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Game Critic Awards: E3 Nominees

Our very own Joan Rivers previews the awards.

The nominees for the Game Critic E3 Awards have been released, frocks have been designed, suits have been pressed and tension is building before the star studded ceremony on June 28th.

I’ve always wanted to say this so – with a swish of my hand towards a ginormous screen – let’s take a look at the nominees!

Best of Show

  • Batman: Arkham City (Rocksteady/WB Games for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
  • BioShock Infinite (Irrational Games/2K Games for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
  • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (Bethesda Game Studios/Bethesda for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Tomb Raider (Crystal Dynamics/Square Enix for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception (Naughty Dog/SCEA for PlayStation 3)

An exceedingly strong line up, any one of the games listed could be a deserved winner. Last year the Nintendo 3DS took home the prize, Uncharted 2 won in 2009 and in 2008, Fallout 3 got the gong.

Best Original Game

  • Bastion (Supergiant Games/WB Games for PC, Xbox 360)
  • BioShock Infinite (Irrational Games/2K Games for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
  • From Dust (Ubisoft Montpellier/Ubisoft for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Journey (Thatgamecompany/SCEA for PlayStation 3)
  • Sound Shapes (Queasy Games/SCEA for PSVita)

Bioshock Infinite is a curious choice, whilst it is a brand new game it does includes game play elements from the previous Bioshock titles. TSA favourite Journey could be a contender but the rather wonderful From Dust is my tip.

Best Console Game

  • Batman: Arkham City (Rocksteady/WB Games for PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Mass Effect 3 (Bioware/EA Games for PS3, Xbox 360)
  • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (Bethesda Game Studios/Bethesda for PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Tomb Raider (Crystal Dynamics/Square Enix for PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception (Naughty Dog/SCEA for PlayStation 3)

Sequel, threequel, fivequel, remake and a threequel, all strong contenders. Could Uncharted take the crown once more or will Nathan Drake’s direct ancestor, Miss Lara Croft (who confusingly is much younger than him now), win the prize?

Best Handheld/Mobile Game

  • Contre Jour (Mokus/Chillingo/EA for iPad, iPhone)
  • Mario Kart (Nintendo/Nintendo for 3DS)
  • Sound Shapes (Queasy Games/SCEA for PSVita)
  • Super Mario (Nintendo EAD Tokyo/Nintendo for 3DS)
  • Uncharted: Golden Abyss (SCE Bend Studio/Naughty Dog/SCEA for PSVita)

This is an interesting line up, two PS Vita games including a second nomination for Sound Shapes.  The 3DS also takes two nominations with two Mario games but could the iDevice game Contre Jour beat them all?

If you missed that game, click here for the trailer, it’s another physics based puzzle game with some Limbo-esque graphics.

Best PC Game

  • Battlefield 3 (DICE/EA Games for PC)
  • BioShock Infinite (Irrational Games/2K Games for PC)
  • End of Nations (Petroglyph Games/Trion Worlds for PC)
  • Star Wars: The Old Republic (Bioware Austin/EA Games for PC)
  • Torchlight 2 (Runic Games/Perfect World for PC)

The third entry for Bioshock Infinite, Star Wars: The Old Republic might of been a contender but analyst Doug Creutz has called the game ‘highly derivative”of World of Warcraft’. You may have noticed Battlefield is being promoted rather heavily, will this swing the vote?

Best Hardware

  • PlayStation Vita (Sony Computer Entertainment)
  • Rocksmith (Ubisoft San Francisco/Ubisoft for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Sony 3D Display (Sony Computer Entertainment
  • Wii U (Nintendo)
  • Zoom for Kinect (Nyko)

Probably the easiest category to call, surely the PlayStation Vita will win. Whilst the Wii U started with plenty of hype but the E3 presentation left many confused and unimpressed. Zoom for Kinect (an attachment which narrows the play area required) and Sony’s 3D monitor are hardly ground breaking.

Best Action Game

  • Battlefield 3 (DICE/EA Games for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (Infinity Ward/Sledgehammer/ATVI for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Gears of War 3 (Epic Games/Microsoft Studios for Xbox 360)
  • Prey 2 (Human Head Studios/Bethesda for PC, PS3, and Xbox 360)
  • Rage (id Software/Bethesda for PC, PS3 and Xbox 360)

Battlefield 3 faces off against Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 for the first time but with Activision’s muted presence and E3 may not be much of a contest. Rage has gained many favourable previews, could it sneak a win?

Best Action/Adventure Game

  • Assassin’s Creed: Revelations (Ubisoft Montreal/Ubisoft for PC, PS3, and Xbox 360)
  • Batman: Arkham City (Rocksteady/WB Games for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
  • BioShock infinite (Irrational Games/2K Games for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Tomb Raider (Crystal Dynamics/Square Enix for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception (Naughty Dog/SCEA for PlayStation 3)

Nomination number four for Bioshock Infinite and a strong contender in this category, but all the games nominated have had excellent previews. Close your eyes and stab randomly at your screen, it’s the most reliable way to predict the winner.

Best Role Playing Game

  • Dark Souls (From Software/Namco Bandai Games for PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning (Big Huge Games/38 Studios/EAP for PC, PS3, and Xbox 360)
  • Mass Effect 3 (BioWare/EA Games for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Star Wars: The Old Republic (BioWare Austin/EA for PC)
  • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (Bethesda Game Studios/Bethesda for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)

Probably a three way battle between Skyrim, Star Wars and Mass Effect but with its rabid fan base and a multi-platform approach will Commander Shepherd collect the gong?

Best Racing Game

  • Driver: San Francisco (Ubisoft Reflections/Ubisoft for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Forza 4 (Turn 10 Studios/Microsoft Studios for Xbox 360)
  • Mario Kart (Nintendo/Nintendo for 3DS)
  • Need for Speed:The Run (EA Black Box/EA Games for PC, PS3, Xbox 360, Wii)
  • Wipeout 2048 (Studio Liverpool/SCEE for PSVita)

I think we can disregard Need for Speed: The Run as many at E3 thought the idea of running in a driving game rather odd. Stalwarts Mario and Wipeout may gain some votes but Forza must be the front runner. Alex was rather impressed with the game, check out his hands on by tickling this link with your mouse.

Best Fighting Game

  • Skullgirls (Reverge Labs/Autumn Games for PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike Online Edition (Iron Galaxy Studios/Capcom for PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Street Fighter X Tekken (Capcom/Capcom for PS3, Xbox 360, PSVita)
  • Soul Calibur V (Namco/Namco Bandai for PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Tekken Tag Tournament 2 (Namco Bandai Games for Arcade)
  • WWE 12 (Yuke’s/THQ for PS3, Xbox 360, Wii)

Isaac would be the best to judge this category but being American he’s asleep at 1pm the afternoon – weirdo. Lets pick Skullgirls as our winner just because it’s completely bonkers and not a sequel.

Best Sports Game

  • FIFA Soccer 12 (EA Canada/EA Sports for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Madden NFL 12 (EA Tiburon/EA Sports for PS3, Xbox 360)
  • NBA 2K12 (Visual Concepts/2K Sports for PS3, Xbox 360)
  • SSX (EA Canada/EA Sports for PS3, Xbox 360)
  • UFC Undisputed 3 (Yuke’s/THQ for PS3, Xbox 360)

Brits would probably choose FIFA or SSX but will the location of E3 help Madden or NBA win the category?

Best Strategy Game

  • Age of Empires Online (Gas Powered Games/Microsoft Studios for PC)
  • End of Nations (Petroglyph/Trion Worlds for PC)
  • From Dust (Ubisoft Montpellier/Ubisoft for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Skulls of the Shogun (Haunted Temple Studios for PC, Xbox 360)
  • Trenched (Double Fine/Microsoft Studios for Xbox 360)

Trenched has been released in the US to favourable reviews but Europeans will have to wait due to ‘unexpected challenges with distribution in some European regions.’

We did not cover End Of Nations during E3 but it looks like a fine MMORTS and you can see it in action here. Likewise Skulls Of The Shoguns slipped under our radar, the official site is just behind this link.

Best Social/Casual Game

  • Dance Central 2 (Harmonix/Microsoft Studios for Xbox 360)
  • Disneyland Adventures (Frontier Developments/Microsoft Studios for Xbox 360)
  • Rocksmith (Ubisoft San Francisco/Ubisoft for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Rhythm Heaven (TNX/Nintendo for Wii)
  • Sound Shapes (Queasy Games/SCEA for PSVita)

Yet another nomination for Sound Shapes, Queasy Games must have cracked open the champagne today but can they beat the mighty Disney?

Best Motion Simulation Game

  • Dance Central 2 (Harmonix/Microsoft Studios for Xbox 360)
  • Fruit Ninja Kinect (Halfbrick/Microsoft Studios for Xbox 360)
  • Sesame Street: Once Upon a Monster (Double Fine Productions/WB Games for Xbox 360)
  • The Gunstringer (Twisted Pixel Games/Microsoft Studios for Xbox 360)
  • The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword (Nintendo EAD/Nintendo for Wii)

Earth to PlayStation Move, Earth to PlayStation Move, come in please, we cannot locate your games. Dance Central leads the pack in this category but The Gunstringer (no, that’s not a typo) looks interesting – click here for the official site.

Best Online Multiplayer Game

  • Battlefield 3 (DICE/EA for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (Infinity Ward/Sledgehammer/ATVI for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Gears of War 3 (Epic Games/Microsoft Studios for Xbox 360)
  • Star Wars: The Old Republic (BioWare Austin/EA for PC)
  • Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception (Naughty Dog/SCEA for PlayStation 3)

Round two for COD vs. BF3, or as all the cool kids are calling it, Cod versus Buffy. The Uncharted team have stated that they are aiming to be the bees knees when it comes to multi-player, could they be a safe bet?

Best Downloadable Game

  • Bastion (Supergiant Games/WB Games for PC, Xbox 360)
  • From Dust (Ubisoft Montpellier/Ubisoft for PC, PS3, Xbox 360)
  • Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet (Fuelcell Games/Microsoft Studios for Xbox 360)
  • Journey (Thatgamecompany/SCEA for PlayStation 3)
  • Papo & Yo (Minority/SCEA for PlayStation 3)

PlayStation exclusive Papo & Yo gets a nod, any title that boasts a monster that ‘is addicted to frogs, and when he eats them he is transformed into an evil killing machine,’ can’t be bad and you can read more about the title here.

The yang to Papo & Yo’s ying, Xbox 360 exclusive Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet gets a nomination and you can visit the official site here, a game that mixes ‘Limbo-like art, fiendish puzzles, guns and bullets’.

Finally we have Bastion, an action role-playing game featuring a reactive narrator who remarks your every move, more here.

Who will win? Let us know your predictions in the comments section.

Source: Game Critic Awards

14 Comments
  1. Crocadillian
    Member
    Since: Feb 2011

    Hmm, the best of show games just seem to me like the games with the biggest budgets behind them rather than anything else, although they are good. I’m really happy to see Sound Shapes get a ton of nominations.

    Super Mario better not get best handheld game… O___O.

    Comment posted on 23/06/2011 at 13:10.
  2. BIGAL-1992
    Member
    Since: Jan 2009

    Surprising. MW3 had a muted appearance in this, although that was partly expected. Skyrim and Mass Effect 3 look like safe bets, but there’s a lot of good games in that list.

    Comment posted on 23/06/2011 at 13:13.
    • rht992
      Member
      Since: Apr 2009

      i’m happy cod isn’t here. time to let other games shine

      Comment posted on 23/06/2011 at 18:34.
  3. Samiro05
    Member
    Since: May 2010

    All added to rental list XD

    I really enjoyed the concepts of Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning so it’s one of my highlights of the show. However, the bests thing for me were Overstrike (as a trailer) Assassin’s Creed: Revalations (as a game) and PS Vita (as hardware).

    Comment posted on 23/06/2011 at 13:34.
  4. shields_t
    Member
    Since: Oct 2008

    Is “our very own Joan Rivers” self proclaimed?

    This list has made me realise just how little E3 coverage I’ve actually scrubbed up on.

    Comment posted on 23/06/2011 at 13:46.
  5. Toby M [Dexter17]
    Member
    Since: Jun 2009

    Uncharted, Battlefield, and Vita shoud all clean up. Aside from that, I’d be surprised if Journey and FIFA don’t win their respective categories.

    Comment posted on 23/06/2011 at 13:55.
  6. Selachii
    Member
    Since: Feb 2010

    I feel Dark Souls is very much underrated and will rank the top bunch of this years’ review scores and sales.

    Comment posted on 23/06/2011 at 14:20.
  7. gazzagb
    Master of speling mitakse
    Since: Feb 2009

    I reckon Tomb Raider should do pretty well, it looked stunning for a game that’s over a year away. BF3 will also do pretty well I expect, and I hope From Dust does really well too. AC:R will pick up some awards too I’m sure, the trailer + gameplay for it was awesome.

    Comment posted on 23/06/2011 at 14:42.
  8. Ben
    Friendly
    Since: Mar 2009

    Tomb Raider was the star of the show for me.

    Comment posted on 23/06/2011 at 14:46.
  9. MadJunkBoy
    Member
    Since: Aug 2010

    i’ll go for my future nolifer game Skyrim!!! :P
    but tomb rider looks good too…

    Comment posted on 23/06/2011 at 15:19.
  10. Origami Killer
    Member
    Since: May 2010

    wow lots of nominees, Skyrim really impressed for me, BF3, Uncharted 3 and Batman will take most awards i think. And certianly PS Vita for hardware

    Comment posted on 23/06/2011 at 18:04.

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