Skyrim Gets Shouted Out as GameSpot’s Game of the Year

Illustration for article titled emSkyrim/em Gets Shouted Out as emGameSpot/em’s Game of the Year

The Oscars have them. March Madness has them. But, numerous outlets start announcing their year-end picks, I'm wondering if anyone does Game of the Year betting pools?

The latest Elder Scrolls game wowed the editors at GameSpot enough for it to win their overall Game of the Year award. Other nominees included Ghost Trick: Phantom Detective, Dark Souls and Total War: Shogun 2. For a full list of GOTY nominees and genre category winners, head on over to Gamespot.

Best of 2011 [GameSpot]

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I've put 250-plus hours into Skyrim (yes I have no life at the moment) and have done almost everything there is to do in the game, and I can't decide how I feel about it. There's a nice list of issues I have with the game. Well over 100 hours of that gameplay was spent doing the same shit over and over again — get quest, go to dungeon, clear dungeon, kill dungeon boss and/or collect item you've been sent to fetch, the end. After a while it feels like much of the game is just tacked-on filler. The dragon fights get old and annoying as you get damn tired of them interrupting your game, plus the more dragon fights you have, the more buggy ones you'll experience. The overall list of bugs starts to add up, and not the humorous type of bugs that you see on YouTube but rather bugs that piss you off, like quests being unable to be completed and the game crashing on you. At times, the game feels lazy or sloppy — little things like the Thieves Guild treating you like a new member even after you've completed all the stupid busy work it took to become leader of the guild and restore the inside of the guild, or enemy AI saying stupid things like "Is someone there?" after they just got shot in the head with a stealth arrow. Then there's some smaller things like some shoddy voice acting and sound effects (like wolves howling, which is very obviously just some guy going "Wooooo"), clipping issues at times, and a couple skill trees that are worthless.

I couldn't put the game down though, even when it was pissing me off or when I was getting bored of it. I just had to try and finish one more quest or hit one more level. And back in the first few dozen hours when Skyrim's world still felt new and fresh, it was a joy to explore, and I'm still finding cool stuff hidden in a corner somewhere over 200 hours in. And I feel much of it is better than Oblivion, which is a game I loved quite a bit.

I kind of didn't want to see Skyrim win any GOTY awards because of the amount of bugs and the problems that the PS3 version had — tossing GOTY awards Bethesda's way is a great way of not holding them accountable for those things. But regardless of any issues I have with the game, I think there's a lot to be admired and a lot of high points that were had. I just wish I didn't have as many low points.