Our Thoughts on The Game Awards 2020

This years Game Awards show was slightly different given the current COVID situation, so the show was based in 3 different locations; the main show being in LA, a musical performance from the UK by the London Philharmonic Orchestra and Tokyo. Celebrity guests such as Brie Larson, Gal Gadot and Keane Reeves were all part of the show announcing winners throughout the night. Last years Game Awards saw the first look at the Series X and whilst there were no huge reveals regarding hardware this year, the games on show certainly didn’t disappoint.

Before we get into the games lets run through who won what on the night:

  • Esports Team: G2 Esports
  • Esports Host: Eefje ‘Sjokz’ Depoortere
  • Esports Game: League of Legends
  • Esports Event: League of Legends World Championship 2020
  • Esports Coach: Danny ‘Zonic’ Sorensen
  • Esports Athlete: Heo ‘Showmaker’ Su
  • Content Creator of the year: Valkyrae
  • Multiplayer Game: Among Us
  • Sports/Racing Game: Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1+2
  • Sim/Strategy Game: Microsoft Flight Simulator
  • Family Game: Animal Crossing: New Horizons
  • Fighting Game: Mortal Kombat 11 Ultimate
  • Role-Playing Game: Final Fantasy VII Remake
  • Players Choice: Ghost of Tsushima
  • Action/Adventure Game: The Last of Us: Part 2
  • Action: Hades
  • Innovation in Accessibility: The Last of Us: Part 2
  • VR/AR Game: Half-Life: Alyx
  • Community Support: Fall Guys
  • Mobile Game: Among Us
  • Debut Indie Game: Phasmophobia
  • Indie Game: Hades
  • Ongoing Game: No Man’s Sky
  • Games for Impact: Tell Me Why
  • Best Performance: Laura Bailey as Abby, The Last of Us: Part 2
  • Best Audio Design: The Last of Us: Part 2
  • Best Score and Music: Final Fantasy VII Remake
  • Best Art Direction: Ghost Of Tsushima
  • Best Narrative: The Last of Us: Part 2
  • Most Anticipated Game: Elden Ring
  • Best Game Direction: The Last of Us: Part 2
  • Game of The Year: The Last of Us: Part 2

The Last of Us: Part 2 was a clear winner at the awards, picking up an impressive 7 awards. Other notable winners were Ghost of Tsushima and Among Us.

The Game Awards also had several new titles shown and some more information on games already announced. Microsoft showed off the first game from their new studio The Initiative – a brand new (and long rumoured) Perfect Dark. Not much was given away but we did see an early concept video confirming that agent Jo Dark would be making a return. Microsoft also showed off some Master Chief but not quite what people were maybe hoping for. Instead, Spartan 117 has been confirmed to be joining Fortnite and is available now in the store (for a mere *cough* 2200 V-Bucks). The Chief also brought with him the classic Blood Gulch map for use in creative mode alongside a version of Capture the Flag. More crossovers coming from Forza Horizon 4 as the Quadra Turbo Type R from Cyberpunk 2077 went live in-game during the show. Sim/Simulator award winner Microsoft Flight Simulator was also confirmed to be coming to Series X in Summer 2021.

Nintendo had a fairly quiet night but Final Fantasy fans will be pleased to know that the One-Winged Angel, Sephiroth, will be joining the Super Smash Bros. Ultimate roster.

Back4Blood was another highlight of the night (hell yeah it was -ed). The zombie co-op game from many of the staff the worked on Left 4 Dead looked incredible with bigger hordes, more bosses and a fresh selection of new guns and characters. The gameplay shown was pre-alpha footage but all signs pointed to this game being a must for some great co-op experiences. Speaking of follow-ups, Dead Space’s executive producer Glen Schofield and his studio Striking Distance Studios showed off their new IP, The Callisto Protocol. The Dead Space influence’s were immediately apparent, and we can’t wait to see more. That 2022 release window seems too far away…

Call of Duty fans were also shown some new features for both Warzone and Cold War. Warzone will be getting 2 new Gulags, including one which is based on the Original Nuketown. Cold War is getting the always fun Prop Hunt mode added to it as well.

I know that I have often thought “Why haven’t the Fast and Furious directors introduced Dinosaurs into the series” well it seems someone at Studio Wildcard had the same thought as the announcement of Ark 2 had a healthy amount of everyone’s favourite gear head, Vin Diesel. Ark 2 will also be a Microsoft Exclusive. Finally my dreams of punching a velociraptor as Dominic Torreto will come true!

A few games with more concrete release dates were also announced. Oddworld: Soul Storm is out Spring 2021, the outstanding look Hood: Outlaws & Legends is due May 2021. Various Yakuza titles are coming to PC and Xbox Gamepass and Super Meat Boy Forever releases on the Epic Games Store this month.

Footage for Open Roads, the latest game for Gone Home and Tacoma developer Fulbright,  Warhammer 40,000: Darktide and Crimson Desert, from the makers of Black Desert Online (which looks like a MMO Witcher) was also shown.

Saving the best for last, BioWare had a big night, showing off teaser trailers of two of their main IP’s. First up we seen some more from the latest instalment in the Dragon Age saga. The game was fairly tight lipped on details but we do know that the game will feature a new hero, the return of Solas from Inquisition and Varric makes an appearance, albeit as the narrator of the teaser. No word on a release window but more likely a late 2021/early 2022 time frame.

Perhaps an ever bigger surprise was a teaser for the next Mass Effect game. We were told that it was being worked on but to actually see some sort of teaser was by far the highlight of the night for me. The trailer starts showing the Andromeda galaxy before slowly working its way back to the Milky Way. Throughout the beginning of the trailer, there are some clues to where this game might be heading, from destroyed Mass Relays, references to the Tempest and the unmistakable sound of the reaper, Sovereign. Jumping back into the Milky Way we see a hooded figure on a frozen planet, scaling a defeated reaper, upon reaching the top they find a piece of old N7 armour buried in the snow. As the trailer ends we see 3 figures standing in the distance (human, salarian and a krogan) and the hooded figure is revealed to be none other that Dr Liara T’Soni!

While the game awards lacked the feel of previous years, the show did not disappoint. Naughty Dog had a great evening with the success of Last of Us: Part 2 and the fans were treated to some fantastic looking games. Highlights for myself include both the new BioWare titles but also Hood: Outlaws & Legends also stood out as a potential dark horse for my game of the year next year. Back 4 Blood sees a welcome return of a beloved franchise and finally seeing what The Initiative have been working on (albeit it a very small teaser) makes me think that Microsoft have their eyes set on Sony’s “Single Player Masterpiece” crown.

What did you think of the Game Awards this year? Let us know in the comments below or on our social pages!

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