I have to admit I have never watched the Video Game Awards on Spike TV. Early on, I devotedly followed the announcements via the interweb. For the last few years I have had the chance to witness the event live, but I've never actually sat on my couch and enjoyed them the old fashioned way...on TV. Although Jack Black and Snoop performed live last year, the show just didn't quite come together. A large part of that was due to the fact it began as an outdoor red carpet pavilion on a day when LA got pounded by a torrential rainstorm which was just unlucky. However the highlight was watching Call of Duty: MW2 take Best Shooter and Best Multiplayer.
In contrast, the 2010 event was much better organized. The LA Convention Center worked well as both an indoor red carpet space, and a elegantly designed stage set. Personally, I thought Neil Patrick Harris was pretty good as the host. Happily, Call of Duty: Black Ops took home a number of awards (Congratulations to Treyarch for the well deserved recognition). I think Keighley and GameTrailers stepped up their game this year.
Whether the VGAs fully captured it or not, there is a ton of amazing talent across this industry passionately working on some remarkable games. 2011 looks to be an exciting year for gamers with a lot of really great titles lining up for the fall run. Studios continue to raise the bar, and that's a healthy motivation for all of us to continue innovating and pushing, especially here at Sledgehammer Games. I can't think of a more exciting industry to be a part of right now, and look forward seeing what great title or studio steps up and delivers the best of 2011.
In the mean time, I've already sent $60 to Naughty Dog for my Uncharted 3 preorder :)
Written by Michael Condrey