• Graphics
  • Sound
  • Innovation
  • Mojo
  • Multiplayer
  • Downloadable
  • Follow Up
  • Character
  • New I.P.

• Uncharted 2: Among Thieves | Publisher: SCEA | Developer: Naughty Dog

Graphically, 2009 was pushed the limits of the hardware, proving once again, the best has yet to be seen. Well in 2009, the best game we seen was Uncharted 2: Among Thieves. The capabilities and profencency of Uncharted 2 is above the pack of followers who come close, but never seem to hit the same depth and realism as Uncharted 2. Running on its own proprietary game engine, Uncharted 2 effortlessly showcases
smooth motion capture animations, extravagant level design, and solid special effects. Hands down, Uncharted 2: Among Thieves is the years hottest looking game.


Killzone 2 (SCEA/Guerilla Games)
Honorable Mentions: Batman: Arkham Asylum, inFAMOUS, Assassin's Creed II, Forza Motorsport 3

GOTY08: Metal Gear Solid 4 GOTY07: Bioshock GOTY06: Gears of War
[Read the Full Review]

• Uncharted 2: Among Thieves | Publisher: SCEA | Developer: Naughty Dog

Interesting enough the best sound design doesn't not always mirror the best graphics winner, although that isn't the case in 2009. This year, Uncharted 2: Among Thieves is picking up both our awards, which hasn't happened since 2006's Gears of War. Like the graphics production, Naughty Dog has really outdone themselves with Uncharted 2. Nolan North (Drake), Emily Rose (Elena), Claudie Black (Chole), and the rest of the cast deserves all the accolades they accumulate with their work for Uncharted 2. And let's not forget about Greg Edmonson who did an all-star job capturing the mood of Uncharted 2.

GTAIV: The Ballad of Gay Tony (Rockstar Games)
Honorable Mentions: Batman: Arkham Asylum, F.E.A.R. 2, Halo: ODST, Brutal Legend, DJ Hero, CODMW2

GOTY08: COD: World at War GOTY07: Mass Effect GOTY06: Gears of War
[Read the Full Review]


• Scribblenauts | Publisher: WB Interactive | Developer: 5th Cell

It is surprising that a Nintendo DS game hasn't be up for an innovation award in past, given the versatility, and innovation of the portable platform. Most developers who developer for the Nintendo DS are always struggling with what the hardware can't do, rather than what it can. In 2009, the winds of change must be blowing because our winnnter, and runner-up are both Nintendo DS titles! but, of course there can only be one winner, and in 2009 it is Scibblenauts.

What is the innovation here? It is simple, Scribblenauts takes the concept of turning childlike drawings into life, and makes it work! In Scribblenauts you can simply pen in words, and the words you wrote will come to life as a useable item in the gamespace. It might not sound like a brilliant innovation, until pick up the game, and you will see what I mean. With over 22'000 words, Scribblenauts encourages the player to think and create while dealing with its challenging puzzles. With multiple ways of accomplishing each goal, Scribblenauts gives the player an unprecedented amount of freedom which something other developers should think about when creating their product.


GTA: Chinatown Wars (Rockstar Games)
Honorable Mentions: Uncharted 2: Among Thieves, DJ Hero, inFAMOUS, Borderlands, Prototype

GOTY08: Fable II GOTY07: Mass Effect GOTY06: Viva Pinata
[Read the Full Review]

• Batman: Arkham Asylum | Publisher: WB Interactive, Eidos Interactive | Developer: Rocksteady

The Mojo has been flowing in 2009, but the outstanding achievement in cool is awarded to Batman: Arkham Asylum. Rocksteady did the impossible by making a "good" comic book adapted game. Like the recent films, Arkham Asylum deals with the darker side of the Caped Cruisader as he battles in arche nemesis in his own personal purgatory. Filled with a list of villian-whos who, you get to explore deep into the lore of DC Comics Batman while becoming one with the Dark Knight. Batman: Arkham Asylum rocks the mojo like no one else!

Assassin's Creed II (Ubisoft/Ubisoft Montreal)
Honorable Mentions: Uncharted 2, CODMW2, Brutal Legend, Prototype, Borderlands, DJ Hero

GOTY08: Fallout 3 GOTY07: Heavenly Sword GOTY06: Elderscrolls: Oblivion
[Read the Full Review]

• Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 | Publisher: Activision | Developer: Infinity Ward

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 is the clear winner for 'Multiplayer Game of the Year'. The first Modern Warfare built the foundation, World at War added to it, and now Modern Warfare 2 knocks it out of the park with its clan ready multiplayer. Even more impressive then the standard multiplayer component is the new Spec-Ops missions that feature dynamic co-op missions that keep you earning medals until you fall asleep with the controller in your hand. There where a lot of great multiplayer games in 2009. However, the one you should remember is Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.

Halo: ODST (Microsoft/Bungie)
Honorable Mentions: Left 4 Dead 2, Beatles: Rock Band, Borderlands, Killzone 2, Forza Motorsport 3

GOTY08: COD: World at War GOTY07: Halo 3 GOTY06: Gears of War
[Read the Full Review]


• Shadow Complex | Publisher: Microsoft | Developer: Chair Entertainment

The best downloadable game of 2009 is Chair Entertainment's Shadow Complex. Set at $15, this Xbox Live Arcade exclusive is almost a steal, and one game that s
houldn't be disregarded because it is only a downloadable game. In all respects, Shadow Complex, and its 2D platforming shooting is one of the best games of the year. It's nice to see the high level of production go into a downloadable game. You would be hard pressed to find a more enjoyable gaming experience at this price point. Simply remarkable.


GTAIV: The Ballad of Gay Tony (Rockstar Games)
Honorable Mentions: Fat Princess, Braid, R&C Future: A Crack in Time, Flower, Battlefield 1943

GOTY08: R&C Future: Quest for Booty GOTY07: Pac-Man: Championship Edition
[Read the Full Review]

• Assassin's Creed II | Publisher: Ubisoft | Developer: Ubisoft Montreal

After a numerous complaints about the repetitive nature of the first Assassin's, Ubisoft Montreal set out to improve, and vary up the core gameplay of their anticipated sequel. Assassin's Creed II, our 'Best Follow-up of 2009' is twice the game than the original. Assassin's Creed II stays true to the formula, while changing it up just enough to win over the majority of doubters. Assassin's Creed II is how you create a sequel, and because it was an original I.P. to start with, the conception of what Assassin's Creed should be, hasn't been established. Sneaking around the French countryside couldn't be any more engaging, and with all the new little additions Ubisoft has thrown into the mix, this is one game that will occupy you for a long time. Now, the question is, where do we go from here?

Killzone 2 (SCEA/Guerilla Games)
Honorable Mentions: COD:MW2, GTAIV:TBOGT, Red Faction: Guerilla, Overlord II, Left 4 Dead 2, Guitar Hero 5

GOTY08: Fallout 3 GOTY07: Super Mario Galaxy GOTY06: GRAW2
[Read the Full Review]

• Nathan Drake from Uncharted 2: Among Thieves | Publisher: SCEA | Developer: Naughty Dog

It is hard to think of the Uncharted series without its leading protagonist Nathan Drake. Voiced by Nolan North (the busiest voice actor in gaming), Nathan's everyman persona, and plain look is one that really attaches itself to a world of gaming that is usually overindulged with over-the-top characters. Staring in Uncharted 2, Nathan Drake is our 'Best Character of 2009', not only because Uncharted 2 is awesome, because Nathan Drake helped make Uncharted 2 awesome. Drake is exactly what we expect a real hero to be, and best yet, he isn't exploited or meant to be seen as perfect. Drake imperfect movements, near death situations, and honesty makes him one of the faces of the Playstation 3, and our Best Character of 2009.

Anthony “Gay Tony” Price from GTAIV: The Ballad of Gay Tony (Rockstar Games)
Honorable Mentions: Ezio Auditore (AC2), Batman (Arkham Asylum), Eddie Riggs (Brutal Legend), The Joker (Arkham Asylum)

GOTY08: Sackboy GOTY07: Big Daddy & Little Sister(s) GOTY06: Tony Montana
[Read the Full Review]

• Dragon Age: Origins | Publisher: Electronc Arts | Developer: Bioware

2009 spawned a number of interesting, and great original I.P.s which include several games that will likely get the sequel treatment. The one that we have picked out of the litter to represent the best new I.P of 2009 is Bioware's Dragon Age: Origins. Dragon Age: Origins is the type of game that is meant to be exploited and branched off over the years. Like the popular series it was inspired from Dragon Age can only go up from here as Bioware expands its fantasy world. Origins is only the start, and we will be closely watching this series to see how it does going into the next century.

Borderlands (2K Games/Gearbox)
Honorable Mentions: Brutal Legend, Prototype, inFAMOUS, DJ Hero, Scribblenauts, UFC 2009 Undisputed

GOTY08: Little Big Planet GOTY07: Rock Band
[Read the Full Review]