The winners of the inaugural Xbox Live Arcade Awards have been announced at a private dinner reception at this year’s Game Developers Conference.

The finalists in each category were chosen by a panel of industry journalists, with six categories chosen by popular vote while the final four were determined based on sales data, Metacritic scores or staff voting. More than 26,000 people cast votes for the awards throughout the month of January. The winners are:

  • Best Overall Arcade Game: Bomberman Live
  • Best Classic Game: Castlevania: Symphony of the Night
  • Best Original Game: Pac-Man: Championship Edition
  • Best Family-Friendly Game: Pac-Man: Championship Edition
  • Best Competitive Multiplayer Game: Bomberman Live
  • Best Cooperative Multiplayer Game: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
  • Best-Selling Game: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
  • Most Played Game: Worms
  • Highest Rated Game: Castlevania: Symphony of the Night
  • Xbox Live Arcade Staff Choice: Pac-Man: Championship Edition

Microsoft says the number of players on Xbox Live Arcade has grown 145 percent over the past year, adding up to more than 115 million hours of game time worldwide and a 150 percent growth in year-over-year unit sales.

“The Xbox Live Arcade business is currently the strongest it’s ever been, thanks to the content provided by the diverse range of talented developers attached to the platform,” said Xbox Live General Manager Marc Whitten. “The Game Developers Conference is the perfect venue to recognize the successes of Xbox Live Arcade developers, and as we move further into 2008, gamers can expect to see even more quality content land on Xbox Live Arcade.”

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