The NextPlay Game Awards 2022

The NextPlay Game Awards 2022

2022 was a massive year for gaming. We had many long-awaited sequels released such as God of War Ragnarök, Horizon Forbidden West, Bayonetta 3, and A Plague Tale Requiem. While some new IPs made an impactful entrance to the gaming scene like Elden Ring and Stray. Of course, I haven’t had the opportunity to play every major game this year, so I would like to give honourable mentions to games that have been highly praised this year that I haven’t had a chance to play: Pentiment, Immortality, As Dusk Falls, Citizen Sleeper, OlliOlli World and Neon White. Now, it is my pleasure to announce the winners of The NextPlay Game Awards 2022.


God of War Ragnarök was full of non-stop action from start to finish. Santa Monica Studios had me captivated throughout the whole journey and through masterful storytelling has no doubt earned Best Action/Adventure Game of 2022.


Honourable Mention: Horizon Forbidden West

BEST HORROR – The Quarry

Supermassive Games are well-known for their interactive horror games and The Quarry has in my opinion reached the altitude that 2015’s Until Dawn did. With a fun narrative and some stellar performances by the cast, this title is a must-play for any horror fans.

Honourable Mention: The Chant

BEST RPG – Elden Ring

Elden Ring’s gameplay allows players to approach the game in hundreds of different ways. The exploration throughout this open-world souls game is exciting, rewarding and often brutal, but not as punishing as previous FromSoftware games, which gives a stepping stone for players new to the souls genre.

Honourable Mention: Xenoblade Chronicles 3


Naughty Dog’s The Last of Us Part I is a legendary remake of a legendary game. Any new or returning players will find this game to be an emotional and action-packed journey which will continue to stand the test of time.


Honourable Mention: Crisis Core -Final Fantasy VII- Reunion

BEST DLC – Winters’ Expansion

While Resident Evil Village: Winters’ Expansion didn’t expand on the story as much as I would’ve liked, it was still a thrilling addition to the Winters’ saga. The many gameplay additions and the return to the most beloved locations of the base game make this a DLC worthy of purchase.


Honourable Mention: Cuphead: The Delicious Last Course

BEST AUSSIE MADE – Wayward Strand

Ghost Pattern has achieved something I have never seen in a video game. I found myself overwhelmed at times with the complexity of multiple narratives unravelling at once. I treasure the experience that this game offers and often find myself thinking back on my playthrough of Wayward Strand regularly.


Honourable Mention: Cult of the Lamb


What is there to say about Elden Ring that hasn’t already been said? A game that captured the hearts of so many gamers at the beginning of the year and instantly became a cultural phenomenon. The FromSoftware game has sold over 17.5 million copies in less than a year – a feat that not many games have achieved.

Honourable Mention: God of War Ragnarök

BEST ART DIRECTION – Horizon Forbidden West

Horizon Forbidden West ventured west to a beautiful new landscape in the Horizon universe and in my opinion is one of the best looking games available on PlayStation right now. Everything in the environment is there for a reason and not just to fill space in a sprawling world of machines.

Honourable Mention: Elden Ring

BEST NARRATIVE – God of War Ragnarök

Santa Monica Studios have excelled in storytelling once more, with the direction and character development a complete standout. I wasn’t sure how the studio was going to trump God of War (2018) but the story was solid from start to finish. While the game’s storyline is heavily prophesized, at no point did I ever predict what was going to happen next. We have seen Ragnarök covered in different types of media in recent years, but this one outshines them all.


Honourable Mention: A Plague Tale Requiem

BEST SCORE – God of War Ragnarök

Bear McCreary, who is nominated at the 2023 GRAMMY awards for his work on Call of Duty: Vanguard, returns to the helm and nails it again. The score throughout the game matches both the intense and light-hearted moments which play a vital role in shaping the game into what it is. The game’s final act had me on the edge of my seat and biting my nails, and that was all thanks to the god-tier score.


Honourable Mention: Elden Ring

BEST PERFORMANCE – Danielle Bisutti

Danielle Bisutti returns as Freya, the Vanir Goddess of Love, Beauty, War, Death, Magic, Childhood and Fertility in God of War Ragnarök. A captivating and emotional performance, Danielle had my personal favourite performance in a game this year.

*Editors note: Ragnarök had the best cast in a game this year, so it was incredibly hard to select just one performance.

Honourable Mentions: Christopher Judge (Kratos) and Sunny Suljic (Atreus) – God of War Ragnarök

HIDDEN GEM OF 2022 – Beacon Pines

Beacon Pines is a wonderfully crafted adventure game with a twisted yet heartwarming story. The way the narrative is told is extremely captivating in a way I haven’t experienced before. I’m excited to see what Hiding Spot games are able to achieve if they keep expanding on this storybook-adventure genre that they’ve pioneered.


Honourable Mention: Wayward Strand

MOST IMPACTFUL – Endling: Extinction is Forever

A beautiful game which follows the story of a mother fox trying to rescue one of her cubs who was poached all while watching the world around her become polluted and desolated. This 3-4 hour game will leave a lasting impact on the player which is an outstanding achievement by Herobeat Studios.


Stray is more than just a cat game. Stray is a short journey through a post-apocalyptic world, but despite its length, it has so much lore packed into it. The world created in Stray was crafted so masterfully that after I completed the game it left me wanting more.

Honourable Mention: Wayward Strand

GAME OF THE YEAR – God of War Ragnarök

Santa Monica Studios deliver an action-packed and emotional journey that includes everything you would ever want in a video game. The exemplary performances of the cast, innovative gameplay mechanics, and masterful storytelling make God of War Ragnarök one of the best games in the 21st century.


Honourable Mention: Elden Ring

So there you have it! NextPlay’s top picks for 2022! Feel free to share your top picks for each category via our social channels.

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