The editors of major consumer video game website IGN have released the winners of the site's annual Best of E3 2006 awards, citing that each category winner (with the exception of Best Non-Playable Presentation, awarded to Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots) was playable during the E3 event in Los Angeles.
The website found that overall the best game shown at E3 was Irrational Games' spiritual successor to System Shock 2, BioShock for the Xbox 360, beating out Bioware's impressive Xbox 360 action RPG Mass Effect, as well as Nintendo's Super Mario Galaxy for the Wii, and Electronic Art's PC strategy title Spore, which was awarded as the best PC game, as well as for its achievements in technical excellence. BioShock was also awarded as the best role-playing game, best console game, and for having the best artistic design at E3 as well.
Epic Games' Gears of War for the Xbox 360 was awarded for offering the best multiplayer experience at E3. While the game was not playable on the show floor, Microsoft was letting select individuals into a room in its massive booth for a few four on four match ups in an attempt to showcase the game's squad-based mechanics, as well as the new weapons, including the rather visceral chainsaw. Ubisoft's Assassin's Creed for the PlayStation 3 was called out as the best action game at the show, while Capcom's stylistic Okami, a PlayStation 2 title, was named the best adventure game at E3, beating out recognized franchise sequels such as Nintendo's upcoming Wii releases The Legend of Zelda: The Twilight Princess and Metroid Prime 3: Corruption.
The arcade version of Sega's Virtua Fighter 5, which maintained a dominating presence at the company's booth at E3, won the award for best fighting game, while Crytek Studios's Crysis for the PC and Ubisoft Montreal's Rainbow Six: Vegas tied, both taking away the award for best first-person shooter. Crysis was also awarded for its use of graphics technology.
Unsurprisingly, Harmonix's Guitar Hero II for the PlayStation 2 was awarded as best music game at E3. The award for best persistent online game was given to Funcom's upcoming PC massively multiplayer online game Age of Conan: Hyborian Adventures, beating out other titles such as Webzen's Huxley and Flying Lab's Pirates of the Burning Sea.
Two Mario-themed games from Nintendo took awards for best platform and best puzzle game at E3. The company's upcoming Wii flagship title Super Mario Galaxy was bestowed as the best platform title at the show, with the recently released New Super Mario Bros. for the DS being the closest competitor. NST's upcoming Nintendo DS title Game Mario vs. Donkey Kong 2: March of the Minis, a spin-off from the Game Boy Advance title Mario & Donkey Kong, was called out as the best puzzle game at E3.
The Wii controller itself was named the most innovative design at E3, as well as the best hardware/peripheral, awards echoed by the lines of attendees that waited for hours just to play games using the new device.
The award for best strategy title at E3 was given to Sega and the Creative Assembly for Medieval II: Total War for the PC, the follow up to the successful Rome: Total War. In addition, the best racing game at E3 was found to be THQ and Climax Studios' MotoGP 06 for the Xbox 360, while IGN awarded NBA 2K7 for the Xbox 360 as the best sports game at E3. Finally, the best handheld game of the show was awarded to Nintendo's Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass for the Nintendo DS, beating out Sony's Loco Roco for the PSP.
Other nods given out by IGN include the best booth (Nokia), best booth babe (Lisa Gleave and Natalie Summerlin), and biggest surprise (Sony's Underwhelming Press Conference), citing the console's recently announced price as the reason for this dubious honor.