‘Horizon Zero Dawn’ leads ‘Zelda’ for DICE nominations

‘Gorogoa,’ for iOS, Nintendo Switch and PC, nominated in Mobile, Design, and Sprite Award categories at DICE 2018. — Handout via AFP
‘Gorogoa,’ for iOS, Nintendo Switch and PC, nominated in Mobile, Design, and Sprite Award categories at DICE 2018. — Handout via AFP

LOS ANGELES, Jan 17 — Sci-fi open world adventure Horizon Zero Dawn and fantasy epic The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild are among the nominees for the games industry’s DICE Awards.

PlayStation 4 game Horizon Zero Dawn goes into Las Vegas’s DICE Awards ceremony with a field-leading 10 nominations, including one for Game of the Year.

Joining it in contention for the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences’ Game of the Year accolade are vintage cartoon-style action game Cuphead, last-person-standing survival challenge PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, joyous jump and run platform adventure Super Mario Odyssey, and another expansive open-world epic The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.

Launched as a foundational title for Nintendo’s Switch console, and available for the legacy Wii U system, Breath of the Wild accrued six nods from the DICE nominations process.

Horizon Zero Dawn, Breath of the Wild and Super Mario Odyssey crop up again in the Adventure Game category, as does the Ancient Egyptian-set Assassin’s Creed Origins and polished franchise spin-off Uncharted: The Lost Legacy.

In total, Uncharted: The Lost Legacy was one of three games receiving five nominations, alongside Cuphead and Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice — perhaps surprisingly, given its widely observed use of nuanced 3D audio, Hellblade didn’t end up a finalist for the Sound Design award.

Pictorial puzzle adventure Gorogoa picked up four recommendations, as did PUBG and Super Mario Odyssey.

As well as generalist categories covering story, sound, animation, art, and characterisation, genre categories included action, adventure, fighting, racing, sports, strategy, role-playing, and family games.

A separate Sprite Award group serves to highlight some of the best and most innovative games of the past year, lest they get lost in the mix of multi-million-dollar budget projects.

So check out Gorogoa along with animal-rolling exploration Everything, friendly cut and paste puzzle Snipperclips, high-fantasy sport and storyline blend Pyre and anthropomorphic hometown investigation Night in the Woods.

On mobile, Gorogoa is one of five in the hat, rubbing shoulders with Cat Quest, Fire Emblem Heroes, Monument Valley 2 and Spitter Critters.

And Family Game of the Year has not just the expected entries for dance and karaoke titles (Just Dance 2018, SingStar Celebration) but also mobile music mixing game DropMix, 3D puzzle GNOG and Snipperclips again.

The 2018 DICE Awards will take place on February 22. A full list of nominations is available to view at interactive.org. The Game Developers Choice Awards occur a month later, on March 21. — AFP-Relaxnews

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