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Nordic Game Awards 2020 Winners Announced

by Rainier on May 29, 2020 @ 12:01 a.m. PDT

The Nordic Game Conference 2020 just wrapped up its second day, concluding with the Nordic Game Awards, selecting the final winners amongst 29 games in nine categories.

The Nordic Game Awards 2020 is organised by Nordic Game and the Nordic Game Institute, which consists of all the Nordic Producer Associations. Each producer organisation has appointed a member for this years awards jury, and the organisations have nominated games in nine categories.

This year, the NG Awards jury consists of the following members: 

  • Gísli Konráðsson, Iceland - A game industry veteran and founder of Órói Game Studios. Gísli has for the past twelve years worked on a wide variety of games in Europe, Asia and the US
  • Jarle Hrafn Grindhaug, Norway - Jarle Hrafn has been writing about video games for close to twenty years and co-founded in 2008. He was also a part of the Nordic Game Awards jury in 2019.
  • Jaakko Kemppainen, Finland - Jaakko works as the regional artist of Games as Art. He has almost twenty years of experience in the games industry and education. Game design as an art form is his not-so-secret love.
  • Albertina Sparrhult, Sweden - From game designer to management consultant/team coach, Albertina has spent over ten years in the industry, on both indie and AAA titles. She loves coffee, dogs, dancing and pen & paper RPGs.
  • Victor Breum, Denmark - Victor leads Nordic Game Jam by night, studies creative direction at the National Film School of Denmark by day, while also cooking up his own games as designer and programmer.

A warm thanks to the sponsors of Nordic Game Awards 2020: Epic Games

The Nordic Game Awards 2020 winners are:

Nordic Game of the Year 2020 

  • Control from Remedy Entertainment (FI)

Judges’ motivation: All departments of the studio came together to create scenes containing immense godlike freedom in this year’s Nordic Game of the Year, Control. Though not groundbreaking the game offers a unique atmosphere that draws players into a mystic and surreal world that David Lynch would be proud to call his own. 

Nordic Game of the Year runners-up:

  • Baba is You, by Hempuli Oy (FI)
  • LEGO Builder´s Journey, by Light Brick Studios (DK)
  • Mosaic, by Krillbite Studio (NO)
  • Sayonara Wildhearts, by Simogo (SE)

Nordic Game of the Year – Small Screen 

  • Sayonara Wild Hearts from Simogo (SE)

Judges’ motivation: There’s nothing predictable when this audiovisual rollercoaster takes players for a dance across the screen. Its minimalist, yet dizzyingly beautiful visuals set players up into a cart and then the catchy music pushes them forward at a million miles an hour. It’s easy to learn, but not hard to love.

Nordic Game of the Year – Small Screen runners-up:

  • LEGO Builder´s Journey, by Light Brick Studios (DK)
  • Mosaic, by Krillbite Studio (NO)
  • Tick Tock: A Tale for Two, by Other Tales Interactive (DK)
  • What the Golf?, by Triband (DK)

Best Art

  • Sayonara Wild Hearts from Simogo (SE)

Judges’ motivation: The unique visual style of this modern masterpiece brings the player back to the golden age of music videos and demoscene. Fluid visual motion, beautiful choreography and ever-surprising world design show us that gaming as an art form can redefine itself again and again.

Best Art runners-up:

  • Control, by Remedy Entertainment (FI)
  • Draugen, by Red Thread Games (NO)
  • LEGO Builder´s Journey, by Light Brick Studios (DK)
  • Little Misfortune, by Killmonday Games (SE)

Best Fun for Everyone

  • What the Golf? from Triband (DK)

Judges’ motivation: This year’s fun for everyone game is like being a child again, and constantly changing the rules in your game of Monopoly to try and win… only this time it is the game itself trying to win and all you can do as the player is to try and keep up. It’s kind of like if Monty Python made a sports game. It’s really fun, and truly unique. 

Best Fun for Everyone runners-up:

  • Baba is You, by Hempuli Oy (FI)
  • LEGO Builder´s Journey, by Light Brick Studios (DK)
  • Minecraft Earth, by Mojang (SE)
  • The Stretchers, by Tarsier Studio (SE)

Best Design

  • Baba is You from Hempuli Oy (FI)

Judges’ motivation: Game design is about deciding what the player can and cannot do. Often the design is hidden within beautiful production, but occasionally it is laid bare before the player. Baba is You really pushes the boundaries of the game’s world, it asks us a philosophical question: “who rules?” But does it provide an answer?

Best Game Design nominees:

  • Control, by Remedy Entertainment (FI)
  • Degrees of Separation, Moondrop (NO)
  • Sayonara Wildhearts, by Simogo (SE)
  • What the Golf?, by Triband (DK)

Best Technology

  • Control from Remedy Entertainment (FI)

Judges’ motivation: New technology brings new opportunities. Sometimes it's a foundation for something original, but other times it's an opportunity to take something great and make it spectacular. Control amplifies the atmosphere of the game world while simultaneously adding depth and richness to the gameplay.

Best Technology runners-up:

  • Deep Rock Galactic, by Ghost Ship Games (DK)
  • Minecraft Earth, by Mojang (SE)
  • Tom Clancy's The Division 2, by Ubisoft Massive (SE)
  • Trailmakers, by Flashbulb (DK)

Best Audio

  • Mutazione from Die Gute Fabrik (DK)

Judges’ motivation: Audio can be the quickest way to the soul. Every part of Mutazione lives and breathes in its own subdued rhythm through the audio. The game even acknowledges the collaborative nature of music, inviting you to create a life intertwined with its beats.

Best Audio runners-up:

  • Control, by Remedy Entertainment (FI)
  • Moons of Madness, by Rock Pocket Games (NO)
  • Rain of Reflections: Chapter 1, by Lionbite (SE)
  • Sayonara Wildhearts, by Simogo (SE)

Best Debut

  • My Friend Pedro from Deadtoast (SE)

Judges’ motivation: If Buster Keaton was armed with guns in a John Woo-directed version of The Matrix - but it was a comedy... and crossed with Max Payne... in 2D. Or something like that. It’s violent, hilarious and, most importantly, instantly fun!   

Best Debut  runners-up:

  • Barotrauma, by FakeFish, Undertow Games (FI)
  • Burning Daylight, by Burning Daylight Team (DK)
  • Druidstone: The Secret of the Menhir Forest, by Ctrl Alt Ninja Ltd. (FI)
  • Tick Tock: A Tale for Two, by Other Tales Interactive (DK)

Best VR/XR

  • Ghost Giant from Zoink Games (SE)

Judges’ motivation: Extended reality gives us a new perspective into gaming. Its goal is to bring virtual experiences as close to real experiences as possible. The winning game is beautiful, fun, and thought-provoking, utilizing virtual reality as a platform to connect players both to the world and events. 

Best VR/XR nominees (NEW category for 2020!)

  • Budget Cuts 2: Mission Insolvency, by Neat Corporation (SE)
  • Curious Tales of the Stolen Pets, by Fast Travel Games (SE)
  • Glyph, by Bolverk Games (DK)
  • Waltz of the Wizard: Extended Edition, by Aldin Dynamics (IS)
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