Feedbacks for GOTY debates 2017

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df

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Please be calm, this is just my personal feeling about this years' debates.

(I have been a subscriber since 2008-07-21, and was a Gamespot subscriber, so hopefully I have decent perspectives on this.)

WHAT I LIKED:

- Abby arguing for games that will otherwise have no place at GB GOTY.

- Alex and Ben explaining Nier: Automata's narrative strength.

- Vinny giving Pyre's characters a chance.

- Brad's takedown of Mass Effect: Andromeda.

- Jeff being critical not only on games, but also on category's definition.

- Dan being calm and eloquent during most debates.

- Jason and Jan doing such great jobs making camera cuts during lengthy debates.

- And Matt Rorie, the savior of Horizon Zero Dawn at GB.

WHAT COULD BE IMPROVED:

- GOTY debate: for a great year in gaming, I was left thinking the debate could have been better. I personally would have like a better takedown/appraisal of various games. In short, I care less about "which games made the list" or "what orders they are in", as long as the crews give them a fair shakedown. (I think some of the 5 hours could be better spent.)

- Category definition: I think a good rule of thumb would be, "You can summarize the category in a sentence." The lack of an agreed upon goal, is a sign of messy (and exhausting) debate.

- Placement debate: it's something people care (often deeply) about, but also something can easily detract the course of discussion. "This game should not be at X" is a bad way to start a discussion. I would rather start with "I see your point but Y feature is not designed quite as nicely as Z, and in the context of this debate it matters because...".

- Game comparison: since most rankings are subjective and personal, I would avoid argument like "But X has done this before", unless you are well-prepared and researched on this topic. It is just not a convincing argument, and it certainly didn't stop PUBG from taking Best Debut (sorry, but argh).

OK that's it from me. Do share your thought and feedbacks!

Happy New Year to everyone!

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liquiddragon

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I said this last night and I want to say it again:

I'd really like to see GB do away with site top ten next year. Imagine if they did a 5 hour podcast, all of them going around the table, taking turns counting down their personal lists and talking about what they enjoyed in all of them. That would be so awesome instead of trying to order completely different experiences and arguing for and against games most of the staff can barely comment on. Seeing new titles like Nioh, Horizon, or Prye to name just a few, get left out for rehashes like Destiny 2 and Tekken 7 makes me sad. It's the time of the year when we should be highlighting stuff we liked, not shitting on them.

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Rilber

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#3  Edited By Rilber

I'd honestly like well formulated arguments like the one we saw Austin Walker had when we saw him bring up Invis Inc. It almost like he brought a script and argument for it. Like he brought up a thesis paper for it that one year when he was bringing for it. If we're going to argue for games we should have sound arguments. Listening over again I want to say over the years there has been weak arguments over many the years and I have to agree too.

Also there is a bandwagon effect on the Giantbomb staff that once someone brings something up that everyone will sometimes just jump on and start nodding their head and agreeing instead of giving a highlighting to something that would usually not get something to list off.

@liquiddragon: You make a great point and I would be totally on board for this. This one felt like a total mess beyond what some of the other forums have pointed out and what some of my past posts have pointed out on a previous thread about this topic. Though this sounds like a great idea to be honest.

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df

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#4  Edited By df

I don't think trying to order GOTY are bad inherently, it can be a catalyst for entertaining discussion. I enjoy takedowns just like anyone :)

I take no issue with the GOTY list, but I would rather the discussion to focus a bit more on games that were cut. However I understand it require enough crews to have played them to enable such discussions.

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sparky_buzzsaw

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gerrid

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I think it would be better without the ordering, which seems to become like a competition rather than an honest debate sometimes. people jumping on criticism because it might mean their game will go up in the rankings, for instance.

my favourite moments are always people eulogising for some aspect of a game that they passionately loved. in previous years people have stepped in to say "let's stop being so negative" and I think it would help to have a blanket agreement that you should mostly argue for the merits of a game rather than just tearing them down. GOTY should be a celebration of the years best games, not an argument about which game has the worst flaws.

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ClockOut

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#8  Edited By ClockOut

I’ve loved GOTY over the years but I agree that it’s probably time for a change.

I think as the crew gets bigger and they’ve played fewer of the same games the value in ranking them diminishes. There are plenty of critiques to make of Nier, but if you’ve only played 8hrs of it I don’t think you’re best placed to make them. Equally if you stopped playing Dream Daddy very early on you’re not best placed to critique the quality of its writing which evolves throughout the dates.

I think it’s a similar situation to the E3 coverage: there was a time when a couple of sofas in a front room and a lot of drunken guests yelling over each other was the right fit for the site, but the new talk show version of the coverage is a much better fit for where the site is now.

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smiddy

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The worst part for me is when it comes time to deciding which order the games are put in. There are some strong personalities in that room, that year after year will keep speaking and become increasingly aggressive and pedantic in order to get what they personally want. I feel like the idea of this being Giant Bombs top ten is lost on most people there, instead we get people arguing over if they like a game more than someone else likes another game.

It's pointless, doesn't go anywhere and always results in one person giving up because they can't be bothered anymore. In the end the whole goal of creating a site top ten is lost and we end up with an extremely tilted list based on the views of a couple of people instead of a representation of the entire staffs.

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wheelhouse

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#11  Edited By wheelhouse

I found the GOTY debate this year to be particularly annoying. I did listen to it in it's entirety while playing They Are Billions. I kind of wish I hadn't (not really, but it was a bit of a bummer with regards to the Dream Daddy and Nier debates). I generally felt the debates were subpar, and the idea of it just being each person talking about their personal 10 sounds great at first, but I think the real solution would be presenting better arguments and a little more direction and control of the discussion. And maybe not booing other games when the list is finalized.

Like Brad, Jeff, Vinny, Abby and (I presume) Dan, I found Nier's gameplay incredibly boring at first. And stopped playing early. Unlike Brad, Jeff and Vinny, I did not return and complete the game (I returned twice, and tried, but found the world and the mechanics so utterly boring that I couldn't stick with it). I was desperately hoping Alex was going to be able to convince my as to WHY he didn't find it dull, or that it didn't bother him, but he didn't. From listening to the others, it seems like you just have to deal with the bad to get to the good, and that they felt it was worth it. Other than the one spoiler Jeff threw out, I don't know any story spoilers. I guess I should watch a Youtube video of the story, because I'm curious as to what all the fuss is about (if it's just a plot twist or a Blade Runner-y rumination on life, then, well, that doesn't seem all that amazing). The gameplay is just so...bad. Stylish, but bad. Easily my most disappointing game purchase of 2017.

I still don't know why I should consider Dream Daddy. In the many, many minutes of deliberation about this game, I only came away with one meaningful observation from the two that were backing it - it's an idealistic/utopian world that would be great to live in. It's definitely not my type of game (walking sim/visual novel. I like The Walking Dead. I like video games. I got about 10 or 15 minutes into the Telltale game when it went to Plus before I was too bored/frustrated by the -lack of- gameplay to continue with it - just not for me). Every moment (bar about 30 seconds) spent discussing this game on this GOTY show felt like a complete waste of everyone's time, because it didn't seem like anything useful was being said.

I do think Cuphead should be higher. (of the games on the list, it would be #2 for me - I don't own a Switch)

I actually only played 3 games on their list. But I feel I have a good understanding of the reasoning behind the inclusion of all games on the list, bar Dream Daddy (and maybe Night in the Woods).

For comparison's sake, I felt I understood the inclusion of Stardew Valley, Thumper and Hyper Light Drifter last year, even though I never played them and probably never will.

Edited to add: I still don't know what they were going for with "Best World". I know what I think of when I hear the phrase best world. and some of the GB crew felt the same, but others felt differently. In the end, that category and the entire debate felt pointless.

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xenocrat

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I've seen a few comments regarding the uproar this year's deliberations have caused, stating that the awards are intended as a celebration of the year in gaming. I think that's an admirable idea but it's not the direction things are heading in, especially now there are more voices at the table.

Only two games I care about were mentioned at all this year, and in both instances one or more people in the room took a shit on the game for 60 seconds and then it was cut from the list. That is not a celebration. I was actually relieved that my other favourites of 2017 were ignored because I dreaded what would be said about them if they were mentioned.

I thought the individual staff lists, and especially the guest lists, did a far better job of celebrating the year in gaming. I'm not quite so needy as to require constant validation of my likes, but I'll admit it gave me a little thrill to see Phil Fish mention Echo, Rami Ismail mention Hellblade, and for Rorie to give Horizon his number 1 spot. This surely is a more positive direction to move in. Perhaps each of the staff and a few guests could sit down in the studio to discuss shared favourites and get into the nerdy details of what made them great, almost similar in tone to the Witness chat with Jonathan Blow.

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Redhotchilimist

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#13  Edited By Redhotchilimist

I think it's a good idea to wait until the year is actually over to do this. First two weeks of January, maybe? Or the third and fourth? There's a cutoff where some 2017 games just don't get mentioned because they weren't out for long, or at all, when deliberations start, and those games also get shafted for next year's considerations because nobody can muster the enthusiasm to "go back".

I liked the deliberations this year! A lot of the categories that used to be smaller now had a longer runtime, so they talked a ton about the games they cared about. The only categories that were harder to get through was the final one(circular arguments about Dream Daddy VS Yakuza 0 for two hours wasn't my favorite part of the deliberations), and Best World. Jeff already said on his tumblr that a quick fix for next year was actually writing down a definition for each category, so they won't spend an hour next year figuring out if Best World is Best Worldbuilding, Best Open World or Best Exploration. Besides big structural changes, like what Liquiddragon proposes or shifting the deliberations to January, those were my only issues.

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xanadu

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I feel like this thread happens every year. The goty process is fine. Who cares if someone pushed harder for one specific game over another? I for one could care less about cuphead or PUBG, they're not for me. I could care even less which categories they win or appear in. It's not my goty list and I don't have to adopt every opinion from GB as truth. So let GB be GB and you guys just do you guys. It's that easy.

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Atwa

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I actually think they probably need to completely revamp how they do these things. They feel so incredibly shallow and meaningless. Like yeah, they probably always have been that. Though at this point, in every discussion I came away thinking that if they just went right back in and recorded it again every category would have different winners.

More notes, arguments and generally deeper discussions is not something I see as totally unbelievable. Large swats of games just gets completely dismissed by a single sentence, and other winners get perpetuated simply because few people have any problems with them, rather than a burning passion for it. Also so many games have only one person played, or played enough, that nobody else can really offer any counter argument to anything said.

Also the top 10 is just silly at this point. Now more than ever its just one person picking a game they really like and nobody else really does. Then top 3-5 is the only thing that really matters, and even then its mostly the games that most people are OK with.

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btrdeadthanred

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@rilber: that's exactly what I don't want. I hated that. It's not supposed to be a scripted exchange, its a passionate opinionated debate (with reason if course).

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Sergio

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Honestly, I thought this was one of the best years in gaming that I can remember going far back to my Atari years, only to be followed up by the worst game of the year deliberations on Giant Bomb.

I felt there were a lot more bad arguments made this year both for and against games that were often hypocritical or repetitive. I’m not a fan of a game being blocked because one person is adamant that a game doesn’t belong at a specific spot, when the larger consensus is that it is fine there. That wasn’t just Abby with Nier, but also Jeff with Zelda. Or that a game must be at a specific spot before deliberations, ignoring more than two people.

This was the 10th GOTY for Giant Bomb. When I look back at the previous nine winners, I probably agree with less than half of the winners. But I could always respect how the decisions were made based on both the arguments made at the time and the merits of the games, even if they were not my personal favorites. I can’t say that this year.

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ajamafalous

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#18  Edited By ajamafalous

I said this last night and I want to say it again:

I'd really like to see GB do away with site top ten next year. Imagine if they did a 5 hour podcast, all of them going around the table, taking turns counting down their personal lists and talking about what they enjoyed in all of them. That would be so awesome instead of trying to order completely different experiences and arguing for and against games most of the staff can barely comment on. Seeing new titles like Nioh, Horizon, or Prye to name just a few, get left out for rehashes like Destiny 2 and Tekken 7 makes me sad. It's the time of the year when we should be highlighting stuff we liked, not shitting on them.

This is what I've been wanting for years. I don't even mind them talking about flaws in games, but the fact that they feel the need to keep to an ordered list is what leads to all the bullshit politicking for personal games to get onto the site's top 10 and stubborn/petty arguments over whether a game deserves to be 5th or 4th on the list. For the last ~6 years so much of the ordering has just come down to 'who is willing to be stubborn for longer until the other person gets tired of it,' which is completely uninteresting in what is supposed to be a celebration of the year's best games.

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sodapop7

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Keep doing what you guys are doing, just have better opinions! I’m kidding. Kind of. But no seriously these podcasts are always fun, whether I agree or not.

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deactivated-6050ef4074a17

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I remember posting about this sort of thing nearly two years ago and basically every single thing I said still applies. Do GOTY in January, write out what the damn categories mean ahead of time so we stop having this yearly "But wait what does this award even mean" debate, take nominations from the community so games aren't left-out.

Most importantly, stop doing a generalized top-ten. There's just nothing gained from it and most of the time is spent pointlessly arguing over where to place every staff member's token choice near the ass-end of the list. Not to mention it just agitates the community listening for no good reason. Go back to a top three or just pick a single Game of the Year and nothing else.

Ryan used to be adamant about this, but it should be repeated: The staff personal top ten lists are where you pick your emotional attachments and the site-lists are where you debate the merits of game vs game and come to at least a slightly more reasoned conclusion. That the site-wide top ten has become a place for people to try and cram in their pet games over someone elses, or just throwing something on #10 to make a staff member or the community (in the case of the Witcher 3, which is basically what that one ended up being) happy isn't what the site-wide list was meant to be, or should be. Either make it more blatantly that (throwing all the staff lists into a blender and picking which gets the most points) or completely separate the two sentiments. The top ten argument is just a mess where people are barely discussing the qualities of the best games since people already know they're going to chart high up. If you were debating between just a top three again, or just picking a single game, you would actually have to defend the games that matter.

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Skumberg

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#21  Edited By Skumberg

@liquiddragon said:

Imagine if they did a 5 hour podcast, all of them going around the table, taking turns counting down their personal lists and talking about what they enjoyed in all of them. That would be so awesome instead of trying to order completely different experiences and arguing for and against games most of the staff can barely comment on.

That would be awesome! That's such a good idea. I would rather they did 20+ hours though, not five.

EDIT: Also, I'd like a segment for them all to take a huge dump on shitty games. Brad's evisceration of Andromeda this year was fantastic.

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Relkin

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#22  Edited By Relkin

@marokai said:

Ryan used to be adamant about this, but it should be repeated: The staff personal top ten lists are where you pick your emotional attachments and the site-lists are where you debate the merits of game vs game and come to at least a slightly more reasoned conclusion. That the site-wide top ten has become a place for people to try and cram in their pet games over someone elses, or just throwing something on #10 to make a staff member or the community (in the case of the Witcher 3, which is basically what that one ended up being) happy isn't what the site-wide list was meant to be, or should be. Either make it more blatantly that (throwing all the staff lists into a blender and picking which gets the most points) or completely separate the two sentiments. The top ten argument is just a mess where people are barely discussing the qualities of the best games since people already know they're going to chart high up. If you were debating between just a top three again, or just picking a single game, you would actually have to defend the games that matter.

God, yes. Thank you. My main issue with this year was just that the arguments were just lacking. There have been weak moments in this regard for each year, but this year it felt like the inverse; their were strong moments, but it was overall just super shallow discussion. I don't want to hear that a game "took the office by storm", or that everyone "really liked it", I want to hear why. Really dig in to each game, compare and contrast, have an open mind, give a different viewpoint a chance to convince you. Don't just argue that you had feelings; explain exactly what led to those feelings. If I wanted to hear them just chat about games, I could listen to just about any other thing they do throughout the year. When I want to hear them do a deep-dive on games, I come to their GOTY deliberations.

In regards to getting rid of the numbered top ten list, I don't really agree that would help, but I wouldn't be opposed to seeing it happen. I personally think that they need to trim the number of people in the room down. There are too many voices: nobody gets enough uninterrupted time to say what they want to say, and I think that's one of the leading reasons why arguments were so weak this year. Also, yes they need to figure out what the categories are before recording. Best World might be the best example of this confusion, but it definitely wasn't the only one. Debut, Surprise and Music also had some fairly substantial misunderstandings in them, but honestly, the more I think on the whole week I'm having trouble thinking of a category that didn't have similar problems.

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Efesell

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Honestly I love the numbered lists, I love the outrage, hell I miss when the final debate involved even more knives than it does now.

Keep on keepin' on. I'll still be here to be fake mad at y'alls bad opinions.

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Luck702

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#24  Edited By Luck702

Flick yourself in the ear every time somebody describes something as "good," "very good," or "so good." Somebody send Abby a thesaurus for the next mailbag.

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DragoonCody

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#25  Edited By DragoonCody

I found the podcasts a lot of fun, and I even loved it when they spent an hour arguing about what the Best World category was. The part that exhausts me is reading the comment sections - it feels like people don't realise that the awards and the Top 10 are intentionally arbitrary / kind of pointless in the first place. You're not going to die if your game is in third instead of second or whatever. That said, Tropical Freeze was robbed.

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TakFR

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#26  Edited By TakFR

I feel like one of the Giant Beast members needs to have a long talk to Abby about how to articulate herself and come in with a more open mind when coming to others opinions which she doesn't agree with, she just attacks them or makes completely false statements about the game they are talking about. I feel like they should have called her out much harder on it then they did in the end, I couldn't listen to the positive categories after day 3 since I got so incredibly sick of hearing her say the same things over and over and over. She didn't come to the deliberations to discuss and debate, she just wanted to try and win it seems which in the end.... really doesn't matter and hurts the discussions that I enjoyed the previous GOTY podcasts and listened to them for

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Arcitee

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Like others have mentioned, I also remember in years past Ryan and others emphasizing personal emotional choices belong in their personal top 10 (*cough*Dream Daddy*cough*) and not on the site's main list. It makes for a less worthwhile process to throw this away.

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golguin

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Define the category in a nicely written succinct paragraph so everyone can read it and refer back to it when making their arguments for their candidates.

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trulyalive

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#29  Edited By trulyalive

@luck702: I hate to admit that I agree but there's only so many times I can hear a person open a sentence with "I think" before that gets *remarkably* grating.

Like in that bit where she was making a case for Dream Daddy and she did it about 10 times in a row, I gave it a pass because I figured she was going for emphasis.
And then for the next four hours it seemed like almost everything she said started with "I think" and it became distracting.

Hope nobody thinks I'm trying to rip on her because I love Abby but I think it's something she could review and address to become a stronger on-mic personality.

Otherwise, I like knives-out so I'm generally okay with this format (even if some of the hard cuts really hurt to go through).

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#30  Edited By conmulligan

I thought the deliberations were mostly great this year and the only real negative is how off the wall some of the reactions have been. Don’t get me wrong, it’s almost always bad, especially when some members of the community have a dog in the fight (I’m looking at you, Nier), but it feels like this year has really brought out the worst in people.

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Barrock

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#31  Edited By Barrock

@takfr: I'm an absolutely gigantic fan of Abby, but yeah, she had some rough moments.

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viking_funeral

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#32  Edited By viking_funeral

@marokai: Ryan was a treasure. I miss that duder on the site. And, y'know, in general.

Edit ~ I have definitely felt like the Giant Bomb top 10 lists have evolved from a 'somewhat consensus on the best games of the year' into more of a personal list, but they've repeated the line, "It's the site's top 10 games of the year, not an objective list" so many times that it's pretty much defined the GOTY debates here. It's a bit too bad, and I definitely think they should move away from that. We already have the personal top 10 lists for that. As it stands, it has pretty much become a game of who can get the most people to agree with their picks and fighting for personal placing. That's not fun. It also leads to some serious personality clashes, with members of the staff acting like my kids when they don't get to pick out candy at the store.

So I think they should try for a more objective list, or failing that, go for something besides a numbered top 10 list, like they did before 2011. (Though I do maintain that 2011 was the best year of debate and GOTY skits on the website.)

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ChallisEaton

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I don't ever post on the GB forum, but I had to come here after listening to the GOTY deliberations, and I'm glad that I'm not the only one that thought it was not great this year. I feel like there was a lack of quality discussion around the small edge case games, and that kinda bummed me out. In 2015 when Austin made his push for Invisible Inc. he really convinced me personally as to why it should be in this top ten at all. Invisible Inc. is very much not my thing, but Austin had such a good delivery on why it should be there and why it was an important game in 2015. I love all the stuff that Abby does with the site, I think she's an awesome person to have on the team, but I don't think she understands how the GOTY deliberations go down? Maybe she should have listened to a couple past ones to see how things typically go? Dream Daddy is a game that I don't give a flying fuck about and I never heard one compelling argument for this game, but I also didn't hear too many compelling arguments against this game. I guess ultimately it doesn't really matter, but this year's goty felt much more personal/emotional charged in kind of a negative way. It was a real bummer to have to hear things like Nier and pubg get slammed for seemingly no real reason other than people had made up their minds a head of time and just said "nah fuck that". Also Persona 5 not winning best styyyyyle is a crime against god and man.

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APDLS

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#34  Edited By APDLS

@liquiddragon: I'd be opposed to this quite strongly. It would drastically reduce the quality and depth of discussion, and there are actually other podcasts that do something similar. Give me these deliberations over that any day.

I like the Empire Film Podcast a lit, and at the end of each year they do a review of the year where they have a few non-competitive categories (like best score, best scene, whatever) and a voted-on, pre-determined top ten list as well as their personal lists. They give their answers for the categories, and go down the lists saying a bit about each film. What it ends up being is saying a sentence and moving on, because there's no discussion or debate. It is just "Boy, Blade Runner 2049 has a great soundtrack, I like it because X, moving on..."It's incredibly shallow compared to the Giant Bomb deliberations. If they did your suggestion it would completely strip away the best and most in-depth gaming discussion the site has. It would also just end up being a retread of the staff top tens anyway.

What they need to do is just make some changes to tighten up the debate. Work on repetitive arguments, aim for less stonewalling, and clearly define the categories beforehand, which they've already said they're doing. Besides, 2018 is looking like a dry year anyway so I doubt we'll end up with nearly as much contention this year.

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nuttyjawa

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I think just a bit more of a lock down on descriptions followed by everyone being allowed to voice their opinion which includes I think someone talking to Abby about how to have critical discussions with others as she seems to champion things to a point where she is coming across as outspoken (which could be why Dan has been so quiet ? )

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mems1224

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I just want to hear better debates and arguments. There was way too much "this was bad/good because I said so" especially during the top 10. The absence of someone like Austin was noticeable, this year especially. Someone also needs to take charge and rein in the conversation and provide some focus when everyone starts arguing in circles for 2 hours. That should probably be the host but they're too busy threatening to filibuster if their game doesn't get on a list, completely derailing the best world category and making an insane argument for why a mediocre game is the worst game this year.

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frymillstrum

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I've noticed it in regular podcasts too recently but the use of the word "like" really started to grind on me during these discussions. I mean using it in these kind of contexts:

"You know, like, I feel that _______"

"But it's like, ________"

"I think, like, this is ______"

Abby, Ben and Alex are the worst offenders I think, with Vinny and Jeff following. It seriously bugged me after a while, I started to count at one stage and the word "like" was said about 6 times in the space of a minute or so. Please stop this habit guys, it's worse than the hmmmmm thing you all picked up from each other.

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FrodoBaggins

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Honestly I think Dream Daddy was a bit of a debacle. The discussion was much less enjoyable overall than past years. It's defiantly gotten away from them since it was just four people hashing it out. But I guess it's going to, isn't It?

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Teddie

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Posted this on one of the deliberations, but they should really consider setting up in the studio for the aesthetics-centric awards and getting people to play some games on a TV. Could end up harming the podcast side too much, though I'd argue Ben pulling up still images on his tiny laptop screen to show people Persona 5's art is a hundred times worse, and this could easily be fixed by people being a little more descriptive in their arguments/explanations for the sake of their podcast listeners, in that case.

Otherwise, they have too many people to keep this frequent stonewalling going now. The Best Game discussion doesn't come close to justifying its length, and it really needed someone to step in and put a hard stop to the roundabout arguments on multiple occasions. The fact that almost every single person in that room said "...or we're gonna be here all night" at some point during that 5 hours, joke or not, is just shitty.

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packerman120

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The key thing here that I wish was better, which also echoes other points in this thread, is that I wish the staff were able to articulate their points better. Instead of getting nuanced debate on why a game should win a particular category, it often just devolved into a fight where it felt like they just kept saying my game is better, no I won't cut this game, etc, etc. As well, and I mentioned this in Day 2's thread, but Abby NEEDS to tone it down with a shouting. Like someone pointed out earlier, shouting I WON after successfully fighting for your game to be included just rubs me the wrong way. This should be a debate to celebrate and recognize the best video games have to offer, not just fighting for what you like best and tending to ignore the others. I love Abby's work, but this was not a strong set of podcasts for her IMO, which can be explained by that it is her first year. I'm sure she'll do what's needed to improve.

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MocBucket62

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I thought the debates for the most part were well done, but at the same time I think they need to make some changes with their Best Game portion of the podcast. It seems like that taking 5 hours to debate over the placement of their top ten must be very strenuous for the crew. Jeff seemed like a genius though letting everyone discuss over who'd be 2-5 while he got his GOTY (PUBG) in the top spot without saying much.

I thought Ben came into the debate well prepared, but also I was a little biased towards Ben because he made the biggest push for Odyssey being Best Game. Then later Brad clarified that Best Game isn't the most polished and least flawed game but rather the game that had the biggest impact on the crew this year. I love having Abby on the site, but I hope she can look back at the Best Game portion and she can correct some rough moments she had. She said, "I think Cuphead should be higher" way too many times and she should have gotten the silence as the rest of the crew politely disagreed. Perhaps she should have elaborated better by making a case on why Cuphead should be higher than a game like Nier Automata. Hopefully she can learn from this and improve on her arguments when they do this later this year in 2018.

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Gusto

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@luck702: I can appreciate that. That’s all I heard her say over and over. I was all team Abby before the GOTY deliberations and now unfortunately, I need an Abby break.

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geirr

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I love every second of GOTY and wouldn't want anything to change.

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Oscar__Explosion

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I've always thought the ordering of the final GOTY section has got to go. The top 2-3 placements always end up with two people saying the same things over and over again as to why one game should be over the other and this year was one of the worst of them. I'd be totally fine if they had an unordered list of the top 10 games the staff (as a consensus) had played that year.

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Beatboxtaun

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I was a little saddened that this year’s GOTY podcast rubbed me the wrong way. I am glad that it was mentioned in previous posts that Abbey viewed the entire process as a game and shouted, “I won,” when Dream Daddy made it into their top 10 list. I kind of felt for Dan because he had to give up on Yakuza when he realized it was a lost cause to fight against Abbey. I feel like everyone just kind of gave it to her for the sake of giving it to her.

The GOTY list is supposed to be agreed upon by everyone sharing similar views and opinions on all the games in the list. It is GIANT BOMB’S GOTY list.

I was also disappointed when I it seemed like no one else wanted to step on her toes, but she interrupted the others quite a bit that I didn’t get to hear everything they were going to say. I know it was Abbey’s first time in the GOTY ring and I like Abbey, but I hope she listens to it so that she can hear what she didn’t hear during the initial recording. That’s the only way to get better.

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fatalbanana

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#46  Edited By fatalbanana

It sometimes surprises me with how entitled parts of this community gets sometimes. The "I don't like how the game I like was treated there for eff GOTY discussions" is especially eye rolling. At the end of the day, the discussions are what they have (more or less) always been. Not that that doesn't mean that it can change in some ways for the better but they are the way they are for a reason. Whether that reason is it gets hella traffic or the staff likes doing it this way or whatever other reason there may be.

I get the feedback, saying the discussions didn't focus enough on impassioned thoughtful arguments or there should be fewer platitudes makes sense to me and I'm sure that is valuable feedback. However, saying the biggest parts of these debates should be scrapped because they didn't go the way you wanted them to or someone didn't meet your expectations is silly to me. The comments and threads about this are full of projection and I hope some of you are able to look at these discussions in a way that gives the benefit of the doubt to the people making it. Because they have been doing it for a long time, they know what works and what doesn't and while I think there is some useful feedback here that they take into consideration, the people butthurt over the thing they like or dislike are not being helpful at all.

The site-wide top 10 is why we have these discussions in the first place. Completely axing that I don't think is the right way to go. Saying you want to get rid of it because it is too negative doesn't really make sense to me either. These conversations are what they are, someone says something negative someone else says something positive sometimes it leans more one way or the other. It is what it is. If you say there was too much negativity well that's just how that conversation went. It is neither good nor bad it just is what it is. Maybe it's you that is focusing too much on the negative... just a thought. This isn't about celebrating what we liked the most as much as it is looking at games as a whole and breaking them down into there weakest and strongest parts in a means of celebrating what we think was the best the year had to offer. Yes, you can still "be negative" while celebrating them. Those things aren't mutually exclusive. Negative things can be said in a debate but the end result is still celebrating the things they did right. I really don't understand any other way of looking at it. Coming away saying "I don't like how negative they were" well maybe debates arent for you in general.

I liked this year's discussion more than any other year. I think everyone was heard and the list is a good representation of all of them as a group. I loved how the staff's personalities either gelled or butted against each other. I loved the passion that Alex had for games like Nier and Dans bubbling excitement over Zelda. Jeff's confidence in PUBG and Brad's stoic admiration for games like Nier and Zelda. I agree with some of the Abby criticism but I give her a lot of credit for getting in there and mixing it up as much as she did. Plus I am confident she learned from this experience and will become better in the coming years. To the people that don't like Dream Daddy, I'm sorry but I think Abby argued well for it and it belongs on the list though I was sad to see Yakuza go Abby's passion for DD was more than enough for me. DIsregarding someone's opinion because of the way they argued it isn't the proper way to go either. Though I don't like some of the ways things were argued I generally really loved the discussion as a whole. You can tell how passionate the staff is for games as well as what they do and can't wait to see what they have cookin for us in 2018.

Oh, and Abby screaming "I won" was a joke everybody calm down.

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TheAdmin

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I said this last night and I want to say it again:

I'd really like to see GB do away with site top ten next year. Imagine if they did a 5 hour podcast, all of them going around the table, taking turns counting down their personal lists and talking about what they enjoyed in all of them. That would be so awesome instead of trying to order completely different experiences and arguing for and against games most of the staff can barely comment on. Seeing new titles like Nioh, Horizon, or Prye to name just a few, get left out for rehashes like Destiny 2 and Tekken 7 makes me sad. It's the time of the year when we should be highlighting stuff we liked, not shitting on them.

100% Agree. Forget the "best" game and the ranking and just spend time talking about the year and your favorite games (if they want to save time have each person choose the top 3 from their top 10 list). I do enjoy the categories hottest mess and please stop, mostly because those are about the games industry as a whole. So perhaps instead have an "industry round-table" where they walk through the year and talk about the highs and lows of the games industry. My perfect GOTY would be talking about their favs, talking about the industry, and then playing those games they loved that year.

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aiomon

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I really like that OP mentioned definition of each award. I felt like there were games being brought up sometimes that had very little to do with a category. All in all I really liked this year tho!

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ad_hoc

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@beatboxtaun: Keep in mind that Dan didn't actually care about Yakuza. He found the game frustrating and didn't put it on his own top 10. He was just arguing for it because he didn't want Dream Daddy on the top 10. Alex was the only one to put Yakuza on their top 10 and he put it at #3.

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Efesell

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So many people just askin' for some boring podcasts here.