AAA Game of the Year Awards 2020 thumbnail

AAA Game of the Year Awards 2020

The best big-name titles

A.J. Maciejewski

Written by for GOTY Awards on 🏆

Now that we looked at the year's top old-school games, RPGs, and indies; here are our favourite AAA games of 2020 in 14 categories.

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Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time 3D Platformer of the Year

Crash Bandicoot 4 marked an incredible return for everyone's favourite orange platforming marsupial. It may seem like a kids' game but long-time fans such as myself will come to understand just how impressively challenging it becomes after facing its final challenges. The resulting blend of familiar gameplay, hilarious cutscenes, and a rewarding level of difficulty is spot-on for any 3D platforming fan. v1d30chumz 18-208-187-128

Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time Review Award image →
Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time screenshot
That's not an award, Crash, it's your nemesis!

Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales Action Game of the Year

I didn't know what to expect before playing Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales; could it live up to its outstanding predecessor? Well, absolutely, and then some! I found Miles Morales to be a more relatable protagonist and its gameplay manages to be even more exciting than in Peter Parker's 2018 adventure so if you enjoy thumb-blistering action set in a sprawling open-world then you'll love this.

Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales Review Award image →
Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales screenshot
Miles doesn't have time for awards

Nioh 2 Souls-like of the Year

Seeing as I wasn't fully impressed by the original Nioh when it released in 2017, I figured Nioh 2 would merely be more of the same but oh boy, was I wrong! Nioh 2 completely refined the formula with more fluid and visceral gameplay, deep character growth mechanics, and a highly enjoyable online component that makes cooperating and competing with fellow warriors incredibly exciting.

Nioh 2 Review Award image →
Nioh 2 screenshot
Who needs an award when you have a spear that big?

The Last of Us Part II Cinematic Experience of the Year

The Last of Us Part II is many things but the main aspect that made it stand out from every other game this year is its ability to keep you on the edge of your seat from beginning to end. Whether through the grueling cutscenes or the in-game atmosphere, the experience remains tense and captivating throughout and no game has accomplished that as well as this gripping tale has.

The Last of Us Part II Review Award image →
The Last of Us Part II screenshot
I hope Ellie and Abby don't fight over this award...

Spellbreak Free-to-Play Game of the Year

Out of all the free-to-play games this year, I found myself most captivated with Spellbreak. Its spell-casting non-violent gameplay really clicked with me right off the bat and once I realised that I could do things like combine elemental magic to create tricky traps and powerful concoctions to overcome my adversaries, I became hooked. Give it a try and see what you think; it's free, after all.

Spellbreak Review Award image →
Spellbreak screenshot
Yes, Spellbreak is one magical online experience

Need for Speed Hot Pursuit Remastered Racing Game of the Year

Need for Speed Hot Pursuit Remastered may be a remake of an older game but it has held up beautifully and even surpassed any other racer that released this year. Whether you're taking down criminals as the police or outwitting law enforcement as you race for the gold, the ridiculously fast competitive arcade-style gameplay remains an absolute blast that's sure to scratch your racing itch.

Need for Speed Hot Pursuit Remastered Review Award image →
Need for Speed Hot Pursuit Remastered screenshot
Sorry, no brand new racers can top this classic

Mobile Suit Gundam Extreme Vs. MaxiBoost ON Fighting Game of the Year

Even with some cool traditional 1-on-1 fighting games releasing this year, I still had the most amount of fun with the arena fighter Mobile Suit Gundam Extreme Vs. MaxiBoost ON which primarily has you challenge players from around the globe via its arcade-style battles. It takes a while to grow on you but once it does, you'll find it to be one of the most rewarding fighters out there.

Mobile Suit Gundam Extreme Vs. MaxiBoost ON Review Award image →
Mobile Suit Gundam Extreme Vs. MaxiBoost ON screenshot
Arena fighting with giant robots? Sign me up!

Clubhouse Games: 51 Worldwide Classics Party Game of the Year

Although I don't like to bring it up because I'd rather help offer an escape from reality; it's been a rough year with being forced to stay inside and not have folks over to game with. So, that makes Clubhouse Games: 51 Worldwide Classics an even more special party game because you can choose to play it with whoever's at home with you or online with friends or strangers. So, you'll never feel alone when you're playing the huge selection of games featured in this expansive and fun-filled collection. Plus, you might learn a thing or 2.

Clubhouse Games: 51 Worldwide Classics Review Award image →
Clubhouse Games: 51 Worldwide Classics screenshot
Yahtzee! Or whatever non-brand name Nintendo called it...

Sackboy: A Big Adventure Family-friendly Game of the Year

Sackboy: A Big Adventure is perhaps the most underrated game of the year and it is by far the most enjoyable family-friendly adventure released in 2020. Cooperating with your chums as you traverse brilliantly vibrant stages offers oodles of fun and its top-notch soundtrack and visuals elevate the overall experience to even higher heights. It's the perfect game for the whole family.

Sackboy: A Big Adventure Review Award image →
Sackboy: A Big Adventure screenshot
Feed me, Seymour!

Dreams Sandbox Game of the Year

Giving players the ability to create their own levels has been around for a while but Dreams takes that concept and runs with it as its in-depth tools allow for astounding amounts of creativity. I honestly don't have the patience to make anything worthwhile but booting up Dreams every now and again in order to see what new and exciting creations have been made is a wonderful treat indeed.

Dreams Review Award image →
Dreams screenshot
Many of the community-made games are simply awe-inspiring

Pikmin 3 Deluxe Port of the Year

Nintendo's long-running Pikmin series masterfully combines real-time strategy and adventure elements to craft a lovely laidback gameplay formula set in a delightful miniature world and Pikmin 3 is the best that the franchise has to offer. Considering you can now play it on the big screen and on-the-go and it performs exceptionally well either way; it's a must-have release for any Pikmin fan.

Pikmin 3 Deluxe Review Award image →
Pikmin 3 Deluxe screenshot
So, when's Pikmin 4 coming out?

Marvel's Spider-Man Remastered Remaster of the Year

Not only has the fantastic Marvel's Spider-Man from 2018 been remade visually in this incredible Remastered package, you can enjoy the lengthy adventure as well as all of its DLC in one convenient collection. Because of that, once you master everything that the top-notch Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales has to offer, you can re-play the original and take in New York City in a whole new light.

Marvel's Spider-Man Remastered Review Award image →
Marvel's Spider-Man Remastered screenshot
Beating up baddies on PS5 has my Spidey Sense tingling

The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III - Thors Academy Edition Special Edition of the Year

Hey, it's a new category this year! With physical game releases becoming more niche and rarer, I figured I should honour games that go above and beyond to give fans an exceptional collector's experience. The Thors Academy Edition of Trails of Cold Steel III is a wonderful treat for series fans as it contains memorabilia from the game world that makes each location feel real, a top-notch selection of 20 tracks on a CD, an adorable plushie, a gorgeous art book, and it's all housed in an eye-catching Einhel Keep box that looks great on a shelf.

The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III - Thors Academy Edition Review Award image →
The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III - Thors Academy Edition screenshot
Alisa and gang definitely deserve this swagalicious award

Ghost of Tsushima AAA Game of the Year

Finally, the big award of the year and it obviously goes to the best game of 2020... Ghost of Tsushima! In an age when open-world games are becoming more and more homogenized, Ghost of Tsushima elevates the genre to new heights with its astounding blend of action-intense confrontations, hair-raising stealth, and rewarding exploration which all take place in perhaps the most beautiful game world ever crafted. Congratulations, Jin Sakai; you and your epic journey will be in the hearts of gamers for decades to come.

Ghost of Tsushima Review Award image →
Ghost of Tsushima screenshot
Jin Sakai takes a calm moment of reflection before humbly accepting his award
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Gameplay video playlist for AAA Game of the Year Awards 2020
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