Uncharted 3 and Portal 2 Lead AIAS Award Nominations
The nominees for the "Oscars" of gaming have been announced, with the usual suspects from GOTY 2011 lists leading the pack.
As we get used to the idea of living in 2012, most of us have a pretty solid idea of what we liked (and didn't like) about gaming in 2011. For those in search of validation, the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences (AIAS) has released its list of nominations for its 15th Annual Interactive Achievement Awards, tipping its hat liberally to a wide variety of popular titles and ignoring almost nobody.
Leading the nominations-count is Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception, which is up for twelve awards including Game of the Year, Outstanding Achievement in Story, and Outstanding Achievement in Game Direction. Portal 2 has ten nominations, including Game of the Year, Oustanding Achievement in Visual Engineering, and a nod for Stephen Merchant as the voice of Wheatley.
The other Game of the Year nominees are Batman: Arkham City, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim and The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword. For a full list of the nominations, which includes 9 nods for L.A. Noire, click this here .pdf.
All in all, the nominations list is fairly well-balanced (it isn't nearly as baffling as the Spike VGAs list, for example). Many of the titles from our own best-loved games of 2011 are in there, though some have been shuffled around a bit.
The winners will be announced at the awards ceremony at the DICE Summit in Las Vegas on the 9th of February, which will be available for livestream via Gamespot.
I'm sad to say it but Uncharted 3 isn't a GOTY game. I Yahtzee's review of it was the most honest and seeing review of a game that I can remember him doing.
It had all the hallmarks of the second game, all the good things going for it, great new set pieces and potentially interesting character development... and then the story kinda fell apart. Nothing felt like it fitted together and the game just felt rushed. They either need to take a couple of years and come up with the next step or they need to put the series to bed now and come up with something else. An almost fall is only so jarring so many times and for some reason (probably level design) the shooting was a little worse this year than last year.
On the other hand, it's certainly the prettiest game of the year, and the things it was doing with moving scenery was beyond what I've ever seen any other game do. People call it out for being completely unoriginal, but then why isn't there another game out there that comes close to being what it is?