2011 has been a busy, interesting year for the games industry - one of embracing technologies with novelty value, of speculating about the next console generation and one where some of the most-loved PC games ever have been either rebooted or continued. Our thumbs are tired; our keyboards worn flat.
And, as you can tell by our deliberately generic opening ramble, the year is now drawing to a close. It's time for the usual Game of the Year round up, which looks back on the best games this year and attempts to organise them into a vaguely authoritative list.
In keeping with bit-tech's most foolish tradition, this year's Game of the Year article is completely inconsistent with all previous years. Last year we discovered your Top 10 Games of 2010 in a public vote; this year we, along with our regular contributors, selected our own Top 5 games of the year.
Who is on our supposedly expert panel? Dan Grilipoulos, Gareth Halfacree, David Hing, Tom Morgan, James Livett, Craig Lager, Danny Palmer, Ben Paddon, Jennifer Anne-Scott, Jamie Cuthill, Chris Capel, Rick Lane and Paul Goodhead all lent their voices to ours, each getting five votes to cast for whatever they considered the best games of the year. We then counted together the votes and came up with a list of the Top 5.
Let's not be silly, however - we're not saying that these five titles are perfect games, nor even that they're perfect for everyone. We're simply saying that they're our collective five favourite games. With that in mind, we'd invite you to head to the forums once you've read our Top 5 and let us know what your favourite games of the year were too.