Valve’s Black Friday Sale 2021 has begun and it allows players to select and share their Steam Awards 2021 nominations including the coveted game of the year.

The Epic Games store has its own Black Friday Sale ongoing and it has discounts for 900 games. This is fantastic for the PC community as it opens up even more discounts to take advantage of if they’re not listed on Valve’s marketplace.

One of those games includes Hitman 3, but – away from EGS – it’s time to nominate your favourite titles of the year.

Guardians of the Galaxy | Accolades Trailer

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Guardians of the Galaxy | Accolades Trailer
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When does the Steam Black Friday Sale end?

The end date for the Steam Black Friday and Autumn sale 2021 is December 1st at 10:00 PT, 13:00 ET, and 18:00 GMT.

This is also the time period for casting your game of the year nominees. Valve’s discounts are better organised than the Epic Games store as you can easily choose discounts you want to see for genres such as RPG, horror, and open-world.

You can look over the bevy of price slashes yourself, but don’t forget to vote for your favourite titles.

Steam Awards 2021 nominations

You have until December 1st to choose your Steam Awards 2021 nominations.

Valve has cast players as the committee, and the titles with the most amount of nominations will be available to vote for when the Winter Sale rolls around. This is leaked to happen on December 22nd.

The ultimate winners will then be announced on January 3rd. Below is our nominees for every category.

Game of the Year – Guardians of the Galaxy

Guardians of the Galaxy is a triumphant tale as it’s a game that was judged by the masses before launch and ended up shutting the mouths of everyone who dismissed it as Avengers 2.0.

Lots will probably think that recommending it as game of the year is over-the-top, but we strongly believe that it’s just as good as Batman Arkham and Insomniac’s Spider-Man. It’s not perfect or flawless, but it’s the title we had the most fun with thanks to its witty characters, exhilarating soundtrack, brilliant story, and exciting combat.

Outstanding Story-Rich Game Award – Psychonauts 2

We decided to cast Psychonauts 2 as our choice for best story as it boasts one the strongest narratives of the year and it’s also one of our game of the year 2021 picks.

The story is as creative as the original Psychonauts and each level is a perfect personification of the game’s many themes. And these themes are really heavy and mature with them tackling issues concerning mental health, forgiveness, and family.

Best Soundtrack Award – Cyberpunk 2077

Guardians of the Galaxy has an amazing OST, but it’s kind of cheating when you use songs from rock royalty such as Motley Crue and Iron Maiden. Plus, anything with Holding Out for a Hero is an instant classic.

Seeing as it largely uses songs rather than an original OST (although Eidos Montreal’s fictional Star-Lord is awesome), we’ve opted for Cyberpunk 2077 instead. Say what you will about the game’s disappointing restrictions and designs as an RPG, its soundtrack is still incredible. If you’re ever bored at work and in dire need of adrenaline, listening to Cyberpunk 2077‘s theme for Johnny Silverhand is a guaranteed way to get your blood flowing.

Better With Friends Award – It Takes Two

It Takes Two is an obvious choice because it’s one of the most innovative co-op games you can play. Yes, its story is a little clumsy and who you should play it with is confusing as it’s the perfect date game on one hand while on the other it’s an experience that will make you quickly consider breaking up and never having kids.

Still, despite its imperfect story and characters, the gameplay truly shines in unique ways. You and your co-op partner constantly need to work together to progress through the story, but there’s also fun distractions to compete in, too.

Labor of Love Award – Dead By Daylight

Dead By Daylight is a personal choice but 2021 has been a strong year for BeHaviour Interactive’s multiplayer phenomenon.

We received another video game crossover with Jill, Leon, and Nemesis from Resident Evil, but we also got Pinhead from the Hellraiser movies. The original characters have also been good and things are set to get even better with the arrival of The Artist in Chapter 22.

The year hasn’t been perfect as the Pinhead NFT debacle was annoying and fans have lost the Stranger Things Hawkins map. But, unlike most other multiplayer games, it has always managed to keep us coming back.

Outstanding Visual Style Award – Loop Hero

There have been lots of beautiful games throughout the year and we were tempted to nominate Psychonauts 2 again. And no one can be judged for selecting Psychonauts 2 as its Henry Selick/Tim Burton visuals are unique and some of the levels are the closest equivalent to shrooming.

However, we’ve decided to opt for Loop Hero because its 2D visuals and art are gorgeous. It’s not the most eye-popping game of all time as its colours are very drab, but they’re still unique to the game.

Best Game You Suck At Award – Deathloop

Very few people will select this but it’s for the multiplayer rather than the single-player. After all, Deathloop‘s single-player is fairly easy as it holds your hand too much and the AI is rather dumb.

As for the multiplayer, it is so hard to win against a Colt who is fully stacked out and better than competent. Players who are terrible are easy enough to kill as you can predict where they will come from and sneak up on them with invisibility.

However, when playing against someone who has all the abilities and fully knows the levels, it’s so difficult to win as Colt has three lives while Julianna only has one. So, even if you kill Colt twice, it’s hard to win overall as one mistake and you’re dead.

Sit Back and Relax Award – Stardew Valley

Stardew Valley is one of the best games of all time and it still remains a fan-favourite five-years later. It feels a tad dirty nominating it as it’s not a 2021 release unlike other games that could have been selected.

However, there were ultimately enough updates throughout the year to warrant its nomination as it’s still the definitive sit back and relax game. That is, after you’ve upgraded your house, barns, and farm to rake in the money with little effort.

VR Game of the Year Award – CYBRID

2020 was an easy choice with Half Life Alyx, meanwhile 2021 is a lot more difficult as there really isn’t a VR game that stands mightily above everything else.

Still, we’ve opted for CYBRID as it’s a rhythm-action game not too dissimilar to the amazing Beat Saber. It has a beautiful neo world and slashing and shooting waves of purple and blue enemies to the rhythm of music is a blast.

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