Spike TV is planning to rethink their annual Video Game Awards. This year's incarnation of the show, called VGX, is an interactive digital event that gamers can experience on multiple platforms.
Previous VGAs were primarily a television broadcast. However, VGX will be streamed online through Viacom sites such as Spike.com, ComedyCentral.com, MTV.com, MTV2.com, BET.com, and GameTrailers.com. Viewers can also watch the 3-hour broadcast through Xbox One, Xbox 360, PS3, Twitch, mobile devices, VGXLive.com, Yahoo Screen and Hulu.
VGX will also mark a change in the award show's format. Previous VGAs consisted of award announcements intercut with trailers for upcoming games. Spike has smartly realized that their viewers care a lot more about the games than the jag-off bowling trophies being handed out so they're adding more preview content to the show. VGX will feature extended demos of next-gen games, one-on-one interviews, and panel discussions.
Viewers will be able to affect the show's direction through Twitter. They can vote on the show's order and also unlock extra content. Developers and other industry figures will also host live question-and-answer sessions over Twitter during the event.
"Spike TV was the first network to embrace the gaming industry. For the last 10 years, the VGAs have honored its creative community and fans,” said Casey Patterson, Executive Vice President, Event Production, Talent Development & Studio Relations, Viacom Entertainment Group. “Until now, we have been limited to TV and a one way conversation with gamers. With the birth of new consoles and other emerging technology, VGX can interact with our audience like never before. This is an organic and exciting step for this franchise."
While game previews will be a big part of VGX, there will still be awards. Fans can vote for Most Anticipated Game on VGXLive.com. The nominees are Destiny, Titanfall, Watch Dogs, South Park: The Stick of Truth and Witcher 3. The nominees for other awards will be announced next week. They're being chosen by a panel of journalists.
I've never been really keen on the Spike VGAs. Watching the cast of the Jersey Shore give out an award for Best Graphics (or whatever they did) isn't my idea of a good time. I think developers should get recognized for their work and a lot of gamers enjoy seeing their favorite games get accolades. However, I think we can do better than a Mountain Dew-soaked clone of the MTV Music Awards. This new format might go a long way toward making everything other than the trailers more tolerable.
The live-stream of VGX will begin on December 7th at 6PM Eastern and last three hours. The highlights from the show will be aired on Spike TV on December 9th at midnight.