Steak-ums should have been the URL of the Year.
The longest part was not the ordering, but what should be included or not (which is not usually the case). However, the process of selecting the games seemed arbitrary compared to past years. Why are reviews not considered when ordering games? For example, if AC4 is on the list (4 stars) while Super Mario is not, it brings up concern from my perspective. The same goes with DMC; why was that not on the list?
While the discussions are entertaining, the process is starting to lose that spark from the great deliberations like in 2011.
I merely find the way they came about making the Top 10 List to be really ignorant when it should have been a mathematical infusion of all of their top 10 lists. A user on the forums showed how this would have come about and it would have been much more logical than the way the handled it. Also would have kept "one offs" like DOTA2 from showing up for no reason other than Jeff thought Brad would really want it on there somewhere when he was the absolutely only person there who cared about it.
I would also argue that the Bombers don't really have enough game diversity among them, outside of maybe Drew, for them to have a really broad spectrum of selections included.
What? The whole point is coming to a decision based on discussion. That's not ignorant, that's a choice of style, and its the way it always has been and I imagine it'll be the same going forward. Plus the whole point of Giant Bomb is they play games that they are interested in, they will never play everything, because that's what they did at Gamespot and didn't like it. Maybe in the future there will be a JRPG or Grand Strategy lover on the crew, but for now, they play the games they play, and discuss only the games they care about.
Man, I loved Ni no Kuni, and didn't care much for GTA 5, but come on, Lamar is the character of the year. Mr Drippy should be honored to be a runner up for best character.
And we knew Ni no Kuni wasn't going to get recognized for music, that's not the type of music the GB guys typically like. Hell, Journey almost didn't get nominated for music, and every one of them played that game. It's Giant Bomb's favorite things, not a list of the best thing objectively, because guess what, that doesn't exist.
I mean, I wasn't particularly thrilled that The Last of Us won, but I'm not going to lose sleep over it.
For the record, some people might remember that I've said some bad things about Uncharted, so I should clear up that I do think that The Last of Us should be on a GOTY 2013 list... but not at the top spot.
@mclargepants: I'm not saying they need to play every Madden, JRPG, and kid friendly title...what I am saying is there really isn't much diversity among the crew overall so you can pretty much easily assume what games are in the running.
I just found, discussion or not, that this year's game of the year discussion was a bit odd compared to the past. I think the whole thing involving DOTA2's addition to the top 10 when even Brad wasn't asking for it was a "what the puppy" moment.
@sammo21: Honestly I think the oddness of this year was because, as much as I love Jeff and the rest of the crew, Ryan was an incredible host, and that's an enormous role to fill, and nobody really tried too hard to do it.
But about diversity, if they get another person, and I'm sure they will eventually, its needs to be someone who fits in. Giant Bomb isn't about exploring the culture of video games, even though Patrick does do some of that stuff occasionally, its about enjoying a set of personalities who happen to play and talk about games. So if they ever get another person, finding someone with another perspective could be interesting, but its far more important that they fit in with the crew, or else it won't be fun to watch. Nobody on the crew seems to think that Giant Bomb is your one stop shop for all games coverage, so if you want a different perspective, you just have to go to another outlet.
And I think you know what games are pretty much in the running because unlike other sites we know a lot about each of their preferences. We know Brad is going to fight for Dota and Brothers, we know Jeff didn't have very strong opinions this year, we know Patrick and Alex loved TLOU and we know they all really enjoyed Zelda because we hear them talk about it for hours every week, not because their taste is just predictable, I mean Divekick is on the list and 3D World isn't!
These debates always get so strange because I don't think people on this site quite get what the overall sites GOTY is supposed to actually represent. People get confused with it meaning something along the lines of the "best" games of the year. There is no such thing as a "best" list that isn't littered with personal opinion. That is the point of the personal top 10's.
The sites overall Game of the Year list and this has been the case for years since I've been listening to them debate is to honor the top 10 gaming achievements of the year. Games that deserve to be recognized for what they did, regardless of opinion. It's why a game like Dota DOES need to make the overall list. It's why games like Gone Home and Stanley were debated on and made lists even though they weren't on some of others top tens. GTA 5 was a great game...but it was just more GTA. In a year where Naughty Dog bucked the trend and made a crazy move to make a new IP at the end of a console cycle, where we had tons of important indy games that shifted the weight of the industry and where the presence of Dota 2 and that whole gaming space threw everything for a loop GTA 5 simply wasn't anything more than a solid sequel to a franchise people loved. It didn't really need to get recognized for that. Tons of other AAA games that were well liked or people enjoyed didn't make the list or even come close. The fact that GTA 5 got deliberated to even be moved to the Top 10 is pretty much enough recognition.
I was fine with the GB list to be honest. It felt like a solid deliberation process where they were able to recognize enough of the bigger things that came out this year from a grand scale. Obviously the list despite the intentions of being as unbiased as possible still had some bias thrown out but every game on that list to me felt like it did enough this year to deserve to be there. The fact that even Jeff who didn't enjoy the gameplay in the Last of Us tried to argue against it winning game of the year but giving up relatively easy proved to me that despite his own misgivings with the game the credit had to be given because Naughty Dog didn't just make another third person shooter. The gameplay was different, they tried several different things again completely bucked the trend gameplay wise on how they were making games. Not to mention how it was really the only big AAA title they really gave any serious praise to this year it makes sense why it ended up with the top spot.
The only place where a top ten list is relevant is if the writer shares your tastes in games and has a chance to inform you of something you missed. An aggregate GOTY list cannot serve this purpose and has no value whatsoever save for internet argument bait.
To me, the only interesting part of the GOTY conversations was the way they condensed the year into a coherent whole. For example, the amount of fucking up EA has done in a condensed period of time really came into stark contrast during the discussions. As they moved further away from fringe categories and more into 'this is the best', the podcast became less interesting and more torturous. (Granted, Jeff et al. have always said that the GOTY podcast is not meant to be entertaining and people who listen to it are crazy)
I thought GTA 5 was incredible when I originally played it (GTA Online never really appealed to me, but saying that MMO's never have), but it hasn't stuck with me in the ways that Bioshock Infinite and especially The Last Of Us have. Still though, a ridiculous technical achievement.
It is a positive though, the growth of gaming. I can have my adult adventure, and Jeff can play the same core mechanic he has enjoyed for 20 years, making the middle of the screen face someone, and pulling a trigger.
this is such an awesome way to describe it that i never thought of before.