Note: iOS 9 + Facebook users w/ trouble scrolling: #super sorry# we hope to fix it asap. In the meantime Chrome Mobile is a reach around
hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

Weekend Reading: And the award goes to...

10:39 PM on 01.06.2008 // 8BitBrian

While mucking up Podtoid 37, I really liked the question about the industry maturing. While videogames are definitely more mainstream, with regular articles covering the industry in the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal, there is still a stigma revolving around videogame culture. For every article that talked about Halo being a billion-dollar franchise, there was someone on TV claiming that games are just for kids.

If you look on TV and in movies, gamers are still furiously tapping the buttons on whatever system they're playing, as though their heart rate depends on smashing that A button in until it breaks. I'm sure once they get up to putting Wiimotes in actors' hands, they'll be swinging about wildly and throwing them into TVs. I can see it now, actually. Jake, the pudgy little boy on Two and a Half Men, gets a Wii for his birthday, because he can use it to "exercise." Charlie Sheen decides to join in, and throws the remote right into the TV. Now, it's a race against time to find the money to replace the TV.

So, when will the general culture of videogames evolve beyond "that thing for kids" into a legitimate art form where we won't need to hear from those like Roger Ebert, telling us that videogames can't be art? Well, I think that can be pretty soon. 

One aspect of the industry that could do with a bit of change is way in which we award the industry. Right now, the Internet is a relative shootout when it comes to the credibility of awards, and so there are two main entities that are outside of that realm: Spike TV's Spike Video Game Awards, and ZiffDavis' current line-up of magazines, and their end-of-year-awards. I want to focus on the Spike awards, though, mainly because it has the largest amount of exposure when it comes to the general American public. Magazines and Internet carry a lot of weight and can swing things within the gaming community, but they are an exclusive source. Television, on the other hand, is easily accessible by everyone who has basic cable.

Right now, the Spike Video Game Awards is the only spectacle on TV that represents videogames. Looking at the list of 2007's winners, along with the discussion that followed, the awards attempted to cover a broad spectrum of games, ultimately giving out awards to triple-A titles, leaving low-key ones like Persona 3 in the dust. While it's a noble goal, bringing videogames to the forefront of peoples' minds, the Spike awards are first and foremost a means of entertainment.

Let's take a look at a clip from the show:

Jesus. I mean, just from the first two minutes of the video, you have the award being presented off of a woman's body, strobe lights that would have given me a seizure if it weren't for YouTube's low quality, and scripted dialogue that is throwing itself at the 18-34 male audience. The show focuses on glorifying everything that's cool and hip, treating things more like the MTV Movie Awards than the Oscars. SpikeTV isn't claiming that they're the Oscars, either. They certainly do reflect an aspect of gaming culture. The problem is that they are the only show representing gaming culture on basic cable, giving a skewed image of what gamers are like.

What we need is an awards ceremony that treats things with respect. First off, while it may be "hip" to have some rocker come out and rip the clothes off of some model in order to reveal the winner of an award, an envelope and explanation of why the game was nominated, along with some game footage, would do just fine. And perhaps, instead of a rocker, why not have it be someone who is actually involved in the industry? Why not have Will Wright or David Jaffe go up and present awards?

If everyone took things seriously in terms of presentation, then that would go a long way towards improving the image of the videogame industry. The next hurdle is creating programming that has a low barrier of entry for people who are not very familiar with videogames. Like I mentioned before, there needs to be an explanation for what these games are, and why they were nominated. The practicality of this is kind of hard, so perhaps the pre-show coverage could do highlights on all the nominated games. Once the awards are presented, then they can give a short description as to why the game has been nominated for that particular award. It's not an ideal solution, but it's a step forward.

Finally, there's the third problem area: the games being awarded. Instead of having this as a simple popularity contest, or making award categories opportunities to sell adspace (i.e. the Gamer Fuel award), have the awards focus on games that are genuinely good, whether they are triple-A titles or downloadable content.

One other thing that is missing from the industry are the auteurs. There are some individuals within the videogame industry that are instantly recognizable: Molyneux, Wright, Jaffe. Yet, can you name the people who wrote BioShock or Call of Duty 4? Auteurs are those people who really made a difference in the project, and helped shape it to their unique vision. I'll get into the auteur theory and videogames in another article, but suffice to say, awarding excellence of specific individuals and groups is an important step towards legitimizing videogames as art.

So, industry, it's about time to trade in those ripped jeans for a tuxedo (and not one that you rent!), and let's start trying to give ourselves a positive image by putting out something that not only rewards videogames for being good, but also sends out a positive message to all those who are watching and don't play videogames.



8BitBrian,
 Follow Blog + disclosure

This blog submitted to our editor via our Community Blogs, and then it made it to the home page! You can follow community members and vote up their blogs - support each other so we can promote a more diverse and deep content mix on our home page.





 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our community fisters, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding *.disqus.com to your whitelists.

 Quickposts
Status updates from C-bloggers

KnickKnackMyWack avatarKnickKnackMyWack
I'm glad that the Amiibo stock situation got much better. Because Hasbro sure as hell didn't get the memo with their Marvel Legends figures. These two seem more elusive than a western Lucina Amiibo!
taterchimp avatartaterchimp
Yay, finally beat the Necrodancer!
Jinx 01 avatarJinx 01
The next time you're getting riled up about game news, politics, drama, etc. just step back and be like The Dude.
The Dyslexic Laywer avatarThe Dyslexic Laywer
So #TeamCap or #TeamIronMan ?
Gundy avatarGundy
*Neps Internally*
SeymourDuncan17 avatarSeymourDuncan17
Seeing as how SMT is nowhere near as massively popular as Pokemon, this probably won't become a thing. Still, I'm curious about whoever's favorite demon/persona. Mine's probably Trumpeter! Without 'em, I would've never aced P4G on Very Hard.
CoilWhine avatarCoilWhine
Playing Tearaway Unfolded without glasses on makes it looks even prettier, gives it a glossy papercraft or almost dreamlike feel to it.
Parismio avatarParismio
eating cold pizza RN. i would warm it up but eeeeeeeeeehhhhh.
Kieronpowell14 avatarKieronpowell14
Just some Marvel stuff
EAPidgeon avatarEAPidgeon
Have a good one everyone. May you enjoy bountiful carbs and fats this Super Bowl Day.
Heat avatarHeat
someone asked me what i am going to do on my vacations... "playing like 6 hours of XCOM 2 daily, then some Diablo 3. Later, Darkest Dungeon and some beers, and to end the night, i'll watch some anime and eat instant noodles" "Perfect"
The Dyslexic Laywer avatarThe Dyslexic Laywer
I've beaten the Gaping Dragon and finally got the key to Blight town, whats the first thing I immediately did when I got there? Fall right into a endless pit and died.
Bardley avatarBardley
I scanned some pages from issues of Nintendo Power from the early 90's and saw this back cover ad. I thought it would be appropriate to post today. Who's everyone rooting for tonight?
Amna Umen avatarAmna Umen
Came home pissed off for some reason, hopped on Rocket League and played the best games of my life. New tactic!
ScionVyse avatarScionVyse
10 hours into the Witness, I've solved 350 puzzles, and activated 8 lasers. So, that's about 35 puzzles an hour, I think that's a pretty good pace. I have no idea how many more puzzles there are, but I think I'll be getting towards the first ending soon.
Dreamweaver avatarDreamweaver
Shoot, I have made the awful mistake of watching 50 First Dates while doing Comments of the Week. The comedy in the beginning gave me energy, but all of the sad drama is making me cry and it's hard to see through all the tears. WHY YOU DO THIS TO ME!? 8^8
Zatsune avatarZatsune
I'm eating EDO's rn. Leftovers. Yum. 🍱🍣🍜🍲
ikiryou avatarikiryou
Kotobukiya's making a Xenoblade Chronicles X Formula skell model that looks great but I'd rather have a Lailah model. And I would name it Tharja just like my Lailah in the game.
ChrisHannard avatarChrisHannard
Damn you, TV Tropes. As if I wasn't already dead set against doing an Undertale genocide run, this has killed the possibility for me.
TheDefenestrator avatarTheDefenestrator
About to start streaming some This War Of Mine: The Little Ones on Twitch. Say hi! http://www.twitch.tv/thedefenestrator
more quickposts


Contest!


Seriously

Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme


Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo



Back to Top


We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -