cover shooter with tacked on superpowers?

very disappointed that ME3 won....but then I looked at the other games visibly readable on the chart and realised I had not played any on them. Not the best year for games. ME3 had an edge because they most people played it, the blend of shooter and rpg attracts many gamers. I'm sure walking dead was great but I never played it so would not vote for it.

2011 games I played this year I loved were skyrim and dark souls. I also replayed deus ex:HR (2010/2011?= doesn't matter). Next year we have last of us & metal gear solid. A year to look forward to!

2012 represents ME3 and Hitman being ruined for me. And also 007 and batman being disappointing. Pretty shite year

Ooooh, this should be gooood. I'm gonna go get the popcorn.

I'm honestly surprised that it won. What with how much the game is derided on these forums and all.

This is just sad. Dishonored was millions of times better than ME3, Spec Ops, and Walking Dead.

Mass Effect 3? Meh. It really doesn't hold up on second viewings.

Upon reflection, I feel that it having a catastrophically bad ending ended up being better for the game. People focused on that way more and the general averageness of the rest of the game looked much better by comparison.

"Vocal minority" my ass. Exactly how big do you people think this community is?

Well that makes it a shitty year after reading the whole game selection... really urgh, thats the votes from the escapist users right? what about a top from the people that writes/makes videos/ect in here? i think it would be better than that crap.

Did you look at the article? There was links there for all the Jimquistion awards, Miracle of Sounds top games, as well as the 5 favourite games from some of the staff. Go have a look at that if you want to see some other opinions.

Also go here to see what games the staff voted for.

I'm pleasantly surprised that ME3 came out on top. I guess this is a case of a silent majority being drowned out by a loud minority.

Walking Dead is still GotY in my mind. It touched my heart and disturbed my mind in ways that a story hasn't done in a very long time.

Congrats to Mass Effect though. I never got around to playing the new one but I've always had fun with the series and the excellent characters in the past.

Glad to see Guild Wars and FTL in the top ten. Both are great games that sucked a lot of hours out of my spare time. :D

I consider this a victor since my vote of P4 Golden beat out Halo 4, AC 3, Blops 2, MoP, AND Diablo 3.

I'd say that's worthy of praise considering Persona is a comparatively lesser known series.

to be honest i thought persona would score lower but im happy it got mentioned as it is definitely my GOTY ME3 was good, but I can't believe it got GOTY when so many other amazing games came out this year. I am glad that stuff like Spec Ops, Walking Dead and XCOM scored pretty high too, but one of THEM deserves GOTY, not the good but deeply flawed ME3.

ME3 was a great game and took you on a great ride up until it hit a brick wall with the ending. Personally I voted for AC3 but I wish I had voted for Dishonored.

If you haven't played it yet I implore you to...

Wait, seriously?

After all that, after the constant threads and complaints about it, Mass Effect 3 gets voted game of the year? I don't even...

I can think of three reasons why it got GOTY here.

1) On the whole, the game deserves the GOTY honour. Yes, the ending of the game was botched to an absurd degree, and the extended ending just Febreezed the giant turd they laid with that ending. But when you take out that ending, you have a hands-down GOTY candidate.

2) Epic trolling by the people who either liked the ending or hated the fans reaction to the ending, deciding to give a "Screw you, hippies!" to end 2012. I'll even mitigate the potential trolling by giving an alternate view of it by theorizing that people couldn't decide between a few games they liked and so they decided to vote for ME3 since it was an awesome game overall (see point 1) and the reaction was so overblown that it deserves to be poked again.

3) An intentionally weighted poll to ensure that ME3 won, thereby ensuring a great deal of page views and unintentional clicks on advertisers banners.

Most likely it's #1 with a healthy does of #2.

/Voted for Spec Ops: The Line, since I don't like anything about the ME3 ending, even when the turd has been polished and Febreezed so it doesn't stink anymore.

Meanwhile, receiving the honors for least-voted-for-game is Call of Duty: Black Ops 2, which received all of 15 votes over the course of the week.

So it seems Mass Effect 3 gets the title. All that whining and you guys still love it over everything else. :P

I voted for The Walking Dead, mostly because I like the graphic novel. I actually don't have any 2012 releases in my game library because my money is going elsewhere. :/

Still laughing at Black Ops 2.


After all that, after the constant threads and complaints about it, Mass Effect 3 gets voted game of the year? I don't even...

ME3 for the most part is a good game, but when you have a horrendously botched ending, that should have excluded it as GOTY.
No, its just not a bad ending, its a horrendously botched ending.

Like most games, it's likely that most people who played it never finished the game. And out of those that did, there's a chance that a lot of them didn't care in light of the rest of the game (or reached the end post patch). The many people posting about how terrible the whole game is (due to the last few minutes) are likely still a "vocal minority" compared to the people who otherwise enjoyed the game.

People who enjoyed things rarely bother to post on forums about it, unless they have something unusual or unknown to discuss. People who have a few minutes of lag connecting to a server, or something poke their video card the wrong way once will sometimes post with great emotion about their lost time/etc. The occasional negative posting (some percentage of people with a specific problem) ends up seeming much higher because the typical response a person with a good experience has to offer is "it worked for me"/"I enjoyed the game throughout" - which doesn't hold up against paragraphs of vitriol. That is, if that person even cares enough to respond rather then just playing the game/haven't encountered the problem and aren't looking to talk about such things.

Go back and take out all the votes from users registered in December 2012 and I bet there is a much different result.

You are kidding me. This is the game that the industry should copy?

Anyway I voted for the walking dead.

Well, it was a vote by majority.

EDIT: It's a good enough game, I suppose. It's unfair to completely blame the fiasco on the game itself.

Y'know what? When I first saw this in the morning, my reaction was like; "WHAT THE F*** MAN?!" I threw tables, ranted to Zeus and Quetzalcoatl and threw ALL the toys from my pram.

Then I went and did something else and moved on with my life.

At the end of the day, it's no big deal what gets voted for, everyone has an opinion and that's great, cause how damn boring would it be if we all agreed, huh?

I still hold to my belief that EA/BioWare's recent crop of games are actually harmful to the industry and should not be celebrated in any way, but that's just the gamer nerd in me, the fact that an indie adventure game was a pretty close 2nd is awesome.

Huh. Missed the vote, myself, and I really don't know what I would've voted for, anyway. Toss up between Guild Wars 2, Xcom, Farcry 3 and Mass Effect 3, I suppose. The Walking Dead told an excellent story, but a story alone does not a game make. Easily the first adventure game I've really given a damn about, and waaaaaaaaaay better than the last one I played (fuck you, Indigo Prophecy! FUCK YOU!), but it really felt more like I was watching a show, or reading a pick your own adventure book then playing a game. That being said, I'm still excited for the next season, and am getting that shit on release.

Eh, on second thought, fuck it. I think Mass Effect 3 was my GOTY.

Space commando 75:

I voted for x-com because it was one of the few games played this year pity id didn't win.

Me too. It and Dishonored were pretty much the only games that were kind of different from everything else this year, and I haven't tried Dishonored yet.

I really wish ME3 wouldn't have won. It's not because I hate it, but I really really don't want other devs to copy anything about that game. From the day-one DLC to the bad writing and botched ending, there are just too many scary things there that could really take a bad toll on gaming in general, if they haven't already.

Can't say I'm unhappy considering my two favourite games of the year came 2nd and 3rd.

I voted for Mass Effect 3, not because I am troll, but because for the first time since Silent Hill 2 did I get this emotionally invested in a game and its characters.


There are just so many great moments: Moridin's Death (I cried), The Fall of Thesisa (I raged), The Reclamation of Rannoch (I sighed in massive relief(, and the Krogan Rebirth (cried some more). No other game has did that other than The Walking Dead which does have better writing overall.

However, what put Mass Effect 3 over the top was the gameplay. It is really good. The retooled combat and the excellent multiplayer which I still play now and then are what puts it over. While I was more invested by TWD' s story I was annoyed by it's quicktime events and searching static background for clues which is a common trope of adventure games. I just had more fun playing ME3.

Your game didn't win? I'm still pissed that Katawa Shoujo wasn't in the running. It's about as much a game as Walking Dead.

I voted for Borderlands 2 but it was tied with ME3 for me. I just voted for the game I thought would have a better chance of winning. Guess I was wrong but I'm still happy with the result.

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