The Steam Awards

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Coinciding with the annual Steam Autumn Sale (not to be confused with the annual Steam Summer Sale or Holiday/Winter Sale) where discounts are aplenty, this year there was a new activity to partake in: The Steam Awards. Apparently Valve have decided that we should be able to nominate games of any age for various categories, and rather than restrict the categories to “best-evers” they have created ones with a little more character. I’m not sure if this will be a new annual tradition, but I assume that this is a lead up for the Xmas sale, and those games that get the most nominations will be put up for votes during that sale (or perhaps before). Then, we’ll see discounts on those sorts of games. This sort of defeats the purpose if we are in fact voting for games that will get discounts, because to nominate a game we probably should be familiar with it. Perhaps they will make sales revolve around that publisher or that game series if it is a part of that sort of thing. Or maybe they’ll just let us give some games awards, and then do it all over again next year. It’s interesting though, that there isn’t any sort of age restriction. The categories lent themselves to picking older games, but at the same time, the reason there are awards given each year is because they only judge games created or released during that calendar year. If we do this again next year, what would motivate us to nominate something else unless it was completely separate categories? Perhaps I’m overthinking this. Let’s talk about the categories:

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There are a total of 9 categories to vote in, and you can either search through your library or browse the store to navigate to each game’s page. From there you will nominate that game for whichever category you want to plug it into, and there you have it. There isn’t any sort of monitoring going on with the submissions, as it seems that you can willingly vote for things that you do not have in your steam library (but hey, maybe you played it elsewhere) and you can take liberties in putting things where you want them to go. So if you feel like the game that best stands the test of time came out in 2016, well you can go ahead and vote that way. I took the categories quite literally, and since there is no explanation given in these screen shots, I thought I’d break them down for ya.

From the top, we have the Test of Time award which I gave to Skyrim. I have played this game off and on for a few years now, still haven’t really touched the mod scene, and really want to jump into a special edition campaign but haven’t just yet. I still feel like I’ll be coming back to this one for years to come.

For I’m Not Crying, There’s Something In My Eye, I nominated the first season of Telltale’s The Walking Dead, mainly because it was the only game from recent memory that had some tear jerker moments in it, though I probably would have gone with The Last of Us if it wasn’t a Playstation exclusive.

Next was the Just 5 More Minutes award, which was a gimme. I could have easily chosen Civ V, but since Civ VI is newer I gave it the nod.

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For Whoooaaaaaaa, dude! I had to go with this year’s rendition of DOOM. id knocked this one out of the park. Loved it.

My Villain Most In Need of A Hug nomination went to Borderlands 2, because I absolutely loved Handsome Jack.

It was a hard choice to make, but I ended up going with a Call of Duty game for the Game Within A Game award. I really don’t want Call of Duty games getting much credit for anything these days, but I have to admit that Treyarch make a hell of a game within a game with their Zombies mode. So many easter eggs, puzzles and challenges to overcome. I love it.

For I Thought This Game Was Cool Before It Won An Award I gave the nod to Warhammer: End Times – Vermintide. I absolutely adored this game and put quite a few co-op hours into it with Eri. We had a blast. We seriously need to go give it another whirl because there have been new DLC additions that I have installed but have not tried. Will be back for more. Does this really fit the category? I don’t know. But you should play this game anyway.

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In the weirdest category by far, there is the Best Use Of A Farm Animal award. I’m thinking they were leaning towards games like Goat Simulator or some of the other farmy-crafty games but I just took the literal definition and gave a nod to a game I’d love to see get more recognition: Nuclear Throne. Where’s the farm animal angle you ask? Well, one of the characters is a chicken, and that happens to be one of my favorites. A chicken is a farm animal. So there.

Last but not least, was our own custom category. The FAQ points towards the most nominations for similar categories will win, or they will all be put into a hat and drawn from. I seriously doubt someone at valve is going to print out millions of suggestions and throw them into a hat, so it will likely be done electronically with some RNG. Either way, should be interesting to see what comes out of that. I was bland and boring, just wanting to nominate my most played Steam game to date: Awesomenauts. I called the category “Best MOBA,” and it’s likely the best MOBA (outside of maybe DOTA 2 — which I don’t play) on the Steam platform.

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Of course, as with most activities on Steam, this one comes with a checklist of tasks to complete to level up your badge. 1 Nomination, 9 Nominations, reviewing a Nomination and playing a Nomination earns you 100xp and a level 4 “Steam Awards Nomination Commitee” badge.

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Did you participate? What games did you nominate?