The Good, The Bad and The Ugly of the Game Awards 2022

Ah, the Game Awards. The video game trailer extravaganza disguised as an awards show. I do think there is still some prestige to Geoff Keighley’s program. And I do get why half of the program is mostly dedicated to shilling out upcoming video games and video game related media. So, yeah, I still have a lot of respect for the Gaming Awards, even though it’s not really about the awards anymore.

So, like every year since its inception, there were a good number of highlights and lowlights and, of course, the ugliest of events that happened during this year’s Game Awards.

The Good

Elden Ring won Game of the Year

Ah, a worthy winner of Game of the Year! Maybe I should finally play it.

Let me be frank: I don’t believe some of the previous year’s Game of the Year award winners deserved it. I can even say that for some games that I liked. In 2019, Resident Evil 2 should’ve won the award instead of Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice. In 2020, I don’t think The Last of Us: Part II should’ve bested games like Final Fantasy VII Remake and Hades. Last year, It Takes Two beat out Resident Evil Village! How did that come to pass?

Well, this year, Elden Ring won Game of the Year. It faced stiff competition from God of War Ragnarok. While I haven’t played either game yet, I do think Elden Ring was the right choice. When a game has extremely high expectations and it manages to meet them, then I do say it’s more than deserving. You could say the same thing from God of War Ragnarok but Elden Ring had a bigger hurdle to overcome as this was, undoubtedly, much more anticipated. So it winning Game of the Year was a good thing. Too bad it was nearly spoiled because of a stupid incident… but we’ll get to that later. Let’s go look at more good stuff for now.

The Last of Us cast in stereo

Yes, you are seeing double.

You could say having the video game cast and the live-action casts for The Last of Us on stage at the same time was a cheesy moment. You could say it was even a cringe moment as Ashley Johnson and Bella Ramsey have to go try to speak in unison or Pedro Pascal and Troy Baker bowing to one another. These weren’t the only awkward interactions they had as, even though they were on stage for just a couple of minutes, they managed to drop in some uncomfortable back and forth.

I totally understand if you think that way. However, I can’t help but smile a little to see both versions of Joel and Ellie on the stage together. It’s just nice to see both the video game and live-action iterations sharing the same space. You can tell they were all winging it and no rehearsing was done so it did make it all the more real to me. It’s cringe but the good kind of cringe.

Diablo IV shows Blizzard still knows how to put out a trailer

Oh, look! Another game I should play!

The public has not been too kind to Activision Blizzard. With all the news that has come out regarding all of the alledged terrible stuff that’s been happening behind the scenes, it’s hard not to see why. Even more bad news has just come out recently with Microsoft’s acquisition of the gaming conglomerate seemingly being blocked as this might be an antitrust violation, whatever that means. So it looks like Activision Blizzard will be spending some time trying to clear all of this up.

But at least they still had enough time to push out a killer trailer for Diablo IV.

Sure, this new trailer for Diablo IV didn’t show a lick of gameplay and was basically a glorious CGI movie dropping hints about what the next game will be like. Then again, do we really need to see gameplay footage when we all know how it’s going to generally play like. Yes, I would’ve wanted to see what the next Diablo game looked like but the trailer did get me excited for what’s to come.

The Bad

Al Pachino can’t read

Insert whatever Al Pachino meme here.

I can see why Geoff Keighley would want to get big name Hollywood stars on the Game Awards. It add a little bit of more legitimacy and prestige to the proceedings. But I implore you, Geoff Keighley, please get some actual actors who give a damn about video games in the future. It’s not like we’re lacking on them nowadays, with high-profile stars like Henry Cavill and Mila Kunis, more than admitting their love for the medium.

So, next time, pass on Al Pachino.

When Al Pachino went on-stage to present the award for Best Performance in a video game, I was excited. Then he started talking. As good as an actor he is, I didn’t buy that he was actually happy to be there presenting this silly award for this silly hobby. His thoughts, not mine. He also couldn’t read the teleprompter, which added to the embarrassment he must’ve felt. I know, because I felt embarrassed for him. Yes, a seemingly inebriated Michael Madsen was terrible and that dad joke from Keegan Michael Key was bad. Al Pachino was much worse.

Chistopher Judge give a heartwarming acceptance spee… Zzzzzzzzz…

If you wonder why the band has to play off some acceptance speeches, ladies and gentlemen, I give you Exhibit A.

I do think Christopher Judge deserves to win Best Performance for his role as Kratos in God of War Ragnarok. That voice has become synonymous with the character now and he manages to capture Kratos’ personality so well so good on him. I also think he was extremely touched for being awarded this honor and he was super proud that he was being recognized for it.

But, c’mon, man! Wrap it up!

This was one of those instances when I was glad I didn’t watch the Game Awards live as I could fast forward Christopher Judge’s speech. It just felt like it went on forever, like Grandpa Simpson talking about how he used to wear an onion on his belt which was the style at the time. In truth, his speech lasted for eight minutes. That’s forever in an awards show! I’m glad he won but I just wished his speech was shorter.

Crash Bandicoot crashing the party

There’s cringe… and there’s this.

Each and every time the Game Awards roll in, I expect a solid amount of cringe. But there will always be that one moment during the show where the cringe becomes almost unbearable. This year, that “award” goes to Crash Bandicoot crashing the show to reveal Crash Team Rumble. The trailer, I have no problem with. The presentation? Well, ugh.

I grew up during Crash Bandicoot’s heyday and I’m familiar with the puppet/costume. I guess the mascot’s outfit is supposed to invoke some kind of nostalgia as it looks like the exact same one from the old commercials. Unfortunately, it looks more dated than nostalgic. Also, the humor during this portion? A huge swing and a miss in my opinion. I was just embarrassed from watching it.

The Ugly

Bill Clinton wins Game of the Year?

Isn’t it weird the best thing of the show was followed by the worst thing?

I can’t lie. I do admire the kid’s gumption. He waited for his moment, walked along with everyone with all the confidence in the world. He blended in with everyone and acted all cool and collected. He waited patiently for his moment and bam! The kid made a rambling speech about a former President of the United States or something to that effect. Sure, it was funny and a meme making machine. But, in retrospect, this was the worst thing of the Game Awards this year.

For one, it stole a lot of the spotlight from the winner of the Game Awards, Elden Ring. This won’t be the year when Elden Ring won. This will be known as the year when some weird kid managed to get up on stage and say something weird. It also makes it very evident that security is very lax at the event as some random nobody can get away with something like this. Sure, he was arrested after the fact. But that doesn’t change the fact that the folks at the Game Awards should’ve been on top of this.

What were some of the more memorable moments from this year’s Game Awards for you? Let me know in the comments section below!

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