timeless. They're inspirational. They inspire us, make us question our
standards, and provide a roadmap for the future of development. They
are the games that innovate and move the industry forward, and
Gamasutra is proud to recognize them with our series of Quantum Leap
In December of 2006, Gamasutra asked its
esteemed readership of games industry professionals, educators, and
students to vote on the most important games of the year, as part of
its ongoing Quantum Leap Awards series. Specifically, we asked the
Q: Which video game has made the
biggest 'quantum leap' in 2006, in terms of innovation and advancing
the state of the art of the industry?
spoke, and we listened. Here, Gamasutra presents the winners of the
2006 Quantum Leap Award for Most Important Game. We'll start with three
pages of honorable mentions, and then present the five most important
games of 2006, as voted by our readers.
Over numerous iterations and side stories, Final Fantasy
has established itself as the benchmark against which all other similar
titles are measured, at least in terms of overall success. That is
perhaps why it felt so appropriate that the series which is responsible
for creating so many of the conventions now seen as commonplace within
the RPG genre took it upon itself to so dramatically change what it
meant to be a console RPG in Final Fantasy XII.
Square Enix's Final Fantasy XII (PlayStation 2)
real time gameplay mechanisms more in line with PC MMORPGs, and tossing
aside the turn based combat that had up until this release been a
series staple, this game felt like the beginning of something entirely
new, different, and altogether exciting for the venerable role-playing
powerhouse. Final Fantasy XII is the perfect punctuation mark on the series, as it transitions from the current to next generation of gaming.
Jason Dobson, Editor, Serious Games Source
Nintendo's Wii Console
it's not a game, the real answer to this question in 2006 is the
Nintendo Wii platform. It's not that Nintendo invented motion sensing
or pointer-device technology -- it's how the company applied that to
the product. It's easy to use, intuitive, and immediately fun to play
with. It's a fundamental change to the interface of gaming, and how we
interact with products. Combined with an always-on, online architecture
of the system, Nintendo's Wii should both bring new people into gaming
and open up new markets for innovative new game types. If that isn't a
Quantum Leap, I want my Scott Bakula back.
Dave Kosak, Editor-in-Chief, FilePlanet.com