ResetEra Games of the Year Awards 2019

Edgar

Member
Oct 29, 2017
5,005
I'm a bit surprised that RE2 won, I think that Sekiro would have been a better representative for 2019. The fact that a remake is the GOTY shows that it was not a memorable year for AAA releases.

I'm surprised that Three Houses got more points that Death Stranding, 3rd place is a great performance for a niche series such as Fire Emblem.

Finally I'm very happy about Slay the Spire and Baba is You being in the top 20 ! I think Katana Zero would deserve a spot here as well.
So is Sekiro weak competion because remake won ?
 

LazyLain

Member
Jan 17, 2019
1,823
Judgment placing above SMM2 and Pokemon makes me happy.

Baba is You placing below SMM2 and Pokemon makes me unhappy.
 

KayonXaikyre

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,074
Cool list. Glad to see Fire Emblem at #3 because it's a great game. RE2 and Sekiro were my favorites as well. All around solid stuff! Goose game won something too!
 

Flayer

Member
Oct 28, 2017
40
Death Stranding deserved number 1 but I don't think as many people played it as RE2 (which is also an amazing game).
 

Sir Sonic

Member
Jan 14, 2020
38
A Great year for both Nintendo and Capcom (and somehow weird, but Activision too)

Solid Top 10 list nonetheless
 

Hoo-doo

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,940
The Netherlands
Thanks for the effort that went into this list! RE2 and Sekiro deserve their spots.

That said, it has been a weak year overall, lots of devs working on next-gen products I bet.
 

Honolulu Blue

Member
Oct 27, 2017
2,910
I'm a bit surprised that RE2 won, I think that Sekiro would have been a better representative for 2019. The fact that a remake is the GOTY shows that it was not a memorable year for AAA releases.
I think this is a flawed take, personally. RE2 is a ground up re-imagining developed from scratch, that stands on its own merits. Infact I think one of RE2's strengths is that it doesn't render the PS1 original completely redundant (unlike REmake 1). It is for all intents and purposes a 2019 game.

I think there is a stronger argument against Sekiro because of its prohibitive difficulty, than there is against RE2 for it being a remake. Both games were top 3 for the year for me btw even though I never finished Sekiro.
 

M4n

Member
Oct 25, 2017
35
Leon, Spain
This is my list in relation to ERA's:
  1. The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III (52)
  2. Devil May Cry V (6)
  3. Disco Elysium (7)
  4. Baba is You (20)
  5. Death Stranding (4)
  6. Outer Wilds (9)
  7. Control (5)
  8. Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice (2)
  9. Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night (13)
  10. Sayonara Wild Hearts (30)
  11. Resident Evil 2 (1)
  12. The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening (14)

I don't like to vote remakes / remasters, but there's no doubt that Resident Evil 2 (2019) is not only an excellent remake, but probably the new aspiration that other developers should have on how to reimagine a game while being faithful to the original.

Pretty good list, so happy to see Outer Wilds in top 10; a bit disappointed with Baba is You and Trails of Cold Steel III positions but, yeah, both are more niche.
 

Euler007

Member
Jan 10, 2018
1,375
I just don't get why FE:3H scored so high. If you stopped playing after the first mission post time-skip I understand that you could score it high but after I finished it I was very disappointed. I played most of the older GB FE games and had very high hopes for it. I feel it's an overall good 7/10 game that has a lot of room for improvement, and with these improvements could be a 9.5 game that makes it to the top 3 of a given year. But not 2019.
 

Minsc

Member
Oct 28, 2017
1,391
I just don't get why FE:3H scored so high. If you stopped playing after the first mission post time-skip I understand that you could score it high but after I finished it I was very disappointed. I played most of the older GB FE games and had very high hopes for it. I feel it's an overall good 7/10 game that has a lot of room for improvement, and with these improvements could be a 9.5 game that makes it to the top 3 of a given year. But not 2019.
Different people like different things? Why does any game place highly (well other than popularity - which really is what most voting threads truly measure)? What you value/find enjoyable in games might not be what other people even remotely enjoy.
 

Psychonaut

Member
Jan 11, 2018
2,664
Bold of us to only include three good games in our top ten. Here's my top ten relative to Era, since everyone else is doing it:

1. Slay the Spire (15)
2. Fire Emblem: Three Houses (3)
3. Disco Elysium (7)
4. Life is Strange 2 (41)
5. Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice (2)
6. Kingdom Hearts III (16)
7. What the Golf (104)
8. Pokemon Shield (18)
9. Luigi's Mansion (10)
10. Dragon Quest Builders 2 (33)

I honestly wish I'd cut off my list after number seven, because I don't think Pokemon or Luigi deserved my votes.
 
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spman2099

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,321
Death Stranding was truly divisive, most number one votes but couldn't even make top 3. Shame to the people who didn't play it. RE2, meanwhile, was a real "everyone who played it liked it" type of great game
Divisive indeed. I would have given Death Stranding negative points if that had been an option. Not that I didn't enjoy my time with it, I just don't think a game with that much emphasis on story, with writing that bad, should be in the running for a GotY. However, clearly other people disagree. Either way, it is a very interesting result.
 
Oct 25, 2017
1,036
yeah, imo it should just be called most #1s.
Yea I feel like the naming is incorrect.
Most Popular = Title that appears in the most lists

idk what word you would use for most first place though.
That confused me too. Most popular game should be based on the game that appeared on the most ballots irrespective of position, whilst the game that recieved the most number 1 votes should simply be awarded "Most number 1 votes" or something along those lines.
Yep, most popular should be the one that was played the most and was good enough to appear on people's ballots. Plus, "Most number 1 votes" is a notable superlative on its own, and shows the quality of Death Stranding.

I did take a look at the data, and did some quick math on number of votes. Here are some additional tidbits.

Total number of votes (including honorable mentions):
1. Resident Evil 2 - 515
2. Sekiro - 424
3. Control - 353
4. Fire Emblem - 343
5. Death Standing - 336

% of #1 votes per game (minimum 100 total votes):
1. Disco Elysium - 44.3%
2. DS - 36%
3. FE - 34.1%
4. Outer Wilds - 26.8%
5. Sekiro - 26.2%

Points per ballot (minimum 100 total votes):
1. Disco Elysium - 3.06
2. DS - 2.86
3. FE - 2.83
4. Sekiro - 2.77
5. RE2 - 2.73

For the latter two lists, lowering the minimum total votes yields different games. I just chose 100 arbitrarily since I don't know how many people actually submitted ballots.
 

Violet

Alt account
Banned
Feb 7, 2019
3,263
dc
Divisive indeed. I would have given Death Stranding negative points if that had been an option. Not that I didn't enjoy my time with it, I just don't think a game with that much emphasis on story, with writing that bad, should be in the running for a GotY. However, clearly other people disagree. Either way, it is a very interesting result.
It was my number one! But IMO I will take a game story that knows what it is: anime sci-fi pulpy shlock that gestures at big dumb ideas, over a "cinematic story" that's just a lesser version of things we've seen a million times before. I almost treat it something like Neon Genesis Evangelion. Objectively stilted dialogue, lots of mind numbing information dumps, sort of teeters and goes off the rail dozens of times...... but it still has a soul behind it and you get the sense that the issues arise from a need of it's creator to dump absolutely every part of themselves and every idea into one place.

I have felt the same way about the Metal Gear series, and I feel that a lot of gamers get so caught up in trying to find the Kubrick of games instead of sitting back and enjoying the Abel Ferrara of games.
 

nib95

Member
Oct 28, 2017
12,444
Yep, most popular should be the one that was played the most and was good enough to appear on people's ballots. Plus, "Most number 1 votes" is a notable superlative on its own, and shows the quality of Death Stranding.

I did take a look at the data, and did some quick math on number of votes. Here are some additional tidbits.

Total number of votes (including honorable mentions):
1. Resident Evil 2 - 515
2. Sekiro - 424
3. Control - 353
4. Fire Emblem - 343
5. Death Standing - 336

% of #1 votes per game (minimum 100 total votes):
1. Disco Elysium - 44.3%
2. DS - 36%
3. FE - 34.1%
4. Outer Wilds - 26.8%
5. Sekiro - 26.2%

Points per ballot (minimum 100 total votes):
1. Disco Elysium - 3.06
2. DS - 2.86
3. FE - 2.83
4. Sekiro - 2.77
5. RE2 - 2.73

For the latter two lists, lowering the minimum total votes yields different games. I just chose 100 arbitrarily since I don't know how many people actually submitted ballots.
Nice breakdown and interesting data. This confirms that 'Most Popular' award should have gone to Resident Evil 2.
 

spman2099

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,321
I have felt the same way about the Metal Gear series, and I feel that a lot of gamers get so caught up in trying to find the Kubrick of games instead of sitting back and enjoying the Abel Ferrara of games.
I think a better analogue for Kojima is a post-Donnie Darko Richard Kelly. Death Stranding has some serious Southland Tales energy to it (super high ambition, abysmal execution). I feel like Ferrara is better capable of delivering a coherent narrative (though I am mainly going off of Body Snatchers and Bad Lieutenant, here).

I do see your point though. I think there are some great storytellers in games, and I don't think they get enough credit, but I do see where you are coming from.
 

Violet

Alt account
Banned
Feb 7, 2019
3,263
dc
I think a better analogue for Kojima is a post-Donnie Darko Richard Kelly. Death Stranding has some serious Southland Tales energy to it (super high ambition, abysmal execution). I feel like Ferrara is better capable of delivering a coherent narrative (though I am mainly going off of Body Snatchers and Bad Lieutenant, here).
Southland Tales is a really great comp haha. And I really enjoy that movie (and in general, big dumb flawed things)! It's also like, the Paul WS Anderson movies. There's so much style and some incredibly visceral moments that make up for the clumsiness, for me atleast.

If you haven't seen King of New York, definitely try it out. Christopher Walken and Laurence Fishburne just operate at another level in that one. My favorite Abel for sure.
 
Oct 25, 2017
1,036
I mean... you could also argue that a lot of people didn't play Sekiro because they were intimidated by the difficulty. This is a long, winding, twisty road to go down.
Agreed. Sekiro and RE2 also get the benefit of being released earlier in the year giving them more time for more people to play them. On the flip side, considering Death Stranding got the most #1 votes, why didn't it get played by more people?

Basically, it's going to be really hard to extrapolate reasons why people didn't put something on their ballots unless we scrape people's comments from the voting thread.
 

Saint-14

Banned
Nov 2, 2017
14,473
I still didn’t get an answer for my question, I’m gonna assume XIV votes actually didn’t count because someone decided to go with 14 instead what it’s officially called, good job.
 

♡♪!?

Member
Oct 25, 2017
6,291
I mean... you could also argue that a lot of people didn't play Sekiro because they were intimidated by the difficulty. This is a long, winding, twisty road to go down.
No one can be completely objectionable and include games they're not interested in, so it will fail if it doesn't have enough widespread popularity.

The only game that deserves to win is what earns the most widespread points. It's not that twisty or complicated.
 

Lulu

Member
Oct 25, 2017
9,693
Yea most popular should be the game that appeared on most list... Which was RE2. I don't get how having the most number 1s means it was the most popular, that doesn't make sense. Change that.
 

spman2099

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,321
No one can be completely objectionable and include games they're not interested in, so it will fail if it doesn't have enough widespread popularity.

The only game that deserves to win is what earns the most widespread points. It's not that twisty or complicated.
I think I misunderstood your comment. I thought you were saying that Death Stranding didn't get the reception it deserved because some people didn't give it a fair shake. I was implying that such a thing could be true, but it would also be true for a number of other games as well (thus, the "long, winding, twisty road" bit). My bad.

Southland Tales is a really great comp haha. And I really enjoy that movie (and in general, big dumb flawed things)! It's also like, the Paul WS Anderson movies. There's so much style and some incredibly visceral moments that make up for the clumsiness, for me atleast.

If you haven't seen King of New York, definitely try it out. Christopher Walken and Laurence Fishburne just operate at another level in that one. My favorite Abel for sure.
Ha, I totally get it, man. I see where you are coming from. I love how consistent you are. I need to have a big movie night with some buddies again...
 

♡♪!?

Member
Oct 25, 2017
6,291
Yea most popular should be the game that appeared on most list... Which was RE2. I don't get how having the most number 1s means it was the most popular, that doesn't make sense. Change that.
Most 'dedicated' or 'passionate', sounds better. And people can't say "well actually DS was really the winner" when it wasn't.
 

goodretina

Member
Dec 30, 2018
400
Not sure I follow. Why would someone rank a game no.1 because they could choose up to 10, but not choose that no.1 game if they could only select one title for GOTY.
Awesome news for Resident Evil, and also glad to see Disco Elysium up there!


I don't think it's a logical fallacy? He is just saying that if people had only voted for one game instead of ten, Death Stranding would have won (because it would have been voted the most, since it was the game with the most 1st position votes). That would have been a different way of voting, though.
My bad - I thought “most popular game” received most overall votes, not the most often at #1.
 

Christo750

Member
May 10, 2018
2,040
Having just finished it, I wish I could amend my list to include Devil May Cry 5. Holy SHIT what a game. Best combat I've experienced in a while; gives Platinum a serious run for their money. RE Engine is putting in work; on a base PS4 the game looks astonishing. Some of the best bosses in recent memory too. I'd easily bump Outer Worlds and put this as number 7 on my list.

It's been a really great year; such a varied list of games. For comparison's sake I looked at 2018 and while I think there were heavier hitters, there was a slight lack in variety. This year really did have something for everyone.
 
Oct 25, 2017
1,036
Most 'dedicated' or 'passionate', sounds better. And people can't say "well actually DS was really the winner" when it wasn't.
For me, most dedicated or most passionate implies that a game had the highest percentage of its total votes at #1. Even by that metric, Death Stranding gets beat by Disco Elysium. FF14 would be higher too if you expand the list to games with at least 50 total votes.

Most #1 votes is still a good indicator of a game's quality though, and that is an actual category that Death Stranding won.
 

Dever

Banned
Dec 25, 2019
316
You can't really get an objective assessment of games through a popular vote of random people, since obviously the games that sold the most will have a massive advantage. Ideally everyone voting would have played every significant game, but that's obviously impossible. Niche games like Disco Elysium or Outer Wilds don't stand a chance against behemoths like RE2 for this reason.

Death Stranding isn't as niche as Disco I suppose, but I do wonder what it winning most #1s but arriving #4 overall means. Did most people who played it absolutely love it? Or did a significant number of people who played it dislike it so much they didn't even list it? Or did it just sell poorly among Resetera voters compared to RE2 and Sekiro?
 

Brian Damage

Member
Nov 1, 2017
7,828
UK
Death Stranding isn't as niche as Disco I suppose, but I do wonder what it winning most #1s but arriving #4 overall means. Did most people who played it absolutely love it? Or did a significant number of people who played it dislike it so much they didn't even list it? Or did it just sell poorly among Resetera voters compared to RE2 and Sekiro?
Alternatively, it could have made a lot of lists but been more polarised towards the top and bottom of the lists. Hypothetically, if RE2 got 10 votes at #3 and DS got 5 votes at #1 and 5 votes at #10, RE2 would have fewer #1 placements but a higher average ranking.

It's a combination of all factors, though it did get fewer votes in total than RE2 and Sekiro which is probably the biggest factor.
 

Dever

Banned
Dec 25, 2019
316
Alternatively, it could have made a lot of lists but been more polarised towards the top and bottom of the lists. Hypothetically, if RE2 got 10 votes at #3 and DS got 5 votes at #1 and 5 votes at #10, RE2 would have fewer #1 placements but a higher average ranking.
Right, that's maybe a more muted version of people simply leaving it off lists entirely.

Personally, nobody at my office full of gamers bought Death Stranding. They saw for example the IGN review, and avoided the game because of it. And I can't blame them really, the game looks boring and many reviews were incredibly negative. I have to imagine those reviews affected people over here too. Was my #1 though, possibly also my GotG... But I didn't play RE2 or Disco Elysium, maybe either of those could've topped it. (My #2 and #3 were Outer Wilds and Sekiro.)
 
Oct 25, 2017
1,036
You can't really get an objective assessment of games through a popular vote of random people, since obviously the games that sold the most will have a massive advantage. Ideally everyone voting would have played every significant game, but that's obviously impossible. Niche games like Disco Elysium or Outer Wilds don't stand a chance against behemoths like RE2 for this reason.
Unfortunately, it's the best that we can do. Then again, you can still provide accolades in a somewhat objective manner for niche games by defining metrics that use averages or rates. Of the 150 people that voted for Disco Elysium, how many ranked it as their #1, for example?

Death Stranding isn't as niche as Disco I suppose, but I do wonder what it winning most #1s but arriving #4 overall means. Did most people who played it absolutely love it? Or did a significant number of people who played it dislike it so much they didn't even list it? Or did it just sell poorly among Resetera voters compared to RE2 and Sekiro?
It just means that the scoring system defined by Era (5 pts to #1, 4 pts to #2 and #3, etc.) still favors total number of votes. You can't really infer much else unless you look at other data points like sales, people's individual comments in their ballots, etc. It's also worth noting that Death Stranding only had 11 more #1 votes than RE2 while RE2 had 216 #2 and #3 votes compared to Death Stranding's 97. Again, it's really hard to make any assertions about what that means except that more people played RE2 and ranked it higher on their ballots.
 

Ultron

The Fallen
Oct 25, 2017
894
Nice, thanks for this list.

So for example, the Top 3 on this list seem to have 'underperformed' (DS to a lesser extent than the other two) on the main list: either because (1) relatively few people actually played them, or because (2) they were 'divisive'/'polarizing' games (in which case, lots of folks who played them would have consciously left them off their Top 10 altogether), or some combination of those two factors.

I guess the available data doesn't actually tell us the extent to which either/both of these factors were involved (in any given case of 'underperformance'), since folks weren't asked/required to give a full list of all the games they actually played/completed (aside from their Top 10), but perhaps I'm missing something.
Yeah, you've basically got it right. All we can really tell from that list is that among people who thought to put those games in their top tens/honorable mentions, most of them *really* liked it. It's interesting that having something as an honorable mention, or even low on the list, actually hurts it in the Points Per Ballot totals. Getting above a 3 like Disco and Shadowbringers did means that it was in the 1-3 lots on the majority of ballots it appeared on.

Just thinking on the two top games, it seems pretty reasonable that not that many people played Shadowbringers. It's the third expansion for an MMO and, I assume, requires many many hours to actually reach and play through the storyline. This required investment probably does trend people to rate it highly as well, since clearly they're really into FFXIV, so a good expansion for that is gonna definitely get high marks. I think Disco Elysium has a similar low player count problem, given that it's only on PC and is kind of a niche thing. Also, just from my playing of it, I could see people bouncing off it if they just aren't up for that much reading and conversation in a game. It getting 7th, with under 200 votes, is a pretty big accomplishment though. Same with Outer Wilds hitting 9th at a similar vote count.
 
Oct 27, 2017
727
Got my quotes in two years in a row now with Detroit and Bloodstained. I see y'all


Yah I can live with this list. Only really surprised Control outdid DMCV by quite a bit, seemed like there was so much more hype for the latter and not much for the former on this board.
 
Jan 11, 2018
3,018
Good to see Luigi's Mansion 3 make the top 10, but it deserved top 5 easily. Glad to see Control, Sekiro, and Death Stranding come in strong. Not surprised that RE2 won despite it being a disappointing game for me personally, and I wouldn't be surprised if another remake wins this years awards (FF7), though it's probably up against stiffer competition overall.
 

CyrilFiggis

Member
Nov 3, 2017
875
Pennsylvania
I completely agree with #1. RE2 got me hooked unlike any other game in a long time. It has great visuals courtesy of the RE Engine, tight gameplay, good level design (especially the police station), and top-notch sound. The only thing I didn't like about it is the lack of a proper soundtrack through most of the game (go for the classic soundtrack if you can).

I can understand not wanting to blow a vote on a remake, but to me this is pretty much a completely new game compared to the original. A poster above addressed that aspect perfectly:
RE2 is a ground up re-imagining developed from scratch, that stands on its own merits. Infact I think one of RE2's strengths is that it doesn't render the PS1 original completely redundant (unlike REmake 1). It is for all intents and purposes a 2019 game.
Happy to see Death Stranding and Control get some love, too. Both were great. Honestly, 2019 probably had the most releases I've played from a single year - that released that year - since maybe the early aughts.

Having just finished Days Gone, I would say that's the only thing missing from the top 20. It really is a great experience and I truly don't understand the lukewarm reception it received. Maybe it was just a mess before months of patches, but the version of it that I played blew me away.