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A surprise win for sci-fi shooter Destiny was the big talking point at this year’s British Academy Game Awards, with the title winning Best Game despite failing to clinch any of the other awards it was nominated for.

Bungie’s first game since leaving the Halo franchise was highly anticipated but divided fans, attracting a mixed reception upon its release last September. Some reviewers criticised its lack of strong characters and narrative whilst others claimed its gameplay was repetitive. Despite this the combination of two genres, merging first-person shooter with a massively multiplayer online (MMO) role-playing game, appears to have been a hit with the Academy.

Claiming the award, Bungie President Harold Ryan thanked Destiny’s players, stating “It’s always a labour of love that we do because of the passion of the fans. They really are the ones who drive you to put the energy and time into putting the game together.”

Hosted by comedian Rufus Hound, there were more shocks at this year’s ceremony, as several of the other big-budget titles missed out on awards. Mario Kart 8, Assassin’s Creed Unity, Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare and Fifa 15 all left empty-handed, with the latter pipped to the post in the Best Sport category by low-budget 2D skateboarding game Olliolli.

Elsewhere, Kevin Spacey was defeated as Ashley Johnson took home her second Best Performance award in two years for her role as Ellie in The Last of Us: Left Behind, with the game also winning Best Story.

The winners in full are:

Category Winner
Best game Destiny (Bungie)
British game Monument Valley (UsTwo)
Debut game Never Alone (Upper One Games)
Story The Last of Us: Left Behind (Naughty Dog)
Performer Ashley Johnson for The Last of Us: Left Behind
Artistic achievement Lumino City (State of Play)
Audio achievement Alien Isolation (The Creative Assembly)
Family game Minecraft: Console Editions (Mojang/4J Studios)
Game design Middle-earth Shadow of Mordor (Monolith Productions)
Game innovation The Vanishing of Ethan Carter (The Astronauts)
Mobile and handheld game Monument Valley (UsTwo)
Multiplayer game Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft (Blizzard Entertainment)
Music Far Cry 4 (Cliff Martinez, Tony Gronick and Jerome Angelot)
Original property Valiant Hearts (Ubisoft Studios)
Persistent game League of Legends (Riot Games)
Sport game OlliOlli (Roll7)
Ones to watch Chambara (Overly Kinetic)
Bafta fellowship David Braben (Frontier Developments)

 

Source: BAFTA