Apparently we need to explain to you what these awards are all about. Well, we’re completely serious about them and are keen to make sure that they go to some of the best indie games of 2012 that haven’t been touted as such enough for our liking. You’ve already got Josh’s picks for the year, but we’re looking at games for different reasons, perhaps even more beautiful reasons than being the “best”. Does that explain anything? Probably not, but just make sure you investigate the list good and proper and make sure you get around to playing some of them too.
Best Antidote To Slenderman
WINNER!: The 4th Wall by GZ Storm
Ever felt confused when playing a game before? When you have no idea what’s going on and proceedings get stranger and stranger, you can’t help but feel unnerved. The 4th Wall annihilated horror this year. And that ending!
Finest Example of Word Science
WINNER!: Cinders by MoaCube
Often we find that we’re partial to snack on the word-fruits of games, and this year was a mighty fine year for gorging. Cinders enticed and suprised us most of all with its text by managing to make us feel all sorts of things, even though it’s based on a well-known fairy tale that we believed we were familiar with.
I Hate This Game But I Can’t Stop Playing It Award
WINNER!: Dustforce by Hitbox Team
It’s a bloody good job that Dustforce happens to have one of the best soundtracks of 2012 because its gameplay, though smooth and elegant, gets right on our tits a little later on. And then, of course, we have to try and best our own times and get the S rank. Then there’s the accursed leaderboards…
Place We Wanted To Go On Vacation
WINNER!: Proteus by Ed Key and David Kanaga
No question as to where we would rather be spending our time. All of it – every second – we’d dedicate our existence inside the world of Proteus if we could with its pixel beauty and adaptive soundscape. Oh, how we miss it!
WINNER!: Death Ray Manta by Rob Fearon
Jam as many colors as you possibly can into your game to win this award and Death Ray Manta succeeded in just besting the others. It was a close call, but considering that our eyes started drooping from the manic aesthetic of this arena shooter, we just had to hand it to Rob.
Best Kick In The Nuts
WINNER!: McPixel by Sos Sosowski
You can’t beat a five-pronged lump of flesh to the groin and, my word, McPixel really takes the biscuit in this category. No one can deny its nut kicking capabilites as it excels in this more than any game before it.
Biggest Brainfart Inducer
WINNER!: Gateways by Smudged Cat Games
We’re still feeling queasy from attempting to puzzle our way through Gateways, and we’re still not sure what reality we exist in. Please, make it stop! Will giving this award to the game appease it for now?! Oh, please let it be!
BANG BANG BANG! PEW PEW PEW! Award
WINNER!: Bleed by Booktdisk Revolution
Getting in just before the end of the year, Bleed proved to be the best gun slinging action you can have this year. Diving, multiple jumps and slow motion moments – it’s got it all! Shoot your way through this smooth seducer and you won’t regret wasting your wish on becoming the best badass there ever was!
Best Pseudo-Cowboy Capers
WINNER!: The Real Texas by Kitty Lambda
We can’t always be real cowboys, so just pretending to be some form of wild west nincompoop will do us. The Real Texas deserves to win more things but this will have to do for now. Man, we love this game.
It’s Been Released At Last! Award
WINNER!: Cortex Command by Data Realms
Zzzzz….huh?! I said to not wake me up until it has been released! Oh, it has?! Blimey. Quick, grab my pipe and slippers; there’s some serious game playing to be done! Of all the games we’d been waiting many years for, it is Cortex Command we were most happy to jump into and satisfy our anticipation with.
The I Don’t Even Know How To Describe This Game Award
WINNER!: Starseed Pilgrim by Droqen
Some games shouldn’t be explained. Some can’t be explained. Starseed Pilgrim falls into both of these categories and we’re telling you, if you haven’t already, you should be playing this game and learning its secrets. Ascend, stranger!
MMMMMMMMMMMultiplayer Experience Of The Year
WINNER!: A Virus Named TOM by Misfits Attic
Believe it or not, we’re not loners all year round, and sometimes we do manage to get some cheeky multiplayer action in. No questions about what game was our favorite this year. And would you believe it, it’s a puzzle game of all things! TOM, come kiss us, you sloppy virus, you!
This Just Needs An Award Award
WINNER!: Goblet Grotto by thecatamites
We’re not even sure what this award is for. There’s just some games that we loved so much that it would feel wrong not to give them some form of recognition. Thecatamites should win all of the things, really. Okay, just Goblet Grotto then – that will do.