The Hearts of Stone Expansion is a Better GotY Choice Than The Witcher 3

While The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt has already garnered many Game of the Year awards from various outlets, Polygon makes the argument that its Hearts of Stone expansion should actually receive such the lofty nod ahead of the base game. A few paragraphs to help explain their reasoning:

Anyone who has played The Witcher 3 for more than the first few minutes has met Gaunter O'Dimm, the primary antagonist of Hearts of Stone. He sets Witcher protagonist Geralt on the right path at the very beginning of the game. In contrast, the player doesn't actually see any of The Wild Hunt until hours into the game, and doesn't meet the king of the Wild Hunt face-to-face until the game's final showdown.

Throughout Hearts of Stone, the player frequently talks to and works with O'Dimm. The player is enlisted to resolve an agreement between O'Dimm and the noble-turned-bandit Olgierd von Everic. It's easy to spend dozens of hours in the main game without sparing a thought for The Wild Hunt, but Hearts of Stone regularly reminds players of the presence and considerable power of Gaunter O'Dimm. He represents CD Projekt Red's writers at their best, putting a sinister twist on a well-worn fairy tale and calling into question the player's sense of right or wrong.

There are a number of excellent set-pieces to establish the character of O'Dimm, including an exceedingly creepy song sung by a group of children preceding a meeting with the character at a crossroads. The Witcher 3 is ripe with villains, some of questionable morality and others downright evil. But Gaunter O'Dimm is the game's biggest success. His veiled, but ever-present threat drives the narrative forward perfectly.