THE Game Awards have long been known as gaming’s version of the Oscars, and there’s less than a month to go before the winners are revealed.
Nominations came out earlier this week, and everyone has already been guessing who the winners might be.
This year’s awards are almost here.
The team that makes The Game Awards happen, has already locked in all the games that will be revealed, and trailers that will be shown.
All that’s left is for the audience to vote, and the show to go on.
We spoke to Geoff Keighley, creator of the award show, as he makes the final preparations for the event.
Many announcements have seemingly been revealed ahead of the show online, as insiders speculate on surrounding rumours.
Keighley says: “It’s always tough because when you have 50-plus games involved in some way, something’s gonna get out.
“But yeah, [we have a] pretty good history, knock on wood, with the show and we usually keep some surprises.”
Once a game is revealed at the awards, Keighley’s job is over, but the developers jobs are just starting.
He explains: “I was talking to one company, and they’re like, ‘Hey, we announced our game at The Game Awards, we have a spreadsheet of 143 things that we have to do immediately after.’
“You know, updating the website and the social posts and things like that. So it’s just a lot of stuff that has to be coordinated. We’re hopeful we’ll get to surprise people.”
It’s the first time that The Game Awards will be filmed with a live audience in three years, and roughly 1k fans will be in attendance.
Keighley claims it will be the most “cinematic show” the team has ever pulled off, with a live orchestra and stage theatrics.
The plan is to tighten things up this year, and have a shorter show than last year’s four-hour event.
However, Keighley claims that this doesn’t mean it’s skimping on the number of World Premieres.
He says: “I don’t have a number for you, but it’s consistent with past years.
“We’ve got some existing games that are announced that will show brand new content, and then we’ve got a lot of new games to reveal as well.
“Lots of speculation online already about what will or won’t be there.
“I’m sure some rumours are probably not right, and they’re only going to intensify in the coming weeks.”
It always feels like Keighley knows all of the industry’s secrets, and he saves them up all for this one night.
The Game Awards are considered to be ‘the place’ to announce your game, despite being about honouring game’s released in the last year.
Keighley says: “We’re in an incredible position.
“We have so many games that pitch us on doing things at the show that the tough thing for me, honestly, is we just don’t have enough time to do everything we want to do.
“So I always turn down a lot of games, because we just don’t have the room to do things.
“The good thing this year, I was able to travel around a little bit more this summer and visit studios and take a look at games.
“I’m very, very excited about some of the stuff we’ve got in the show. There’s the big stuff, there’s small stuff – we really try to have a diverse slate of content.”
The big surprise of the 2021 show was the trailer for The Matrix Awakens, which truly demonstrated the power of the Unreal Engine 5.
According to Keighley, more mind-blowing demos like this will appear in this year’s show.
He explains: “We’ve got some big Unreal Engine 5 games in the show.
“Hopefully, our show excites you about the future of the medium and gets you excited about the future potential of games.
“Sometimes we’ll show games that won’t be out for a few years just to get people excited.
“But the balance now is like, does a game company show a game that’s coming out in three months versus coming out in three years?
“There’s been a sense of people trying to reel that in a little bit and the length between announcement and ship has been shorter, which I think is a positive thing.”
Keighley says he doesn’t see E3 as competition to his Summer Games Fest, but it will be interesting to see which show the majority of the publishers choose to host their reveals with when June comes around.
You can tune into The Game Awards on December 8.
Written by Kirk McKeand and Georgina Young on behalf of GLHF.
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