Special Achievement: Dark Horse

The third award of this night of nights is the Special Achievement award for Dark Horse of 2012. That is, the winner of this award is the game that came out of nowhere and knocked my socks off the furthest. I was tossing up a couple of games for this award, but there was only one game that I was truly, hugely surprised by this year. A game that I hadn’t even heard of before playing it, and ended up on my Game of the Year nominees. Sure, I was probably the only person to put it on their list, but still. The Select Start Media Special Achievement Award for Dark Horse of 2012 goes to:

dark horse

No, it’s not going to win the final award of the night, but Yesterday is a game I enjoyed more than most others in 2012. Its dark, brooding story, oddball sense of humour, and perfectly crafted puzzle difficulty curve added up to making this tiny Spanish adventure game one of my favourite of the year. It’s not perfect, by any means. You’d have a hard time finding a critic who’d recommend it as highly as I do. But the fact that even at the beginning of 2013 I’m still wholeheartedly recommending Yesterday, despite having never heard of it or the studio that published it this time last year, is a testament to its deservedness of the Special Achievement award for Dark Horse of 2012.

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