Best New Game - Final Fantasy V
1st Runner Up - Ghost Trick
2nd Runner Up - Cthulhu Saves the World
My favorite new game of 2010 was Final Fantasy. My favorite new game of 2011 was Final Fantasy V. Coincidence? Probably.
Worst New Game - Super Princess Peach
1st Runner Up - Steel Storm: Burning Retribution
2nd Runner Up - The Legendary Starfy
You can read my respective quickies for more information, so here's a random anecdote: according to the Wikipedia page for the Humble Indie Bundle, somebody at Kot-in-Action Games complained about how much trouble he had getting Steel Storm into the third bundle (which, incidentally, is where I got the game from). I might have been more sympathetic to this if the game wasn't so shit.
Best Replay/Alternate Version - MDK2
1st Runner Up - Meta Fight EX
2nd Runner Up - Painkiller Black Edition
If they'd just sorted out the cosmetic glitches and used the checkpoint save system, the PC version of MDK2 would have been a perfect alternative to the Dreamcast version, especially since it's so easy to get ahold of through Steam and GOG.com. Meta Fight EX satisfied a strange bug I had at the beginnig of the year to replay Enemy Below, but also provided something new. For Painkiller Black, I'm only counting the original game, because Battle out of Hell just wasn't that great.
Best Soundtrack - Cthulhu Saves the World
1st Runner Up - Final Fantasy VIII
2nd Runner Up - Terranigma
Yeah, I might be overrating Cthulhu's soundtrack a bit. But it still kicks ass.
Most Pleasant Surprise (Games) - Ghost Trick
1st Runner Up - The Blitties in Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story
2nd Runner Up - Cthulhu Saves the World
I wasn't sure what to expect from Ghost Trick when I went in, but was very pleased with what I got and it gets pushed to #1 on the list for its ending. The Blitties were the only thing that made Bowser's Inside Story bearable, and the special attack for Bowser if you find them all is an absolute joy, both aesthetically and for being a piece of cake to do max damage with. And I actually wasn't expecting much from Cthulhu, but it did everything it could to please me; a great soundtrack, hilarious writing, and a kitty for a party member.
Biggest Disappointment (Games) - Terranigma
1st Runner Up - Painkiller: Battle out of Hell
2nd Runner Up - The rest of Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story
I really expected more from Terranigma. A lot more. Not only did it have Soul Blazer and Illusion of Gaia to look up to, even Terranigma's first... third? quarter? showed promise only for it to go completely to shit halfway through. Battle out of Hell was a letdown, and it saddens me to hear that the Painkiller Overdose, Resurrection, and Redemption are supposed to be even worse (also, I'm kinda wondering why Battle out of Hell and Redemption even exist, if the Trauma difficulty was supposed to be the true version of Painkiller's story and Daniel goes to Heaven at the end). Bowser's Inside Story was ruined by those tedious touch screen minigames.
Most Satisfying to Finally Finish After Tormenting Me For Years - Phantasy Star III: Generations of Doom
Runner Up - Metroid II: Return of Samus
These two only win by proxy. While it was nice to finally get them out of my side after all these years, that's all I really got out of them, not that I was expecting much from Phantasy Star III.
Funniest Game - Cthulhu Saves the World
1st Runner Up - Back to the Future: The Game
2nd Runner Up - Ghost Trick
Although I ranked the other two above it, Ghost Trick might actually stand alone the best of the three; I'm sure you get more out of Cthulhu and Back to the Future by being familiar with JRPGs and Back to the Future, but I don't see why you'd be playing them to begin with if you're not.
Greatest Big Reveal - Ghost Trick (Sissel is really a cat)
Worst Ending - Phantasy Star III: Generations of Doom
1st Runner Up - Faerie Solitaire
2nd Runner Up - Ys: Oath in Felghana
Phantasy Star III wins, or maybe loses for both pointlessly having three nearly identical ones (and a fourth that I'd bet money is only different because the programmers felt one of them *had* to be, but might be the worst of them all) and the major plothole. Faerie Solitaire is on for commiting the cardinal sin of having an ad for the sequel that may or may not ever exist instead of a proper ending. Oath in Felghana takes home the tarnished bronze for completely ruining Ys 3's ending.
Game That I Put A Decent Amount of Effort Into, But Never Got Around to Finishing of the Year - Defense Grid: The Awakening
I hope I can finally complete the story campaign in 2012. I've only got a few maps left and I've greatly enjoyed the time I've put into it, just one of the last maps (the one in the picture, in fact) kicked my ass so hard it sent me running away with my face in my hands. I did finally beat it some time later after completely rethinking my strategy for it, but this was after an update (or maybe the You Monster DLC I picked up during the big Steam Winter sale), so I hope Hidden Path didn't nerf the game.
Game That I Put A Decent Amount of Effort Into, But Decided Could Go Fuck Itself of the Year - Super Meat Boy
I hated this game so bad that if I'd actually bothered to finish it, it would have been the #2 worst game of the year. Most of the difficulty comes from the controls being beyond terrible, and it's full of the kind of gratuitous violence and "edginess" (hurr hurr, the villain is an aborted fetus in a jar) that needs to go back to Adult Swim where it belongs. I made it to the Rapture world and finally decided I had better fish to fry. By the way, I love how this game advertises itself as having "the old school difficulty of classic NES titles like Mega Man 2, Ghost and Goblins and Super Mario Bros. 2 (The Japanese one)", when Mega Man 2 is easy and nobody likes Ghosts and Goblins.
Also, I'm not sure if it was from Team Meat or just had some of the same people on it, but what I played of Binding of Isaac sucked ass. The levels are randomly generated by computer and BOY does it show, and the bosses could be easily beaten without taking damage if they didn't take so damn long to kill I'd get bored and stop giving a shit halfway through.
Best New Movie - Dark City
1st Runner Up - Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure
I guess I didn't watch very many movies this year, unless you count MST3K features. These pretty much win by default, but they're still good films in their own right.
Worst Movie - City of Lost Children
Really the only bad movie I saw this year. Okay, Plan 9, Planet of Dinosaurs, and Santa and the Ice Cream Bunny were all terrible, but I was watching the RiffTrax versions, which both gives those movies a pass, and lets me know not to expect anything from the movies themselves.
Best New TV DVD - Just Shoot Me! The Complete Third Season/Seasons One and Two
1st Runner Up - Mystery Science Theater 3000: Vol. 21: MST3K vs. Gamera
2nd Runner Up - SWAT Kats: The Radical Squadron
Honorable mention goes to The Critic, which I may have scored higher than SWAT Kats, but SWAT Kats hold a special place in my heart and its first season was stronger than The Critic.
Also, I watched quite a bit of Seinfeld later in the year, but never mentioned it in the quickies because I have the Complete Series, and was jumping around randomly instead of watching it in order. The only season I'm certain I watched fully was the first, and let's just say Seinfeld not only hadn't hit its stride then, it was struggling just to stand up.
Worst TV DVD - Drawn Together Season One
1st Runner Up - American Dad! Volume 1
2nd Runner Up - Harvey Birdman: Attorney at Law Volume 2
These all wound up sold to Hasting's to fund some movie rentals. I just wish I'd had the smarts to not have bought them in the first place.
Best Book - The Dragon and the George
Excluding manga, I guess I didn't do much book reading this year, and nothing really blew me away. And I only read one Discworld. Shame on me.
Worst Book - Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Another annoyance I have with this book? I keep almost calling it Harry Potter and the Order of the Griffon.
Best Manga - Parasyte
1st Runner Up - Full Metal Panic!
2nd Runner Up - Chi's Sweet Home
Read quite a bit of manga this year, most of which I didn't comment on because it was rather unremarkable, but now that I'm out of the manga class my interest in has kind of died down. I still keep an eye out for anything interesting.
Worst Manga - Shin Megami Tensei KHAN
1st Runner Up - Yotsuba!
2nd Runner Up - Animal Academy
This is hard to rank because a lot of the manga I read this year didn't make much of an impression on me either way. Still, Shin Megami Tensei was aggresively incoherent (I suppose the same could be said Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo and FLCL, but I'm letting Bobobo-bo slide because at least it knew what it was and FLCL has the excuse of being based on an anime that made no damn sense in the first place), Yotsuba! was annoying, and Animal Academy was about as remarkable as dead bug in a wallpaper paste factory (shut up, I don't know what that similie means either).
Most Pleasant Surprise (Everything Else) - Just Shoot Me!
1st Runner Up -The Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo anime, after the manga was so lame
2nd Runner Up - RiffTrax
I really didn't have any interest in Just Shoot Me, but my dad dragged me into it, and I found myself thoroughly enjoying it. I thought I hadn't heard of it before, but I guess I did; it's mentioned in a Critic commentary, as it was created by one of The Critic's writers.
Biggest Disappointment (Everything Else) - The Azumanga Daioh Retranslation
1st Runner Up - Pluto Vol. 8
2nd Runner Up - SWAT Kats Season Two
I really need to find my copies of the original Azumanga Daioh retranslation, and I think I know where they are. The only problem is I think they're in a box in the backyard storage house under some other boxes. The last volume of Pluto totally ruined everything that came before it. And I had such fond memories of the second season of SWAT Kats, and it just didn't live up to those memories.
A lot of my gaming this year was spent trying to thin out my stupidly long Steam backlog, kicked off by the achievements-for-DLC offer during the Summer Sale. And I succeeded to some extent, then re-glutted my library with the big Winter sale. Even worse, I signed up with GOG.com early in the year, amassed a collection from their weekend, summer, and winter sales over the year, and the only game I've finished from that place is Tyrian 2000. I guess I'm going to be spending a lot of 2012 in front of the computer!
I finally got around to starting the Harry Potter series. I grew up in a family that condemned it, but I've gotten around that hitch. Maybe if people weren't so caught up in arguing over if they're evil and glorify sorcery and witchcraft or whatever, they'd realize children shouldn't be growing up on them because they aren't that good.
I guess I really didn't get much done on the actual site this year. Aside from some Blaster Master leftovers from 2010 I threw up at the beginning of the year, and some adventures with somebody who is quickly turning into my own personal SlayerX, it seems all I really did was review quickies. And boy do I have a backlog of stuff to write. Lemmy's eternally trapped in a desert, I've had that half finished review of Ultraverse Prototype sitting in the dark corners of the my hard drive for years, and there's a bunch of other stuff I've only banged out some random starting sentences for. Let's see how much of that I can clean up, eh?