AG generic

2013 Aggie Award Nominees


Final Notes

To be eligible, a game must have been launched through digital distribution, self-published online, or  commercially released in either North America or the United Kingdom in the calendar year 2013.

Although their respective first episodes were released in 2013, Broken Age, Broken Sword 5: The Serpent's Curse, The Walking Dead: Season Two and The Wolf Among Us will be carried over to 2014.

The first two episodes of Bot Colony were made available to purchase in 2013 but are still in beta, so the game not yet eligible.
 



Complete list of eligible games


PC/Mac (includes multi-platform releases)
 

Adventures of Max Fax
Alone in the Park
Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs
ASA: A Space Adventure
Astroloco: Worst Contact
Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons
The Cave
Cognition: An Erica Reed Thriller – Episodes 2-4
Cold Case Summer
Conspirocracy
Detective Case and Clown Bot: Murder in the Hotel Lisbon
Dominique Pamplemousse in "It's All Over Once the Fat Lady Sings!"
Doorways: Chapter 1 and 2
Dracula 4: The Shadow of the Dragon
Dracula 5: The Blood Legacy
Dream Chamber
The Dream Machine: Chapter 4
Dreamscapes: The Sandman
Eleusis
Face Noir
Fester Mudd: Curse of the Gold – Episode 1: A Fistful of Pocket Lint
Finding Teddy
Gomo
Gone Home
Goodbye Deponia
Helga Deep in Trouble
Hypnosis HD
The Inheritance
The Inner World
The Inquisitor: Book 1 – The Plague
Jack Haunt: Old Haunting Grounds
Jack Keane 2: The Fire Within
Journey of a Roach
Kentucky Route Zero: Acts 1 and 2
Lilly Looking Through
Master Reboot
Memoria
Montague's Mount: Episode One
Murder in Tehran's Alleys 1933
Mysterious Cities of Gold: Secret Paths
Namariel Legends: Iron Lord
Nancy Drew: Ghost of Thornton Hall
Nancy Drew: The Silent Spy
Nancy the Happy Whore and the Perfidious Petrol Station
Necrotic Drift Deluxe
The Night of the Rabbit
Nightmare Adventures: The Turning Thorn
Oknytt
Papers, Please
Quantumnauts: Chapter 2 - Black Hole Happens
The Raven: Legacy of a Master Thief
Reversion: Chapter 2 – The Meeting
Richard & Alice
Secret Files: Sam Peters
Tiny Thief
Violett
The Walking Dead: 400 Days
 

Console/Handheld (exclusives)
 

BEYOND: Two Souls (PS3)
Blackbar (iOS)
The Curse of Shadow House (iOS)
DEVICE 6 (iOS)
Jacob Jones and the Bigfoot Mystery: Episode 1 – A Bump in the Night (iOS/Vita)
Layton Brothers: Mystery Room (iOS)
Lost Echo (iOS)
Maniac Manors (iOS)
Phoenix Wright: Dual Destinies (3DS)
Professor Layton and the Azran Legacy (3DS)
rain (PS3)
The Starship Damrey (3DS)
Year Walk (iOS)



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Comments

CroGamer CroGamer
Feb 7, 2014

Can somone tell me how do you vote?! I’m new to the forums.

Manuel Manuel
Feb 7, 2014

If I remember correctly when the AG staff finishes their voting then we the readers will have a chance to vote for every category.

Jackal Jackal
Feb 7, 2014

Readers don’t vote on these. These picks are just our own finalists.

The upcoming reader poll (next week) will let you vote for any game you want in each category.

Iznogood Iznogood
Feb 7, 2014

Pretty much the same 5 games nominated in all the categories?
That is very… disappointing!

I’m not necessarily saying it is the wrong nominees, just that I would have expected a much greater variation between the different categories.

2013 might not have been the best year in the history of adventure games, but there were still plenty of good solid and for that matter unusual games, and I would have expected to see many of these at least as nominees in one or two category, like Oknytt for best setting just to give one example.

Instead it seem like the Aggies are going to be divided between very few games, perhaps with one taking the vast majority, which as I see it isn’t a fair representation of the AG scene of 2013.

Jackal Jackal
Feb 7, 2014

I believe there are 24 games here. How many exactly were you expecting? (Rhetorical question.)

We’re not going to punish the genre’s best games just for the sake of token representation of a few more.

Within Within
Feb 7, 2014

I’m glad to see a strong presence from Daedalic. The three games the studio released this year were of very high quality. Good representation from indie titles and great selections in the writing categories as well. I’m very interested in seeing who wins what!

Beyond: Two Souls seems like a stellar contender in many areas. I don’t own a PS3 though so I can’t agree nor disagree on its plethora of nominations.

Also, thank you for considering The Wolf Among Us and The Walking Dead: Season Two non-eligible this year. I’ve seem them pop up on some magazine’s awards (although I can’t remember which one) but they are hardly complete games at this point. You deserve a beer for this policy alone.

rottford
Feb 7, 2014

Surprised “Face Noir” isn’t a nominee anywhere. I particularly think it deserves a nomination under “Best Soundtrack”—the jazzy, noir-influenced music is excellent.

Strav
Feb 7, 2014

To me, 2013 marks the beginning of an era where game critics have finally reached their literary colleagues in that they are beginning to praise an art not for it’s sheer enjoyment but according to some convolved theory about what it should be. Just go at metacritic and take look at the difference between the “official critics” and the general public ratings for games such as Gone Home, Stanley’s Parable and Dear Esther. In the general public ratings, you’ll find some very low scores, (non-existent amongst the official critiques). If you take a moment to read those low-score reviews, you’ll find that, surprise! most of them recognized that those were original games, had a somewhat good concept but they were just bland, boring and mostly pompous. I have this awful feeling that the current nominees selection will make it so that Gone Home will get another game of the year award (why else include such a forgettable game in nearly each possible category?).  Let it be said: Gone Home is no more than a cheap teen novel with oh so “shocking” and “provocative” undertones and marital ambiguity using a bland video game as it’s medium.

Jackal Jackal
Feb 8, 2014

Why else? Is that a trick question? Because a bunch of people on staff liked the game and strongly disagree with you. No need to fabricate imaginary reasons for why others don’t share your equally subjective opinion.

Strav
Feb 8, 2014

Jackal: Agreed, my “why else” comment was a bit out of line. But what it implied is this feeling that the current list appears strongly biased towards Gone Home, as in: when we like something, let be careful not to give it undue credit just because it has our favour.

Having that said, I also must concur that 2013 hasn’t been a great year for adventure games. I personally would have included Antichamber and The Swapper in the nominees but I guess the story telling of those games might be a little thin to meet the “adventure game” criteria.

Rolandesch Rolandesch
Feb 8, 2014

Haven’t played Gone Home yet, seen some gameplay footage but I am interested why The Stanley Parable wasn’t nominated since it seems to me that both games rely on storytelling and exploration and not gameplay mechanics and puzzles?
For me Stanley was one of the better adventure games this year but it is not recognized as such.
Interested in knowing the reasons.

Jackal Jackal
Feb 8, 2014

A lot of us really liked The Stanley Parable, but there just really isn’t enough gameplay or player agency to warrant calling it an adventure. In Gone Home, at least you’re consciously trying to unravel a mystery through your actions (rummage through drawers, access cryptically-clued hidden passageways, etc.). Stanley Parable is more like a rat maze that you’re trying to find your way out of, full of narrator-guided amusing dead ends that send you back to the beginning. All you really do is choose which direction to go and then see what happens. Even the Stanley developer openly questions whether it’s actually a game. That’s part of its unique charm. But also why it’s not eligible for the Aggies.

MurrayL MurrayL
Feb 8, 2014

Thanks for the nomination! Just being in the same category as a game by Ron Gilbert is amazing.

Antrax
Feb 9, 2014

So why didn’t Heroine’s Quest qualify?

subbi subbi
Feb 9, 2014

It is rather odd that the AG review summary of Beyond says ‘....look past constraint and awkward gameplay’ and that the game is still nominated fir ‘best gameplay award’.

I have not played it myself sofar, so I can’t really comment on this, but does that mean that 2013 was not a very rich year gameplay wise and that there simply wasn’t a better game on thus aspect?

Simon_ASA Simon_ASA
Feb 9, 2014

Thanks a lot for the nomination of ASA, it really is a pleasure and a good surprise. It would be fun to discuss of your reasons of putting ASA in the Sound Effects category.
I personally understand it that way : you liked the game and wanted it to be nominated somewhere, but it didn’t fit in any category because there were many other games much better in graphics, music, gameplay, etc. And more famous also. But because you liked the atmosphere and experience of the game, the Sound Effects category wrapped well the idea of immersion and was the best place for this game. So we need to understand Sound Effects as Immersion. Did you think like that ? I’m curious Smile

Jackal Jackal
Feb 9, 2014

Antrax, Aggies are for commercial games only. As great as some freeware games are, there’s no way we could possibly play enough of them to be sure we were doing justice to them all. So no picking favourites, it has to be all or nothing.

Subbi, if nothing else, it’s a reminder that a review is only one person’s opinion, while the Aggies represent us all.

Simon, there’s no master plan for distributing nominations. ASA made the cut in the sound effects category and not in the others, simple as that. Smile

subbi subbi
Feb 9, 2014

Ok, clear. I mistakenly assumed that also the reviews were checked by writer peers and editorial staff, making it a result of a much broader consensus.

Advie Advie
Feb 9, 2014

Lilly Looking Through is a great game of course ,but did this game really have ‘Soundtracks’ , .. uh, I mean Music !? .Anyhow, who I am I to complain .
Its still sad how you couldn’t distinguish the differences between both; Soundtracks and Music.

Where is Leisure Suit Larry in the Land of the Lounge Lizards: Reloaded on the nominee eligibility list?

rtrooney rtrooney
Feb 9, 2014

While I understand Broken Age and Broken Sword not being included because they are not completed, I wonder how Fester Mudd is included. The problems at Replay certainly played a role, but the developers still only delivered one (great) episode of a three-part opus.

Shouldn’t Fester be held to the same standards as the Brokens were?

Karlok Karlok
Feb 9, 2014

I don’t understand why Papers Please is considered an adventure when The Stanley Parable is not. (I love both games, but that’s beside the point.) Papers Please has no exploration, no story to speak of, and no puzzles. The gameplay is of the kind you find in simulation games. Checking, comparing, deciding whether to let somebody enter the country or not. Could you please explain what made you decide Papers Please qualifies as an adventure?

zane
Feb 9, 2014

The stanley parable and gone home are both visual novels where you move around with minimal interaction and each lasted me almost exactly 2 hours.
Eh, maybe this just wasnt a very good year for adventures. Oh well.

Jackal Jackal
Feb 9, 2014

AGF, we don’t consider ports or remakes for awards.

rtrooney, Fester Mudd is sold as a standalone game (even if it’s meant to be episodic); the others are not.

Karlok, I haven’t played Papers, Please, so my personal knowledge is limited, but by staff accounts, the entire game is based on puzzle-solving (or at least problem-solving) within a narrative framework, so it qualifies. There’s certainly far more player agency involved than in Stanley. I’m not about to start getting into debates on what constitutes a puzzle or a story. The endless “what is an adventure?” foolishness (in general, not from you) is tiresome enough.

A.A
Feb 11, 2014

Stick it to the Man was the most fun I had with an adventure I reckon this year. Thought it would have got a look-in; it was every bit as adventure-gamey as the Telltale stuff. I thought Leisure Suit Larry was also very funny, but that comedy thing really is subjective I guess. 

Contrast too felt adventure-y enough to get a look-in.

Anyway, it is what it is.

Skywalker333 Skywalker333
Feb 12, 2014

Very little cognition (which was amazing) and very much Raven (which started great and then collapsed into a pile of garbage)

PadanFain
Feb 13, 2014

So how come Memoria hasn’t made the best story category? Apart from Beyond (which I haven’t played… yet), Memoria has far and wide the better story of all the other games listed.

xxax
Feb 13, 2014

Beyond: Two souls best gameplay? Is this some kind of joke?

DarkEye DarkEye
Feb 14, 2014

That makes me laugh so hard! I’m sorry is there any gameplay in Beyond: Two souls at all?. Why so many wierd games lately with such a hype like
The wolf among us? Are gamers to lazy to even play games or what…

shiajun
Feb 14, 2014

I’m surprised at the absence of Antichamber, not only on the list, but on the site in general. If Portal can be featured on the site, so should Antichamber, as it’s basically Portal’s LSD addicted kid. It’s the game that had me bending my neurons the most impressive ways last year, to get through all its room-riddles. Plus, it has no death or pressure to solve it. Granted, story is non-existent, aside from whatever you project unto the game. As an indie addition to the non-traditional adventure games, that one should take the cake

Jackal Jackal
Feb 14, 2014

We covered Antichamber. And calling it Portal without the story explains why we consider one an adventure and the other not.

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