Following a weeklong flurry of digital events, and a four-day spree of press conferences, E3 2021 will culminate in an awards ceremony, the Entertainment Software Association announced today. Yay…
You might be thinking to yourself, “Wait a second, haven’t E3 awards always existed?” You’re not wrong. There’s a reason box art for games like Dragon Age: Inquisition and BioShock Infinite features golden badges proclaiming dozens of “E3 awards,” typically allotted by excited members of the press. It’s just that, this year, the ESA is codifying the process.
“For this year’s event, we are collaborating with editors at some of the world’s leading video game media outlets to create the Official E3 2021 Awards Show, recognizing the show’s most anticipated games,” Stanley Pierre-Louis, president and CEO of the ESA, said in a press release.
Awards will be chosen by a panel of editors from IGN, GameSpot, GamesRadar+, and PC Gamer. In addition to an award for the most anticipated game of E3’s entirety, there will also be categories for each individual publisher participating in E3. It’s unclear whether or not these awards will focus on the big players that host the marquee conferences—like Ubisoft and Microsoft—or on literally every single one of the more than two dozen exhibitors. (The ESA did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Kotaku.)
This whole charade is, of course, silly. Barring some last-second releases, it stands to reason that every game at the show won’t be out yet. How can you accurately judge a game based on, at most, a 20-minute clip that may or may not consist of a developer pretending to play the game live? (There’s also the matter that, often, E3 demos show a small slice of the game explicitly designed to drum up attention, and aren’t always representative of the final product.) Also, Tales of Arise will still be an “anticipated” game come June, so why even host a show? The winner is already decided.
The ceremony is scheduled for June 15, time TBA.