This year’s Golden Joystick Awards in London has come to its conclusion, and a clear winner has stood head and shoulders above the rest: Larian Studios’ expansive D&D-inspired RPG Baldur’s Gate 3, which won an impressive seven awards including Ultimate Game of the Year. The game, which released to unexpected worldwide acclaim earlier this year, is the third in the popular series of games taking place in the Forgotten Realms setting of Dungeons and Dragons. It beat out fierce competition including Starfield, Marvel’s Spider-Man 2, and The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, for the coveted title of Ultimate Game of the Year.
The seven awards won by Baldur’s Gate 3 at the Golden Joysticks are:
- Best Game Community
- Best Visual Design
- Best Storytelling
- Best Supporting Performer (Neil Newbon as Astarion)
- Studio of the Year (Larian Studios)
- PC Game of the Year
- Ultimate Game of the Year
In their many winning speeches, Swen Vincke and other Larian Studios luminaries thanked their fans for standing with Baldur’s Gate 3 through its tumultuous multi-year Early Access period. They expressed their absolute shock that their game, which they had expected to remain relatively niche, had exploded in popularity and become so successful. Newbon, when accepting his award for Best Supporting Performer, thanked players and fans with an iconic and touching line of dialogue from his character Astarion: “This is a gift. I won’t forget it.”
— Golden Joysticks (@GoldenJoysticks) November 10, 2023
The other “Game of the Year” categories were won by The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom for Nintendo Game of the Year, Starfield for Xbox Game of the Year, and Resident Evil 4 Remake for PlayStation Game of the Year. Recently released horror title Alan Wake 2 was also honored with this year’s Critics Choice Award.
Cyberpunk 2077’s well-received Phantom Liberty expansion also got some love, taking home both Best Game Trailer and Best Game Expansion. Final Fantasy XVI took home Best Audio as well as Best Lead Performer for Ben Starr, who plays Clive Rosfield. Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth, the next game in the ongoing Final Fantasy 7 remake saga, was voted the Most Anticipated Game for 2024.
Many other awards were handed out during the ceremony, which ran just over two hours in total and was livestreamed on various platforms including YouTube. No Man’s Sky got the “Still Playing Award,” Sea of Stars the “Best Indie Game,” Mortal Kombat 1 the “Best Multiplayer Game,” and Horizon Call of the Mountain the “Best VR Game.” The PSVR2 was acknowledged as the “Best Gaming Hardware,” while Geometric Interactive got the “Breakthrough Award” for their sci-fi puzzler Cocoon.
Other 2023 awards ceremonies are still to come, including The Game Awards. It remains to be seen whether Baldur’s Gate 3 will perform similarly well at these events or whether titles like Starfield, Tears of the Kingdom, Spider-Man 2 or others will take home the win.