GotY Awards 2011 – Staff Picks

By Jonathan Barnes, 4 years ago
Now that we’ve crowned the official TrueAchievement’s GOTY, the staff thought it might be an insightful bit of fun to let you take a peek behind the scenes of the international TA offices to see what our thoughts were as to the 2011 Game of the Year. Every team manager polled their respective teams as to their favorite game of the year AND their favorite achievement of 2011.

Let me tell you, this was no easy task, and things got heated… very heated. I’d like to personally apologize to DavieMarshall for shivving him in the commissary over a dispute as to the merits of versus, and to Chad and Jessie for the “unfortunate incident” involving a llama, a puddle of polyvinyl alcohol, and … I cannot say more due to an ongoing legal battle.

So, without further ado, here are the highlights from our 2011 Staff Picks!


Like many of our teams, the Moderator Team, represented by Clever Jake, didn’t reach much of a consensus, but Skyrim was the victor from their group, narrowly edging out by one vote.

The Content Team, represented by W1LLYMAN also reached the conclusion that Skyrim was the Game of the Year, beating out Batman: Arkham City (Xbox 360) by three votes.

Chad and Jessie spoke for the Community and Events Team. Being mainly comprised of staffers who were represented by other teams, this vote was evenly split three ways between, Saints Row: The Third, and

Then we come to my own team, the Newshounds, represented by Matrarch. Unlike the other teams, the Hounds managed to garner the most complete consensus for the Game of the Year. In a (slightly) shocking decision, Gears of War 3, ran away with the Game of the Year by almost a 2-1 margin.

So, if you’re looking for the shortlist of the best games of the year from the staff perspective, look no further than: Skyrim, Saints Row: The Third, Gears of War 3, Halo CE Anniversary, and The Gunstringer.


While the Game of the Year is always a contentious battle (I now have a nice scar thanks to Beanpotter and a thrown mug of Earl Grey), highlighting outstanding achievements is equally difficult, but a few special pops shined for the staff this year. Amongst the highlights:

Shadow Enz and Kung Fu Riki from the Content Team were big fans of:

Batman: Arkham City (Xbox 360)StorytellerThe Storyteller achievement in Batman: Arkham City (Xbox 360) worth 28 pointsHave 12 murderous dates with Calendar Man

Shadow Enz went on to say:
Minus the ability to be exploited, I think this achievement is genius. Asking players to return to the game during 12 holidays throughout the year following the game's release is just awesome. Plus it adds to the story. Just like the audio logs in ODST -- I absolutely loved their addition to the plot.
W1LLYMAN, DavieMarshall, and TyrannoJesusRex also enjoyed:

Portal 2You Saved ScienceThe You Saved Science achievement in Portal 2 worth 153 pointsComplete all test chambers in all courses of co-op

TJR highlights the reason for his pick:
Portal is one of the finest games made, and I can't resist co-op gameplay. I've met the requirements for this achievement 3 times over already
thirtysmooth wanted to make special mention of an achievement from one of the “Dark Horse” GOTY contenders, Saints Row: The Third:

Saints Row: The ThirdStay Classy SteelportThe Stay Classy Steelport achievement in Saints Row: The Third worth 18 pointsKill 25 Gang Members each with 'the Penetrator' AND the Fart in a Jar.

They say "Never bring a knife to a gunfight", so imagine my utter dismay when going toe-to-toe with an 8-man strong gang, fully armed with assault rifles, with just my 3-foot-long, purple sex-toy-on-a-stick as my only accomplice. There's something disturbing, but strangely satisfying about beating a man to death with a battery powered sex aid. And how's this for a kicker? Look at the achievement tile! "What say you, boy? I challenge thee to a dildo-duel!"
Chad and Jessie and LitaOsiris both had their respective, favorite achievements come from Michael Jackson: The Experience. These achievements are not for the faint of heart:

Michael Jackson: The ExperienceNO ONE WANTS TO BE DEFEATEDThe NO ONE WANTS TO BE DEFEATED achievement in Michael Jackson: The Experience worth 230 pointsAchieve a 5 star rating in "Beat It" in performance mode (Solo only)

By far, the proudest achievement from 2011 and probably my proudest achievement ever. I had a first with this achievement...I raged quit. Yes, raged quit on MJ, screamed at my TV, wanted to pick up my Kinect and bash it into a wall, and did the unthinkable...turned off the xbox while still in a game. I probably played this song about 80 times before I finally got enough points to earn the 5*...didn't help that the game mocks you while playing *Beat it, beat it*

I was trying too cry
Michael Jackson: The ExperienceJUST BEAT ITThe JUST BEAT IT achievement in Michael Jackson: The Experience worth 321 pointsAchieve a 5 star rating in "Beat It" in master performance mode (Solo only)

...simply because it was so challenging to get and keep in mind there is no way to practice the master performance routines. It must have taken me at least 50 attempts (most likely more) and that was simply down to a few moves not being tracked correctly. I still don't know to this day what way to do those moves in a way not to miss them - it felt random every time. Anyways, when I finally got the achievement I sunk to the floor with my hands over my mouth in disbelief. I've never had that kind of a reaction to an achievement before! laugh
Several members of the Newshound team also wanted to give special mention to:

Gears of War 3Seriously 3.0The Seriously 3.0 achievement in Gears of War 3 worth 926 pointsReach level 100 and earn every Onyx medal.

You know it… you love it… you’re grinding your Xbox to death to get it.


We also valiantly tried to garner some consensus on the “Most Anticipated” game of 2012. Let me tell you, if you thought Peter Griffin’s Chicken Fights were intense, have no idea the wrath and carnage that came out in the boardroom of the TA offices. Our very own site progenitor TrueAchievement, managed to catch a chair-to-the-back (pro wrestling style) from an “unknown assailant” (*cough, cough* litepink *cough, cough*) as he was making the case for In the end, however, we have quite the “short list” for our eagerly anticipated games (in no particular order):

Grand Theft Auto V


Now that you’ve heard a little bit from the staff, feel free to let us know YOUR picks for Achievement of the Year and “Most Anticipated” game of 2012 in the comments section.

On behalf of the staff, I’d like to thank you for doing your part to crown TrueAchievement’s 2011 Game of the Year. Without you, the members, TA wouldn’t be the site that it is. 2012 is off to a great start with a metric crap-ton of amazing games on the horizon and I’m sure you, like the rest of us, can’t wait to get your hands on them.

Here’s to a great 2011 and an exciting 2012!

Jonathan Barnes
Written by Jonathan Barnes
Jonathan has been a news/views contributor since 2010. When he's not writing reviews, features, and opinion pieces, he spends his days working as an informal science educator and his nights as an international man of mystery.