Very well deserved. This game is amazing. There were some other phenomenal games this year, but nothing quite like the experience I had with Zelda. And they hit the nail on the head with rewarding a player's ingenuity.
I'm one of the gamers where the nostalgic influences ran high: I've always referred to A Link to the Past as my all-time favorite game. I've lost count of the number of times I've played through it over the years. But my victory over that game came with a terrible secret: as a young lad, I made more than one call to the Nintendo's game counselor hotline. And I regret it, because they had some of the most clever puzzles of any game ever.
With this game, I was absolutely determined not to make the same mistake twice (even though Google makes it a thousand times easier to do so). Every time I solved a puzzle on my own, I felt like I was actually EARNING my victories, not just going through the motions like so many other games.
And I LOVE the StreetPass feature in this game! Playing Shadow Links owned by other players with some legitimately challenging achievements (beat them without using your sword or items?!?) is an incredible experience.
I literally got chills the first time I turned it on and it played the remastered intro music from a Link to the Past. The soundtrack is absolutely incredible, you MUST wear headphones to do it justice. And the graphics are so beautifully vibrant that my kids have stopped what they're doing just to sit and watch me play (the major downside being I have to switch off the 3D so I don't ruin their eyes watching the action from an angle).
Buy this game. Everyone. If you don't own a 3DS yet, you owe it
to yourself to get one just so you can play this game. Those that decry
Gamespot's declaration of A Link Between Worlds as Game of the Year
without picking it up are doing themselves a major disservice.