Animal Crossing
Animal Crossing was Nintendo's strongest game of 2020, but even that couldn't stop a fall in the rankings...

Review aggregator site Metacritic has released its 2020 publisher rankings, showing us which studios put out the strongest lineup of games based on their overall quality – according to critics, at least.

Publishers are ranked based on a points system made up of four main steps, detailed below. To qualify, a publisher must have released at least five titles throughout the year:

(1) Average Metascore for all games released in 2020
150 possible points (awarded at 1.5 x the average Metascore)

(2) % of scored products with good reviews (Metascore of at least 75)
100 possible points (ex: 80% good = 80 points)

(3) % of scored products with bad reviews (49 or lower; in this case, a lower % is better)
100 possible points (ex: 20% bad = 80 points)

(4) Number of "great" titles (Metascore of 90 or higher, min. 7 reviews)
Awarded as 5 bonus points for each distinct title with a 90+ score

So, on to the list. Sega came out on top this year with a total score of 372.2 points, partly thanks to Persona 5 Royal and Yakuza 0 scoring above '90', earning the publisher bonus points as described in the fourth bullet point above.

Nintendo landed in ninth spot overall, with Animal Crossing: New Horizons being its only game to score above 90. The company's average Metascore actually declined by five points from the year before, leaving it lower down the pecking order than we'd usually see.

Image: Metacritic

Last year, in 2019's publisher rankings, Nintendo came third.

What did you think to Nintendo's 2020? Did you end up buying and enjoying many of its games? Let us know with a comment below.