he Controversy with The Game Awards 2020


The Game Awards is a yearly celebration of Video Games as a medium. It is what the emmys are to movies. Because of this, every year people buy tickets or sit at home to see their favorite games on the big screen. But much more happens at The Game Awards then just celebrating the past games. They also look to the future with new games being announced and new content for old games being released. Just over a week ago, the 2020 Game Awards were held and because of the awards that were given, a controversy has arisen.

The game awards started off strong with several new games being announced: Back4Blood is a co-op survival zombie game from the same developers as Left 4 Dead, Scavengers an online competitive shooter hybrid with Player vs Player and Player vs Environment gameplay, and Ark 2 a sequel to the critically acclaimed Ark Survival evolved a multiplayer survival game. All being notable announcements.

After the beginning ceremony, the Game Awards officially started and awards were being dealt to fan favorite games from 2020:
Game of the Year: The Last of Us Part 2 | Best Game Direction: The Last of Us Part 2
Best Narrative: The Last of Us Part 2 | Best Art Direction: Ghost of Tsushima
Best Score/Music: Final Fantasy VII Remake | Best Audio Design: The Last of Us Part 2
Best Performance: Laura Bailey – Abby, The Last of Us Part 2
Games for Impact: Tell Me Why | Best Ongoing Game: No Man’s Sky
Best Indie Game: Hades | Best Debut Game: Phasmophobia
Best Mobile Game: Among Us | Best Community Support: Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout
Best VR/AR Game: Half-Life: Alyx | Innovation in Accessibility: The Last of Us Part 2
Best Action Game: Hades | Best Action/Adventure Game: The Last of Us Part 2
Best RPG: Final Fantasy VII Remake | Best Fighting Game: Mortal Kombat 11 Ultimate
Best Family Game: Animal Crossing: New Horizons

Most of these games have dedicated communities who loved to see them winning awards on the big screen. But there was one game which the community felt didn’t deserve to win as many spots as it did. The Last of Us Part 2 was widely accepted as a good game, but with a total of 7 awards, the community felt as if the judges were slightly biased towards it.

The Last Of Us Part 2 is a primarily story based game with the main focus being on the characters and how they interact with each other rather than the actual gameplay. A large number of the online community have expressed that it didn’t deserve the awards it was given since instead of being a fun game to play, it hinged on being controversial and innovative with its characters. Here is a quote from The Outer Haven: “It’s all simple, really: There are better games and reason out there rather than a game that only gets headlines and website clicks by being “controversial.” Think about it for a moment.” The community has expressed that just because a game is a social commentary does not mean it is better than a game that doesn’t comment on our world. This was reflected by the number of people both streaming and watching the game on platforms like twitch.

Overall, the Game Awards 2020 was a controversial one. Because of its award choices, the community feels like it is starting to prioritize things that do not involve how fun the game is to play. The Game Awards were founded in 2014, but if they wish to be treated seriously as something like the emmys, they need to sort out how the games themselves are rated.