On December 5th, the first annual The Game Awards (TGA) took place. Billed as a combination of “the Oscars and E3”, TGA appeared to be a step up from its predecessor, Spike TV’s Video Games Awards. Of course, when the VGAs feature women in pie eating contests and speakers perpetuating gamer stereotypes, the bar was set pretty low.

I did not watch the show live due to a long history of Spike TV’s sexist, marginalizing, and immature presentations. However, TGA seemed to be mostly well received by the community and, more importantly, to demonstrate some respect towards that community.

What caught my attention from this first TGA show was the category “Games for Change.” 5 games were nominated for this award.

Mountain

Never Alone

Last of Us

This War of Mine

Valiant Hearts: The Great War

Valiant Hearts won the category. It also won Best Narrative. I had the chance to play game back in October at a Red Cross event.

With meaningful games and games for change being included alongside AAA titles, and categories focused on elements such as narrative, social impact, and even family-friendliness, I am cautiously optimistic about future TGA events and the possibility of games being taken seriously and treated with respect on a very public level.

All nominees can be viewed here. 

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