The Escapist Reader's Choice Game of the Year 2014 Winner Is ...

| 30 Dec 2014 16:00
readers choice goty 2014 3x3 2

After a month of voting, the winner of the Reader's Choice Game of the Year for 2014 can finally be crowned.

I know a lot of people out there didn't think 2014 was a very good year. Sure, it doesn't beat the banner years of 2011 or 1999, but I personally had a lot of fun playing all kinds of different games in 2014. It's easy to be cynical - it takes effort to show your love of the medium we all enjoy despite its foibles. You guys and girls did so this month by participating in our Reader's Choice Game of the Year bracket for 2014 where we pit 16 games head-to-head. The winner would move on to the next round and face another game title, until only two games were left.

This year those two games were Dragon Age: Inquisition and Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor (see how I didn't capitalize the "e" in earth like a boss???). Both of these games have similar fantasy trappings, but they felt extremely different in execution. DA:I is a sweeping epic RPG, while Mordor boasts a concise mechanic with tons of possibility for emergent storytelling with its nemesis system. Which was better? You voted in this championship round to determine the answer.

In the end, BioWare's game earned the most support from Escapist readers, winning nearly two-thirds of the vote. You have spoken.

The Escapist Reader's Choice Game of the year 2014 is Dragon Age: Inquisition.

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Many congratulations to the team at BioWare for creating a wonderful RPG! You've certainly earned your winter break this year.

In addition to crowning the winning game, we also get to crown the winning Escapist readers who correctly predicted how the bracket would shake out. The best three will receive some awesome gaming gear from our friends at Roccat. There were six readers who perfectly predicted the entire bracket (holy shit) and we used an extremely scientific method (a d6) to randomly choose the prize winners. The rest of the top ten placing brackets (also chosen randomly) will receive a year's subscription to The Escapist's Publisher's club.

We'll be sending out PMs to the winners in the next week with instructions on how to claim your prize but here is a handy-dandy list of the winners for bragging rights.

  1. Daelin Dwin
  2. Lamnidae
  3. dragonet111
  4. suitepee7
  5. Childe
  6. LegendarySoap
  7. Blazingdragoon04
  8. tixmix
  9. MacChris1991
  10. Guilherme Bernardo

Congratulations to all of the winners! Thanks for participating in The Escapist's Reader's Choice Game of the Year bracket.

Happy gaming in 2015!

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mattttherman3:
Good thing Valve didn't release anything good this year. Really glad to see BioWare win one here. They have never IMHO, released a truly dreadful game. Dragon age 2 was not terrible, it was average.

I agree with you on that. I could write a pretty long review about how I felt about Dragon Age 2, but I'll leave it at this: going in with low expectations, I was pleasantly surprised. There were definitely some issues, serious ones that couldn't be overlooked (repeating mobs and environments), but I thought the story concept was interesting, and thought the characters overall were quite well-written (Isabella notwithstanding).

Good thing Valve didn't release anything good this year. Really glad to see BioWare win one here. They have never IMHO, released a truly dreadful game. Dragon age 2 was not terrible, it was average.

llamastorm.games:

Remember when people just played games...

Yeah, I remember playing better games years ago. Even Dragons Dogma with all its problems was better.

llamastorm.games:
For me Shadow Of Mordor is the most exciting game that has come out in a long time, the "game" itself is quite serviceable but I find it to be one of the only actually innovative games I've seen for a long time. I am quite excited for the next 2-3 games that use a similar system.
Imagine that system in Skyrim or even Borderlands, the results could be incredible...

As for Dragon Age: Inquisition - I'm not all that far in, ~5 hours worth of a normal persons playing time, and it is probably the best game I've played all year.
I find some people are oddly critical and very negative about gaming in general all of the time.

I didn't play this game...
This game was crap, I played a dozen obscure games only about 5 other people played and they were miles better...
I've never heard of it until this post...
The resolution and fps aren't high enough, despite gaming being around for 40 years and only having reached 1080/60 in the last few years if a game doesn't hit these numbers it is automatically shit regardless of the game itself....
It has "insert random thing" wrong with it so it's shit...
I only play games on PC and I have no interest in this game and most of the other games were console only so it sucks...
I don't agree so it's wrong...
EA...

Remember when people just played games...

Yeah, I remember that time as well.

The reason why I like Dragon Age: Inquisition the most isn't something I can really put my finger on, but it got my vote for Game of the Year because it is the only game this year where I went back and started a second game as soon as I was done with it. I thought Alien: Isolation might have the same result, but I got so frustrated with the second half of the game I traded it in as soon as I was done.

For me Shadow Of Mordor is the most exciting game that has come out in a long time, the "game" itself is quite serviceable but I find it to be one of the only actually innovative games I've seen for a long time. I am quite excited for the next 2-3 games that use a similar system.
Imagine that system in Skyrim or even Borderlands, the results could be incredible...

As for Dragon Age: Inquisition - I'm not all that far in, ~5 hours worth of a normal persons playing time, and it is probably the best game I've played all year.
I find some people are oddly critical and very negative about gaming in general all of the time.

I didn't play this game...
This game was crap, I played a dozen obscure games only about 5 other people played and they were miles better...
I've never heard of it until this post...
The resolution and fps aren't high enough, despite gaming being around for 40 years and only having reached 1080/60 in the last few years if a game doesn't hit these numbers it is automatically shit regardless of the game itself....
It has "insert random thing" wrong with it so it's shit...
I only play games on PC and I have no interest in this game and most of the other games were console only so it sucks...
I don't agree so it's wrong...
EA...

Remember when people just played games...

Props to Dragon Age: Inquisition winning. I am still proud of Dark Souls 2 making it so far and even having the majority of users wishing for it to compete in the finale. All well... i'll still love my beloved Dark Souls forever and ever.

Besides, this was a fun event. There wasn't much of flaming period which was a huge relief. Quite the peaceful event I dare say.

Xsjadoblayde:
I still have yet to play shadow of mordor as the last gen ports are so terrible, i cannot bring myself to put the disc back in until i hear of any fix patches released. Why no journalists are mentioning this contrast, is beyond me.

So yeah...Good one Bioware! You did an absolutely outstanding job of renewing faith in Dragon Age! Still miss my old mates; Shale, Alistair and Morrigan though...

I doubt any member of your squad that could die will ever return as a companion because of what happened with Mass Effect 3 and what happened when they had to create two characters to fill a single role.

marioandsonic:
I don't agree with this. Not that it was bad, but I don't think it's that great either. And yet it's gotten so many game of the year awards...

Maybe that's because this year was full of disappointments from AAA publishers?

It could be that other people saw things to enjoy in the game that you didn't, for there have been many games released over the last few years that I never liked that got a lot of praise. I am fine with Dragon Age: Inquisition being voted because a lot of games (including Inquisition) suffered from being released on five platforms.

never played the game nor will i in the future since i didnt even like the first game. more than half of the game listed i have never played either not available on pc or no interest.

I don't agree with this. Not that it was bad, but I don't think it's that great either. And yet it's gotten so many game of the year awards...

Maybe that's because this year was full of disappointments from AAA publishers?

I still have yet to play shadow of mordor as the last gen ports are so terrible, i cannot bring myself to put the disc back in until i hear of any fix patches released. Why no journalists are mentioning this contrast, is beyond me.

So yeah...Good one Bioware! You did an absolutely outstanding job of renewing faith in Dragon Age! Still miss my old mates; Shale, Alistair and Morrigan though...

That game didnt click at all with me, from the "Hold Right Trigger to attack" to the MMO grindfest

Well, I for one, can never get enough of this MMO-structure-without-pesky-speedruners-who-kick-you-out-of-the-party-if-you-decide-to-take-a-minute-to-enjoy-the-the-vistas-or watch-the-cutscenes type of games.

***

the PS4,Xbox One and PC visuals are nothing special but the PS3/Xbox 360 ones are just terrible

Correction: the Hinterlands look terrible: the rest of the game goes from okay to pretty once they take the party away from Ferelden canonically established brownitude and send you to places where warm colors exist.

You guys spelled Persona Q wrong...

Tito has been waiting for this moment all year.

2014 had some great titles, but so many massively hyped, advertised to complete media saturation titles that were just . . . meh. I suppose as I have less and less gaming time, the requisite number of good games to fill my time continues to drop.

thebobmaster:
It's kind of interesting, really. I mean, there are a LOT of people on here critical about EA's every move, that say that Bioware is going downhill, that EA drains the talent from every company they get their vampire hands on...and yet Dragon Age: Inquisition won Game of the Year by a comfortable lead.

I'm not saying that the people who are skeptical about EA are wrong, or that their beliefs are ill-founded. It's just an interesting juxtaposition, to me. I haven't played DA:I yet, so I can't comment on whether it deserves the win.

I've a small theory on why that seems to be... I think there's a chance that some of the folks who're vocal against EA aren't really as vehemently down on EA but they're too much a follower-type personality to go against the grain so they just join in the mob of "hate on EA". But secretly they still buy EA games and enjoy them in the closet. Just my theory.

I personally don't always agree with what EA does and will call them on bullshit like Dungeon Keeper Mobile and BF4's crap release, but overall I still enjoy a lot of EA releases. I think its possible to be critical of a company yet still buy their products. Doesn't mean I'll buy them day 1 or at full price unless I can find a way to deem them worthy of the pricetag.

thebobmaster:
It's kind of interesting, really. I mean, there are a LOT of people on here critical about EA's every move, that say that Bioware is going downhill, that EA drains the talent from every company they get their vampire hands on...and yet Dragon Age: Inquisition won Game of the Year by a comfortable lead.

I'm not saying that the people who are skeptical about EA are wrong, or that their beliefs are ill-founded. It's just an interesting juxtaposition, to me. I haven't played DA:I yet, so I can't comment on whether it deserves the win.

That's pretty much the internet, make a post here about a game and half the time you'll get people telling you how much they hated the game, or the company who made the game, or the industry as a whole.
For most people though games are still enjoyable, they just aren't as fun to listen to.

thebobmaster:
It's kind of interesting, really. I mean, there are a LOT of people on here critical about EA's every move, that say that Bioware is going downhill, that EA drains the talent from every company they get their vampire hands on...and yet Dragon Age: Inquisition won Game of the Year by a landslide.

I'm not saying that the people who are skeptical about EA are wrong, or that their beliefs are ill-founded. It's just an interesting juxtaposition, to me. I haven't played DA:I yet, so I can't comment on whether it deserves the win.

Bioware has managed to put out a quality product despite being owned by EA and that in itself is a small miracle when looking at the past properties that have been mismanaged with as EA as a producer (Simcity, Dungeon Keeper, Dead Space). Still, a lot of money was spent to make Dragon Age: Inquisition, and EA has the deep pockets to provide that dough, so here's too hoping my still favorite game company can keep striking that balance between putting out a great game while keeping Daddy Warbucks happy.

It's kind of interesting, really. I mean, there are a LOT of people on here critical about EA's every move, that say that Bioware is going downhill, that EA drains the talent from every company they get their vampire hands on...and yet Dragon Age: Inquisition won Game of the Year by a comfortable lead.

I'm not saying that the people who are skeptical about EA are wrong, or that their beliefs are ill-founded. It's just an interesting juxtaposition, to me. I haven't played DA:I yet, so I can't comment on whether it deserves the win.

Best written Bioware game I've played (I started with Kotor)with the best cast of characters (outside of Blackwall, I can't believe some people ship him). There were scenes where I sat there and struggled with the choices I had to make for five, ten, and fifteen minutes. It was far from perfect, but I know throughout 2015, it will be this game I will be talking about with my friends, and nothing else.

That game didnt click at all with me, from the "Hold Right Trigger to attack" to the MMO grindfest, the bad visuals (the PS4,Xbox One and PC visuals are nothing special but the PS3/Xbox 360 ones are just terrible) and the poor animations there were plenty of reasons for me not to like.

Shadow of Mordor was kind of fun but it was a very shallow experience and a good example that a good mechanic alone cant support and entire game, especially one that doesnt demand anything from the player.

My picks would either be, Wolfenstein:TNO, Styx: Master of Shadows, The Wolf Among Us and Insurgency (I have also heard very good of The Talos Principle but didnt manage to play it yet, that came so near the end of the year that its hard for it to earn anything).

Congratulations to the contest winners (the users)

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