The Game Awards is in its 10th year of existence. It has drastically outpaced the more juvenile gaming days and appears to be hitting its stride. There are still some oddities that hold it back from being something truly special of which the industry can applaud.
Our Issues with The Game Awards
No Mention of Layoffs.
The Game Awards would not exist without developers. You don’t have devs; you don’t have games. In a year with layoffs across the entire industry, not a single second was spent on the plight of the industry. I find it hard to believe that there wasn’t time for a segment spotlighting the issue. It could have been two minutes, or it could have been 10. To completely avoid it is a really bad look. As to why it wasn’t discussed? I have no clue. Geoff’s show clearly aligns more closely to studios vs those employed by it.
It’s an Ad Show.
The ads are the main focus. That is really the nicest way to put it. As we are guilty as well, the main coverage and aspect of the show is to show what is coming up. You know… what E3 used to be. Instead, they also saddle an awards segment into what is mostly tuned in for to see the next titles from the biggest studios.
Awards are Secondary.
I can’t even take a guess as to who won anything outside of Game of The Year for any award of any year. They are rushed through with little to no time celebrating the game that actually won the award and those that brought it to life. The winners were given 30 seconds to speed through who they wanted to thank and then were drowned out by the music. It almost seems like a farce to have them walk up there if you are giving them such little time.
Non-Gaming People Focused.
There is always a complaint that there aren’t any recognizable devs in the industry outside of someone like Kojima. This feels like a chicken and the egg sort of thing since the awards show that should be spotlighting talent opted to have celebrity guest after celebrity guest. I haven’t gone back and timed it, but I’d wager that any celebrity on the screen had twice the length of time as any person in the gaming industry.
The Game Awards should be a celebration of games AND those that make them. Instead, it feels closer to an advert paid for by the studios without a mention of the cost to make them.