Call of Duty 4, Super Mario Galaxy Nab Top Baftas

It's the game that keeps on giving: Call of Duty 4, which actually came out in November 2007, still won three awards at last night's British Academy of Film and Television Arts (Bafta) game ceremony. Super Mario Galaxy scooped the biggest award, of course, taking home game of the year. The BBC calls that a "surprise," which just means the BBC doesn't pay a lick of attention to critical consensus. Nothing wrong with that — critical consensus is worth diddly-squat as often as not — but Super Mario Galaxy bagging game of the year's really about as surprising as April showers.

The real surprise was Rockstar's Grand Theft Auto IV, nominated for seven awards (counting one public) and winner of none.

Here's the full alphabetically sorted list of categories and nominees, with winners in bold.

ACTION & ADVENTURE
Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
Dead Space
Fable II
Grand Theft Auto IV
Prince of Persia
Tomb Raider Underworld

ARTISTIC ACHIEVEMENT
Assassin's Creed
Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
Dead Space
Gears of War 2
LittleBigPlanet
Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots

BAFTA FELLOWSHIP
Nolan Bushnell, creator of Pong and founder of Atari

BAFTA ONES TO WATCH AWARD
Boro-Toro
Origamee
Vegeme

BEST GAME
Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
Fable II
Fallout 3
Grand Theft Auto IV
Rock Band
Super Mario Galaxy

CASUAL
Boom Blox
Buzz! Quiz TV
Guitar Hero: World Tour
LittleBigPlanet
Singstar Vol. 2
Wii Fit

GAME AWARD OF 2008 (PUBLIC)
Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
Fallout 3
Gears of War 2
Grand Theft Auto IV
Guitar Hero World Tour
Left 4 Dead
LittleBigPlanet
Professor Layton and the Curious Village
Wii Fit
World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King

GAMEPLAY
Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
Grand Theft Auto IV
Left 4 Dead
Mario Kart Wii
Rock Band
Super Mario Galaxy

HANDHELD
Geometry Wars: Galaxies
God of War: Chains of Olympus
The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass
Patapon
Professor Layton and the Curious Village
Soul Bubbles

MULTIPLAYER
Buzz! Quiz TV
Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
Gears of War 2
Left 4 Dead
Mario Kart Wii
Rock Band

ORIGINAL SCORE
Assassin's Creed
Dead Space
Fable II
Fallout 3
LittleBigPlanet
Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots

SPORTS
FIFA 09
Football Manager 2009
Motorstorm Pacific Rift
Pure
Race Driver: GRID
Wii Fit

STORY AND CHARACTER
Assassin's Creed
Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
Fable II
Fallout 3
Grand Theft Auto IV
Mass Effect

STRATEGY
Advance Wars: Dark Conflict
Command and Conquer: Red Alert 3
NinjaTown
Sid Meier's Civilization Revolution
SOCOM: US Navy Seals Tactical Strike
Viva Pinata: Pocket Paradise

TECHNICAL ACHIEVEMENT
Assassin's Creed
Fable II
Fallout 3
Grand Theft Auto IV
LittleBigPlanet
Spore

USE OF AUDIO
Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
Dead Space
Gears of War 2
Grand Theft Auto IV
LittleBigPlanet
Super Mario Galaxy

I like the way Christopher Faherty commenting on this Times Online piece puts it: "Any of the candidates deserved to win." Indeed. The last 12 months, give or take, have been some of the best in gaming history, even while the list of Bafta winners and runner-ups accounts for but a fraction of a fraction of last year's greats.

Matt Peckham would've voted Fable II his game of the year. You can keep tabs on him at twitter.com/game_on.

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