End of Year 2020: Our Favorite Games of the Year

2020 is over, and 2021 has started! We’ve voted on our favorite games of the year, and this is what we chose.

Thank you for participating in the Waypoint Community’s End of Year event of 2020! It’s been quite a year, both for gaming and for the whole world, so there was a lot to consider. The conversation threads will remain open, so you can keep talking about your favorite experiences of 2020 as much as you want! Here’s hoping 2021 will be full of great experiences.

You can find the hub thread for the Waypoint Community’s End of Year 2020 here.

Game of the Year
Hades - Supergiant Games

With nearly a third of the vote, Hades, the Greek Mythology-themed action roguelite from Supergiant, was the most popular favorite of the year. You play as Zagreus as he faces a Sisyphean struggle to escape his father’s underworld to find his mother. Supergiant released Hades into early access in 2019, and it finally reached 1.0 in September of 2020, and was met with rave reviews and near-universal acclaim.

Other Nominees: Final Fantasy VII Remake, Kentucky Route Zero, Umurangi Generation, If Found…, Paradise Killer

Favorite Narrative
Kentucky Route Zero - Cardboard Computer

This year, we were moved by the magical-realist saga of Kentucky Route Zero, which started all the way back in 2013, each portion of the game coming out over the course of seven years. Through both gameplay and experimental multi-media, it tells the story of Conway, an antique delivery truck driver, Shannon, a VCR repairwoman, and a dog with a hat searching for a mysterious address on Dogwood Drive and the people they meet on the way. In January of 2020, the fifth and final act of the story was released.

Other Nominees: Umurangi Generation, If Found…, Final Fantasy VII Remake, Spiritfarer, 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim


Favorite Game Music
Paradise Killer - Kaizen Game Works

Kaizen Game Works’ Paradise Killer simply oozes style unlike any other game, and nothing quite conveys it like its funky fresh soundtrack. It instantly had us bobbing our heads and grooving. Composed by Epoch (AKA Barry Topping), it evokes Japanese city pop and vaporwave with its synthesizers and relaxed vibe. It’s the perfect background for solving such a wild mystery!

Other Nominees: Hades, Umurangi Generation, Animal Crossing: New Horizons, Jet Lancer, Risk of Rain 2

Favorite Game Feel
Hades - Supergiant Games

Hades is the culmination of all the experience Supergiant has gained since their first game. Slicing and dicing through hell hit a lot of our sweet spots. Zagreus has an arsenal of weapons, and all of them make loud, satisfying sounds and bursts of explosive color as they cleave through enemies, which we can assure you can be made quick work of.

Other Nominees: Spelunky 2, Star Wars: Squadrons, Ghostrunner, Nioh 2


Favorite Presentation
Kentucky Route Zero - Cardboard Computer

This year, we were enchanted by the world of Kentucky Route Zero. The game has an impeccable sense of cinematography, and the designers at Cardboard Computer were influenced by Bertolt Brecht and Andrei Tarkovsky. Its contemplative silence is punctuated by beautiful musical interludes. The strange world of Kentucky Route Zero of rendered with low fidelity but striking clarity. Its surreal images haunted our memories well after the journey had ended.

Other Nominees: Paradise Killer, Hades, If Found…, Ori and the Will of the Wisps, Ghost of Tsushima


Favorite Multiplayer
Blaseball - The Game Band

In July, the browser game Blaseball appeared on the internet with little prelude. Players bet on fictional blaseball teams in tournaments and vote on rule changes. With most sports being canceled due to COVID-19, Blaseball filled in that gap in many people’s lives. The first known splort quickly became a sensation, with the community inventing its own lore and backstories for the teams and their players. We cheered victories, bemoaned failures, and mourned devastating incinerations.

Other Nominees: Among Us, Animal Crossing: New Horizons, Valorant

[Art by: @formyths on Twitter]

Favorite Ongoing Game
Destiny 2 - Bungie

Destiny 2 was originally released in 2017, and has kept on trucking ever since with consistent updates. It became free-to-play in 2019, and in 2020, they released the new Beyond Light expansion in November. Whether in strikes or raids, we continued to be enraptured with the mythic sci-fi action Bungie has continued to craft since day one.

Other Nominees: Final Fantasy XIV, Apex Legends, Caves of Qud, World of Warcraft