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Exber's GOTY Awards 2021


It all has come down to this, me changing the name of my yearly awards while also adding three new categories and, sharing it outside my gaming circle to curious effects. To share one's love is something I learnt this past year, and last but not least, here I am sharing once again, my game awards.

1) Best Narrative

Winner: STAY

Runner up: Xenoblade Chronicles

A visual novel that tackles depression in a really serious matter without forgetting that we are indeed playing a video game? Sold.

2) Best Character

Winner: Rose - The Legend of Dragoon

Runner up: Quinn - STAY

A somewhat soulless woman who only cares about the mission turned out to be a person who a strong heart and emphatic personality behind her shadow shelf. Loved every line of dialogue from her.

3) Best Antagonist

Winner: Dr. Fetus

Runner up: Raven Beak

Silly, always present, a pain the ass. Dr Fetus is this antagonist I didn't know I would love so much.

4) Best Soundtrack

Winner: Pandora's Tower

Runner up: Xenoblade Chronicles

5) Best Protagonist

Winner: Ryu Hayabusa - Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 Plus

Runner up: Ace - Final Fantasy Type 0

Just like it happened with the original release of Ninja Gaiden 2 back in the NES, this sequel goes beyond its predecessor in its storytelling by giving us a Ryu with a lot more personality that with only few lines proves to be a hell of a protagonist.

6) Best Surprise

Winner: Tearaway

Runner up: Zelda Four Swords Adventures

The reviews back when it released told so: this is another tech demo made into a game. Felt like kid all over again smiling at the game to take a picture of me. Truly a joy.

7) Best Ending

Winner: Final Fantasy Type 0

Runner up: Xenoblade Chronicles

8) Best Boss Fights

Winner: Pandora's Tower

Runner up: Metroid Dread

Not only it sometimes was truly challenging to get to them in each of the 12 towers but their battles demanded even more skills. That change in vocals after the 6th boss rocks.

9) Best Sequel/Prequel

Winner: Runner 2

Runner up: Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 Plus

How can a game so simple be so simple yet again in the sequel but with tiny touches here and there to make it better? Enter, Runner 2.

10) Best Graphics

Winner: Uncharted Golden Abyss

Runner up: Street Fighter x Tekken

A portable PS3, nuff said. The Vita was the closest thing we had to a Switch back in 2012.

11) Best Console

Winner: PlayStation Vita

Runner up: Nintendo Wii

Probably the console which I had been craving to buy for the longest time. Have to admit however, I used not to care for it at all. Growing up has its perks, all right.

12) Best Multiplayer

Winner: Resident Evil 5

Runner up: Just Dance series

13) Best Final Boss

Winner: Metroid Dread

Runner up: Xenoblade Chronicles

14) Best Series

Final Fantasy

15) Best Moment

Winner: True Story - Persona 4 Golden

Runner up: Last Friday Night - Just Dance 2022

16) Best Theme

Winner: Cosmic Highway - DK Barrel Blast

Runner up: Like The Dragon - Persona 4 Arena

17) Best Opening

Winner: World of Final Fantasy

Runner up: Street Fighter x Tekken

18) Best Replay

Winner: Bloody Roar 2

Runner up: Vagrant Story

The improvements from Bloody Roar 1 to its sequel were something that as a child I couldn't comprehend. These replays of mine let me appreciate games even more.

19) Best Innovation

Winner: Dismemberment - Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 Plus

Runner up: Vision - Xenoblade Chronicles

I am a gore fan, what can I say?

20) Best Gameplay

Winner: Pandora's Tower

Runner up: Salt and Sanctuary

This game is a mix of many gameplay elements that more often than not end up in a mess. Pandora's Tower does things right while using the Wiimote to a simple yet great effect.

21) Best Song

Winner: Snowflakes - Persona 4 Golden

Runner up: Beyond the Sky - Xenoblade Chronicles

Is incredible how a game that already was master class in many areas continues to expand its greatness in an enhanced version. That extra month listening to this in the background made the whole unlocking process worth it.

22) Best Voice Acting (New Category)

Winner: Xenoblade Chronicles

Runner up: Persona 4 Golden

23) Best Sound Design (New Category)

Winner: Pandora's Tower

Runner up: Tearaway

24) Best Real Life Moment Thanks To A Video Game (New Category)

Being front paged over here was a dream I saw years away from happening, then this happened and I literally jumped in my room out of joy. I am grateful to have an space where I can be myself and share my deepest thoughts, and to be awarded by an editor as to see one's work on the front page? Destructoid, you have my thanks.

25) Best Game

10: Dishonored


8: Salt And Sanctuary

7: Metroid Dread

6: Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 Plus

5: A Boy And His Blob

4: Persona 4 Golden

3: World of Final Fantasy

But first, let's take a look at all the 45 games I played this 2021:

Xenoblade Chronicles
Donkey Kong Barrel Blast
Final Fantasy III
007 From Russia With Love
Super Meat Boy
Final Fantasy Type 0
Bloodstained Curse of the Moon
Pandora's Tower
Just Dance 2021
Mario & Luigi Superstar Saga
Zelda Four Swords Adventures
Salt and Sanctuary
Kirby Mass Attack
Doom 2
Axiom Verge
Def Jam Icon
Persona 4 Arena
Mighty Number 9
The Legend of Dragoon
Dragon's Crown
No More Heroes
Runner 2
Persona 4 Golden
A Boy and His Blob
PlayStation All Stars Battle Royale
Uncharted Golden Abyss
Jet Set Radio
Stree Figher x Tekken
Ninja Gaiden Sigma Plus
World of Final Fantasy
Half Life 2
Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 Plus
Metroid Dread
Metal Gear Solid 2 HD
Metal Gear Solid 3 HD
Just Dance 2022

2 & Runner up: Xenoblade Chronicles

1 & Winner: Pandora's Tower

Pandora's Tower (Nintendo Wii) Análisis | GameDynamo

"Being this the first game Ganbarion released trying to do something new and original without forgetting their cultural references, Pandora's Tower is affected by the team's vision. Affected I say? Yeah, but not in a bad way because this game serves as yet another reason not to overlook any kind of art from any medium due to the background they might have. I, for one, don't like anime that much or when any culture clouds a product too much making it hard to grasp for the general public. Such is not the case here. Take Dragon Ball (anime), and Parasite (korean movie) both products of their culture that went all out to deliver a message they believed only meant something for their demography but that actually applies for everyone. Pandora's Tower did just that, relying on working Japanese tropes to remind us of the importance of love, loss, and acceptance. Available on Wii, and on Wii U through Virtual Console."

Thanks for Reading.

- As expected, video games made this possible.

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About Exberone of us since 7:47 PM on 04.07.2020

I guess these would be considered as my stats, so here I go:

I'm Exber, not related to my name by any means. I'm from Venezuela and I'm an English Teacher.

I have been playing video games since I was 4 years old. Goldeneye 007 for the Nintendo 64 is my first gaming memory.

Console gamer for the love of everything retro. I play on PS1, PS2, PS3, PSP, PS Vita, Nintendo 64, GameCube, Wii, 3DS, DS, GBA, Xbox 360, and Wii U.

Resident Evil and Persona share the spot as my favorite gaming series. Following this, here are my favorite games per year along with the runner ups:

2006: The Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time

2007: Resident Evil 2

2008: Persona 4
Runner Up: Resident Evil 4

2010: Metal Gear Solid 3 Snake Eater
Runner Up: Final Fantasy XII

2011: Radiant Historia
Runner Up: Okami

2012: Klonoa Door to Phantomile
Runner Up: Tomb Raider Anniversary

2013: Fatal Frame 3 The Tormented
Runner Up: Silent Hill 4

2014: Onimusha Dawn of Dreams
Runner Up: Resident Evil Zero

2015: The Legend of Zelda Skyward Sword
Runner Up: Final Fantasy IV

2016: Final Fantasy IX
Runner Up: A Link Between Worlds

2017: Persona 5
Runner Up: Brothers A Tale of Two Sons

2018: Skies of Arcadia Legends
Runner Up: Zelda Spirit Tracks

2019: Persona Q2 New Cinema Labyrinth
Runner Up: Ghost Trick

2020: Metal Gear Solid Peace Walker
Runner Up: Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy

2021: Pandora's Tower
Runner Up: Xenoblade Chronicles

2022: Super Paper Mario
Runner Up: Child of Light

I try to learn the most I can with every video game, thus my Retro GOTY winners won a place in me. Best examples are Persona 4 (2008) and Final Fantasy IX (2016).

GameSpot and GameInformer were the sites that granted me the opportunity to blog prior to coming here. Good times.

I'm currently 29 years old. Come May 10th and I'll level up.

Favorite color: green.

Favorite number: 4.

Favorite video game genre: Survival Horror. RPGs come second.

Favorite movie: 13 going on 30.

Favorite TV Show: Mr. Robot

Favorite game of all time: Persona 4.