Rant Time #1: The Game Awards

Hey guys! I’m back with another new series called Rant Time, where I’ll discuss certain patterns or trends that I see and almost make me upset in a sense on a personal level. Well, here we go.

So the 2017 game awards happened, and in some ways I am satisfied, while in others, I am, well, ready to rant.

Game of the Year. This category has troubled me ever since last year when Overwatch won over Uncharted 4. (I will always have some salt in my heart after that, and will tie this into the article later.) So this year’s nominees are Persona 5. Zelda: BOTW, Super Mario Odyssey, PUBG, and Horizon Zero Dawn. Looking at this list for the first time, my friends and I automatically eliminated the last two. It’s not because they are bad games, but because they simply don’t come close to the other three. PUBG’s creator said he didn’t think his game should be on the list at all.

So, between BOTW, Odyssey and Persona 5, the only thing that interested me and angered me at the same time is how two of these three games are Nintendo exclusives, and overrated ones at that. While I respect what Odyssey was trying to do, and the new mechanics it presented, it’s still the same old story: Mario has to save Peach from Bowser, they just changed the way to get there. Meanwhile Breath of the Wild is essentially what if Dark Souls was easy and featured characters from Zelda. The issue is nostalgia. Once Nintendo puts its name on anything it is instantly golden: hell, Odyssey was released under a week or so before the game awards were even announced. If you want insanely good reviews for your game, just stick this logo on the cover:

It sometimes is truly about quality, but Odyssey and BOTW are not 9/10 or 10/10 in any way. Both of these titles have mediocre-to-boring plots bein done for the thousandth time, but all reviewers see is “oh look, that character I grew up with has changed so much, so 10/10, Game of the Year!” In the years to come, Nintendo nostalgia will be replaced by warm feelings towards the PlayStation and Xbox because these are the systems a lot of us are making memories on. This effect, though, splits what is objectively the Game of the Year and what the general population believes is Game of the Year. This is just like last year, where Overwatch got a cult following and this cult following led it to victory over Uncharted 4.

This leads to my next point: what exactly is the criteria for a game to be nominated/win Game of the Year? Well, for me it depends. To me, being the lover of story telling and literature that I am, I feel that a Game of the Year needs great gameplay (mechanics, combat, etc.) with a great story to elevate that game play to another level.

This year Persona 5 did it the best. In terms of gameplay, it is extraordinary: I will admit it is equal or on par to BOTW or Odyssey. However, the story blows everything else out of the water. BOTW doesn’t come close, even with SOME new story elements, to the completely new and original story of Persona 5. The only excuse I hate to hear from my friends is, “Well, you know, it’s not meant to be a great story.” Then what is a game for? Movies, TV, books, video games, these are media whose purpose is to help us become emotionally connected to characters and feel like we are going on a journey along with them. I hate the whole argument of “it’s meant to be a storytelling game.” Well, if that’s the case, then the game should not be at such a high price as $60. I understand that these media are completely opinionated in what they are and their purpose. So let’s go back to 2016.

Overwatch vs Uncharted 4.

Uncharted 4 is the conclusion to one of the best game series of our generation, with a story that is truly immersive and gameplay and graphics that are stunning. Meanwhile, Overwatch is a huge multiplayer games with characters that only get developed outside of the game. Why am I spending $40 to $60 on a game where I don’t care about the characters and the fight I am going on. Here is the other thing: while yes, the game is fun – you know what, I made an article talking about this overrated piece of junk. Go check it out. Objectively, it is no contest. Uncharted 4 and even Persona 5 were simply better games all around. Unfortunately, we have this thing called voting, and that’s fine, but maybe the votes should go towards something like Fan Game of the Year.

It’s a gripe I have with music shows like American Idol or The Voice or America’s Got Talent. We take away the power from people who know what they’re talking about to give a mass of people the final call over the competitors, and some of us go “well, that sounds great!” In some ways, I absolutely understand, but I think we also need to let the true professionals take over. I believe if it were up to the critics that Uncharted 4 would have won. Unfortunately, BOTW still would have won due to the nostalgia factor involving Nintendo I discussed earlier.

I think I have finished ranting now. I thank you all who have read and I really want to know your views on this issue/topic. Thanks so much.


Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.