GDC Award nominees announced; Shadow of Mordor cleans up

GDC, or the Game Developers Conference, is due to take place in March, during which some lovely awards will be handed out to games that are innovative, well-designed, have nice art or good stories, or were just the best games of 2014 (in the judges' opinions). There are some great PC games in the list of nominations this year, including Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor, Alien Isolation, and Hearthstone up for the GDC Awards' Game of the Year. One of those was PC Gamer's GOTY, by the way, but which one. Yeah it was Alien. Remember?

Other PC games nominated include The Vanishing of Ethan Carter and This War of Mine for the Innovation award, Shovel Knight and The Banner Saga for Best Debut, and Kentucky Route Zero Act 3 for Best Narrative. Shadow of Mordor did particularly well, securing five nominations in total, including Best Narrative for some reason. Here's the full list:

Game of the Year

  • Bayonetta 2 (Platinum Games/Nintendo)
  • Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor (Monolith Productions/Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment)
  • Destiny (Bungie/Activision)
  • Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft (Blizzard)
  • Alien: Isolation (Creative Assembly/Sega)

Honorable Mentions: Titanfall (Respawn/Electronic Arts), Valiant Hearts: The Great War (Ubisoft Montpellier/Ubisoft), Far Cry 4 (Ubisoft Montreal/Ubisoft), Dragon Age: Inquisition (BioWare/Electronic Arts), Super Smash Bros. for Wii U (Sora Ltd. and BANDAI NAMCO/Nintendo)

Innovation Award

  • Bounden (Game Oven)
  • Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor (Monolith Productions/Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment)
  • This War of Mine (11 bit studios)
  • The Vanishing of Ethan Carter (The Astronauts)
  • Monument Valley (Ustwo)

Honorable Mentions: Crypt of the Necrodancer (Brace Yourself Games), Extrasolar (Lazy 8 Studios), Elite: Dangerous (Frontier Developments), Elegy For A Dead World (Dejobaan Games), 80 Days (Inkle Studios)

Best Debut

  • Yacht Club Games (Shovel Knight)
  • Respawn Entertainment (Titanfall)
  • The Astronauts (The Vanishing of Ethan Carter)
  • Stoic Studio (The Banner Saga)
  • Upper One Games (Never Alone)

Honorable Mentions: Dynamighty (CounterSpy), Hinterland Games (The Long Dark), 1337 & Senri (Leo's Fortune), MachineGames (Wolfenstein: The New Order), Hipster Whale (Crossy Road)

Best Design

  • Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor (Monolith Productions/Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment)
  • Shovel Knight (Yacht Club Games)
  • Dragon Age: Inquisition (BioWare/Electronic Arts)
  • Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker (Nintendo EAD Tokyo and 1-Up Studio/Nintendo)
  • Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft (Blizzard)

Honorable Mentions: Mario Kart 8 (Nintendo EAD Tokyo/Nintendo), Alien: Isolation (Creative Assembly/Sega), Destiny (Bungie/Activision), Monument Valley (Ustwo), Far Cry 4 (Ubisoft Montreal/Ubisoft)

Best Handheld/Mobile Game

  • Threes! (Sirvo)
  • Super Smash Bros. 3DS (Sora Ltd. and BANDAI NAMCO/Nintendo)
  • Hearthstone (Blizzard)
  • 80 Days (Inkle Studios)
  • Monument Valley (Ustwo)

Honorable Mentions: Bounden (Game Oven), Bravely Default (Silicon Studio and Square Enix/Nintendo and Square Enix), Desert Golfing (Blinkbat Games), Velocity 2X (FuturLab), Fantasy Life (Level-5/Nintendo)

Best Visual Art

  • Monument Valley (Ustwo)
  • Hohokum (Honeyslug and Sony Santa Monica/Sony)
  • Child of Light (Ubisoft Montreal/Ubisoft)
  • Bayonetta 2 (Platinum Games/Nintendo)
  • Alien: Isolation (Creative Assembly/Sega)

Honorable Mentions: Never Alone (Upper One Games/E-Line Media), The Vanishing of Ethan Carter (The Astronauts), Transistor (Supergiant Games), Broken Age: Act 1 (Double Fine Productions), Destiny (Bungie/Activision)

Best Narrative

  • 80 Days (Inkle Studios)
  • This War of Mine (11 bit studios)
  • Kentucky Route Zero: Episode 3 (Cardboard Computer)
  • Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor (Monolith Productions/Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment)
  • The Vanishing of Ethan Carter (The Astronauts)

Honorable Mentions: Dragon Age: Inquisition (BioWare/Electronic Arts), Valiant Hearts: The Great War (Ubisoft Montpellier/Ubisoft), Tales From The Borderlands: Episode 1 (Gearbox Software/Telltale Games), D4: Dark Dreams Don't Die (Access Games/Microsoft), Hatoful Boyfriend (Mediatonic/Devolver Digital)

Best Audio

  • Alien: Isolation (Creative Assembly/Sega)
  • Hohokum (Honeyslug/Sony)
  • Destiny (Bungie/Activision)
  • Transistor (Supergiant Games)
  • The Vanishing of Ethan Carter (The Astronauts)

Honorable Mentions: Child of Light (Ubisoft Montreal/Ubisoft), Far Cry 4 (Ubisoft Montreal/Ubisoft), D4: Dark Dreams Don't Die (Access Games/Microsoft), Bayonetta 2 (Platinum Games/Nintendo), Crypt of the Necrodancer (Brace Yourself Games)

Best Technology

  • Destiny (Bungie/Activision)
  • Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor (Monolith Productions/Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment)
  • Wolfenstein: The New Order (MachineGames/Bethesda)
  • Elite: Dangerous (Frontier Developments)
  • Far Cry 4 (Ubisoft Montreal/Ubisoft)

Honorable Mentions: Assassin's Creed Unity (Ubisoft Montreal/Ubisoft), The Last of Us: Remastered (Naughty Dog/Sony), Sunset Overdrive (Insomniac Games/Microsoft), Alien: Isolation (Creative Assembly/Sega), Infamous: Second Son (Sucker Punch Productions/Sony)

Nominees for the Ambassador, Pioneer and Lifetime Achievement awards, meanwhile, will be announced in the "near future", while voting for the Audience Award begins in February.

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