Last week’s The Game Awards stood as a grand celebration of video games.
The year’s best titles landed coveted awards, teasers hinted at the games to come, celebrities stumbled through platitudes beamed by teleprompter, and Xbox chief Phil Spencer stood on stage like a proud father to pull the curtains back on the very literally towering Xbox Series X.
The Game Awards’ run time, which edged passed the three-hour mark, was a little on the long side. A maniacally hasty conveyor belt of trailers pacing the odd dozen awards dished out during the evening felt, at times, like filler.
Yet, within a format that still needs a bit of fine-tuning, The Game Awards hit an important milestone.
During those few short hours, it was hard not to feel part of something tangible and buy into a unique brand of excitement beamed to us through a web of thousands of miles of trans-oceanic fiber optic cables. A broader gaming community tuned in together to bask in the glory of its shared passion for interactive entertainment.
Today, the host and mastermind behind The Game Awards, Geoff Keighley, revealed on Twitter that a record 45 million livestreams watched the 2019 edition. Keighley explains that this represents a 73% increase in viewership compared to last year’s event.
While the numbers are impressive and amount to the population of a small country, they reveal much more about the draw of The Game Awards and, more broadly, video games.
More people tuned in to watch the event last Thursday night than the 2019 Academy Awards. An estimated 29.6 million viewers watched Hollywood’s finest felicitate one another for their cinematic achievements.
Put into context, more people watched From Software’s Hidetaka Miyazaki pick up the Game of the Year award for the phenomenal Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice than the cast of Green Book visit the stage for their Best Picture statuette at the Oscars.
That’s a big deal.
Last modified: January 22, 2020 11:40 PM UTC