Back in 2011, Metacritic started doing an annual ranking for video game companies; publishers are categorized according to the number of releases for the year and judged by overall Metacritic scores. Also, sales and user reviews aren't taken into account for the overall rankings, so only reviews from authorised media outlets are counted. Last year Nintendo made the top 5, coming in at number 4; this year it's pulled ahead to the coveted number one spot, seeing off its closest rivals in Ubisoft and Electronic Arts.

For Nintendo, the best rated overall release was, unsurprisingly, Super Smash Bros. For Wii U., while Bravely Default took Best New Original Title (as it was released in early 2014 in North America and wasn't part of an existing series). Chibi-Robo! Photo Finder was Worst Overall Release and the winner of Users' Favourite was a three-way tie between Bayonetta, Bayonetta 2, and Mario Kart 8. Nintendo released more unique titles than any other publisher and was the only one to make the 'green' bracket, with an average Metascore of 76.5 just clearing the cutoff.

Metacritic has also released some other sets of data outlining the most popular games along with the best and worst performers on each platform - hit up the link below to read the full breakdown.

What do you think of these results? Were you pleased with Nintendo's output over the last year? Sound off in the comments below.

[via metacritic.com]