PC & Video Games

Your 2021 GOTY Picks

  • Last Updated:
  • Jan 4th, 2022 11:55 am
Tags:
[OP]
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Jun 16, 2009
6279 posts
6577 upvotes
GTA

Your 2021 GOTY Picks

Instead of letting Geoff Keighley have all the fun, how about we reflect on our favorite 2021 games?

No specific categories are expected, but if I could suggest:
2021 GOTY
2021 Console Exclusive Choice
2021 Backlog Achievement
2021 Online Game Award


And how about:
2021 Most Frustrating Award

But add your own choices if you'd like, nothing written in stone, just some fun looking back.

My 2021 GOTY is probably It Takes Two simply because it was an enjoyable multiplayer game that I could spend time playing with my wife. The game's story wasn't terribly awesome, but I enjoyed the gameplay and that it was challenging enough without being frustrating to my wife. In contrast, we just finished Sackboy and she was pretty done at about the 80% mark of the game. The runner up would be the rerelease of Super Mario 3D World for Switch. We still haven't finished it but that's something we're working through with the kids.

My 2021 Exclusive Choice is Ratchet and Clank A Rift Apart. It was a short game, I finished it in about a week. But it didn't overstay it's welcome and it was all fun. The graphics were quite kickass, hard to believe it's a launch title and it looks that great.

My backlog achievement is Ghosts of Tsushima. It would be my 2021 game but it came out last year. It's Assassin's Creed Japan but better, just loved that game.

My Online choice is Back4Blood. I don't think I've played it for more than 30 hours but I know this game is something I'll be revisiting many, many times with friends. L4D is (sort of) back!

I don't have a frustrating choice right now, but I'll think on it.
c'mon get happy!
13 replies
Deal Fanatic
Oct 23, 2004
9374 posts
6750 upvotes
Toronto
2021 GOTY - Psychonauts 2. The most straight up fun, unique, creative and no BS game I've played in years. Runner ups: Mass Effect Legendary Edition, It Takes Two

2021 Console Exclusive Choice - Forza Horizon 5

2021 Backlog Achievement - Hitman 2 with 2016 DLC. Always heard it was good but has completely blown away my expectations with the unbelievable amount of content, quality gameplay design and replayability. Runner Ups: XCOM 2, RDR2

2021 Online Game Award - Halo Infinite

2021 Most Frustrating Award - Halo Infinite. I want to enjoy and play it more but it's so buggy, unpolished and needs more content
Deal Guru
Feb 11, 2007
10448 posts
4672 upvotes
2021 GOTY (without disqualifying re-releases with upgrades): Final Fantasy VII Remake Intergrade, Persona 5 Royal, Ghost of Tsushima Director's Cut

2021 GOTY: (disqualifying re-releases with upgrades) - Mario Party Superstars
2021 Console Exclusive Choice - Mario Party Superstars, Super Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury
2021 Backlog Achievement - none
2021 Online Game Award / multiplayer - Mario Party Superstars

2021 Most Frustrating Award - Grand Theft Auto Definitive Trilogy should have been better.

2021 best movie: Spider-Man: No Way Home
2021 best game music: NieR Replicant.
Instead of letting Geoff Keighley have all the fun, how about we reflect on our favorite 2021 games?
Resident Evil Village has the most reader's choice awards for Game of the Year in 2021 by a large margin.
It Takes Two has the most media voted Game of the Year Awards for 2021.

www.gameawards.net

Enhanced re-releases were disqualified from being qualified nominees on most sites.


-
Last edited by XFactor11 on Jan 22nd, 2022 7:01 pm, edited 9 times in total.
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Feb 28, 2006
9500 posts
2541 upvotes
Richmond Hill
Game Of The Year: Returnal

Best Multiplayer: Halo Infinite

Best Graphics/Art Direction: Ratchet and Clank Rift Apart

Best Sound: Returnal

Best Music: Tales of Arise

Best Co-op Game: It Takes Two

Most Anticipated 2022 Game: Horizon Forbidden West

Best Racing: Forza Horizon 5

Best New IP: Returnal

Best Action Adventure RPG: Tales of Arise

Best DLC: Ghost of Tsushima Iki Island

Best horror: Resident Evil 8

Best multiplatform: Guardians of the Galaxy

Best Hardware: PS5 digital edition (best bang for buck)

Best accessory: Dualsense 5 for its new haptic features

Best TV Series: Wandavision

Best Movie: Free Guy

Most disappointed movie: Old
Deal Addict
Jul 31, 2007
1115 posts
999 upvotes
GOTY: None, honestly can't think of a single game that deserves it in an objective sense, and also no game really stood out above the crowd
Console exclusive: Again none
Backlog: Ghost of Tsushima Director Cut was a lot of fun, and so was Metro Exodus with RT on
Online game: Don't really play online games, the ones I finished were flawed in some ways, like Outriders and The Ascent
Deal Fanatic
Feb 21, 2013
5622 posts
2687 upvotes
Toronto
2021 GOTY
Halo Infinite
The best multiplayer modes in current competitive games, decent single player campaign, a fun open world, and a true return to form for the Halo franchise. Sure there were some hiccups like the Battlepass progression (which were remedied quickly), but the pros heavily outweigh the cons and 343i is finally in a good place. Halo is also killing it in the eSports scene and has managed to revitalize a community that many thought was dead.

Best Graphics
Forza Horizon 5 / Kena: Bridge of Spirits
It's almost too easy to choose a car game for this because they're already building on a good looking baseline...

So I'm also choosing Kena... I haven't played it but I think it's fair to say that it has amazing graphics that look straight out of a Pixar movie, with mesmerizing lighting and particle effects, lush greenery and great design.

Best Art Direction
The Artful Escape
A game doesn't have to have the best graphics to have great art direction, and for me The Artful Escape has the most whimsical, nonsensical, fantastic interpretation of what I imagine an LSD trip would look like. It's almost not even a game but a visual experience, and seeing the vibrant colours explode on screen is a treat that was well worth the few hours spent playing the game.

2021 Backlog Achievement
Hades
What a great game, deserving of last year's GOTY. I don't mind roguelike games, and this one is the pinnacle of them, while also adding some wrinkles like introducing random Greek gods to meet along the way who help flesh out the story. Each weapon truly shines and when paired with the multitude of boons, gives you a variety of ways to play the game to suit your style. The game keeps finding ways to force you to push forward, and that "one more run" suddenly becomes four.

Online Game Award
Halo Infinite
This game launched with a multiplayer "beta" two weeks early that even put multiplayer stalwarts COD and Battlefield to shame. Whether you're into 4v4, ranked or BTB, each play session has the potential to give you amazing emergent moments and highlights that will make you keep coming back. It takes a number of well balanced weapons and equipment into the sandbox to give players a fun, competitive, highly rewarding MP experience.

Best Indie Game
Unpacking
Who would've thought that a game about unpacking boxes could be so evocative? The game's art direction is on-point, and at a glance, manages to convey so much meaning and nostalgia through relatively simple pixel art. It's also one of those easy, relaxing, almost zen games with no fail state.

2021 Most Frustrating Award
It Takes Two
Hear me out... This is actually an amazing co-op game with really fun areas that aren't actually super frustrating on their own. What frustrates me about this game is that it's 12 hours long. I really want to play more of it, but knowing how long it is, especially for a co-op game, turns me off from playing it. I made it past the bee level, which already felt like a good chunk of time, but that was just 2 of the 9 chapters, and I just can't convince myself to find a co-op partner to play the rest of it through.
Gear: Fujifilm X-Pro2 | Canon A-1
Deal Fanatic
Oct 23, 2004
9374 posts
6750 upvotes
Toronto
M1GOmigs wrote: 2021 Backlog Achievement
Hades
What a great game, deserving of last year's GOTY. I don't mind roguelike games, and this one is the pinnacle of them, while also adding some wrinkles like introducing random Greek gods to meet along the way who help flesh out the story. Each weapon truly shines and when paired with the multitude of boons, gives you a variety of ways to play the game to suit your style. The game keeps finding ways to force you to push forward, and that "one more run" suddenly becomes four.
I should've included this one in my backlog list as well. When I first tried this game after 2-3 runs I thought to myself "how is sitting here replaying the same thing over and over again supposed to be fun?" but I gradually came back to it playing a run every few days between other games until I eventually found myself hooked trying to clear it and finally did back to back escapes on my 26th-27th runs. It was satisfying reaching that point and while I don't see myself going for repeated escapes to get the "true ending", I enjoyed the time with this game
Deal Addict
User avatar
May 31, 2009
2034 posts
1092 upvotes
2021 GOTY Halo Infinity
They got their crap together and released a good game, to much of everyone’s surprise. Sure we don’t have co-op but it’s coming, don’t have Forge but it’s coming too. Yeah it’s not a complete game that they promised from the start but I now have faith in them. (something I thought I lost with them with Guardians) The story has been great, multiplayer has been a blast and my friends/brother even came back to play this. It’s nostalgia on top of an overall solid game.
2021 Console Exclusive Choice PS5 Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart
Like playing a Pixar movie on your console. Great story with nice new additions to the gang. The only issue I really had was that some of the guns weren’t my fav from the series of amazingly weird guns
2021 Console Exclusive Choice XSX Forza Horizon 5
is just a fun sandbox of a game that has retained my attention again and again. Sometimes a little OCD on beating some of the speed traps/jumps/barn finds and more. I thought Halo would of taken that spot but as of now, lags just slightly behind.
2021 Backlog Achievement Control
I bought this for my PC but didn’t play it until the game was given out on PS+ with all the DLC included. What a great looking, sounding and progressive game this is. Love the gradual powers you gain and tying it to Alan Wake. Which makes me wanna play that game too. Hope we see more happen with control, or tie it into Alan Wake 2
2021 Online Game Award Halo Infinite
Welcome back my king. I still suck overall at this game but god I’m having fun doing so. Sure some guns or so-so, but the new toys are a great replacement of the old one. The grapple hook is probably the best addition to the series and adds so much more to your traversal and gameplay strategy. Saved my ass more then a few times in multiplayer, and nothing better then zipping and clubbing an opponent from behind.

2021 Games That Still Need my Attention
Psychonauts 2 is downloaded and have played a level or 2 so far, but placed to back burner.
Metroid Dredd might get me to play my switch again. Reason why I have no best game listed
Guardians of the Galaxy is have been told is nothing but amazing. Just bought and waiting for my Amazon order for my XSX
Resident Evil Village I’m still a game behind and also on my back burner with gamepass
Last edited by Invader Gir on Dec 29th, 2021 9:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
[external link removed]
Deal Fanatic
Feb 21, 2013
5622 posts
2687 upvotes
Toronto
Invader Gir wrote: [The grapple hook is probably the best addition to the series and adds so much more to your traversal and gameplay strategy. Saved my ass more then a few times in multiplayer, and nothing better then zipping and clubbing an opponent from behind.
I used to think so too, but in MP I'm having so much more fun with repulsors. 343 just did such a phenomenal job with this game...
Gear: Fujifilm X-Pro2 | Canon A-1
Deal Addict
Nov 29, 2011
2174 posts
888 upvotes
Toronto
I only game on PlayStation and Nintendo platforms:

2021 GOTY - Final Fantasy VII Remake Integrade
2021 PS5 Exclusive - Final Fantasy VII Remake Integrade
2021 Switch Exclusive - Shin Megami Tensei V
2021 Backlog Achievement - Nothing really, maybe one day I will finally complete RDR2, AC Valhalla, Hades etc
2021 Multiplayer Game Award - Monster Hunter Rise, Mario Party Super Stars (lol at them being Switch games)
2021 Most Frustrating Award - Far Cry 6 (the progression system in this game is not gelling with me) Super Monkey Ball: Banana Mania (why is this game unnecessarily difficult?)

2021 Honorable Mentions
Resident Evil Village (Excellent game, though a step below GOTY)
Bravely Default II (Spent 50 hours on this game despite its flaws)
Nier Replicant Ver 1.22 (First time playing the original Nier... I actually prefer this to Automata)
Castlevania Advance Collection (I enjoyed my time completing Aria of Sorrow...I can't believe I wasn't aware of these GBA Castlevania games until this year)

2021 Buyers Remorse
Outriders (bland and generic, it only received buzz since it came out during the third wave of the pandemic when there weren't many other games coming out)

2021 releases that still need my attention
Metroid Dread, Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury, Ghost of Tsushima: Director's Cut - Played a few hours of each game, hoping to complete them this winter

I don't think I'm interested in checking out GOTY contenders such as Deathloop or Ratchet and Clank. I want to check out It Takes Two, but I feel it will be too difficult for my partner.
Deal Fanatic
Dec 12, 2006
6144 posts
2031 upvotes
calgary
I like to do a top 5:

1. Psychonauts 2 - As a longtime fan of old school 3D platformers this one really stuck with me in a way only a handful of games throughout the years have. It might not have the best platforming or combat, but their is more creativity packed into the first 5 minutes of this game then the entirety of a lot of massive AAA games. Each level is so wonderrfully unique and individually crafted and none of these levels ever outstay their welcome so it always feels like you are experiencing something new and interesting. I think pacing over an 8-12 hour videogame is absolutely critical, I always want to feel like Im moving forward and experience unique and new things and a lot of games fail on that level as they introduce bloat and repeatable environments and missions, this game absolutely nailed the pacing, there was never any lulls. Also I loved the old school nickelodeon art style and the OST was really underrated.

2. Halo Infinite - I've been playing nothing but this game basically for the last 1.5 months. The multiplayer -specifically the ranked-objective based game modes- might go down as one of my favorite multiplayer games ever, I cannot stop playing it.
The Campaign was a return to form in my eyes, without just completely ignoring it happened they somehow managed to write out the stain of Halo 5's story and introduce new characters and new storylines that are actually interesting to me.
Gameplay wise the grapple hook is a revelation and the open world was a really good fit for Halo and its sandbox. There is nothing cooler than dropping in a ravager and loading it with a bunch of Rocket Launcher armed marines and driving around the ring with them.
It's not without issues though, the open world really loses its luster in the second half as different segments of the Halo Ring offer absolutely nothing new in terms of gameplay elements and I think the way they laid out the story missions with the open world really hurt the pacing and the story they were trying to tell.

3. The Artful Escape - Not so much a game, but more of an audio/visual experience that told a cool story about breaking out of the shadows of other people and becoming the best version of yourself.
It wasn't long (~3 hours) and I played it in a couple sittings but just sat their wide eyed and entertained the whole time.

4. Echo Generations - An old school Voxel style RPG that takes place in a world stripped right out of Stranger Things. The art style and OST in this game are immediately inviting and well their is a few big difficulty spikes early in the game that are a bit frustrating to overcome it was totally worth it because the game itself is super fun. It's actually really a call back to the item finding in Links Awakening which was always something I really enjoyed (though admittedly I had to use a guide towards the end as I got stuck in a couple spots).

5. Mario Party Superstars - I somewhat apprehensively picked this up for the kids for Xmas (as I've felt a bit burned on the last few mario partys I've bought) but this one has been really really good. It combines all the best minigames from Mario Party games of yesteryear into one tight package. It's basically Mario Party Version of Mario All Stars. There is so much content in here that we've played a game or two each night since Xmas and I'm still expeericing New (or old) game boards and minigames. I think the best thing about it is that they weren't forced to try and create minigames that took advantage of the consoles features and as a result we got the best Mario Party game I've played in years.
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Feb 28, 2006
9500 posts
2541 upvotes
Richmond Hill
heywhatsmyname wrote: I only game on PlayStation and Nintendo platforms:

2021 GOTY - Final Fantasy VII Remake Integrade
2021 PS5 Exclusive - Final Fantasy VII Remake Integrade
2021 Switch Exclusive - Shin Megami Tensei V
2021 Backlog Achievement - Nothing really, maybe one day I will finally complete RDR2, AC Valhalla, Hades etc
2021 Multiplayer Game Award - Monster Hunter Rise, Mario Party Super Stars (lol at them being Switch games)
2021 Most Frustrating Award - Far Cry 6 (the progression system in this game is not gelling with me) Super Monkey Ball: Banana Mania (why is this game unnecessarily difficult?)

2021 Honorable Mentions
Resident Evil Village (Excellent game, though a step below GOTY)
Bravely Default II (Spent 50 hours on this game despite its flaws)
Nier Replicant Ver 1.22 (First time playing the original Nier... I actually prefer this to Automata)
Castlevania Advance Collection (I enjoyed my time completing Aria of Sorrow...I can't believe I wasn't aware of these GBA Castlevania games until this year)

2021 Buyers Remorse
Outriders (bland and generic, it only received buzz since it came out during the third wave of the pandemic when there weren't many other games coming out)

2021 releases that still need my attention
Metroid Dread, Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury, Ghost of Tsushima: Director's Cut - Played a few hours of each game, hoping to complete them this winter

I don't think I'm interested in checking out GOTY contenders such as Deathloop or Ratchet and Clank. I want to check out It Takes Two, but I feel it will be too difficult for my partner.
It Takes Two isn't difficult at all, it's pretty chill. Finished it with my fiancee over the summer, was a blast. Definitely recommended.
Deal Addict
User avatar
Nov 2, 2012
3791 posts
5902 upvotes
2021 GOTY - Death's Door (Psychonauts 2 a close 2nd)
I was so impressed by this game. Came out so polished with tight controls, a simple but great story, a wonderfully LTTP inspired world design, and puzzles that just played so well and gave nice satisfaction when completed. Thoroughly enjoyed it.

2021 Best Backlog Achievement - Hades
I was addicted to this game as soon as it hit Game Pass. I cursed at it. Then I barely finished it. Then I finished it enough times to get the real ending. Then I played it enough times to be able to complete a 16 skull run. I will eventually get that last statue! Smiling Face With Open Mouth And Smiling Eyes

2021 Most Frustrating Award - Metroid Dread
Nostalgia for Super Metroid had given me the idea that I was still good at 2D Metroid games. I am not...
Newbie
Oct 25, 2020
20 posts
39 upvotes
2021 GOTY - Resident Evil 4 VR - the base game is 15 years old, and this would be the 4th time I purchased this game on a different counsel. and yet its still a pretty amazing game ( its probably nostalgia aspect of it as well)

2021 Best Backlog - Half life Alyx - it honestly felt more like an experience than a video game.

Top