In brief: The award winners of the annual Game Developers Choice ceremony have been chosen, with Hades snatching the "Game of the Year" award from contenders such as Animal Crossing: New Horizons, Half-Life: Alyx, Ghost of Tsushima, and The Last of Us Part II.
The GDC Awards focuses on celebrating peer recognition among game developers, awarding games based on their artistry, innovation, and creativity. The 21st Game Developers Choice Awards was fully virtual despite initial plans of holding it as a hybrid event.
This year's jury included Chris Carla, senior director of content curation at Xbox, Mark Cerny, lead system architect of the PS4 and PS5, Emily Greer, co-founder and CEO of Double Loop Games, Caryl Shaw, VP of Development for Double Fine Productions, and Brandon Sheffield, creative director of Necrosoft Games.
You can see all the nominees and winners of the 21st Game Developers Choice Awards in the following list:
- Game of the Year: Hades (Winner), Animal Crossing: New Horizons, Half-Life: Alyx, Ghost of Tsushima, The Last of Us Part II
- Best Audio: Hades (Winner), Doom Eternal, Final Fantasy 7 Remake, Ghost of Tsushima, The Last of Us Part II
- Best Debut: Phasmophobia (Winner), Carrion, Mortal Shell, Raji: An Ancient Epic, Umurangi Generation
- Best Design: Hades (Winner), Animal Crossing: New Horizons, Half-Life: Alyx, Ghost of Tsushima, The Last of Us Part II
- Best Mobile Game: Genshin Impact (Winner), Alba: A Wildlife Adventure, If Found..., Legends of Runeterra, The Pathless
- Innovation Award: Dreams (Winner), Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout, Hades, Half-Life: Alyx, Microsoft Flight Simulator
- Best Narrative: The Last of Us Part II (Winner), Final Fantasy 7 Remake, Ghost of Tsushima, Hades, Kentucky Route Zero: TV Edition
- Best Technology: Microsoft Flight Simulator (Winner), Dreams, Half-Life: Alyx, Ghost of Tsushima, The Last of Us Part II
- Best Visual Art: Ghost of Tsushima (Winner), Cyberpunk 2077, Hades, The Last of Us Part II, Ori and the Will of the Wisps
- Best VR/AR Game: Half-Life: Alyx (Winner), Dreams, Paper Beast, Star Wars: Squadrons, The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners
- Audience Award: Ghost of Tsushima
- Pioneer Award: Tom Fulp (creator of Newgrounds and co-founder of The Behemoth)
- Lifetime Achievement Award: Laralyn McWilliams (lead director of Full Spectrum Warrior and creative director of Free Realms)
Since Hades was first introduced as an early access game on the Epic Games Store, the game has been praised for its art, sound, and gameplay. During early access, the studio had exemplary communication with buyers and fans, working closely with the community to improve the game to its current state.
Besides being named "Game of the Year" at the 21st GDC Awards, Hades has already been awarded with the "Best Game" award at 17th British Academy Games Awards and "Game of the Year" at the 24th DICE Awards.
Moreover, it was nominated for "Game of the Year" at the Golden Joystick Awards and The Game Awards 2020.
Many believe "early access" isn't the best method to develop a game (cough, cough... DayZ), but Supergiant Games still took a chance and created what seems to be the best game of 2020.