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Game Developer's Choice Nominees Announced

Zonk posted more than 9 years ago | from the gonna-rock-the-gdc dept.

Games 37

The International Game Developers Association has announced the nominees for the 2005 Developer's Choice Awards. The list includes some pleasantly surprising decisions, such as the inclusion of the quirky Katamari Damacy in the running for Best Game of the Year.

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fr1st ps0t (-1, Troll)

rudy_wayne (414635) | more than 9 years ago | (#11676744)


fr1st ps0t

All others are invalid

This has to be a joke (4, Insightful)

Dragoon412 (648209) | more than 9 years ago | (#11676822)

Take a look at some of the nominees:

Leisure Suit Larry: Magna Cum Laude for writing? I've seen more engaging plots in first-graders' short stories.

Prince Of Persia: Warrior Within and World of Warcraft for character design? Sure, maybe if they're talking about visual design only.

My dislike for a lot of the games listed aside, the ones above are just grossly out of place.

Re:This has to be a joke (1)

chalkoutline (854917) | more than 9 years ago | (#11676902)

Doom 3 should have got something for character design, it's up there with HL2, in my opinion.

Re:This has to be a joke (1)

mausmalone (594185) | more than 9 years ago | (#11676945)

I agree... Doom3 had some really spectacular character design. Then again, some of the characters were completely retarded (wasn't there an upside-down skull with wings or something?). I wonder if the occasional bad character designs in Doom 3 killed it, or whether the IGDA just thought that Doom 3's characters just weren't that spectacular. At any rate, I'm glad they're nominated for visual art.... Say what you will, Doom 3 is visually stunning, and it's not just because of the graphics engine. The levels are absolutely beautiful, even if they're annoying to play on.

Re:This has to be a joke (3, Interesting)

UWC (664779) | more than 9 years ago | (#11677798)

wasn't there an upside-down skull with wings or something?

No, no, the upside-down skulls were on spider legs. And the flying skulls had jetpacks, not wings.

I'm not kidding.

Re:This has to be a joke (3, Insightful)

Xentor (600436) | more than 9 years ago | (#11679543)

(From the GDCA website)

"The Character Design award recognizes the overall excellence of (non-licensed) character design in a game - including, but not limited to, originality, character arc, emotional depth, etc. "

I haven't played Doom 3 (As sibling post mentioned), but do any of the characters really have personalities? WoW comes off as pretty cheesy at times, but many of the hundreds of speaking NPCs have stories behind them, different modes of speech, etc. I don't think WoW deserves the award (Can you really beat Alyx in HL2?), but the nomination seems appropriate to me.

As for the new Larry... I've boycotted that, because Al Lowe wasn't involved.

Re:This has to be a joke (1)

stonecypher (118140) | more than 9 years ago | (#11715763)

Prince Of Persia: Warrior Within and World of Warcraft for character design? Sure, maybe if they're talking about visual design only.

Um, yes, that's what the phrase character design means.

I can't take this list seriously... (4, Interesting)

jvmatthe (116058) | more than 9 years ago | (#11676957)

...when it doesn't have Metal Gear Solid 3 anywhere on it. I'd have put it in any of Best Game, Character Design, Game Design, Visual Arts, or Writing. I'd say it's probably the best game I've played in two years, maybe more.

It's got a great story (which manages to tie in well with all the other games), some of the most memorable characters I've ever seen, great music, good sound, impressive voice acting, and at least one really, really impressive one-on-one battle (versus The End, who feels like battling a real human at times). Then there is the whole camouflage mechanic which, while mostly unrealisitic, is pretty unique and interesting. And cut scenes that are actually interactive in a limited way, one that I found really appealing.

To top it off, the game is actually fun to play, which is what we all wanted anyway.

I also appreciated the fact that I could complete the game without killing any enemy soldiers and was able to use tranquilizer darts and stun grenades to defeat all the bosses. This gave me a special ranking at the end for not killing any humans (which apparently excludes bosses, since they do actually die, but that's a quibble). This is indicative of what I feel is one of MGS3's strengths: the freedom to get from point A to point B using any of a variety of methods. Despite being a completely linear game in the large sense, most players will have unique experiences because they'll do the various small tasks using different strategies.

To get back on topic...list is flawed when it doesn't include MGS3. Sorry.

Re:I can't take this list seriously... (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11677265)

Um... NO.

MGS3 was just like MGS2. It didn't do anything new, it just rehashed the same gameplay yet again. (Oh, it took away that radar. Yeah, that's exciting new gameplay. No, wait, that just makes it more like the various Tom Clancy games, minus the strategy.) Face it, if you played MGS2, you played MGS3. There was nothing new. Hell, you're playing the same damn character!

Oh, wait, that's right, the annoying camouflage and health system. Somehow, making the game play more annoying doesn't seem like an improvement to me. Instead of using one item to completely cure a gunshot wound, now I need to use six! That's six times as fun, right? Oh, wait, no - it's just tedious. The food thing was BS too, since there was food EVERYWHERE and yet again you could instantly chow down on a complete meal to regain your health in the middle of a firefight with ten guards. Yeah, that's good gameplay. I'll just keep taking hits, because once I've finished with the guards, I can just go on a small hunting spree to restock the small zoo of animal carcasses I'm carrying around with me.

The character design is just as lame as always, the story was just as pointless as always, the boss battles were just as lame as always. All around it was a C-grade game. That's probably why it didn't make the nominations - it was a lousy game, that was simply a rehash of previous lousy games.

Re:I can't take this list seriously... (1)

th1ckasabr1ck (752151) | more than 9 years ago | (#11678208)

This is NOT informative:

Hell, you're playing the same damn character!

Wrong.

yet again you could instantly chow down on a complete meal to regain your health in the middle of a firefight with ten guards

Wrong. You didn't gain health from eating, but when you were well fed you would gradually regain health over time.

it was a lousy game

Just wrong.

Re:I can't take this list seriously... (2, Insightful)

CrusadeR (555) | more than 9 years ago | (#11679591)

You're not Solid Snake in MGS3.

How is the camo system annoying? You mention it but then fail to explain what bothered you about it.

If you're in the Cure menu frequently, you're doing something wrong - this is a stealth game, not a first-person shooter. You don't want to be getting shot at constantly, much less removing bullets every area.

As mentioned by someone else, food does not cure you - it restores stamina.

You're entitled to your opinion on the game, but it sounds fairly ill-informed. Did you get to the boss fight with The End? Did you beat the game and see the conclusion of the story (which won best story of 2004 from Gamespot incidentally, with the Boss winning best new character)?

Re:I can't take this list seriously... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11679809)

Yes, it is the same damn character. I don't care if he has a different name or anything, he's the exact same freaking character and you know it.

He looks the same. He has the same voice actor, who's using the exact same Snake voice. He acts the same. Technically he's Solid Snake's "father" or something due to the whole BS about the clones that came up in MGS, but he's the exact same character. Ever seen a bad movie with a flashback to some character's childhood where the same actor is playing the character's father, and is acting just like the son? MGS3 is exactly like that - technically, it's "someone else" but it might as well be Solid Snake.

And, there's plenty of hints that you're playing as Solid Snake using a VR thing to control Snake or some BS like that, so there's a chance that your really are Solid Snake anyway.

And you're right about the food thing. That was a brain-fart. In reality, you can apparently perform complex surgery on yourself in the midst of combat, and that WILL heal you. Apparently Snake is capable of digging out a bullet, disinfecting the wound, stitching up the wound, and dressing it with a bandage while holding a guard at gunpoint! (BTW, these aren't listed to be a smart-ass, you actually have to tell Snake to do all of those steps. No, seriously, the "cure" system mean that instead of unrealisticly using one item to heal yourself, you have to unrealisticly use 4-6.)

And I'm sorry, anyone who thinks the story in MGS3 was any good needs to go read some more. The story was lame and derivitive, as always. It was yet again Hideo Kojima saying NUKES R BAD, WAR R BAD!!1!1

We know, we got it, we stopped caring two seconds after the intro to the "plant" chapter in MGS2. War and nukes are bad, check.

Re:I can't take this list seriously... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11681074)

Well, so what were you expecting of the game? Metal Gear has had an anti-war theme and half-real/half-fake play style since the very first game on MSX. Those are now standard features of the series, so from what you describe, it sounds like a worthy addition, not a miserable failure.

Re:I can't take this list seriously... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11698628)

You are simply jealous that you were not a part of it.

Re:I can't take this list seriously... (1)

emilng (641557) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689019)

This is the game developer's choice awards. If this were the game player's choice awards then maybe you could nominate it. It's the difference between the Oscars and the Golden Globe Awards.

hmm (3, Insightful)

Staplerh (806722) | more than 9 years ago | (#11676966)

The choice snippet above caught my attention:

The list includes some pleasantly surprising decisions, such as the inclusion of the quirky Katamari Damacy in the running for Best Game of the Year.

We keep beating this drum - I think Katamari Damacy looks like a cool game, but believe it or not, most of my friends think that as well. While my friends are nerds (engineers, mostly), they aren't slashdot fans and such. I should ask my far younger brothers and sisters...

What I'm trying to say is that Katamari Damacy is pretty mainstream now, and although it looks like a victory for the 'little guy', I think that victory came a long time ago.

Meh, good call for the awards people anyways, just chippin' in my two cents.

Re:hmm (1)

Demodian (658895) | more than 9 years ago | (#11677842)

Let's hope that the sequel does a better job with the camera in close quarters. Other than that minor annoyance, it was a very addicting game that was fun enough for even my wife to enjoy it, and she doesn't play many 3D games on the consoles. We can't wait to see how the King of the Cosmos screws up the Universe next time.

Re:hmm (1)

kaisyain (15013) | more than 9 years ago | (#11679517)

If by "little guy" you mean a game from a company with $400 million a year in video game revenue...

The following comments... (0, Offtopic)

Traegorn (856071) | more than 9 years ago | (#11677100)

Warning - The rest of the comments will look like:

whine whine whine Game X didn't get nominated whine whine whine Game Y wasn't really all that good whine whine whine. I shall resume my ignoring them.

Re:The following comments... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11677504)

Why is this offtopic? Look at the rest of the comments! They're all following exactly that pattern!

Whine, whine, my pet game didn't get listed and so my existance isn't validated, whine, whine, cry.

Dude, you TOTALLY forgot... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11677645)

Dude, you TOTALLY forgot to mention Game Z!!! It was the best of the bunch!!!

Correct me if I'm wrong... (4, Insightful)

Tepshen (851674) | more than 9 years ago | (#11677791)

..but isnt this the "DEVELOPERS CHOICE" awards? everyone is going to be posting about how they agree or disagree with the picks. However, If your not a developer your opinion doesnt really mean squat. now if it was awards for popular choice I could understand.

Re:Correct me if I'm wrong... (4, Interesting)

th1ckasabr1ck (752151) | more than 9 years ago | (#11678139)

Well, I AM a developer so I suppose that makes my opinion more valid:

Best Game: Ratchet and Clank 3. This is the most fun I have had playing a game in a while. What game has been made recently that's more fun than R&C3?

Audio: Doom 3 is the best use of audio to create atmosphere that I have ever experienced in a game.

New Studio: What Crytek did with Far Cry as their first game is extremely impressive.

Character Design: Katamari Damacy. Your father in that game is one of my favorite characters of all time.

Technology: Doom 3. There were more than a handfull of moments in that game where I almost could not believe that what I was seeing on my screen was really there.

Writing: Ratchet and Clank 3. Most of the nominees have really terrible writing. HL2? Give me a break. The game was awesome, but the writing? R&C3 was funny and quirky, and did quite a bit to make the overall experience of the game more fun.

Re:Correct me if I'm wrong... (2, Insightful)

shoptroll (544006) | more than 9 years ago | (#11679687)

"Writing: Ratchet and Clank 3. Most of the nominees have really terrible writing. HL2? Give me a break. The game was awesome, but the writing? R&C3 was funny and quirky, and did quite a bit to make the overall experience of the game more fun."

How LSL:MCL made the writing list is beyond me. Especially when you consider that the original creator [allowe.com] is pretty much disappointed with Sierra's blasphemous creation. The writing was horrid from what i've heard, which is a major departure from the series since it's always had top notch writing and humour.

WoW being on the visual list is impressive considering that it has the least cutting-edge graphics out of everything on that list.

I think you nailed most of the winners dead on.

Re:Correct me if I'm wrong... (1)

CaptMonkeyDLuffy (623905) | more than 9 years ago | (#11680542)

Depends how you define(or perhaps judge would be the better term) visuals. Technical engine specs is only half the story, the other half is the art department. Having the most cutting edge engine, with a sub par art staff isn't necessarily going to produce the prettiest game.

That said, it's possible to look at computer graphics and focus on and appreciate the technical aspects, in essence trying to ignore the art staff effort. I've done this myself watching CGI movies, I'll find myself momentarily watching the technology rather than watching the movie. I'm less prone to this with games, personally, though I have talked with some people who's entire opinion of game graphics seem to be 'how fancy is the engine,' though I don't fall under that category myself(those sorts wouldn't be particularly fond of WoW). There's also the somewhat related group which follow the 'realism is the be all end all' mantra, since the focus on 'games must be photorealistic' requires advances to graphics engines...

Curious what the breakdown in graphics engine/art quality priority preferences are here at slashdot...

Re:Correct me if I'm wrong... (1)

shoptroll (544006) | more than 9 years ago | (#11683001)

That's kindof what I was hinting at in my post. While WoW's graphics aren't nearly as striking as EQ2, the art direction has been utterly amazing.

Re:Correct me if I'm wrong... (3, Funny)

DA_MAN_DA_MYTH (182037) | more than 9 years ago | (#11679711)

Where you a developer for Ratchet and Clank 3?

Re:Correct me if I'm wrong... (1)

th1ckasabr1ck (752151) | more than 9 years ago | (#11680117)

Ha ha - No.

Re:Correct me if I'm wrong... (1)

SansTinfoilHat (759207) | more than 9 years ago | (#11683718)

Well, I AM a developer so I suppose that makes my opinion more valid:

Best Game: Ratchet and Clank 3. This is the most fun I have had playing a game in a while. What game has been made recently that's more fun than R&C3?


I am as well. I agree with all of your picks except best game (and maybe best writing. I might give that to Sly 2). While UYA was a lot of fun and that shouldn't be understated, it was only marginally better than Going Commando. On the other hand, we had some really excellent picks this year that ALSO did something new:

- Burnout 3 is a racing game that even people who don't like racing games normally can enjoy. For sheer excitement, no game this year beats it. Some of the game design elements are so subtly beautiful that they are easy to miss. I think this game has been overshadowed by Katamari Damacy when we talk about Game Design.

- World of Warcraft is probably the most ambitious game of all time. When you have to deal with the fact that there are people _addicted_ to your game, you know you have something. Whether you agree or not that it reached the superlatives that everyone seems to lavish it with is your call.

- How in the world has everyone forgotten that Pandora Tomorrow was a 2004 release? While the single player was... less than spectacular, the multiplayer was incredibly original and fun.

-Must I even comment on Katamari Damacy?

As far as pure fun goes, Up Your Arsenal is probably in the top 10, but I wouldn't put it as #1. Damn it's good to be a gamer.

Re:Correct me if I'm wrong... (1)

-kertrats- (718219) | more than 9 years ago | (#11685779)

I felt Going Commando was a letdown. While the platforming aspects were great, just as in Sly Cooper 1, the overly populous minigames (the flying, gunner, and skateboarding missions) were all very poorly done and brought the game down. Sly Cooper did the same thing with its driving and gunner levels. Both of the sequels to these games (UYA and Band of Thieves) corrected this error, removing the annoying levels (especially the space flying missions from Going Commando) and fixing the ones that remained so that they were tolerable and even fun at points (the 'hacking' levels from Sly 2 were great). UYA also greatly upgraded the weapon system with the huge variety in upgrades. How you can say that the jump from GC to UYA was 'marginal' is beyond me.

Cool :) This sounds like a fair contest (2, Interesting)

Killjoy_NL (719667) | more than 9 years ago | (#11678143)

Because the last contest I read about had only EA games listed as nominees and winners.
Like The Sims, Fifa "pick a number", etc

I believe these to be well thought out nominations.

I just hope my current favourite game WoW will win :)

I have no idea what I would have nominated... (4, Insightful)

Moryath (553296) | more than 9 years ago | (#11678485)

but I would have hoped to see more variation than just "Doom 3, Half-Life 2, GTA, WoW, Doom 3, Half-Life 2, WoW...."

I mean, seriously. There are thousands of games released in a given year, and at least half of every category's nominations are just repeating the same tune.

I'm not going to whine about what I think they should have nominated, that'd be pointless. But I will point out that maybe, just maybe, there should be more variation in where they're looking for their nominations.

Re:I have no idea what I would have nominated... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11679818)

Or maybe the keep getting repeated because a lot of the games released are crap/average, and thus don't get nominated.

KotOR2 (3, Informative)

aurum42 (712010) | more than 9 years ago | (#11678918)

I must say, I'm a tad surprised at the nomination of Knights of the Old Republic 2. Admittedly, I'm only halfway through the game at this point (playing intermittently over a period of months), but IMO the game is a pale shadow of the original Bioware title.

The story seems to lack cohesion with the original's (which was a satisfying Star Wars style archetypal good vs. evil thing - simplistic perhaps, but fun), and they apparently failed to run the game's dialog through a spellchecker, let alone a grammar checker. This ruins the sense of immersion, for me at any rate. There are several seemingly gaping plot holes, that I'll detail in a reply, for anyone who's interested (some mild spoilers, so I'll leave it for now). Also, the music is quite banal compared to the original's haunting melodies (Jeremy Soule did the first one's music, I believe - not sure if it's him again, or someone else, but I liked his music in Dungeon siege too). You'd think that building on KotOR1's game engine would result in fewer bugs, but that's sadly not true either - I've already encountered a few (generally minor, but very annoying).

Re:KotOR2 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11680311)

Agreed - IMO, the original game was a labor of love in many ways.Bioware has always been good at taking pride in their products - even if you don't like their stuff,I don't think anyone would deny that they put a lot of work into it.I'd have expected better of the guys who created Fallout and PS:T, but "The sith lords" feels incomplete,and the less said about the ending,the better (won't ruin it for ya).

Re:KotOR2 (1)

Telastyn (206146) | more than 9 years ago | (#11694026)

I concur. Kotor2 is a far worse story, is far easier, is far shorter, and is quite a bit more... bland than it's original. It's still a fine game compared to other modern games... but doesn't hold a candle to kotor1...

Re:KotOR2 (1)

mink (266117) | more than 9 years ago | (#11694740)

Welcome to PC style game development.

I've been suffering through Vampire The Masqurade: Bloodlines.
The game is great, has a lot of potentian for different style gameplay depending on your character and how you build them up. The dialog seems quite well thought out.
The problems are numerous deadly bugs, horrible typo/spelling errors and to top it off they never bothered to go over the script and match the subtitles to the actors lines, so where things get adlibbed it gets disjointed.

It really wants to be a good decent game, and I like the diamond I see in the unpolished rough version that was released to stores. However this is a game that needed at least 6 months to fix up the serious show stopping bugs and clean up the typos and other cosmetic issues.

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