GM GOTY Awards 2019 – Best Story
Who doesn’t love a good story told in video games form? Despite the unofficial name, this is no joke category- it is to celebrate the best story in a video game this year.
The narrative that captures our hearts and minds delivered in video game form
- Days Gone
- Metro Exodus
- The Outer Worlds
As you can see in the nominations list, we didn’t play that much story-based or narrative games this year. There are definitely glaring omissions- some because we didn’t play. Some we just didn’t bother or not to our liking. But this is the GM crew’s list at the end of the day. We ended up less than the minimal 5 games in the finalised list.
Days Gone is an anomaly because one person here actually likes the chic-lit shlocky story-telling of “Suamiku Mat Motor”. And it all boils down to how the actors deliver their performance capture. Seeing Deacon St. John struggling with the reality that is the fate of his loved one is sweet, harrowing and kind of relatable. The way it showcases the diverging storylines which can interweave in and out various missions is an interesting novelty that has potential, but clearly hard to explain and understand.
Control sets expectations just right. The first line you hear from the game is that it’s about to get weird, and it definitely did. Unsettling horror and mystery is the name of the game, with various Lynchian inspiration. Metro Exodus gets a big shout thanks to the wife of protagonist Artyom, Ana, who is a badass sniper. The two do get nice moments, and the whole story of venturing out of the titular Metro is still a great ride.
But what captivates the crew here the mist this year is a very obvious game. The Outer Worlds explore a solar system where capitalist rules. But it presents a deeper, murkier and more grounded depiction of it. Rather than having the theme being “screw the pigs, down with the system” from the get-go, you get to see how the flawed system is keeping the Halcyon Colony alive. There are moments where the game presents the corporate shmucks in a different light.
That being said, as an Obsidian RPG, you still have free reign to make whatever choices you wish. The story structure is pretty much Fallout: New Vegas, down to the slideshow-style ending recapping the choices you make and the fate of various characters. But The Outer Worlds has more tongue-in-cheek writing with some of the funniest and unexpected twist for sidequests.
Congratulations to The Outer Worlds for winning the GM GOTY Award for Best Story!
Check back tomorrow for winner of the Most Surprising Game!