ResetEra Games of the Year Awards 2019

Ramsay

Member
Jul 2, 2019
776
Australia
GAME OF THE DECADE! Yes! This will be fun.

Oh, and congrats to this year's winners. Weak year, though. None of my top 10 this year will be in my top 10 for the decade.
Yeah, I agree that this year's been quite weak, especially in terms of exclusives. Fire Emblem will probably make my top 10 for the decade, but at a low position (probably number 8 or 9).

Thinking about it, here's a preliminary list:
  1. Zelda: BOTW
  2. Xenoblade 1
  3. Celeste
  4. TLOU
  5. Mario Galaxy 2
  6. Witcher 3
  7. Undertale
  8. Fire Emblem: 3H
  9. Pokemon B/W
  10. Zelda: ALBW
 

dumbyugi

Member
Oct 25, 2017
164
Very happy to see Fire Emblem make top 3, even got my quote in there haha. Figured I'd do a comparison since so many people are doing it.
  1. Fire Emblem: Three Houses (3)
  2. Mario Maker 2 (20)
  3. Pokemon Sword (19)
  4. Ring Fit Adventure (32)
  5. Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night (14)
  6. Luigi's Mansion 3 (11)
  7. Dead or Alive 6 (156)
  8. Tetris 99 (27)
  9. The Legend of Zelda: Links Awakening (15)
  10. Devil May Cry 5 (7)
Wish Mario Maker had managed to get a bit higher but otherwise everything landed pretty well. Happy to see Pokemon get top 20 after all the negativity on here. DoA6 actually managed to get more votes then I expected lol.
 

jph139

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,487
Massachusetts
King of Cards is sooooo good. I recommend that out of this entire list since it feels so overlooked
I feel like after all the other Shovel Knight campaigns people are kind of "over it" - like, yeah, more Shovel Knight, more of the same, yawn.

But when "more of the same" is more perfectly designed levels with a great difficulty balance and a fun, fresh mechanical hook... I mean, that's exactly what I was hoping for?

Honestly if it was a "real" game rather than "bonus content" for the original, people would probably be paying more attention. But it's just as good as a new game!
 

Minsc

Member
Oct 28, 2017
1,391
Yeah, I agree that this year's been quite weak, especially in terms of exclusives. Fire Emblem will probably make my top 10 for the decade, but at a low position (probably number 8 or 9).

Thinking about it, here's a preliminary list:
  1. Zelda: BOTW
  2. Xenoblade 1
  3. Celeste
  4. TLOU
  5. Mario Galaxy 2
  6. Witcher 3
  7. Undertale
  8. Fire Emblem: 3H
  9. Pokemon B/W
  10. Zelda: ALBW
All those RPGs and no Divinity 2? It's definitely placing pretty high in the lists, most people who play it adore it, and put it up amongst the best RPG they've ever played in any decade.
 

Tochtli79

Member
Jun 27, 2019
1,063
Mexico City
Resident Evil 2 winning is no surprise and it's well earned. It was something a lot of people dreamed about for years, and it actually lived up to expectations. Will be interesting to see if FF7R can do the same this year as the longing and hype are pretty similar.

And holy crap, congratulations Three Houses! I was expecting 5th place for it, so seeing it in 3rd is a great surprise! It's definitely the most fun I've had on Switch and I don't say that lightly. After personally being underwhelmed by the series through the DS/3DS years, it feels so good to see it get back to the greatness of earlier titles. I hope they stay on this path and can continue to improve the writing and strategy in future games. I'm super excited to see what comes next for the series.
 

Minsc

Member
Oct 28, 2017
1,391
Resident Evil 2 winning is no surprise and it's well earned. It was something a lot of people dreamed about for years, and it actually lived up to expectations. Will be interesting to see if FF7R can do the same this year as the longing and hype are pretty similar.

And holy crap, congratulations Three Houses! I was expecting 5th place for it, so seeing it in 3rd is a great surprise! It's definitely the most fun I've had on Switch and I don't say that lightly. After personally being underwhelmed by the series through the DS/3DS years, it feels so good to see it get back to the greatness of earlier titles. I hope they stay on this path and can continue to improve the writing and strategy in future games. I'm super excited to see what comes next for the series.
Now that you mention it FF7R probably has a real good chance of GOTY (based on the videos and reception from fans who feel they're nailing everything about it), I wonder if we'll see all the same "boring year if a remake wins" comments as with RE2.

Be even crazier to see FF7R Part 2 win the following GOTY, and FF7R Part 3 win the next year and FF7R Part 4 take the one after that lol. Gonna be a lot of boring years upcoming.
 

♡♪!?

Member
Oct 25, 2017
6,290
Now that you mention it FF7R probably has a real good chance of GOTY (based on the videos and reception from fans who feel they're nailing everything about it), I wonder if we'll see all the same "boring year if a remake wins" comments as with RE2.

Be even crazier to see FF7R Part 2 win the following GOTY, and FF7R Part 3 win the next year and FF7R Part 4 take the one after that lol. Gonna be a lot of boring years upcoming.
FF VII remake is known to be only based on the intro on FF VII, so I doubt it will be a satisfying enough game to beat Cyberpunk or Last of Us 2. Remake 2 might have a chance depending on where the ending is.
probably has to have an emotional ending with Aeris' death, or Cloud's fake death in the northern crater
Part 3 seems unlikely to win game of the year if it's just wrapping up the rest and doesn't introduce many new locations. I guess FF VII remake part 2 will be late 2022 but I may be being generous, since it's presumely the 2 main continents which is the heart of the game.
 

Stygr

Member
Oct 26, 2017
8,471
Now that you mention it FF7R probably has a real good chance of GOTY (based on the videos and reception from fans who feel they're nailing everything about it), I wonder if we'll see all the same "boring year if a remake wins" comments as with RE2.
FF7R has 0 chances winning GOTY here when TLOU 2 and Cyberpunk 2077 are releasing in 2020.
 

Violet

Alt account
Banned
Feb 7, 2019
3,263
dc
I could see stuff like TLOU 2 and Cyberpunk splitting the votes while all the JRPG fans vote for FF7R.
 

♡♪!?

Member
Oct 25, 2017
6,290
I could see stuff like TLOU 2 and Cyberpunk splitting the votes while all the JRPG fans vote for FF7R.
Kingdom Hearts 3 didn't do that well, compared to the anticipation and that game was quite compact, with a very substantial ending and some massive levels. Some people like to say remake is a complete game but it still looks like a taster and set up for other parts. Unless you can explore every sector of Midgar and the story content is tripled (and that's arguable not a good thing), I don't think it has much of a shot of GOTY.
 

Violet

Alt account
Banned
Feb 7, 2019
3,263
dc
Kingdom Hearts 3 didn't do that well, compared to the anticipation and that game was quite compact, with a very substantial ending and some massive levels. Some people like to say remake is a complete game but it still looks like a taster and set up for other parts. Unless you can explore every sector of Midgar and the story content is tripled (and that's arguable not a good thing), I don't think it has much of a shot of GOTY.
I think KH3 was always going to be divisive. Even the original games were divisive, plus tons of people who didn't want to play the mobile games were let down by how much plot would be missing, etc etc. FF7 is a remake of one of the most revered games of all time.

I could definitely see it being claimed as "incomplete" if it's not like 30+ hours
 

Zen

Member
Nov 1, 2017
4,625
Gaming is mainstream enough that the likes of games with wide, mainstream appeal will always take the popular vote over less widely appealing genre titles, so the GOTY or GOTD picks that factor popular numeric vote into account will always reflect that and choose the most widely appealing game. This is why genre picks are more relevant to anyone whose taste isn't solely with the popular zeitgeist. TLOU isn't comparable at all to FF7R. The target audience is completely different.
 

StarPhlox

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,843
Texas
That's an unimpeachable top 3, IMO. Really glad to see excellent single-player games that are (relatively) free of anti-consumer practices get such positive attention. I had Sekiro at 1, RE at 2, and FE at 4 so these are definitely personal favorites as well.
 

Minsc

Member
Oct 28, 2017
1,391
Maybe it's been asked and answered but why wouldn't FE be best hand held game?
Yes, that seems weird to me too.

Actually the entire Switch lineup got robbed, they should all be under handheld games. The Switch literally being a handheld device and all with attached screen and controllers and built in battery and you hold in your hands to play on.

Even if you want to argue semantics which IMO you'd be wrong, there's the Switch Lite and the games are all on that and you can't win that argument. The Switch Lite is not a hybrid, and solely a handheld and plays all those games handheld.

Maybe they only count games that are on multiple handhelds.
 
Oct 28, 2017
647
Glad to see RE2 as GOTY as it was my number 2 favorite game this year; I would have loved to see Disco place in the top 3 as it was my favorite, but I'll settle for the Top 10.

If Disco had released on consoles as well, it would have cracked the top 3. I have no way of proving that, but that's just my intuition. Hope all the console only players really enjoy it when it releases this year.
 

Zissou

Member
Oct 26, 2017
670
When 2019 EGS timed exclusives launch on Steam in 2020, will they be eligible for voting next year? (will that be considered launching on a new platform?)
 

Crushed

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,468
Man, remember when these first screenshots of Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles came out and people were furious that the game was still a lightgun game and not the over-the-shoulder RE2 remake the pictures invoked?






(especially since the producer of Umbrella Chronicles had originally said that it would have been an RE4 style game, but Wii owners "like easiness" so they made them lightgun titles)
 

Violet

Alt account
Banned
Feb 7, 2019
3,263
dc
When 2019 EGS timed exclusives launch on Steam in 2020, will they be eligible for voting next year? (will that be considered launching on a new platform?)
There probably needs to be a re-thinking of the rules in general. HD collections and ports are more common then ever. We might be getting big Sony exclusives going to PC soon. Personally, I think tough shit, you can't be voting for Nier Automata or Red Dead Redemption again. If you loved it, great, you loved a game that came out a few years ago. Not eligible. I don't understand the point of allowing older games to get votes year after year after year.
 

Minsc

Member
Oct 28, 2017
1,391
There probably needs to be a re-thinking of the rules in general. HD collections and ports are more common then ever. We might be getting big Sony exclusives going to PC soon. Personally, I think tough shit, you can't be voting for Nier Automata or Red Dead Redemption again. If you loved it, great, you loved a game that came out a few years ago. Not eligible. I don't understand the point of allowing older games to get votes year after year after year.
Why bother to allow games that released in past years in other regions then? If you loved it you loved a game that came out a few years ago, tough shit you don't know the language of the original release. Not eligible.

I think the answer is just that a port is still a release on a platform where the game didn't exist before, so it is the very first time people who own that platform and not others can play the game. Much like it is the first time people who speak one language but not another can play the game.

The question in your post is asking if storefronts on PC should be comparable to console platforms, and I think there's an argument for that. To some people Steam and EGS are as different as the PS5 and the Switch.
 

Violet

Alt account
Banned
Feb 7, 2019
3,263
dc
Why bother to allow games that released in past years in other regions then? If you loved it you loved a game that came out a few years ago, tough shit you don't know the language of the original release. Not eligible.

I think the answer is just that a port is still a release on a platform where the game didn't exist before, so it is the very first time people who own that platform and not others can play the game. Much like it is the first time people who speak one language but not another can play the game.
Other than Japanese/Western localizations, how often is that really a problem? And atleast that makes some sense as this is an English speaking forum.

Yeah it's eurocentric and a bit shitty to out and out dismiss other countries in this scenario, but I still feel like those scenarios are very uncommon compared to run of the mill indies porting their games around and remasters, which both happen constantly.
 

jett

Community Resettler
Member
Oct 25, 2017
21,497
Recently got into Outer Wilds, so I didn't vote for it. What an outstanding game. More creative, clever, and smartly designed than basically everything else on the list.
 
Oct 27, 2017
402
[...] 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.
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.)
A couple of folks have posted 'average ranking points per ballot' numbers for each game (though not the corresponding standard deviation for each game, which might be of interest, with regard to the 'polarization' question):
Outer Wilds cracking the Top Ten warms my heart. If you add a column for number of ballots that a game appeared on and then average points per ballot, it's interesting to see that excluding games with only a couple votes, that Disco Elysium and FFXIV: Shadowbringers are the only games to have an average points per ballot above 3. So most people that played them put them in the 1-3 range. (Here's a copy of the sheet with that column added) https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1JThmmU_nxo0aKRsECIZa4IQyZ3INWAqhUFfhJIreQqo/edit?usp=sharing
Just because I enjoy messing with data in this way, and I remember enjoying previous years being broken down like this, if you go by average points per ballot, for games with more than 5 votes, the top twenty is this:

1) final fantasy 14 shadowbringers 3.298507463
2) disco elysium 3.057471264
3) death stranding 2.857142857
4) fire emblem three houses 2.825072886
5) sekiro shadows die twice 2.766509434
6) resident evil 2 2.730097087
7) anno 1800 2.727272727
8) the legend of heroes trails of cold steel iii 2.7
9) outer wilds 2.68902439
10) divinity original sin 2 definitive edition 2.615384615
11) red dead redemption 2 2.526315789
12) return of the obra dinn 2.5
13) control 2.458923513
14) pathologic 2 2.4
15) monster hunter world iceborne 2.381578947
16) dragon quest 11 definitive edition 2.379310345
17) supraland 2.375
18) trials rising 2.333333333
18) f1 2019 2.333333333
20) dirt rally 20 2.3125

And yeah, Shadowbringers is pretty out there in front of everything else by this metric. Love to see Anno 1800 in the mix there as well. Need to play more of that.

Shoutouts to the following games that were someone's number 1 and appeared on no other list: Sonic Robo Blast , Eagle Island, The Legend of Heroes Trails of Cold Steel II, Planetarian: The Reverie of a Little Planet, Forza Horizon 4: Lego Speed Champions, Imperator Rome, Vestaria Saga I: War of the Scions, ESP Ra.De. Psi, Dota 2 Autochess, Mario Kart Tour, Grim Dawn: Forgotten Gods.
[...] 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.
But there are limits to what we can say for sure, if we stick to the available data:

Nice, thanks for this list.

So for example, the Top 3 [Shadowbringers, Disco Elysium, Death Stranding] on this list [ranked by average points per ballot] 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.
Unless we wanted to do something less formal/definitive, like scraping comments from the voting thread, wherever folks happened to mention why they left certain games off of their ballot:

[...] 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.
 
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Minishdriveby

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,866
Yay! Baba is You made it on the list! I didn’t vote but I also only finished Baba is You last year so my options are limited, but despite my lack of knowing the other candidates, Baba is You has been placed in my top games of all time.
 

Gen X

Member
Oct 31, 2017
718
New Zealand
I kept putting off voting mainly because I only completed about 4 games released in 2019, hell, I'm still chipping away at Yakuza Kiwami 2 before I start Yakuza 6, both which I got in 2018. Adulthood, fatherhood and home maintenance gets in the way these days. Oh to be 20 years younger.

The 2 best games I played (and would've voted at the top) though were RE2 and Blood & Truth, both of which won their own categories so that's good.

Very surprised at Death Stranding at #4.
 

Disclaimer

Member
Oct 25, 2017
7,403
Nice! I'll add it to my backlog.

I don't think I've ever played a strategy game before (does the first Valkyria Chronicles count?) so I kind of don't know what to expect.
VC1 surely counts -- although it and Fire Emblem are truly more tactical games than strategy.

If you're a JRPG fan in general, you have some of the best games in the entire genre ahead of you within the tactics sub-genre. Not just Fire Emblem, but Final Fantasy Tactics: War of the Lions, and Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together, which have some of the best writing in the medium IMO.
 

McNum

Member
Oct 26, 2017
1,595
Denmark
Nice! I'll add it to my backlog.

I don't think I've ever played a strategy game before (does the first Valkyria Chronicles count?) so I kind of don't know what to expect.
Valkyria Chronicles counts. You're already familiar with the Player Phase/Enemy Phase routine which is the core of Fire Emblem's battles. You'll have to learn how to prepare a solid Enemy Phase better than VC, but the game has generous tutorials and is fairly straightforward with lots of room for error in the Normal difficulty. Less so on Hard and not at all on Maddening, though. You can decide if you want permadeath for your units or not, too.
 

goodretina

Member
Dec 30, 2018
400
Recently got into Outer Wilds, so I didn't vote for it. What an outstanding game. More creative, clever, and smartly designed than basically everything else on the list.
I was in a similar position. I started the game before the deadline but didn’t really get into it until it was too late, then I beat it in five crazy days.

Outer Wilds is one of the best games I have ever played.
 

DeusOcha

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,238
SoCal, US
All you PC players not voting for FF14 Shadowbringers sicken me. Oh well atleast Three Houses got on there.... multiple times.
 

AuthenticM

The Fallen
Oct 25, 2017
8,331
Man, remember when these first screenshots of Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles came out and people were furious that the game was still a lightgun game and not the over-the-shoulder RE2 remake the pictures invoked?






(especially since the producer of Umbrella Chronicles had originally said that it would have been an RE4 style game, but Wii owners "like easiness" so they made them lightgun titles)
yeah that was super fucking weird. Like, they made all of those super high quality assets, and they wasted them on a rail shooter. It's got to be one of the worst production / marketing decisions ever.
 

Lulzwagon

Member
Oct 25, 2017
712
Canada
Fire Emblem really rubbed me the wrong way despite loving the rest of the series, but this has me wanting to give it another go.
 

CHC

Member
Oct 27, 2017
3,493
Glad to see Fallen Order did well here. I feel like the narrative around it was so negative, so many unnecessary comparisons to Sekiro. Personally, it reminded me of a much more optimistic era for EA, in the late 2000s, when they were interested in games like Dead Space and Mass Effect. Fit right into that whole vibe and was just a feel-good game from start to finish.
 

ghibli99

Member
Oct 27, 2017
6,564
USA
Glad to see Fallen Order did well here. I feel like the narrative around it was so negative, so many unnecessary comparisons to Sekiro. Personally, it reminded me of a much more optimistic era for EA, in the late 2000s, when they were interested in games like Dead Space and Mass Effect. Fit right into that whole vibe and was just a feel-good game from start to finish.
I'm starting this next, even though there seemed to be overwhelming negativity in the "which difficulty should I play on?" thread about Fallen Order. I haven't played a Star Wars game in so long... I'm really looking forward to finally diving in.