Little Big Planet tops AIAS noms

Sony Europe's sandbox platformer receives 10 nods for 12th Annual Interactive Achievement Awards, to be handed out Feb. 19 at the DICE Summit in Vegas.

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In a bid to become the definitive gaming-awards ceremony, the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences announced in October that it had folded the International Game Developers Association into its Interactive Achievement Awards selection process. As a result of the partnership, the IGDA's 14,000-strong membership base would gain a vote on the "craft" categories of the IAAs.

We're going to need more Sackboys.

Today, the AIAS announced the initial fruit of that collaboration, laying out the nominees for its 12th Annual IAAs. Topping the list of this year's nods is Sony's PlayStation 3-exclusive Little Big Planet, which received critical praise from GameSpot upon its release in October. The AIAS gave the sandbox platformer 10 nominations, in categories ranging from Family Game of the Year to Outstanding Achievement in Art Direction to Overall Game of the Year.

Little Big Planet will face stiff competition to take home the AIAS' Game of the Year. Other contenders for the award include Bethesda Softworks' Fallout 3, Rockstar Games' Grand Theft Auto IV, Valve's Left 4 Dead, and Konami's Metal Gear Solid 4. Other multiple-award nominees include Epic's Gears of War 2 (9), Valve's Left 4 Dead (8), Bethesda's Fallout 3 (8), Konami's MGS4 (7), and Lionhead's Fable II (6).

The awards will be doled out as part of the AIAS' annual DICE Summit on February 19 at the Red Rock Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada. As he did for last year's IAAs, comedian Jay Mohr will emcee the event, his fourth time to do so.

The full list of finalists for the 12th Annual Interactive Achievement Awards is as follows.

Overall Game of the Year
Fallout 3 - Bethesda Softworks - Bethesda Softworks
Grand Theft Auto IV - Rockstar Games - Rockstar North
Left 4 Dead - Valve Software - Valve Software
Little Big Planet - Sony - Media Molecule
Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots - Konami - Kojima Productions

Console Game of the Year
Fallout 3 - Bethesda Softworks - Bethesda Softworks
Gears of War 2 - Microsoft Game Studios - Epic Games
Grand Theft Auto IV - Rockstar Games - Rockstar North
Little Big Planet - Sony - Media Molecule
Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots - Konami - Kojima Productions

Computer Game of the Year
Fallout 3 - Bethesda Softworks - Bethesda Softworks
Left 4 Dead - Valve Software - Valve Software
Mass Effect - Electronic Arts - BioWare
Spore - Electronic Arts - Maxis
World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King - Blizzard Entertainment - Blizzard Entertainment

Adventure Game of the Year
Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia - Konami - Konami
God of War: Chains of Olympus - Sony - Ready at Dawn
Mirror's Edge - Electronic Arts - Digital Illusions
Naruto: The Broken Bond - Ubisoft - Ubisoft
Prince of Persia - Ubisoft - Ubisoft Montreal

Massively Multiplayer Game of the Year
EVE Online: Quantum Rise - CCP - CCP
Pirates of the Burning Sea - Sony Online Entertainment - Flying Lab Software
PMOG - GameLayers - GameLayers
Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning - Electronic Arts - Mythic Entertainment
World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King - Blizzard Entertainment - Blizzard Entertainment

Sports Game of the Year
FIFA 09 - Electronic Arts - EA Canada
Madden NFL 09 - Electronic Arts - EA Tiburon
MLB 08: The Show - Sony - SCE Studios San Diego
NBA 2K9 - 2K Sports - Visual Concepts
NHL 09 - Electronic Arts - EA Canada

Racing Game of the Year
Burnout Paradise - Electronic Arts - Criterion Games
GRID - Codemasters - Codemasters
Mario Kart Wii - Nintendo - Nintendo
MotorStorm: Pacific Rift - Sony - Evolution Studios
Pure - Disney Interactive Studios - Black Rock Studio

Fighting Game of the Year
Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe - Midway - Midway
Soulcalibur IV - Namco Bandai Games - Project Soul
Super Smash Bros. Brawl - Nintendo - Nintendo, Sora
Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix - Capcom - Backbone Entertainment
WWE Smackdown vs. Raw 2009 - THQ - Yuke's

Outstanding Achievement in Online Game Play
Call of Duty: World at War - Activision - Treyarch
Gears of War 2 - Microsoft Game Studios - Epic Games
Left 4 Dead - Valve Software - Valve Software
NHL 09 - Electronic Arts - EA Canada
Rock Band 2 - MTV Games - Harmonix

Action Game of the Year
Call of Duty: World at War - Activision - Treyarch
Dead Space - Electronic Arts - EA Redwood Shores
Far Cry 2 - Ubisoft - Ubisoft Montreal
Gears of War 2 - Microsoft Game Studios - Epic Games
Grand Theft Auto IV - Rockstar Games - Rockstar North

Handheld Game of the Year
Advance Wars: Days of Ruin - Nintendo - Intelligent Systems
Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia - Konami - Konami
God of War: Chains of Olympus - Sony - Ready at Dawn
Patapon - Sony - Sony Computer Entertainment International
Professor Layton and the Curious Village - Nintendo - Level 5

Cellular Game of the Year
Reset Generation - Nokia - RedLynx
Spore Origins - Electronic Arts - Babaroga, Tricky Software
Trism - Demiforce - Demiforce

Casual Game of the Year
Braid - Microsoft Game Studios - Number None
Mystery Case Files: Return to Ravenhurst - Big Fish Games - Big Fish Games
Patapon - Sony - Sony Computer Entertainment International
Professor Layton and the Curious Village - Nintendo - Level 5
World of Goo - Nintendo - 2D Boy

Outstanding Achievement in Game Design
Fable II - Microsoft Game Studios - Lionhead Studios
Fallout 3 - Bethesda Softworks - Bethesda Softworks
Gears of War 2 - Microsoft Game Studios - Epic Games
Left 4 Dead - Valve Software - Valve Software
World of Goo - Nintendo - 2D Boy

Outstanding Achievement in Game Direction
Fallout 3 - Bethesda Softworks - Bethesda Softworks
Gears of War 2 - Microsoft Game Studios - Epic Games
Left 4 Dead - Valve Software - Valve Software
Little Big Planet - Sony - Media Molecule
Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots - Konami - Kojima Productions

Family Game of the Year
Boom Blox - Electronic Arts - EA Los Angeles
Little Big Planet - Sony - Media Molecule
Rayman Raving Rabbids TV Party - Ubisoft - Ubisoft Paris
Rock Band 2 - MTV Games - Harmonix
Wii Fit - Nintendo - Nintendo

Strategy/Simulation Game of the Year
Advance Wars: Days of Ruin - Nintendo - Intelligent Systems
Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 - Electronic Arts - EA Los Angeles
Sid Meier's Civilization Revolution - 2K Games - Firaxis
Sins of a Solar Empire - Stardock Entertainment - Ironclad Games
Tom Clancy's EndWar - Ubisoft - Ubisoft Shanghai

Outstanding Achievement in Animation
Castle Crashers - Microsoft Game Studios - The Behemoth
Gears of War 2 - Microsoft Game Studios - Epic Games
Left 4 Dead - Valve Software - Valve Software
Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots - Konami - Kojima Productions
Prince of Persia - Ubisoft - Ubisoft Montreal

Outstanding Achievement in Art Direction
Dead Space - Electronic Arts - EA Redwood Shores
Fable II - Microsoft Game Studios - Lionhead Studios
Little Big Planet - Sony - Media Molecule
Mirror's Edge - Electronic Arts - Digital Illusions
Prince of Persia - Ubisoft - Ubisoft Montreal

Outstanding Achievement in Visual Engineering
Gears of War 2 - Microsoft Game Studios - Epic Games
Little Big Planet - Sony - Media Molecule
Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots - Konami - Kojima Productions
Resistance 2 - Sony - Insomniac Games
Tomb Raider: Underworld - Eidos/Warner Bros. Interactive - Crystal Dynamics

Outstanding Achievement in Game Play Engineering
Fable II - Microsoft Game Studios - Lionhead Studios
Fallout 3 - Bethesda Softworks - Bethesda Softworks
Left 4 Dead - Valve Software - Valve Software
Spore - Electronic Arts - Maxis
Tom Clancy's EndWar - Ubisoft - Ubisoft Shanghai

Outstanding Character Performance
Gears of War 2 (Dom) - Microsoft Game Studios - Epic Games
Gears of War 2 (Marcus) - Microsoft Game Studios - Epic Games
Little Big Planet (Sackboy) - Sony Computer Entertainment America - Media Molecule
Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots (Old Snake) - Konami - Kojima Productions
Tomb Raider: Underworld (Lara Croft) - Eidos/Warner Bros. Interactive - Crystal Dynamics

Outstanding Achievement in Adapted Story
Lego Batman: The Videogame - Warner Bros. Interactive - TT Games
Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe - Midway - Midway
Naruto: The Broken Bond - Ubisoft - Ubisoft
Quantum of Solace - Activision - Treyarch
Star Wars: The Force Unleashed - LucasArts - LucasArts

Outstanding Achievement in Original Story
Brothers in Arms: Hell's Highway - Ubisoft - Gearbox Software
Fable II - Microsoft Game Studios - Lionhead Studios
Fallout 3 - Bethesda Softworks - Bethesda Softworks
Grand Theft Auto IV - Rockstar Games - Rockstar North
Professor Layton and the Curious Village - Nintendo - Level 5

Role-Playing Game of the Year
Fable II - Microsoft Game Studios - Lionhead Studios
Fallout 3 - Bethesda Softworks - Bethesda Softworks
Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Time - Nintendo - Chunsoft
Tales of Vesperia - Namco Bandai Games - Namco Bandai Games

Outstanding Innovation in Gaming
Braid - Microsoft Game Studios - Number None
Left 4 Dead - Valve Software - Valve Software
Little Big Planet - Sony - Media Molecule
Spore - Electronic Arts - Maxis
Wii Fit - Nintendo - Nintendo

Outstanding Achievement in Original Music Composition
de Blob - THQ - Blue Tongue
Dead Space - Electronic Arts - EA Redwood Shores
Fable II - Microsoft Game Studios - Lionhead Studios
Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots - Konami - Kojima Productions
World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King - Blizzard Entertainment - Blizzard Entertainment

Outstanding Achievement in Soundtrack
Guitar Hero World Tour - Activision - Neversoft Entertainment
Little Big Planet - Sony - Media Molecule
Motorstorm: Pacific Rift - Sony - Evolution Studios
Rock Band 2 - MTV Games - Harmonix
Singstar PS3 Vol. 1 - Sony - SCE London Studio

Outstanding Achievement in Sound Design
Dead Space - Electronic Arts - EA Redwood Shores
Gears of War 2 - Microsoft Game Studios - Epic Games
Little Big Planet - Sony - Media Molecule
Prince of Persia - Ubisoft - Ubisoft Montreal
Wipeout HD - Sony - SCE Studios Liverpool

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