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NeoGAF Game of the Year 2019 |OT| Voting thread (mobile friendly) [Up: CLOSED]

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Gold Member
Welcome to the NeoGAF 2019 GOTY voting thread

The format change from last year has carried over so please read the thread. TL-DR merchants, the link to the form is at the bottom.

As per countdown timer below;

Minimum votes: Games 1-3 are the only mandatory votes;

How long will it take me to fill in the form?
If you only vote for the three games:
~3-5 minutes
If you vote for all categories (no commentary): ~10 minutes
If you vote for all categories (with commentary): ~ 15-20 minutes (depending on thinking time)

Disqualified votes
Game spamming:
If you use the same game in more than one position, then your vote will be removed from the ballot count. Please bear this in mind for minimum votes above;

A game I want to vote for isn't listed
I tried to include the most common games, and even asked beforehand (also use this thread to get your votes in your head sorted). But if there is one you really want added let me know. It takes an hour to refresh after being added. I'll be honest I don't have a huge amount of spare time and this took some effort on it's own. As a result there will definitely be titles that I've missed off. So just drop them here or PM me and I'll add them.

They will appear at the end of the list prefixed by an 'X'. Games added so far (only just added, so will appear within 60 minutes of post time):

X - Baba is you
X - LoveR
X - Xeno Crisis
X - Amid Evil
X - Superliminal

Can I post my list/choices in the thread?
Certainly. I've hosted it like this mainly for the automation. It makes the demands on my time less. But also, I feel it might actually throw up more authentic results without people getting a flavour for the 2/3 titles that are leading. Having said that, please do share your list or partial list if so inclined, with your thoughts on the games.

Why the three words?
It's hard when picking out an individual quote to really capture an entire communities thoughts, so I'm going to try and capture the most common thoughts from everyone to paint a broader picture. You can see the tag clouds from last year that were built and I'm sure you'll agree they are actually pretty cool. I think it's better that we get a collective feel rather than just picking one or two quotes from a single user.

  • Playable content released this year is eligible. This includes new games, remasters, ports, and so on. There is always a debate on this but ultimately if the content is appearing on the platform for the first time, it could be the first time certain players had the opportunity to play the title. It also provides a nice meta on the timeless quality of certain games, or the current thinking of modern games.
  • DLC, including expansion packs, are eligible to be voted on as long as it's playable.
  • Episodes of games released this year are eligible. In this case the votes will be amalgamated (e.g. different votes for LiS2 episodes will be grouped as LiS2)

Are Early Access games eligible?
No, Early Access, beta, demo, and Greenlight games are not eligible. PC games must reach full release, or version 1.0 in order to be eligible.

Can I update my vote?
As it's form based, no. You need to put your votes in one sitting.

Scoring is based on user rankings on a simple ladder scale. Game in position 1 scores 10 points, game in position 2 scores 9 points...game in position 8 scores 2 points etc. There is no weighting in place as this feels like it creates an artifical tier

One month away and hopefully will get them up for the 27th January

Extra awards and updates
For the first year, we're trying out dedicated categories for genres. I've condensed them down just so we can trial it and see how it goes. This is maybe in response to saying people thought SMO may be a better game overall, but Celeste was a better platformer. The genre awards are set to:

- Action/Adventure
- Sports
- Fighting
- Shooter
- RPG (aRPG and tRPG/cRPG are in one category as the genre lines are very blurred anyway these days)
- Platformer

We've retained the category awards for this year as well, which are:
- Best graphical showcase;
- Best narrative/storyline;
- Award for best co-op/multiplayer game;
- Award for outstanding achievement in world building;

Lastly, I've tagged another category for fun, which is GAF's most anticipated game. The criteria isn't as hard as it used to be, just a list of the big titles that have strong indications they will drop next year. Don't take it to seriously, there's only about 12-15 games in there :)
- Most anticipated game

All of the above will have gold, silver, bronze awards.


Happy voting. Look forward to the results! And the discussions below!!

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I have only played 2 games from 2019 ... Can't vote. Doesn't matter as Disco Elysium is the game of the year. If the vote says otherwise? ... Communist lies and propaganda!


Good stuff Cormack. Can you add Baba is You please :)

Also, Link's Awakening is under 'The' for anybody interested.
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1. Ion Fury

The last few years have been kinda great for fans of old-school FPS games. Last year we had the phenomenal Dusk, and the previously mentioned Heretic tribute, Amid Evil this year as well. Ion Fury is the final piece of the current trifecta of high quality old-school shooters and in my opinion is easily the best game of the year as well. This game scratches an itch I haven’t had satisfied for a long time, and that’s finally being able to play a new Build engine game. The legendary engine that helped developers craft such classics like Blood, Shadow Warrior, and the big grand daddy of them all, Duke Nukem 3D, one of my favourite games and the king of FPS games in my opinion! Well, Ion Fury fits right in with all of these bonafide 90’s classics. Voidpoint have proven that they have a masterful grasp at what made Build engine shooters so good. You’ve got dozens of intricate open levels with secrets stashed everywhere, some may argue that some of them may be a bit TOO well hidden, but going out of your way to find these secret areas is always well worth the ammo and weapons gained from seeking them out. All of the weapons feel satisfying to use with some fantastic alt-fire options to boot. The magnum’s ability to lock onto multiple enemies before firing a massive volley of homing shots into each and every enemy being a particularly satisfying one! Through the entire meaty single player campaign I never once felt that any of the levels were badly designed or lazily slapped together. The polish on display is outstanding and you can tell oodles of care and attention went into this project with a real respect for the legacy of the engine and the classics it helped create. In a year of strong offerings from both third and first party studios, Ion Fury really stands out, and in my opinion, it’s the cream of this year’s crop. Haven’t bought it yet? Don’t have a PC? Then buy it on consoles next year. Fucking outstanding game!

2. Resident Evil 2

I’m not somebody who has a massive nostalgic connection to the Resident Evil franchise. In fact, most of my time with the series was spent with Remake on the gamecube, RE:0 and Resident Evil 4 when it originally came out. So it says a lot that as a stand-alone game based on it’s own merits, Resident Evil 2 Remake is exceptionally good! Traversing the RCPD Station, the sewers and the labs I kinda got an idea of why the original PSOne game is so widely regarded as such a classic. Planning trips back and forth through the meticulously designed locales calls for a lot of inventory management and route optimisation, having to pick when to fight or take flight. The way the game is paced is nigh on perfect, the rate at which new threats get introduced as you wander back and forth through the network of tunnels and rooms is almost masterful and never once does exploration ever feel dull or repetitive. This is peak survival horror and in terms of visual polish is easily one of the best looking games of the generation to boot! While Resident Evil 4 is still the best game in the series for me, this game comes so damn close to taking that title. If the upcoming Resident Evil 3 remake comes even close to matching this game, it’d be one hell of an accomplishment!

3. Luigi’s Mansion 3

Have to admit, my expectations for Luigi’s Mansion 3 weren’t exactly high. Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon was a solid game in it’s own right but compared to the original? It just lacked the atmosphere and the magic that the first game had, and the stage-by-stage structure of the game was a major step back from the original as well in my opinion. But Next Level Games really got their shit together for this game. The luxury hotel setting is a stroke of genius, allowing the developers to go nuts with what they can cram into the game in comparison to the first two games. A neon 80’s style disco club? Yup, that’s there. A film studio? You betcha! A pyramid with a network of dungeons and trap rooms?! For some reason there’s an entire floor dedicated to that as well! The new abilities are also a welcome change. Using the plunger attachment to grab and throw stuff around is hella satisfying, and being able to conjure up a gooey clone of yourself to interact with puzzles in new and unique ways really adds a lot of depth to exploring each of the hotels 17 floors! Hope NLG get given more work in the future. If Nintendo has any common sense, they should! It’s such a charming game, full of character, and if you own a Switch I’d recommend this as one of the first games you should pick up!

4. The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening

Never played the original gameboy game, but after playing this remake I kinda wish I had when I was a wee bairn! In terms of structure, dungeon design and just overall atmosphere this game is kind of unique among the series. Much like my favourite game in the franchise, Majora’s Mask! The map is fairly compact, but what it lacks in overall size it sure as hell makes up for with depth! There are secrets hidden everywhere, some in plain sight and others in vague nooks and crannys. But nothing ever feels too cryptic or frustrating to find or discover and Link’s kit this time around adds a surprisingly robust set of tools to explore the world’s caves and overworld. Even the side-quests are amusing and sometimes even outright bizarre! While traversing the games dozen or so dungeons I can’t say I ever felt myself get frustrated or irritated by any of them either! It’s just a shame that the constant framerate issues that occur when exploring the overworld and spelunking the depths of Koholint drag the experience down. If it wasn’t for that this charming update of a curious little handheld game would be quite a bit higher on my list.

5. Amid Evil

New Blood Interactive is on a roll! After publishing last year’s fantastic Dusk (Which barely missed out on earning my GOTY award, thanks to Smash Bros Ultimate) they’ve helped crank out yet another fantastic tribute FPS game, this time using Heretic as their inspiration. The melee fantasy based arsenal on display here is nothing short of inspired. Here’s just a small smattering of what you get your mitts on throughout the sizable campaign. You’ve got stuff like a Mace that fires out icy spikes towards their target, a mages staff that shoots entire PLANETS at people, that’s right, entire fucking astral bodies, before blowing up, and my particular favourite, a sword that shoots horizontal beams of light so sharp that they lacerate and slice through their targets. The over-saturated, colourful aesthetic is both unusual and oddly appealing, giving the fantasy realms you’ll be bunny hopping and sprinting through a bizarre 80’s neon-style aesthetic. It’s so garish but also beautiful at the same time! There’s tons of enemy variety too, and each chapter never re-used enemy types so each set of levels feels wholey unique. Here’s hoping that Maximum Action ends up being just as good as this and Dusk!

6. Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

So, Respawn took a crack at making a souls-like action game, and a Star Wars themed one no less! And despite being a bit rough around the edges, they’ve succeeded at combining a multitude of mechanics from different games (Uncharted, Dark Souls, Sekiro, Prince of Persia) to make a wholly satisfying game. Narratively, it’s a much more grounded game compared to other similar Star Wars fare, focusing on the Order 66 incident and the state of the galaxy years later, it’s a refreshingly personal story, focusing on smaller, less consequential events. Each of the game’s 5 different locales are all wonderfully designed, an intricate series of areas all winding into and out of each other fluidly. Progressing through each planet’s biomes feels really fluid and Respawn have even got From Software’s knack for shortcuts that loop back into previous areas you’d previously been to! Force pulling and pushing enemies, slowing down enemies, expanding your list of abilities and moves and changing combat styles on the fly all feels satisfying despite a little bit of jank from time to time. There’s a lot of room for improvement here and I hope Respawn gets a shot at making a sequel in the near future. About time you treated the Star Wars license with a bit of respect EA!

7. Astral Chain

Another year, another Platinum character action game! The combat strikes that trademark balance of accessibility and complexity that the company is well known for. Switching between Legions allows for a whole wealth of complex combos and attack options and once the game really hits it’s stride you’ll be swapping between each beast and their repertoire of moves effortlessly, chaining them all together to deal out some crazy choreographed ass-kicking! It was also nice of Platinum to switch up their usual formula a bit too, giving players a bit of downtime by allowing them to gather evidence and clues to the whereabouts of certain targets and objectives is a welcome change from the usual roller-coaster ride of action the development studio are usually well known for. So props to Platinum for trying something different. While it’s nowhere near my favourite game by them (Bayonetta 2 takes that particular honour) it’s still a damn good slice of character action with a fairly engaging narrative and world. Wouldn’t mind a sequel Nintendo, just saying!

8. Devil May Cry V

Finally, after 11 entire years of ignoring the mainline series, Capcom finally put out a new numbered DMC game and while it does have it’s flaws, it feels like a strong return to form for the developer and the series in general. The mix of three different combat styles with Nero, Dante and V all come together fairly well, offering a nice mix of gameplay, V’s being the most striking and unique with a surprisingly “hands-off” approach to combat using various summon-able creatures to do the dirty work while you loiter around in the distance. Nero’s arm mechanic that has you queueing up different types of engineered gauntlets that host a flew of different abilities is a welcome step-up from his load-out in DMC4, really making him stand out. And the usual staggering variety of moves and abilities all of Dante’s weapons grants him is still as refreshing and liberating as ever. Sure the over-usage of one particular boss gets a bit grating after a while and the level design towards the last third of the game takes a sizeable dip in quality, but the combat really rises above all that and really shines through. Welcome back Devil May Cry, we missed you!

9. Super Mario Maker 2

Surprised this game didn’t come out sooner in the Switch’s lifespan, but I’m sure as hell glad it’s here now! The creation tools that the original Wii U game provided the player were pretty robust and allowed you to create all sorts of weird and wonderful machinations, or hell, just some good old-fashioned traditional levels, but Nintendo really outdid themselves this time and added a crap-load of great new features to help tweak out the most from the templates and course elements on display this time around. The most notable being way more interactive elements, day and night time tile-sets with different effects on gameplay, slopes, tons of new enemy types, and even a whole new gameplay style in the form of the 3D World template, introducing completely different handling, and different course elements separate from the already established templates of the original game. The new story mode is a charming little collection of developer made courses that felt like genuine effort were put into them this time, and are great fuel for inspiration! Super Mario Maker 2 may just be a greatly expanded version of the original game, but that’s all it needed to be, and with LittleBigPlanet seemingly dead and buried for now, a game like this is much needed.

10. Wreckfest

Originally, when Bugbear’s kickstarted Demolition Derby project “Next Car Game” got funded I didn’t really pay much attention to it, but after seeing a fair bit of positive buzz once the full game released only a few months ago, I figured I’d buy it at a bit of a discount, and I’m so glad I did. Wreckfest satisfies a need of mine that I haven’t had fulfilled for a long-ass time, in fact, as far back as the first four Burnout games, and that’s wanton vehicular destruction! T handling on various terrains, trading paint with other racers, and the damage modelling on each and every car is immensely satisfying! Everything from oval circuits, figure 8’s, destruction derby arenas, lawnmower racing, and hell, even bus and sofa racing is thrown in there as well. Hell, you can even mix in all the aforementioned vehicles together. There’s even a fucking combine harvester thrown in there as well, if you really want to spice things up. A fairly robust campaign mode, a great online suite of modes and match customization really extends the lifespan of the game. Set the restriction on all vehicle types off and enjoy the limitless carnage on offer. Game is a blast!​
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Gold Member
Solid list Juke Joint Jezebel Juke Joint Jezebel

Mine is shaping up to be below. Haven't played a huge lot this year of the new stuff. Looking to be:

Fire emblem
Astral chain
A Plague Tale: Innocence
The Division 2
The Legend of Zelda: Links Awakening
Tetris 99
efootball PES 2020
Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

so far. Quite a tough year to think of a front runner. Just going through the list now to see if anything I've missed off. I guess Layton and Katrielle but it's so far off the usual quality I'm loathe to include it or consider it seriously.

Deleted member 17706

Unconfirmed Member
Lot of amazing stuff this year. I'm definitely going to have a tough time sorting my top 10. Still need to play a few games before deciding, too.


Gold Member
You missed Xeno Crisis on MegaDrive. Game was released recently. A brand new MegaDrive game in 2019, and the game is so good it deserves a spot in my top 3.

Added. Give it an hour to refresh (or it will refresh if someone submits the form earlier)


1. Control
2. Resident Evil 2
3. Mutant Year Zero
4. A Plague Tale: Innocence
5. FAR: Lone Sails
6. The Last Door - Complete Edition
7. Blair Witch
8. Void Bastards
9. Death Stranding
10. Metro Exodus

With an honorable mention to:
Blazing Chrome and Football Game (Lynchian adventure game)

I still wanna play Disco Elysium, Sekiro, and the new Star Wars game by Respawn.
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Fire Emblem for GOTY, because it's incredible.

Resident Evil 2 and Ace Combat 7 for runner ups. I finished more games this year than any other since 2015! 2020 will be my last year of semi-unrestricted gaming before studying for work certifications and a baby consume my every waking moment. Let's make it count!

The Shepard

1. Resident Evil 2 Remake
2. judgement
3. Devil may cry 5

I can't remember the last time 3 Japanese games we're my favourite of the year. Capcom have had an excellent year and yakuza is my favourite new franchise I discovered this generation.


I didn't play much this year, but my list is:

1. Fire Emblem. It's not uncommon for a FE game to be top for me, but the previous sittings of FE, after Awakening have been pretty lack lustre. Three Houses was exactly what I wanted though.

2. Apex Legends. I hate the game so much that I couldn't stop playing it. Rage followed by happiness followed by rage. Seriously good multiplayer game, not without its issues, but it's definitely got the feeling of suspense down.

3. Red Dead Redemption 2.
I'm a year late. The game is OK, but I didn't really have anything else to put in the slot.

4. Wargroove.
I was told it was like advance wars. It kinda is. Decent game, but the factions feel like they're exactly the same (probably because they are). The art...oh god the art is ugly. Still had a good time, up until the last level, which is completely different from everything else in the game.

Edit: after playing some Sekiro, I'd put it up there with Fire Emblem, easily. Shame I missed out on it earlier in the year.
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Temp Banned for Remedial Purposes
I didn't play enough new games to participate but am looking forward to the results.
Switching between Chimeras allows for a whole dearth of complex combos and attack options
I enjoyed and appreciate your writeups for each of the ten games, thanks a lot for taking the time and effort. However, I couldn't help but nitpick this particular line.

They're Legions and "dearth" is the opposite word you want in this context. You did get me thinking of W101 though! :D


I just voted for 6 games for best game of 2019, then I saw that the other great games I would have nominated are from my backlog hahaha. Great year nonetheless, but 2020 seems promising!
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I enjoyed and appreciate your writeups for each of the ten games, thanks a lot for taking the time and effort. However, I couldn't help but nitpick this particular line.

They're Legions and "dearth" is the opposite word you want in this context. You did get me thinking of W101 though! :D

Silly me! Fixed!


1. Katana Zero
2. Astral Chain
3. Slay The Spire
4. Dragon Quest XI-S
5. Tetris 99
6. Ring Fit Adventures
7. Fire Emblem: Three Houses
8. Odallus(please add!)
9. Bloodstained: RotN
10. Minit

Most anticipated: PS4 price drops of Sekiro DunDunDunpachi DunDunDunpachi , Death Stranding, Resident Evil 2; Elden Ring, Hollow Knight: Silksong.


1. Outer worlds
2. Kingdom hearts 3
3. Resident evil 2 remake
4. Age of empires 2 definitive edition
5. Astral chain
6. Sekiro: Shadow die twice
7. DMC5
8. Borderlands 3
9. Control
10. Greedfall
Still have to play three houses and disco Elysium.
This year is so hard because none of the games I played is GOTY worthy. Forced out a list anyway though. Worst year for me tied with 2012. Ugh
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I could only do 6 despite playing 9/10 from this year. Some weren't worth my time overall.

I did vote on the Best Genres though and hope some I picked are at least 3rd and 4th.


Unconfirmed Member
There are so many games that came out decades ago on this list and some that aren't even out yet. (worldwide)


Let's do a top 5:

1. DMC V
2. Fire Emblem: Three Houses
3. Resident Evil 2: Remake
4. Super Mario Maker 2
5. Pokemon Sword and Shield

Honorable mentions:

- Final Fantasy XIV: Shadowbringers, didn't finish it yet, but so far I've been really digging the QoL improvements and new areas.
- Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (Smooth as jazz, too bad I'm kinda burnt out on CoD)
- Luigi's Mansion 3 (Finally a proper sequel to the original, amazing level design)

Pretty easy choices. Japanese games have been killing it these past few years.
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I haven’t played Death Stranding and couldn’t care less about it. I was just wondering what someone who doesn’t play video games, GOTY would be.

That's a crying shame because the last 4 chapters make it one of the best games that I've played since God of War. It's clear to me having achieved the platinum trophy that the vast majority of reviewers didn't play past chapter 3. It proved it when later chapters introduced tools that counters complaints reviewers made about the game being slow, mundane, difficult to travel etc. Well when you've built the roads, you're smashing deliveries in your truck, fighting off mules, destroying BT's before they attack and exploring the vast chiral network, the story grips you by the throat and is genuinely heart breaking at the end. It's not about the beginning but the journey.
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