The announcements of our Game of the Year 2012 winners will begin later today. We’ve spent the past couple of weeks nominating, deliberating, voting, counting, collating and charting our top picks in a number of categories. We’ve even asked you to select your choices, the results of that vote will appear towards the end of our announcements.
First, we wanted to explain a little bit about how our process worked this year.
For 2012’s Game of the Year awards, we moved away from our recent method of using platform-based categories. This year, we didn’t vote for a PlayStation 3 exclusive, an Xbox 360 exclusive and so on. We tried to form categories which were based on genres. The modern videogame landscape is so diverse and creative that shoehorning every game into a nice neat little box would be impossible.
Certain games fit into more than one category, some don’t conveniently fit into any. Some genres didn’t have many game releases this year and as such, we didn’t create a dedicated category for them. To ensure that everything could be considered, we created a category for the odd stuff – the impossible to categorise and the games without enough competition in their genre – and we called it “Genre Agnostic.”
The process begins with an email to all TSA staff and our most frequent contributors, asking for nominations in each of the categories. They’re encouraged to nominate any game they think should be included in consideration, rather than simply nominating the one they think should win. In this way, we hope to unearth a wider range of titles and potentially jog everyone else’s memory as to what might be eligible for this year’s awards.
Once the nominations are in, we place everything into a form and the same list of staff and frequent contributors are asked to vote for their top three in each category. Selecting a top three, rather than just one choice, ensures that a wider range of games are considered and represented. It is not essential that voters cast a vote in every category or include a second or third preference if they don’t wish to.
When voting is finished, we pull the data from the form and rank the games in each category using a weighted score based on how many times it was selected as first, second or third preference in that category. As a game is selected for a person’s first, second or third preference, it is awarded three, two or one points respectively and a total score is calculated.
We’ll represent each of our results’ top five as a chart to show how close – or not – voting was at the top but we’ll also show our final league table in each category so that every game we voted for is shown.
Our announcements will begin later today with the Soundtrack category before moving on through Mobile and Handheld categories and then into some traditional genres. We’ll culminate with the announcement of our Community Game of the Year 2012 (based on your votes) and our Overall Game of the Year 2012 on January 1st 2013.