"Game of the Year" is the most prestigious award any source that covers the industry can hand out. But as is the case with reviews, there is no standardized approach to determining winners, and the criteria for choosing those winners. It ain't easy.
So what does that illustrious label mean to you? What would you look at when determining the year's best video game? Are you putting more of an emphasis on fun factor, which would translate to a more subjective analysis? Would you be willing to give your favorite title Game of the Year over a production that might be more qualified from a technical and artistic perspective? Or would you stress innovation and freshness? So many people have complained about a lack of originality this generation (which I don't necessarily agree with, by the way), so maybe that's important to you. There must be priorities.
Then again, maybe you just take the most straightforward approach- Pick the game that simply appears to be the most accomplished, whether it's your cup of tea or not. We should all be able to appreciate extreme levels of quality, regardless of opinion and personal preference. That can be difficult to do, though…after all, isn't it a little weird if we couldn't entertain ourselves with our own Game of the Year pick? By the way, although it really hasn't been tough from PSXE's point of view over the last few years, our 2012 choice for Game of the Year is requiring a lot more thought. No, it hasn't been decided yet, but you'll know soon enough.