Animal Crossing Wins GOTY at the Tokyo Game Show
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Animal Crossing Wins Tokyo Game Show’s Game of the Year

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BY March 17, 2021

At the Tokyo Game Show, there was a wild lineup of possible Game of the Year winners. The lineup alone featured games that headlined all three consoles and PC. Most notably, the nominees varied a number of genres, core audiences, and game mechanics. Nintendo might have locked up its first win of many for Game of the Year awards for Animal Crossing: New Horizons. Here’s why news that Animal Crossing wins GOTY recognition might become a reoccurring thing.

Animal Crossing Wins First GOTY Award, Likely More to Come

Animal Crossing Wins GOTY Image Credit: Nintendo

We’re still in a global pandemic that dates back to the later days of 2019. For the United States, Animal Crossing: New Horizons launched right in the heart of stay-at-home orders for many states. If you played New Horizons this spring, then you’re one of many. The game broke sales records for Nintendo and is a strong contender for the Switch’s most popular game to date. The game was up against fierce competition at the Tokyo Game Show. Other titles up for the Game of the Year award ensured it would be a close fight.

Other games noted for excellence that didn’t win included 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim, Death Stranding, Fire Emblem: Three Houses, Monster Hunter World: Iceborne, Nioh 2, Persona 5 Royal, Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield, Ring Fit Adventure, and Yakuza: Like a Dragon. Overall, a few of those titles stood a good chance against Animal Crossing. In particular, Death Stranding and Persona 5 Royal seemed like possible winners. The real power of Nintendo’s island sim still holds true and might lead to one of the many Animal Crossing GOTY wins of the calendar year.

The Joy of Gaming in a Joyless Year

Animal Crossing Wins GOTY Image Credit: Nintendo

The press statement from the Tokyo Game Show concluded that Animal Crossing: New Horizons truly made 2020 a bit brighter. The release said, “Because we were forced to stay home due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a slow-life experience in this game in which you can do everything freely became a comfort to people all over the world.” The peace and serenity of a game that doesn’t force or rush you is incredible in a stressful time like now. The upcoming Animal Crossing Halloween update is going to mix things up for players. I myself have over 300 hours clocked into the game with no desire to stop. Why? In a lot of ways, it’s keeping me sane.

2020 is a truly terrible year. As many memes and jokes about 2020 we’ve seen online, they’re all true. It’s been a rough go for many and it’s not going to get better anytime soon. The little things matter most when the world feels like it’s falling apart. For a lot of people, including myself, Animal Crossing is a reprieve from it all. It surely deserves this GOTY award and all that will follow this year.

Overall, are you a fan of the game? Did you think the award should have gone to someone else? Let us know your thoughts in the comments! Thanks for reading Comic Years for all things gaming, comics, and pop culture.

Featured Image Credit: Nintendo


Taylor loves to play video games in his spare time. He has two degrees in Political Communication and wrote his thesis on Marxism and the exploitation of college athletes. In his spare time, he loves spending time with his wife and two Toy Australian Shepherds. He’s always got headphones in, and he’s a diehard Cubs fan.

Animal Crossing: New HorizonsNintendoTokyo Game Show

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