Windows Central Game Awards 2019: Awarding the best games, tech, and innovations of the year

It's that time of year again, when we look back and celebrate the best of the best. The game industry had a huge year in 2019, as we head closer and closer towards next-gen consoles and even beefier PC rigs.

2019 year saw the return of old school experiences like World of Warcraft Classic, Age of Empires II DE, and Half-Life (albeit on VR). We got a broader push into game streaming with Google Stadia and Project xCloud. We also got the formal announcements of next-gen consoles in the form of Xbox Scarlett and PlayStation 5, accompanying ray-tracing capable graphics cards making our games look more vivid than ever.

And of course, we had piles of awesome games to play. With our Windows Central Game Awards, our gaming writers got together and voted on our favorite gaming experiences, tech, and products of the past year, presented here for your perusal. Do let us know what your favorite games of 2019 were in the comments too, and let us know what you're excited for in 2020 and beyond.

Best Games of 2019

Best Gaming Hardware of 2019

Game Industry Awards

Derek Kessler

Derek Kessler is Special Projects Manager for Mobile Nations. He's been writing about tech since 2009, has far more phones than is considered humane, still carries a torch for Palm, and got a Tesla because it was the biggest gadget he could find. You can follow him on Twitter at @derekakessler.

  • No love for Outer Wilds!
  • Outer Wilds is awesome, lots of games I woulda liked to have included somehow. :C
  • Outer Worlds or Outer Wilds…Which game you boys talking about
  • Haha, I think he's talking about Wilds? Worlds is great too.
  • Yes, they're both great, but, yes, I was indeed talking about Wilds, not Worlds.
  • I literally disagree with every single one except Xcloud. Lol Best Xbox One gane is without a doubt between Gears 5 and TOW. Resi 2 was good. But way to short. And it wasn't as good as the original. Although still great. I preferred DMC5 from Capcom. Best tech and visuals of the year easily goes to Gears 5. Both in sound design and technical achievement. With 60fps across the board with the visual fidelity it has is simply a massive achievement for this entire generation. And on PC also. As DF said Gears 5 is the best visuals on PC to date. And the PC version is a glimpse as to what next Gen consoles will look like. The Outer Worlds easily is the best written game of the year. The writing is so flawless its mesmerizing how good it is. Other games could take note of how to write dialogue and morale choices so brilliantly. Best campaign Control? I had to laugh. Because it's miles behind the storytelling campaigns of Alan Wake and Quantum Break. They focused to much on gimmicky gameag this time. And the writing and storytelling suffered massively as a result.
  • We didn't have "best tech and visuals award," you're making stuff up to fit your narrative. We didn't have a "best writing" award either. Alan Wake and Quantum Break didn't come out in 2019. Please think before you write man lol
  • Hahaha. Yeah. That doesn't make sense at all. I was at work and tried to write my comment to fast clearly. I was trying to give reasons as to why Gears 5 etc deserves Game of the year. With such a high level of polished not seen in any other game this year. I'm well aware Alan Wake and Quantum Break didn't come out this year. My point was Controls campaign quality has dipped that much in storytelling. The other 2 games were far superior in their campaigns. It's quite an insult to other campaigns this year that one as mediocre as Control won. That was my point.
  • You were spot on though about The Outer Worlds though :)
  • Control didn't get my vote, but it's popular among the team. I genuinely don't think Gears 5 deserves game of the year, after all the issues with multiplayer/microtransactions/poor community communication etc, personally.
  • Why no award for best local multiplayer games? I don't expect windows central visitors are only people who never make time to hang out with friends. Or don't have kids for that matter.
  • Local multiplayer games are eligible to win best multiplayer game tho. What would you pick for the winner?
  • I don't really think it makes sense to put them in one category. When deciding which game to play (or buy), there are almost no situations where you would consider both type of games at the same time. For xbox, I would say gang beasts (although for everyone else the game is older). MageQuit or Tools up! would be likely contenders, but haven't played those enough yet to have a judgement
  • Hmm perhaps, but if we do best local co-op, we'll have to start covering every single genre as well, could get really messy haha. I'd still consider local co-op games for best multiplayer award, purely from a genre perspective.
  • It's a little depressing that the best game of 2019 is from 1998. Revamped or not. Mad props to Control though, that game was phenomenal start to finish.
  • Revamped? Rebuilt from the ground up, far more than a simple revamp.
  • Best Indie Game: Lonely Mountains: Downhill. No doubt.