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Games of the Year

RPGFan Games of the Year 2021: Best New IP

GOTY 2021 New IP Scarlet Nexus

Winner: Scarlet Nexus

When Scarlet Nexus was announced, my expectations were subterranean. Even as I popped the game into my system, I figured it wouldn’t hold my attention for more than a couple of hours. Yet, with each scene, battle, and conversation, I found myself getting attached to the characters and hooked on the story. I was left constantly guessing at what would happen next as protagonists Kasane and Yuito’s stories diverged and weaved back together. Every battle was a blast as I slung cars and telephone poles into enemies while tapping into my allies’ special abilities. The game’s presentation makes it feel like a manga, an anime, and a motion comic, all rolled into one. As well as looking stylish, it feels stylish too. The gameplay is exciting and fun, while the story is a wild ride from start to finish. Scarlet Nexus is a great debut for a new IP, and I can’t wait to see what’s next.

by Des Miller


Runner-Up: Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy

Thanks to Marvel Studios, Guardians of the Galaxy left relative obscurity and reached a surprising level of popularity. While this is not the first attempt at a video game based on the Guardians, Square Enix and Eidos Montreal’s interpretation combines the quippy and loud dynamic from the movies and comics with a surprising amount of charm and heart. Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy looks great too, offering up clean and colorful visuals alongside some masterful face and motion capture. Accompanied by a ton of licensed ’80s and ’90s tunes along with a suitable original score, Guardians of the Galaxy really delivers on the character and atmosphere of the broader Marvel comics universe, even when the gameplay feels lacking.

by Steven Mattern

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Readers’ Choice: Best New IP

Winner: Scarlet Nexus

Runner-Up: Eastward

It seems you agreed with us here – Over 50% of you voted for Scarlet Nexus in this category!

Des Miller

Des Miller

Des is a reviews editor, writer, and resident horror fan. He has a fondness for overlooked, emotionally impactful, and mechanically complex games - hence his love for tri-Ace and Gust. When he's not spending hours crafting in Atelier or preaching about Valkyrie Profile, he can usually be found playing scary games in the dark. With headphones. As they should be played.