Steam Awards 2021 Nominees Announced

It’s that time of year again where Steam announces the nominations for various categories, including Best Soundtrack, Labor of Love, and more.

The closing moments of each year is an opportunity for gamers and companies to look back over the last twelve months and ponder those releases which really made an impact. It Takes Two won Game of the Year at The Game Awards 2021, but there are many more categories that honor those titles that have something special. Each year, Valve does its own, with the Steam Awards, and the developer and publisher has now announced the list of nominees and their respective categories, with votes opening tomorrow.


On the Steam website, Valve is presenting all the games that users will be able to vote for, with the company choosing the finalists from each category. Fans will be able to cast their votes, starting December 22 from 10am PST, 1pm EST, or 6pm GMT, going right through to January 3, 2022, at which point the winners will be selected. As usual, there are a number of specialist areas that each game comes under.

One of the first categories is “Labor of Love”, which, interestingly, does not just look back at recent games, but those that may have been out for years and have been given a lot of attention by the developer. Games like Terraria, Rust, and No Man’s Sky are among the ones that fans can choose between. Given the enormous changes that No Man Sky went through after an appallingly controversial release back in 2016, it’s probably not too surprising that it’s on this list. It’s also interesting that Valve’s own DOTA 2 is under this category, as well.

Valve Reveals Nominees for Steam Awards 2017

For the “Better with Friends” section, games which seem to work best when played with others are chief among this list, including Valheim. As is Back 4 Blood despite its difficulty spike, which the latest update should have resolved by now. Had this been last year’s Steam Awards, the likes of Phasmophobia would have likely been on this list too. However, it’s only 2021 games that are in this category, it seems. It was nominated for “VR Game of the Year,” and did eventually win “Best Debut Game” at the Game Awards 2020.

Also, perhaps not too surprising, in the “Most Innovative Gameplay” category, is 12 Minutes which was highly praised by Hideo Kojima upon release. Although it’s gone down as the “Most Retired” game of the year, many still value its dark and narrative-heavy story, while also offering something different to the point-and-click adventure genre.

The full list of nominees at this year’s Steam Awards are as follows:

Labor Of Love

  • DOTA 2
  • Terraria
  • Rust
  • No Man’s Sky
  • Apex Legends

Better With Friends

  • Valheim
  • Back 4 Blood
  • Halo Infinite
  • It Takes Two
  • Crab Game

Outstanding Visual Style

  • Psychonauts 2
  • Subnautica: Below Zero
  • Little Nightmafres 2
  • Bright Memory: Infinite
  • Forza Horizon 5

Most Innovative Gameplay

  • Inscryption
  • 12 Minutes
  • Moncage
  • Deathloop
  • Loop Hero

Best Game You Suck At

  • World War Z: Aftermath
  • Naraka: Bladepoint
  • Nioh 2: Complete Edition
  • Age of Empires 4
  • Battlefield 2042

Best Soundtrack

  • Guardians of the Galaxy
  • Nier Replicant
  • Persona 5 Strikers
  • Guilty Gear: Strive
  • Demon Slayer -Kimetsu no Yaiba- The Hinokami Chronicles

Outstanding Story-Rich Game

  • Life is Strange: True Colors
  • Cyberpunk 2077
  • Resident Evil: Village
  • Days Gone
  • Mass Effect: Legendary Edition

Sit Back And Relax

  • Unpacking
  • Potion Craft
  • Farming Simulator 22
  • Townscaper
  • Dorfromantik

Source: Steam Store

Source: Gamerant

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