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Bytten Ernie Awards 2006

Best A.I.
Awarded to Tribal Trouble by Oddlabs

Most games require artificial intelligence of some sort and in the past year I've seen my fair share of games that demand it, from the first person shooter War World: Tactical Combat, to the Risk-like game The Strategist.

Tribal Trouble Paperball

As a real time strategy game, Tribal Trouble needed A.I. on many levels and it had it. From path-finding by your soldiers, to their local intelligence, to a global strategy demanded by the computer opponents, Tribal Trouble managed each task to make a game that was easy to play despite many levels of complexity.

The Same But Different Award
Awarded to PaperBall by E-Giraffa

To some, clones are the evil face of indie games but each game has its merits and sometimes an old idea will be done well enough to equal or beat the archetype. For a game to be fun it must be balanced well no matter how original the idea, and in many ways making an existing idea stand out is as hard as making an original game. Arcade shooter Zig by Ben Campbell came close to winning this award but PaperBall simply had me addicted.

PaperBall is a simple Breakout game with graphics that looked like scribbles on paper. The game has exactly the right level of pace and speed, with enough features to keep you interested and enough gameplay to keep you hooked. Graphics and presentation are well done and the game didn't go overboard with type of pickup or complexity. Innovation is not necessary if the game is fun and distinctive, and PaperBall proves that.

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