Last Friday night, we saw the first inaugural Game Awards as a successor to the VGAs, or most recently VGX. Fans were much more satisfied with the show this year, backed by excellent performances such as the team-up of Imagine Dragons and Koji Kondo. This level of reception was greatly reflected in the ratings, as they were up over 75% over VGX.
Coming straight from the pocket of Geoff Keighley, he felt the awards were a great success, but were not without their problems in this first attempt. In an interview with Polygon, Keighley discussed what he thought The Game Awards 2014 achieved with a lack of a marketing budget or TV spots to advertise the show.
“It’s empowering that we as a community can get the word out virally about a show like this. I always knew the show would get a better critical response from the community, but in many ways I was making a more serious show that risked not having as much mainstream appeal. That’s why Kiefer Sutherland, Conan O’Brien, Trey Parker and Imagine Dragons were such important bookings. All of them truly love games and came to celebrate our medium.”
Not only was Keighley proud of the audience numbers that the show provided, but also the content itself.
“I was really happy with how things turned out. Certainly the audience numbers were well beyond my wildest dreams, and creatively I’m proud of what we put on the screen. Moments like the tribute to Ken and Roberta Williams and the Koji Kondo/Imagine Dragons performance were once in a lifetime experiences.”
Keighley mentioned that he thought the show could have been shorter with a few less world premieres and more awards given on stage, but overall he was very happy. He had to prove to publishers that the show was the right venue to show off gamers again, so hopefully next year’s show will be even better.