Critical success

Baldur’s Gate 3 sweeps Golden Joysticks, earning an armful of glittering awards


Following three years of totally digital awards shows, the Golden Joystick Awards returned to in-person form this year at the Royal Lancaster Hotel in London. Hosted by prolific performer Troy Baker, it was a night of massive wins – with only a few technical issues and a very merry crowd betraying any sense of the event being out of practice.

A record number of votes from the public meant history-making wins for certain high rollers. The heaviest hitter was Baldur’s Gate 3, a crunchy RPG that somehow manages to bottle the lightning of your most electric Dungeons & Dragons sessions. Cleaning house at this year’s Joysticks, it picked up wins across seven different categories, and achieved a feat no other game has managed in the awards show’s 41-year history.


The game took the top spot in Best Storytelli­ng, and netted Ultimate Game Of The Year. (It’s a PLAY 10/10 for a reason.) Actor Neil Newbon also picked up Best Supporting Performer for his turn as everyone’s favourite haughty elf, Astarion, delivering a heartfelt thank you both in and out of character during his acceptance speech.

While Larian CEO Swen Vincke was seen fleeing the scene with an armful of awards, Baldur’s Gate 3 didn’t win all the headlining trophies. Capcom’s remake of Resident Evil 4 scooped up PlayStatio­n Game Of The Year, and the other big winner was Final Fantasy XVI. Smashing together choir chanting and full-throated rock songs, its eclectic soundtrack impressed the judges to the tune of a Best Audio win. On top of that, before the night was out actor Ben Starr picked up Best Lead Performer for his passionate portrayal of Final Fantasy XVI’s lead character Clive Rosfield.

And as this was an in-person ceremony, people dressed up for the occasion – often with a videogamin­g twist. Starr wowed everyone not only with his acting chops but also his choice of favourite series entry; the Final Fantasy VIII logo was emblazoned across the front of Starr’s awards show ’fit, stylishly co-ordinated with an orange velvet suit. Do you reckon it’s a look we could pull off? Well, don’t know until we try… next year!

Awards season isn’t over! Read PLAY’s Game Of The Year awards next issue.

 ?? ?? Years of hard work from hundreds of developers across the world has culminated in win after win for Larian Studios.
Years of hard work from hundreds of developers across the world has culminated in win after win for Larian Studios.

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