The Platinum Chalice Awards 2011, Part 3 Game of the Year

The best game of 2011, for real, we mean it

This article is part three of a three-part series of awards. Click here for Part 1 and Part 2.

Our sixth annual Platinum Chalice Awards are now in their final stretch. With the rest of this celebration of gaming behind us, there's just one thing left to do: declare a winner for Game of the Year. Once again, we're doing things a little differently this year; where in years past, we'd simply pick a winner and a runner-up, this year is so crammed full of top-tier quality that just singling out two games seems incredibly stingy. So instead, we'll start by ticking off five nominees – which we've teasingly revealed all this week, one at a time – and then declare a victor (and reveal our Reader's Choice winner) on the following page. Sound good? All right then, let's finish this!

THE NOMINEES

Batman: Arkham City

Our review said: “Batman: Arkham Asylum was the greatest superhero game of all time. The sequel, Batman: Arkham City, is five times bigger and about a billion times better. You do the math.”

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

Our review said: “Skyrim is sprawling, generous, gorgeous and ambitious. It does what few games can: thoroughly follow through on its ambitions. It could be possible to play only this game for the next year and still not discover all of its mysteries.”

Portal 2

Our review said: “Portal 2 couldn't be Portal, but it's the next best thing. It's a longer, funnier, more emotional plummet through Aperture's perplexing laboratory, and its meticulous detail, perfect pacing, and kinetic, mind-expanding puzzles make it a blazingly memorable experience. It's so damn memorable, already feel nostalgic about it.”

The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings

Our review said: Truly a labor of love, this amazing sequel fortifies the foundations laid down by a flawed classic and creates a brilliant masterpiece. Visceral combat, dizzying player customization and a truly immersive story all come together to create one of the best role-playing experiences of the year.”

The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword

Our review said: A perfectly balanced mix of innovation and classic Zelda gameplay, Skyward Sword truly lives up to the Zelda legacy of excellence, and offers the most variety of any Zelda game to date. Its swordplay and puzzles are some of the best in the series, and seeing Link and Zelda's first story chronologically is a treat for longtime fans.”

Who's going to take it away this year? Find out on the next page, when we announce that the winner is... IS...

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