At GAMA 2020, the Game Manufacturer's Association's invite-only trade show, members of GAMA voted on the nominees for the 2020 Origins Awards, which promote and award tabletop gaming excellence.
Some of these nominees are familiar to many of you (and some of them I'd even covered on this very site!), while others are definitely a bit less so (which only means I'll have to pay a bit more attention to them).
From the press release on the Origins Game Fair website:
The annual Origins Awards reward excellence in game design. Products eligible for the 2020 Awards cycle must have been released to the public between November 15, 2018 and November 14, 2019. The following titles were selected by a jury of 40 hobby games industry professionals as the most deserving in their respective categories.
Nominees will be on display and available for demo during Origins Game Fair from June 17-21 in Columbus, OH.
Three types of awards will be presented during the Origins Awards Ceremony on Saturday, June 20 at 8pm: Category Winners, Fan Favorite, and Game of the Year. The Academy of Adventure Gaming and Arts will choose the ultimate winner of each category. Origins attendees will vote upon the Fan Favorite of each category through the official Origins Game Fair mobile app during the show. GAMA members will vote upon the Game of the Year via a digital survey.
The nominees in each category are as follows:
Cloudspire | Chip Theory Games | Adam Carlson, Josh J. Carlson, Josh Wielgus
Colors of Paris | Super Meeple / Luma Imports | Nicolas De Oliveira
Guardian's Call | Druid City Games / Skybound Games | James Hudson
PARKS | Keymaster Games | Henry Audubon
Prêt-à-Porter | Portal Games | Piotr Haraszczak, Ignacy Trzewiczek
Red Alert: Space Fleet Warfare | PSC Games | Richard Borg
Tonari | IDW Games | Bruno Faidutti, Alex Randolph
Tricky Tides | Gold Seal Games / Zafty Games | Steven Aramini
Cogs and Commissars | Atlas Games | Matt Haga
DC Deck-Building Game: Rebirth | Cryptozoic Entertainment | Matt Hyra, Jared Saramago, Nathaniel Yamaguchi
Embers of Memory: A Throne of Glass Game | Osprey Games | Kuro
Kamigami Battles: River of Souls | Japanime Games | Rich Gain
Lockup: A Roll Player Tale | Thunderworks Games | Stan Kordonsky
Shuffle Grand Prix | Bicycle | Rob Newton
UNDO: Cherry Blossom Festival | Pegasus Spiele | Michael Palm, Lukas Zach
Yes, that's the only one in its category! I bet they'll win.
Cutthroat Caverns | Smirk & Dagger Games / Cellbloc Studios | Curt Covert
Mystic Vale | Alderac Entertainment Group / Nomad Games | John D. Clair
Raiders of the North Sea | Renegade Game Studios / Garphill Games / Dire Wolf Digital | Shem Phillips
Through the Ages: New Leaders and Wonders | Czech Games Edition | Vlaada Chvátil
Tsuro VR | Callipe Games / Thunderbox Entertainment Digital | Tom McMurchie
ClipCut Parks | Renegade Game Studios | Shaun Graham, Scott Huntington
Code Stack! | AMIGO Games | Heinz Meister
Dirty Pig | North Star Games | Frank Bebenroth
Draftosaurus | Ankama Boardgames / Luma Imports | Antoine Bauza, Corentin Lebrat, Ludovic Maublanc, Théo Rivière
Finger Guns at High Noon | Indie Boards and Cards | John Velgus
Historical Miniature Games
Yes, Osprey Games has stake in both games in the Historical Games category. It's like two actors from the same film being nominated for the same Academy Award… Only nobody else is viable for that award. Cool!
Right here we see two games I've covered – Gaslands: Refuelled and Warcry – and I'm pleased that they're both there. Fine games indeed!
Alien: The Roleplaying Game | Free League Publishing | Andrew E.C. Gaska, Tomas Härenstam
Over the Edge (3rd edition) | Atlas Games | Chris Lites, Jonathan Tweet
Pathfinder Core Rulebook (2nd edition) | Paizo Inc | Logan Bonner, Jason Bulmahn, Stephen Radney-MacFarland, Mark Seifter
Star Crossed | Bully Pulpit Games | Alex Roberts
Teens in Space | Renegade Game Studios / Hunters Entertainment | Jonathan Gilmour, Doug Levandowski
And there you have it, folks – this is the gamut of the nominees for 2020's Origins Awards. Here's hoping that this award ceremony (which will be hosted in July, at this juncture) is not cancelled due to COVID-19 or its repercussions.
What do you think? Are these games all worth their salt? Do you project one company to take more awards home than another? Let us know!