Last year, Canadian games journalist Geoff Keighley hosted the very first Game Awards ceremony. The show took place in December, after gaming trade shows E3, TGS and Gamescom were done for the year and it aimed to be both a celebration of the industry as well as a showcase for some exciting end of year reveals. The Game Awards also allowed Keighley to set up a more grown up replacement to the Spike Video Game Awards, which had continuously been criticized for their awkwardness, as well as the way they put the focus on celebrity cameos and comedic gags rather than the industry’s hard work and efforts.
Overall, The Game Awards were received well. There was awkwardness when Destiny bagged the award for Music Composition after lead composer Martin O’Donnell had been fired from developer Bungie earlier in the year and not everyone may have agreed with Dragon Age: Inquisition winning Game of the Year, but as these awards were doled out with total professionalism, few people seemed to mind. There were also over a dozen world premieres of The Game Awards (including the reveal of a King’s Quest reboot and the announcement of The Banner Saga 2) which also saw people react positively to the show.
And the positive public opinion was reflected in the viewership too. The inaugural Game Awards ceremony drew in 1.93 million viewers, an increase of around 75% from the Spike VGX 2013 ceremony that took place the year before. That was huge not just because Keighley had a small marketing budget for the show but because The Game Awards were only viewable online. This year, the journalist has revealed, The Game Awards will be coming back and looking to capitalize on its debut success.
After confirming the show’s return at PAX South in Texas, Keighley tweeted
“As I announced this morning at PAX, I’m excited to already be working on @thegameawards for 2015. Will share more later this Spring.”
Given that Keighley is already working on The Game Awards 2015, it could be possible that this year will see an earlier ceremony. Even last year Keighley was only talking up the show in fall so the fact that he is preparing to make announcements as soon as spring seems to suggest that we could be seeing the TGAs 2015 take place earlier than last year’s December timeslot.
The decision to move The Game Awards up further in the year would be a wise decision on Keighley’s part. Although there were plenty of world premieres, the fact that The Game Awards took place just days before Sony’s PlayStation Experience event (which came with plenty of big announcements of its own) meant that it likely lost out on some reveals to the PlayStation platform holder. Arguably, the fact that the TGAs and the PlayStation Experience were held in the same place (Las Vegas) in the same month may have helped garner interest from press for their debuts but now that they have some clout they’ll want to stand out on their own.
Additionally, an earlier Game Awards benefits developers and publishers who are looking to drum up extra holiday season press for their games. In theory, they could host The Game Awards in November so that as gamers head to the tills, they’ll be aware of which games took the top industry honours.
For now this is speculation but we’ll have more on The Game Awards 2015 soon.
Source: Geoff Keighley