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The Official Insomnia Game of the Year Awards (1962-2019)

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Unread postby icycalm » 06 Apr 2017 15:45

A little perspective on the Wildlands vs. Zelda choice for 2017 GOTY, because jeff was questioning my decision on Discord. Zelda is a third-person GTA clone 16 years after GTA3. It took Nintendo 16 whole frigging years to learn from DMA (now Rockstar), and they have yet to learn from Ubisoft's Far Cry 2, released nine years ago, that first-person free-roaming is more immersive than third-person free-roaming.

Meanwhile, Wildlands is not only the first proper free-roaming game with co-op (which isn't crap or doesn't look crap, at any rate), but it even has FOUR-player co-op. AND the biggest free-roaming world ever. AND stuff like helicopters and boats and drones and shit. And though I have nothing against cartoon-stylings, I can tell from the trailers that the hostile forests and mountains of Bolivia will be a lot more interesting to explore and immerse myself in than the kiddie setting in Zelda.

I have played neither game of course, and there are a ton of things that matter besides the high level design stuff I am basing my provisional decision on, but the mere fact I have to point this shit out and that no one really sees it is the reason I am the critic here and everyone else the reader. It blows my mind that I have to point out this is the first ever co-op "open world" game, pretty much, while people like jeff -- i.e. everyone -- just see "Zelda" and "Tom Clancy" and immediately draw their stupid, crap-taste conclusions, and blink uncomprehendingly when they see me say that the latter is probably superior to the former. And if the former ends up being superior it will be DESPITE its inferior high-level design choices, not because of them. If Zelda wins it will be because Ubisoft dropped the ball on this one game, not because Nintendo did something to actually win, because they are still a decade behind in high-level design decisions.
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Unread postby icycalm » 06 Apr 2017 16:03

And of course whoever automatically prefers Zelda to men with guns is effeminate (if not an outright fag) and his opinion therefore doesn't count.
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Unread postby icycalm » 13 Apr 2017 16:12

It has begun:

https://boards.fireden.net/v/thread/373 ... #373732283

Anonymous wrote:>>373731913
Here is your quintessential list:

http://culture.vg/reviews/awards/game-of-the-year.html

You should be able to play most on PC.


It's not me. I am perfectly fine with owning my shill posts.
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Unread postby icycalm » 19 Apr 2017 00:39

Let the copy-catting begin:

The most technically-advanced game for each year
http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showthread.php?t=984191

He even copied the two runner-ups idea.

His list is of course stupid and useless, and the games are mostly dreck, even.
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Unread postby icycalm » 22 May 2017 07:45

I've been making various smaller and larger changes to the list, but I haven't been documenting them. Some of the major changes are PUBG in place of For Honor, Rust in place of Blacklist, and TW101 instead of I forget what, but basically take another look at the list at some point because after all the refinements it's considerably more solid than it was. At least the last ten or so years -- I haven't touched the earlier years much recently, but will do so soon.
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Unread postby icycalm » 22 May 2017 08:01

Also, Left 4 Dead replaces Senjou no Valkyria.
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Unread postby icycalm » 22 May 2017 17:35

God Hand replaces Gokumakaimura.
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Unread postby icycalm » 31 May 2017 22:11

Replaced Crysis with S.T.A.L.K.E.R. and Left 4 Dead with Mount & Blade.
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Unread postby icycalm » 06 Jun 2017 07:36

Replaced Dying Light with ARK: Survival Evolved.
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Unread postby icycalm » 23 Jun 2017 15:35

Replaced Hyper Olympic with Nobunaga no Yabou.
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Unread postby icycalm » 27 Jun 2017 16:05

Switched places between Rust and MGR for 2013, and linked my Rust VGART essay in place of the Steam review I had before (which will however remain in the in-depth review section of the site, since it's a decent enough review, and certainly the best one of the game I have come across after mine).
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Unread postby icycalm » 29 Jun 2017 15:08

Replaced ARK with Dying Light again for 2015, and also moved up Until Dawn as GOTY for that year. I do this after my recent 6.5-hour session with ARK, which disappointed me. It has all the right ideas to be the next step up from Rust, but very bad implementation of these ideas. Every aspect of the game is overbearing. The survival aspects are so heavy-handed that you can't go two minutes without needing food or water or heat protection or to take a shit in the middle of whatever else you are doing. The map is small and there are few players in it and half of the ones you meet are already fully-leveled. Since you can't travel far because of the overbearing survival balance, you are left with no option but to build next to them and be at their complete mercy. Beginner players can hardly walk while the leveled-up ones can fly with dragons and fast-travel with their beds. In Rust I never felt at anyone's mercy no matter how late in the game I entered because you could always find a patch of uninhabited land, and build yourself up with some effort and guerilla tactics. The map was so big and the players so many, that you could go unnoticed by the late-gamers, if you played your cards right, pretty much almost until you yourself was in the late game. In ARK this seems impossible, and I do not relish the idea of kissing someone's ass for two weeks and then betraying them as the only way to gain a foothold on a server. On top of that the UI is inferior, and combat is so clunky and laggy that it is utterly unenjoyable. It's still at least a 4/5, and maybe even a 5/5 if things prove to not be so bad with more exposure to the game and if I am just overreacting now, but with what I've seen of the game so far, it definitely is not a GOTY or even a runner-up, I am afraid.
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Unread postby icycalm » 03 Jul 2017 02:56

Replaced Hitman with Baldur's Gate II.
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Unread postby icycalm » 04 Jul 2017 18:30

By the way, I am certain D:OS2 will kick PUBG off the list, it just seems unseemly to do this now and back it up with an EA review of the first Act only, so I will wait until September for the full release and a decent review of the entire game.
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Unread postby icycalm » 14 Jul 2017 16:06

I'll be replacing Bard's Tale with Ultima IV.
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Unread postby icycalm » 30 Nov 2017 01:56

I've added Thea: The Awakening as a candidate for 2015.
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Unread postby icycalm » 10 Dec 2017 17:10

Replaced pedit5 with Moria for 1975 (not the same game as the 1983 Moria).

Also, Factorio is a candidate for 2012. I need to play Spec Ops and Dragon's Dogma to decide on it. They sound like tough competition. I will probably play Spec Ops first because it sounds like a quick and easy game.
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Unread postby icycalm » 10 Jan 2018 11:44

Replaced PlanetSide 2 with Factorio for 2012.

I've been doing some reading on the original PlanetSide, and 2 is basically the same with better graphics and more players. It's more of a remake than a sequel, and hence doesn't belong on the list because of the innovation bias that I mentioned in the introduction. Make no mistake: PS2 is a better game than Factorio, but Factorio had more new things to bring to the table in 2012 than PS2, and that's why it beats it out.
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Unread postby icycalm » 28 Jan 2018 01:06

I've already started lining up potential 2018 GOTY candidates. If I could have a few titles in my hands right now to check them out, I would ask for:

Kingdom Come
Far Cry 5
Spider-Man
Phoenix Point
Death Stranding

These are confirmed 2018 releases. There are other games with TBA status right now that I am not including in this shortlist.
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Unread postby icycalm » 21 Mar 2018 16:02

Couple of changes today.

First, I replaced PUBG with For Honor. This is because PUBG didn't invent the Battle Royale genre, DayZ and/or H1Z1 did, so quite likely one of those games should be GOTY for their respective years. I will have to check and make any necessary changes, but until then I will make the educated guess that For Honor deserves to be on the list more than PUBG because it is more innovative.

Then, I switched places between For Honor and Breath of the Wild as runner-ups because, though I haven't played BotW, from what I have heard it is likely better overall. They are still both runner-ups for 2017, but BotW is now the head runner-up.

I also switched places between M.U.L.E. and Ultima III: Exodus for 1983, so that the former is the GOTY for that year now. Further, I switched places between Nobunaga and Ultima III as runner-ups for that year, because it is likely that Nobunaga was the more innovative of the two.
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Unread postby icycalm » 23 Mar 2018 14:30

Some more changes today.

First off, I added three provisional choices for 2018: Kingdom Come: Deliverance, Far Cry 5, and A Way Out, with a little note underneath to make sure people understand these are just candidates.

Then, I added choices for 1965, '66, and '67, found here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Early_his ... ideo_games

"a baseball simulation game written in BASIC by John Kemeny in 1965"
"a BASIC bingo game by Larry Bethurum in 1966"
"a basketball simulation game written in BASIC by Charles R. Bacheller in May 1967"

These are the only games I know of to have been produced for those respective years, so they win by default. If you can find other ones that look better, let me know.

So now only '63 and '64 remain with no entries. If you can find any, once again, let me know. There must be others, because of this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Early_mainframe_games

Wikipedia wrote:By the latter half of the 1960s, higher-level programming languages such as BASIC which were able to be run on multiple types of computers further increased the reach of games developed at any given location. While most games were limited to text-based designs, rather than visual graphics like Spacewar, these games became more complicated as they reached more players, such as baseball and basketball simulation games. Access to the computers themselves was also extended to more people by systems such as the Dartmouth Time Sharing System (DTSS), which connected several thousand users through many remote terminals to a central mainframe computer. By the 1967–68 school year the DTSS library of 500 programs for the system included, John Kemeny and Thomas Kurtz wrote, "many games". Over a quarter of the system's usage was for casual or entertainment purposes, and Kemeny and Kurtz noted that "we have lost many a distinguished visitor for several hours while he quarterbacked the Dartmouth football team in a highly realistic simulated game".
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Unread postby icycalm » 24 Mar 2018 14:09

A couple of big shake-ups today, for '84 and '85.

In '84, King's Quest replaces as GOTY The Lords of Midnight, which now becomes the first runner-up.

In '85, Super Mario Brothers (the last word written in full in the Japanese version of the game) replaces as GOTY Ultima IV, which now becomes the first runner-up, with Green Beret moving to second runner-up.
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Unread postby icycalm » 24 Mar 2018 23:39

From Discord:

I wrote:After the GOTY feature is complete I would like to see if I can do something related on YouTube. For a start, put playthroughs by CULT players of all games in a playlist, sorted chronologically. Then, maybe do interviews of the players (or, if the player is me, have other CULT players who are familiar with the game in question interview me), and slot those in the playlist too, between playthroughs.
It will be tricky because the actual game choices are fluid. Most are solid, however, so it should be doable, even though we might have to scrap the odd playthrough or interview whenever I change my mind on a title. (edited)
The ideal would be to bring the devs themselves to comment on the reviews.
I think the whole enterprise is bound to get very popular eventually, because no other site/YouTuber has done anything remotely on this scale, or could ever do it, but my reputation would be an issue. Quite a few years would need to pass for the popularity of the project to overcome the reputation.

Well, I went ahead and started the playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=P ... R_o9NKYOez
A surprising amount of content there already
Rory and Saf need to tell me if their For Honor run is complete
And of course I will keep updating recoil's Mushi and Uprising runs with better videos, if he makes them
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Unread postby icycalm » 30 Mar 2018 14:58

Many changes today:

-Nobunaga no Yabou was moved up from runner-up in 1983 to GOTY, and M.U.L.E. moved down from GOTY to first runner-up.

-Utopia was moved from 1982 to 1981 (error on my part), and replaces Ultima, which leaves an empty slot for 1982, which I filled with Pitfall. Then I moved Pitfall up to GOTY and Dungeons of Daggorath down to first runner-up.

-Eastern Front (1941) replaces Galaga as second runner-up for 1981.

-The Prisoner replaces Pac-Man as second runner-up for 1980.

-Akalabeth moves down from GOTY for 1979 to first runner-up, replacing Galaxian which is removed from the list. Then Temple of Apshai takes the vacated GOTY spot.


Also, here's CGW's Hall of Fame, for reference: http://goldenageofgames.com/the-compute ... l-of-fame/

Note that this is the latest iteration of the list, written in the late-'90s early-2000s, so many of the choices are degenerate. This isn't the list I grew up with, it's a greatly expanded one. Plus, even the old choices are not all good. Still, it's the most hardcore list after mine, so I keep referring to it for cool choices like M.U.L.E., and also for bad choices as candidates for my Not Art essays.


Moreover, I recently made a GOTY-specific Steam curator (that's been a big hit and just passed 100 followers in a mere few days), featuring GOTY lists sorted by decades, and a Steam group for GOTY aficionados, both of which I urge everyone to follow and join:

Curator: http://store.steampowered.com/curator/3 ... S-IT-GOTY/
Group: http://steamcommunity.com/groups/gotygotygoty
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Unread postby icycalm » 12 May 2018 00:04

I replaced Far Cry 5 with Phoenix Point as one of the provisional runner-ups for 2018, due to the somewhat negative review of FC5 I just published.

Nothing is set in stone until I play the games, of course, and I can easily see myself loving FC5 merely for the ambiance despite all the negatives, just as I did with FC2.
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