Okami, Oblivion nab top noms at GDC awards

Snubbed by the AIAS, Capcom title picks up four nominations, including Best Game.

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Call it Okami's revenge.

The Capcom game noticeably absent from the nominee pool at this week's AIAS-sponsored Achievement Awards shares the distinction of being the most-nominated game in the upcoming Game Developers Choice Awards competition.

Okami shares the honor with Bethesda Softworks' The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. Each title is nominated in four categories, including Best Game.

"The GDC derives its authenticity from the developers themselves, who teach and share at the show--the Game Developers Choice Awards is then the natural validation of their collective artistic effort, voted on and awarded to individual game creators," GDC executive director Jamil Moledina said in a statement. "Since the Choice Awards have an open nomination process and reflect the judgment of peers, the awards have earned the highest respect of the community."

The awards take place on Wednesday, March 7, at 6:30 p.m. in the Esplanade Ballroom of Moscone South. DJ Chris and Mega64 are performing. The awards are part of the Game Developers Conference, scheduled for March 7 to 9 in San Francisco.

The full list of nominees is as follows:

Best Game
Gears of War (Epic Games / Microsoft Game Studios)
Cliff Bleszinski, Michael Capps, Rod Fergusson

Okami (Clover Studio / Capcom Entertainment)
Atsushi Inaba, Hideki Kamiya

The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion (Bethesda Game Studios / 2K Games/Bethesda Softworks)
Todd Howard

The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess (Nintendo EAD / Nintendo)
Eiji Aonuma, Satoru Iwata, Shigeru Miyamoto

Wii Sports (Nintendo)
Satoru Iwata, Shigeru Miyamoto, Keizo Ohta, Takayuki Shimamura, Yoshiaki Yamashita

Audio
Company of Heroes (Relic Entertainment / THQ)
Crispin Hands, John Johnson, Jennifer Lewis, John Tennant

DEFCON: Everybody Dies (Introversion Software)
Alistair Lindsay, Michael Maidment

Guitar Hero II (Harmonix Music Systems / RedOctane)
Jeff Allen, Eric Brosius, Izzy Maxwell

Lara Croft Tomb Raider: Legend (Crystal Dynamics / Eidos Interactive)
Troels Folmann, Karl Gallagher, Mike Peaslee, Gregg Stephens

LocoRoco (Sony Computer Entertainment)
Kemmei Adachi, Tomonobu Kikuchi, Kouji Niikura, Nobuyuki Shimizu

Character Design
Final Fantasy XII (Square Enix)
Hideo Minaba, Hiroshi Minagawa, Akihiko Yoshida

LocoRoco (Sony Computer Entertainment)
Tsutomu Kouno, Keigo Tsuchiya

Okami (Clover Studio / Capcom Entertainment)
Mari Shimazaki, Sawaki Takeyasu, Kenichirou Yoshimura

Rayman Raving Rabbids (Ubisoft Montpellier Studio / Ubisoft Entertainment)
Michel Ancel, Charles Beirnaert, Hubert Chevillard, Florent Sacre

Viva Piñata (Rare / Microsoft Game Studios)
Ryan Stevenson

Game Design
Bully (Rockstar Vancouver / Rockstar Games)
Michael Skupa

Okami (Clover Studio / Capcom Entertainment)
Hideki Kamiya

The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion (Bethesda Game Studios / 2K Games/Bethesda Softworks)
Todd Howard

Viva Piñata (Rare / Microsoft Game Studios)
Justin Cook, Gregg Mayles

Wii Sports (Nintendo)
Keizo Ohta, Takayuki Shimamura, Yoshiaki Yamashita

Technology
Company of Heroes (Relic Entertainment / THQ)
Drew Dunlop, Shelby Hubick, David Swinerd, Ian Thomson

Dead Rising (Capcom Entertainment)
Shinya Ikuta, Tomofumi Ishida, Yasuhide Sawada, Tomohiro Ueda

Gears of War (Epic Games / Microsoft Game Studios)
Michael Capps, Ray Davis, Tim Sweeney, Daniel Vogel

Rockstar Games presents Table Tennis (Rockstar San Diego / Rockstar Games)
Ted Carson, Eugene Foss, Wil Paredes, Steve Reed

Wii Sports (Nintendo)
Takuhiro Dohta, Takeshi Miyamoto, Keizo Ohta, Kenta Sato

Visual Arts
Final Fantasy XII (Square Enix)
Isamu Kamikokuryo, Hideo Minaba, Akihiko Yoshida

Gears of War (Epic Games / Microsoft Game Studios)
Jerry O'Flaherty, Chris Perna

Okami (Clover Studio / Capcom Entertainment)
Naoki Katakai, Kenichirou Yoshimura

The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion (Bethesda Game Studios / 2K Games/Bethesda Softworks)
Matthew Carofano, Christiane Meister, Istvan Pely

Viva Piñata (Rare / Microsoft Game Studios)
Ed Bryan, Ryan Stevenson

Writing
Bully (Rockstar Vancouver / Rockstar Games)
Dan Houser, Jacob Krarup

Dreamfall: The Longest Journey (Funcom / Aspyr Media)
Dag Scheve, Ragnar Tørnquist

Sam & Max Episode 1: Culture Shock (Telltale Games / GameTap)
Brendan Ferguson, Dave Grossman, Steve Purcell

The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion (Bethesda Game Studios / 2K Games/Bethesda Softworks)
Ken Rolston

The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess (Nintendo EAD / Nintendo)
Kyogoku Aya, Nate Bihldorff, Mitsuhiro Takano

New Studio
Gastronaut Studios (Small Arms)
Jacob Van Wingen, Don Wurster

Iron Lore Entertainment (Titan Quest)
Paul Chieffo, Jeff Goodsill, Brian Sullivan

Naked Sky Entertainment (RoboBlitz)
Joshua Glazer, Tian Mu, Sam Thibault

Ready At Dawn Studios (Daxter)
Didier Malenfant, Andrea Pessino, Ru Weerasuriya

Wadjet Eye Games (The Shiva)
Chris Femo, Dave Gilbert, Peter Gresser, Ian Schlaepfer

Discussion

158 comments
mjk_1
mjk_1

pfft, wii sports... anyway i gotta fix my ps2 for okami

t_g
t_g

I'm glad to see Viva Pinata with a few nominations. It is a good game with excellent character animation.

Charlie2688
Charlie2688

Its nice to see Okami getting the recognition it deserves...Okami definitely deserves the Best game awards besides a couple extra ones :P

Diamondbarrow
Diamondbarrow

smoothn00dle: You mean their opinion? You'd question their over-all judgment because of a general consensus? Can I question you're judgment for yours?

Diamondbarrow
Diamondbarrow

smoothn00dle: You mean their opinion? You'd question their over-all judgment because of a general consensus? Can I question you're judgment for yours?

manhunt1001
manhunt1001

I have played 4 out of 5 of the best games(since Okami isn't released till well tomorrow:)) I would have to say that Gears was definitly my favourite of the list. Although I havn't played it yet, I would think FFXII would be a better candidate for the award than Wii Sports(which is fairly average as a game really). Oblivion would come in a close second for me with Zelda taking the Third spot.

smoothn00dle
smoothn00dle

If GDC vote GOW, a super hype game for the Game of the Year, I will have to question those developers' judgment.

bozco-mkd
bozco-mkd

Okami looks amazing cant wait for uk release.............

lightgamet
lightgamet

Finally Okami is getting a bit more attention. I actually enjoyed Zelda TP more however I found Okami more innovative and beautiful. Game of the Year goes to either Gears or Zelda

polsci1503
polsci1503

Wii Sports as best game? Couldn't Company of Heroes or Resistance have taken that slot? Even Bully could have been in there instead. I can understand it being in the Technology category but not best game.

iDIVIDEBYZER0
iDIVIDEBYZER0

"why?? because FF12 had voice-actor reading the lines, instead of making you actually read the writing like in Zelda, I guess for that, beautiful voice-acting isn't exactly something you read, and therefore, doesn't deserve it." uh and Bully and Dreamfall didnt have voice acting? Writing means the script of the game, it doesnt matter if its spoken or not. Zelda is the only game up there with no voice acting.

urbanlegend13
urbanlegend13

Good thing for Okami and Twilight Princess. :D

Jebril
Jebril

In Oblivion you'll be explorin and talking to people more than you'll be killin stuff.

qiwihead
qiwihead

Corky842: Again you're not explaining what you think makes a game an RPG. Most of the RPG players I know, myself included, consider RPGs to be games that include the elements I listed before: classes, experience-based leveling, long and connected quest lines, etc. Saying that Oblivion isn't an RPG just boggles my mind. If it isn't, then what is? Are you saying it isn't really an RPG because they slightly streamlined some aspects of the leveling system from Morrowind, which by most accounts is one of the most complex RPGs ever made? Your other criticisms about the somewhat compromised nature of a few quests is overly harsh--name some other RPGs that don't have that issue. In order to create a game as complex as Oblivion, some compromises have to be made in the internal logic of the gameworld. If you want a game where you are allowed to kill a questgiver on a whim and then have the game end because you just killed an important player in the game's storyline, then more power to you. It'll be realistic, but it'll be boring and short. You're also missing the point of role-playing. Sure, the fact that the world is about to end but the game allows you to dilly-dally on sidequests seems silly; but if you use your imagination and actually role-play the game, you wouldn't dilly-dally and you would go with all haste through the main questline. That you chose to kill some fish first is your own failing, not the game's. It seems like on the one hand you want the game to allow you to do whatever you want to do (like kill anyone you want), but on the other you want it to force you into a linear progression by making you do the main questline before you do anything else. I think Oblivion strikes a very nice balance between those contradictory desires. For someone who apparently played Morrowind, a game that requires even more imagination and role-playing, I'm baffled by your criticisms.

cjcr_alexandru
cjcr_alexandru

Oblivion is a great game and this nominations show it.

svenuce
svenuce

Really great to see Okami and Dead Rising getting some recognition. These awards really show the flaws in the AIAS award process.

racerx737
racerx737

GoW should get a couple, so should Zelda and Oblivion

tntnavid
tntnavid

Oblivion is Greatest game i have ever seen. at least It should pick up 3 awards.

quetzalcoatl45
quetzalcoatl45

I Hope Gears Loses it all, Mindless POS. Oblivion All the way!

NicktehImperial
NicktehImperial

What? Oblivion is a free roam RPG! Don't people get it? Just cause it has a realistic combat system doesn't mean its all action. Its free roam. FREE ROAM. Thats different from other RPG's though where its not free roam but the story and roleplaying with other characters is more complex.

HumanTorch101
HumanTorch101

GoW has about two awards locked up and hopefully Guitar Hero 2 can walk away with best audio. Other than that, it looks wide open.

jcloverboy
jcloverboy

I'd expect Gears to win a couple. Okami should do well also - very original designs.

drangel_jam
drangel_jam

Gears should pick up at least two awards

corky842
corky842

[quote="qiwihead"]incredibly deep and complex character creation and leveling system[/quote] You mean just like Morrowind but watered down? It's more like an action game with RPG elements. [quote="qiwihead"]a persistent world[/quote] "You got a quest: Go kill everything and come back when you're done." "Sorry, you can't kill this person because he gives a minor sidequest that you probably don't want to do anyway." "The world's going to end, and you're the only one that can save it! What? You say there's this fisherman who wants you to kill a bunch of fish for him first? OK, you go ahead and do whatever you want, we can wait."

Tomrr711
Tomrr711

I really hope that Ready at Dawn Studios wins the best new Studio catogory. jak and daxter's move from Naughty Dog was a good move!

2deluxe
2deluxe

Sounds like pity nominations.

Expane
Expane

Bully should win for design, its the most original game on the list. Oblivion, Okami and Gears are all fantastic games, but Oblivion is a lot like morrowind, Okami is a lot like Zelda and Gears is a lot like 100million other 3rdperson shooters, just better. Bully is the first truly original home console game to come out in a while.

Dantes_Monkey
Dantes_Monkey

OKami is THE outstanding game of the last year...nuff said

rulo_rezn0r
rulo_rezn0r

"Romanticide Really oblivion is just barely an RPG, i'd class it more as a fantasy adventure game. Gears of War is jut showing off a very watered down Unreal 3 engine on hardware that is already getting dated. Unreal Tournament 3 will be so much better. " what u talkin about, GOW is the best lookin game in the market, u gotta read a little more dude and oblivion is more into rpgs than zelda itself dont get me wrong i love both

raziellich
raziellich

Nice to see Bully get some nods. If there hadn't been so many damn good games this year, you'd see Bully getting a nomination for best game.

Stabby
Stabby

Also I hope the awards vary... the previous years have been boring and have only 1 game win everything, its stupid.

qiwihead
qiwihead

I'm interested to know why some in this thread, like Romanticide, claim that Oblivion is "barely an RPG." Wtf is it if it's not an RPG? Prince of Persia is an action/adventure game, how can you say that Oblivion is in the same category? How could Oblivion be more of an RPG? It has an incredibly deep and complex character creation and leveling system, long quest lines, classes, factions, a persistent world...by any definition of RPG I've ever seen, Oblivion practically defines role playing. Am I missing something here, or are there just some Oblivion haters trying to stir up a flame war?

Stabby
Stabby

Nice to see Okami get something, so either this or Oblivion should win... as long as its not Zelda, the GS fanboys made the game look bad for others lol!

NekoTheSpook
NekoTheSpook

Thank goodness SOMEBODY out there has the ability to recognize a great game when they see one! GoW is good, too, but Okami has a lot more universal appeal and the character designs/graphics are really a refreshing change of pace. Hope Okami racks them in and and the AIAS chokes on it.

drgnstr13
drgnstr13

Finally Okami is in there! Such an enjoyable game! Plus the story and all it's characters are based off of old stories which I thought was cool! I've never played GoW, and I'm really tired of hearing about it.

RoterTod
RoterTod

Clover deserves this a lot. they've brought very good games that dont get a lot of attention. I hope Okami wins at least something

Enthasius
Enthasius

Oblivion may be an RPG/action adventure game, but the same token goes to Zelda, which features less RPG elements than Oblivion does.

limberis
limberis

I hope Okami wins...Maybe the press will help sell some more copies. Okami is such a fun and original game WITH a good message/story. I hope it does a little better sales wise so people aren't afraid to make games that are out of the norm.

sonicare
sonicare

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

sigma8
sigma8

"Go, Wii60!!" Whatever. Go PWiiS3. Actually, either way you slice it, it seems like Nintendo's name turns out to be pretty genius.

Gamer443
Gamer443

gears is not all thats is cracked up to be.

LosDaddie
LosDaddie

Gears of War should win big Go, Wii60!!

DanC1989
DanC1989

Okami finally comes out here in a few days..

Iffy350
Iffy350

I agree with Romanticide.

Romanticide
Romanticide

Really oblivion is just barely an RPG, i'd class it more as a fantasy adventure game. Gears of War is jut showing off a very watered down Unreal 3 engine on hardware that is already getting dated. Unreal Tournament 3 will be so much better.

sugreev2005-06
sugreev2005-06

Finally some great games nominated.Sick of seeing a very much overrated Gears of War taking the Sheen from much much better games such as Bully and Okami.Okami is a first of it's kind and the industry should realize it.

gato_zero
gato_zero

Okami debe ser el mejor juego del 2006, seguro que se lleva la flor clver studio jeje