The Platinum Chalice Awards 2009

The Last Guardian’s sweet-as-hell boy and his giant griffin story hit us right here (if you could see us, we’d be gently placing our palms over our hearts) with an “aww” factor that rivals pictures of kittens and dogs cuddling together. Remember that tingly feeling you had at the end of ICO? How about your first dog…or anything you’ve ever loved (Tamagotchi perhaps)? Team ICO’s heart-pureeing project brings it all back, and with an orchestral score to make it that much more sublime.

Above: This is what love feels like

If you haven’t seen the trailer, watch it immediately, and if you have, you’re probably going to watch it again. And if you’re as excited for the game as we are, you’ll want to read our unnecessarily comprehensive analysis. Now get your glassy eyes ready…

Prinny’s stubby little legs are so wobbly cute and his bulbous body is so huggable that it makes you want to just hold his adorably flappy flipper and walk around with him to make sure he doesn’t take a tumble. But part of his preciousness is his resiliency and determination in the face of adversity, so we’re content to root for him from the sidelines as he tackles life’s issues head-on in this series of five real-life adventures.

Two companies at the absolute top of the genres they’re known for, PopCap and Square-Enix teaming up for a puzzle-RPG seemed like a dream too good to even dare to wish for. But it happened! It really, truly happened, and it is glorious. Gyromancer keeps intact everything that was good about the original puzzle-RPG, Puzzle Quest (based on PopCap’s Bejeweled), yet somehow changes everything up enough that it feels totally fresh. The gameplay is deeper and more nuanced, and the twist mechanic (based on Bejeweled Twist) feels a bit trickier and therefore more satisfying than simple gem swapping.

While PopCap games don’t slouch when it comes to presentation, you can really see Square-Enix’s hand at work here in the massive amount of beautifully detailed art for each character, beast and location, as well as in the rousing soundtrack. Man, just wait ‘til you get to the last boss battle. That guitar WAILS. 

Sun-powered plants face off against hordes of adorable zombies in PopCap’s latest ploy to make sure we never sleep. Cute visuals and simple mechanics may make it a casual game, but crafting the perfect combination of carnivorous vegetables and watermelon-launching catapults makes for one of the most addictive and hardcore experiences of the year.

Of all the worlds we visited in all the games we played this year, none matched the sheer creativity and originality of Brutal Legend. In a gaming landscape increasingly littered with me-too casual knockoffs, drab sequels and formulaic design, Brutal Legend stood out like a pink Mohawk at an accounting convention. With Brutal Legend, Tim Schaefer has given the shocker to the crusty old establishment and created a heavy metal wonderland.

Drawing inspiration from decades of heavy metal songs and album covers, Schaefer's world is logically consistent in its own delightfully demented headbanging kind of way. From the Screaming Wall to the Sea of Black Tears, the world of Brutal Legend is steeped in metal lore and populated by bizarrely appropriate creatures like lazer panthers and battle nuns. Legitimacy was further ensured by recruiting members of iconic metal bands for voice talent, burning Brutal Legend forever into the culture it so enthusiastically celebrates.

High fantasy may have done dwarves and elves to death, but Dragon Age managed to breathe new life into the genre that so many other games, films, and books have already tread, creating a detailed and compelling world that we can’t wait to explore further.


  • deathrebellion - January 27, 2010 8:11 p.m.

    @ Ricohet3438 thats the UK/US english difference u dope
  • deathrebellion - January 27, 2010 8:10 p.m.

    cudn't agree with u guys more
  • Ricochet3438 - January 6, 2010 12:54 a.m.

    it drives me crazy when you ppl at GR spell wotds that should have z's with s's. realized for instance. read the thing for borderlands. it should be realized but instead they put realised. its not the first time theyve done it either. just because a word has an s sound dsnt mean tht it is spelled with an s. maybe tht hypothesis about videogames ruining your brain is correct. if so, GR is certainly proving it.
  • Anduin1 - January 6, 2010 12:18 a.m.

    uncharted 2 wasnt revolutionary? What game came before it that did what it did and garnered that kind of acclaim? Sure AA was good but game of the year good? HELL NO. Nobody even disputing if its good or not. All I know is gamesradar has forever lost the shred of credibility it had. They couldve put any other game in that place but when in a review you state that "x is better than Y" and then give y the prize, you lost.
  • racsonia - January 5, 2010 9:48 a.m.

    Idk y but at one stage i was thinking of not getting Uncharted 2 and shrugging it off, but now after it came runner up it sounds great, maybye the ads just didint do a good enough job for me?
  • sofaku - January 5, 2010 1:02 a.m.

    i cant say im not surprised. Arkham asylum is a great game but i dont know about game of the year. i think the onlything i really like about arkham asylum is the satisfaction of slowely taking out every enemy in a room and watching their heart rate rise. my pick for game of the year would either be MW2 or assassins creed2.
  • t3rry747 - January 4, 2010 4:20 a.m.

    sry 4 the twin post but 4 all you people saying uncharted is better than AA thats exactly what there say just that uncharted wasnt revoultionary it stuff every one has seen batman is the first good comic book game EVER!!!! read the article damn it
  • t3rry747 - January 4, 2010 4:09 a.m.

    wow im really suprised AC2 didnt win anything it was fantastic.
  • dante1924 - January 3, 2010 2:20 p.m.

    Sorry for another post, but EVERYBODY I know seems to think that all of these games are complete shit. Except for MW2, L4D2, and maybe Assassin's creed 2. For everything else, they all stare at me blank eyed, then talk about how stupid I am. I think I should print this list and show those fanboys who's right!
  • dante1924 - January 3, 2010 2:04 p.m.

    I tried spreading the word about Muramasa, just like you said, but everyone that I told about it said it looked stupid. That should be a crime! Also, it's not really related, but at nintendo world, I saw that you could play Muramasa! So I started it up, and it said that I needed the nunchuck to play. But there was none! So why the hell was it even on display? It's good and all, but if you can't play it, than why... Oh gamesradar, how you like to shoehorn okami into anything!
  • kevs223 - January 3, 2010 1:41 a.m.

    Damn...I can't believe Arkham Asylum won coz i really hate dis game(^^no offense for the players of this game) coz i think Assassin's creed is way better...
  • shinyscizor93 - January 1, 2010 2:20 a.m.

    Just got Batman Arkham Asylum, and I have to agree 100%. The most amazing game I've ever played. Great graphics, storyline, combat system, and unique boss battles (like Scarecrow levels) plus the accuracy from Batman's story make it one truly amazing game. Even the demo is so great it will make you want to go buy the game immediately.
  • oreomonkey - December 31, 2009 4:16 a.m.

    personally, Batman Arkham Asylum is garbage and boring no way is it game of the year
  • Anduin1 - December 29, 2009 4:15 a.m.

    and yea the whole review by you guys stating its better than AA is dumbfounding, looking real foolish
  • Anduin1 - December 29, 2009 4:13 a.m.

    Wow... uncharted beaten by arkham asylum? I mean Batman is prob my top 3 comic book heroes ever but Uncharted 2 was just epicness in gaming unseen as of that point. I can take that slight but "oh shit" moments in MW2? Are you kidding? The game played like a fantasy shooter with its ridiculousness whereas Uncharted 2 had real moments that could actually happen. Chopper on the rooftops, tank invading a village, moving through a train...vs snowmobiles and uzis, and what? I once read something real poignant about MW2. MW1 if it was a movie would've been directed by Francis Ford Copola whereas MW2 was a Michael Bay movie. At least you guys gave Demon's Souls some love, game doesn't get enough press imo.
  • Howetzer - December 28, 2009 10:01 p.m.

    phoenicks, excellent point! From the reveiw of Uncharted 2 in the section that GR puts in called is it better than... Batman: "Yes, just. And before you Batman fans get your knickers in a twist, let us explain. AA's combat system is fantastic and the world they've created around the Dark Knight is well realised, but it is relentlessly dark and bleak. The variety of environments and the aformentioned story-telling in Uncharted 2 snatches the victory." So can GR explain their way out of this one? Hrmm. I thinks not. Please though GR answer phoenicks question won't you? oh yeah and @LieutenantCipher, all I got from your comment is that I had excellent points, so thank you very much for that =). Peace.
  • phoenicks - December 27, 2009 4:09 p.m.

    Not for nothing, but the review for Uncharted 2 clearly states that it is a better game than Arkham Asylum. How, then, can Batman be the Game of the Year?
  • LieutenantCipher - December 26, 2009 11:34 p.m.

    I should have known that not even the Platinum Chalice Awards would be safe from fanboy rage, Howetzer and Crazyqazqaz, you two should be ashamed, both your comments are riddled with fanboy rage and you have 1 or 2 good points. As for you Gamesradar, I sense some serious Sony ass-kissing going on here, Uncharted 2 seems plastered all over this article in an uncharming way and Arkham Asylum wasn't nearly as great as you say it was.
  • secretsearcher - December 25, 2009 5:35 p.m.

    Really? Was Batman really THAT good? I haven't played it, and honestly, I don't intend to. I guess I just can't get past the "superhero games automatically suck" mindset. Oh well. Thumbs up for the Okami Award. Which reminds me. If you haven't yet, please buy Okami and play it. Please. Your life is not complete until you play this game.

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