Watch Dogs Was Supposed to be A Legit GotY Contender...Is It?

Now that we've got a bunch of review scores, can we determine if Watch Dogs is the GotY contender it was supposed to be?

Considering all the hype and lofty expectations, it's a given that Watch Dogs was supposed to be a true-blue Game of the Year contender.

Come the end of 2014, many might've expected to see Ubisoft's new IP in the running for the best overall game award. But now that the reviews are in, will this really happen?

The game is averaging in the low 80s, which doesn't seem to imply "Game of the Year" quality. Granted, many sources saw fit to award the game a 9+ score but others have scored it as low as 6. If we were to guess right now, we'd have to assume that Watch Dogs might not be a serious threat for GotY.

Then again, with all these promising high-profile games being delayed until 2015, maybe the competition won't be so stiff.

Will the game's reputation get better with time, or will it erode?

Some games have a reputation that gets better as time goes on. Even if the title didn't score off the charts when it first arrived, subsequent later reviews have more praise, and the positive word-of-mouth continues to spread. On the other hand, the opposite could happen as well. So, the big question: how will Watch Dogs fare as the year progresses?

One thing we have to remember is that expectations are high for several big-name titles this year, and if they end up being disappointing, Watch Dogs will look that much better. It really might come down to how well the competition performs; if games like Batman: Arkham Knight and Assassin's Creed: Unity bring down hefty scores and a boatload of critical acclaim, Watch Dogs is likely to get lost in the shuffle.

Only time will tell.

It's always a test of memory

If a game wishes to be a GotY contender, it's always better to come out toward the end of the year, so it's fresher in the minds of gamers and critics. Movie makers use a similar tactic; if they're trying to produce an Oscar-worthy production, they want to release it not long before the award ceremony. It's just a matter of simple psychology,  you know?

Thing is, the way the review scores are stacking up now, I have a bad feeling that Watch Dogs may not be all that memorable. I mean, there should be a lot of games that average around an 8 and none of them will be considered for the industry's top awards at the end of the year. On top of which, for a game that was really supposed to get 9s, people might reflect on Watch Dogs and call it an even bigger disappointment than it was.

With seven months to go before the end of the year: How will this one be remembered when the moment of truth arrives?

Featured Columnist

A gaming journalism veteran of 14 years, a confirmed gamer for over 30 years, and a lover of fine literature and ridiculously sweet desserts.

Published May. 27th 2014

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