2021 is nearly done and I don’t know about you but I think it’s been a peach. The start of the year was a strong showing for Playstation with games like Returnal and Ratchet and Clank, Nintendo brought Metroid back to life and then Xbox closed the year out with a couple of great titles in Forza Horizon 5 and Halo Infinite. Welcome to the TWM Game Awards 2021!
It’s the first time in many years that all 3 major brands could argue that they had the game of the year. There’s also been a couple of big surprises from games that weren’t expected to do great that turned out to smash hits.
That’s not to say 2021 has been perfect, as the big 3 have also made a couple of major errors and faced fan backlash. Xbox had planned to change the pricing structure of Xbox Live and had to swiftly backtrack such was the uproar from fans, Nintendo’s N64 emulation for Switch seemed to be far behind what fans have been able to do for years and even the normally bulletproof Playstation had to about-turn on plans to close down online stores for legacy platforms like PSP and PS3.
Not to mention that many games that were due in 2021 have slipped into later release dates in 2022 or later due to the continuing pandemic that’s affected, everyone. Office’s remain closed with work from home the norm for huge numbers of workers. This also means that even over a year after launch, the newest consoles from Sony and Xbox remain unavailable for large numbers of players that are desperate to own them.
But in my opinion, at least, it’s still been a good year for gamers with titles released all year round that’ll be playing for some time to come.
With that in mind, I asked the wonderful writers at TWM for their feedback on a couple of nominations for some of their favourites of the year and I’m pleased to give you our thoughts on them.
TWM Game Awards 2021 | Biggest Surprise of the year
This was a category I was keen to include, as there have been many games this year that I just wasn’t expecting to be as good as they ended up being. No one can help but have preconceived ideas about what to expect on some titles, due to the massive amount of coverage they tend to get nowadays. This can be good or bad and that’s why I try as many games as possible to make up my own opinions.
Here are the games that surprised us the most!
- Far Cry 6
- Riders Republic
- Knockout City
- Halo Infinite Multiplayer
- Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy
- Life is Strange True Colours
Winner= Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy
Firstly, go try all of the included games from this section. Every game here is worthy of your time for one reason or another. However, if you only have time or cash for one of them, I’d recommend Guardians.
No one expected such a well-made game and it’s turned out to be a highlight for anyone that’s jumped in. It also acted like such a good pallet cleanser after the disappointment that was The Avengers game. It proved that it’s not only Insomniac that came take a Marvel property and create a smash-hit.
Good gameplay, great story and beautiful visuals combine for a wonderful single-player experience.
TWM Game Awards 2021 | 2022 Most wanted
Looking forward to 2022, it’s looking like it could be an even better year for gamers, no matter their console of choice. Plenty of planned titles already had release dates for 2022, so some of these might only be shown in trailers or teasers. That doesn’t stop us from wanting to know or see more about them though. Although there is still the lingering doubt that as least one of the planned 2022 releases might slip to 2023 (I’m looking at you Starfield…..), these are the titles we want to see ASAP!
- Elden Ring
- GTA 6
- Horizon: Forbidden West
- Pokémon Legends: Arceus
- Saints Row
- Elder Scrolls 6
Winner= Horizon: Forbidden West
Playstation really struck gold when it came to the IP of Horizon. Gamers were taken aback by the beautiful visuals and world on offer and it looks like this is set to continue with the sequel. This was an overwhelming victory in terms of votes and from the trailers shown so far, it’s not hard to see why.
Being totally selfish, I’d also love a release date from PC. I finally got round to experiencing Aloy’s story in 2021 and I’m sure there are plenty of players begging for this to make its way to PC’s, even if it is at a later date. Please Playstation with cherries on top? Hopefully, we find out more come February.
TWM Game Awards 2021 | Most Played
Gaming doesn’t always need to be about new releases, I know I have a backlog that I have little chance of ever getting through and imagine I would imagine I’m not alone in that situation. However as much as I like a new game to drop, I probably spent more of my time on older games or revisiting classics at higher settings. As such here’s what the lovely writers at TWM found themselves playing the most in 2021.
- Dark Souls
- Assassin’s Creed Vahalla
- Red Dead Redemption 2
- Pokemon Snap
- Pokemon Unbound (RomHack)
- The Outer Worlds
- Dead by Daylight
- Persona 5 Strikers
Winner= Assasins Creed Vahalla
Having spent a large number of hours exploring the world of AC Vahalla, I’m not surprised this was mentioned so often by our writers. The game is huge (a little too huge in my honest opinion…), and alongside this was a late release back in 2020. It makes sense that it could be a game we’ve lost too many hours to.
Although I thought it was a little too padded out at times, the core gameplay and story are good as they have been for some time and I’m looking forward to trying out the next DLC content due to release in 2022 called Dawn of Ragnarök. This ditches the realistic historical setting in favour of fantasy and mythology. Who knows, maybe it could be enough to get the game another nomination in this category come the end of 2022.
TWM Game Awards 2021 | The Game of the Year
That brings us to the big one. Note to reader, if your favourite game isn’t here it doesn’t mean it’s not a good game, it just means that that we never enjoyed it as much as you…. Or maybe We’ve just not got round to it in our backlogs from hell……
Here are the top picks from TWM:
- Life is Strange: True Colours
- Psychonauts 2
- Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy
- Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart
- Forza Horizon 5
- Far Cry 6
Winner= Forza Horizon 5
Forza takes a narrow victory here with Life is Strange and Guardians of the Galaxy all receiving multiple votes but having played all of the above, you can’t really go wrong with anything from this list.
Forza Horizon has historically always been good and every title has been highly regarded by critics and fans. But with the fifth entry in the series, everything is turned to 11 and it’s the best it’s ever been. Totally stunning to look at and it showcases developers Playground Games at the absolute height of their powers. This is the type of game that will continue to get played for years to come.
The driving feels so good and there are huge amounts of races and vistas to complete or explore. In 2022 we should be getting even more content in the form of DLC for the game and I can’t wait to get back to the race.
That’s all from us just now, but we’ll hopefully be back again in 2022 with our favourites once again. Whatever your favourite game of 2021 was, I wish you happiness during your time with it.