Note: You may very well disagree with some of my choices, but that’s why it’s a good list.
2003 Game of the Year: Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time
Runner-up: Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow
This was the first one in awhile where I had some trouble choosing not only the nominees, but also the winners.
After thinking about it Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time had to be the winner. It’s the only game that I’ve ever known nothing about yet liked it so much that I did three speed runs of the game back-to-back with my best time being just under three hours. The combat is the weakest part of the game which is why it’s good that there’s a ton of awesome platforming action to play. I was pretty disappointed with the newest game in the series to say the least, but I can’t recommend Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time enough.
Out of all of the Symphony of the Night style of Castlevania games, Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow is my favorite. It was the first of that style that I played on a recommendation from usagi704. I played through it several times. First I had the original release and then soon I bought the Castlevania Double Pack and played it again on that cartridge.
I recommend any of the nominated games as they are all excellent. Want to play the first game to have a cover system? Get yourself some Kill Switch. Maybe you want to show all those NES lovers what a better Double Dragon looks like? Show them the remake of Double Dragon Advance.
Thanks for reading!