Game Developers Choice Awards Honors Hades and More

Last night, the Game Developers Choice Awards (GDCA) marked the halfway point of this year’s GDC.

Never heard of the GDCA? The ceremony is not unlike the Oscars for the video game industry. Created for and voted on by developers, it honours the very best games from the past year. The panel of judges, who are all leading industry icons, are hand-picked and invited specifically for the event.

Hades Wins Game of the Year

Hades award

Hades, Supergiant Games’ stylish roguelike, received the top honor. It walked away with the Game of the Year award. The game also received awards for Best Audio and Best Design. Hades received nearly universal acclaim when it launched, with many critics stating that it combined the best aspects of Supergiant Games’ previous titles.

Phasmophobia Gets Best Debut and More

Phasmophobia, the debut title from independent developer Kinetic Games, took home the award for Best Debut. A veritable phenomenon when it launched last year, the game puts you and your friends in the shoes of paranormal investigators tasked with entering dangerously haunted locations.

Unsurprisingly, the award for Best Narrative went to Naughty Dog’s The Last of Us Part II. The gritty revenge story may have divided fans of the series, but it received massive critical acclaim and numerous accolades nonetheless.

A full list of the awards and winners can be found below.

GDCA Honors Icons

Of course, the Game Developers Choice Awards also celebrates the people behind the games.

Tom Fulp, best known as the founder of website Newgrounds, received the Pioneer Award. The award is given in recognition of breakthrough tech and industry milestones. Fulp’s work helped to launch Macromedia Flash as a viable animation and game making tool. Throughout the years, Newgrounds has proven to be a massive influence on independent game developers by offering them a huge platform to share their work.

Furthermore, a Lifetime Achievement Award was given to influential game designer Laralyn McWilliams. With over 28 years of experience in the video game industry, McWilliams worked on practically every genre, including many influential MMOs. Notably, she served as lead designer for the critically-acclaimed Full Spectrum Warrior, E3 2003’s most nominated game.

“We’re wowed to see so many creative and excellent titles released during the past year, which has been a difficult one for many, and we are proud to be able to honor them tonight,” said Katie Stern, who oversees the GDC as VP of Entertainment Media at Informa Tech. “GDC is about bringing the game development community together to celebrate the craft of video games, and there is no better way than to recognize the hard work and talent that made these games possible.”

Game Developers Choice Awards Winners

The Game Developers Choice Awards winners are:

Best Audio

Hades (Supergiant Games)

Best Debut

Phasmophobia (Kinetic Games)

Best Design

Hades (Supergiant Games)

Best Mobile Game

Genshin Impact (miHoYo)

Innovation Award

Dreams (Media Molecule / Sony Interactive Entertainment)

Best Narrative

The Last of Us Part II (Naughty Dog / Sony Interactive Entertainment)

Best Technology

Microsoft Flight Simulator (Asobo Studio / Xbox Game Studios)

Best Visual Art

Ghost of Tsushima (Sucker Punch Productions / Sony Interactive Entertainment)

Best VR/AR Game

Half-Life: Alyx (Valve)

Audience Award

Ghost of Tsushima (Sucker Punch Productions / Sony Interactive Entertainment)

Game of the Year

Hades (Supergiant Games)

Pioneer Award

Tom Fulp

Lifetime Achievement Award

Laralyn McWilliams

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