The Aggie Awards – The Best Adventure Games of 2018 page 6

Aggies: Complete Results
Aggies: Complete Results
Continued from the previous page...

Best Gameplay: Return of the Obra Dinn


There are hundreds of games that cast players as a homicide detective investigating a murder, but of those, only a paltry few manage to make you feel like you’re actually solving a mystery rather than watching your character put the pieces together. Many games are seemingly afraid to leave you to your own devices, instead spoon-feeding you clues and conclusions – or at the very least nudging and winking very broadly – until you arrive at the only viable decision remaining. Return of the Obra Dinn isn’t one of those games. Lucas Pope, in his own typically atypical way, has made one of the great detective games of all time, earning the year’s Best Gameplay award in the process.

Return of the Obra Dinn not only allows you to solve its central mysteries through your own cleverness, it outright refuses to lend a hand. As an insurance adjuster investigating the unexplained deaths aboard the long-lost-but-recently-found eponymous merchant vessel, you are given a ship to explore, a notebook, and… a magic stopwatch that can show you a frozen tableau of the final instant of a dead person’s life (as magic stopwatches do). With only these tools, it’s up to you to explore the boat and pick apart each blood-spattered scene of the crime, marking down your deductions about every corpse’s identity and manner of death based on the visions provided. The game’s smart distribution of clues both subtle and overt lead you on an intellectually thrilling chase after the truth, and with patience and perseverance it’s possible to correctly identify every member of the crew – and man oh man, is it ever satisfying when you do.

Runners-Up:


Unavowed

FAR: Lone Sails

The Gardens Between

Beyond the Sky
 



Readers’ Choice: Unavowed


Instead of emphasizing a series of progress-hindering obstacles, gameplay in Unavowed is highlighted by choices that actually have a tangible effect. At the beginning, you select a personal history for the main protagonist, which opens up one of three entirely different playable flashbacks. Later you’ll pick specific companions for each mission and leave others behind, thereby changing the approach to your goal. And during each quest is a moral decision that has a notable impact on the game’s ending (which itself offers several distinct variations). Of course, along the way you will still collect and use inventory items, tap into the physical and supernatural skills of your teammates, interpret clues, transport between dimensions, and come up with some creative solutions to finally get your way. It’s not a puzzle-intensive journey, but a consistently engaging one with no unwanted filler, and for that Wadjet Eye secures the reader choice for best gameplay experience.

Runners-Up:


Leisure Suit Larry: Wet Dreams Don’t Dry

Return of the Obra Dinn

Detective Gallo

Lamplight City
 



Next up: Best Concept... the envelope, please!

Continued on the next page...


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Comments

DaveGilbert DaveGilbert
Feb 21, 2019

I don’t often comment on these things for obvious reasons, but I just wanted to make one small correction.

“Violet Young deserves a special shout-out for convincingly providing several young girl voices – a notoriously difficult role for adults to get right.”

Violet Young was able to convincingly play a child because she is a child herself. She is 12 years old. Smile

Either way, thanks so much! Back to hiding. /swooshes away

Jackal Jackal
Feb 21, 2019

D’oh! Well, that’s quite the achievement in its own right! But I’ll correct.

(And congrats!)

DaveGilbert DaveGilbert
Feb 22, 2019

(Also: there was never a game called The Blackwell Conspiracy)

(sorry)

Jackal Jackal
Feb 22, 2019

I don’t know WHAT possessed me when I wrote that. Tongue

SplinterX
Feb 23, 2019

It is so inconvinient without the summary. I want to see all winers for all categories with all nomenees in one page. It is annoying to go to different pages so often just to see the whole picture. I mean this awards can be a reason to play such games. I want to see a list of them not a sheet.

Corduroy Sombrero Corduroy Sombrero
Feb 25, 2019

Fantastic to see Larry back and getting some mentions Smile

CaliMonk CaliMonk
Feb 25, 2019

We’re working on a sub-category on the site in which you can find an easy overview of Aggie Award winners, per category, per year.

Doraleous
Feb 25, 2019

Bravo, Unavowed made me come back to this genre after years of pretty much only MOBA’ing. What a f***** good game.

CaliMonk CaliMonk
Feb 27, 2019

Great game indeed :-)

small dickie small dickie
Mar 5, 2019

Great Aggie Awards! Really enjoyed them. Great videos, superbly voiced by Ivy Dupler

But i have one questions: Why was The Red Strings Club not considered for the awards? I just started to play it and i noticed that it was released in 2018

Jackal Jackal
Mar 5, 2019

We just felt it was ultimately more of an interactive story game than an adventure game proper. Certainly close enough to cover here at AG, but we try to reserve the Aggies for games that meet our full genre criteria.

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