The Spike VGAs have come and gone leaving a sea of upset gamers behind it. This yearly event has sparked a mess of flaming forum posts, rage-filled video rants, and editorial after editorial talking about how �THIS show is not what the industry needs right now." Well, I hate to be the one to go against the herd here, but I’m all for the VGAs, and I say we all should be behind it.
Why? First off, as a whole, everyone needs to �get� what the VGAs are. Yes, it’s an �award show,� but it’s not the Oscars, the Grammys, the Emmys, or hell, even the Tonys. The VGAs are the video game version of the MTV Video Music Awards. It’s time to stop brow-beating the show for not taking video game awards as seriously as the Oscars do for movies. I mean come on people, it’s Spike. This is the network that advertises it as the �Network for Men,� with shows like the "Deadliest Warrior" and "1000 Ways to Die."
This is not exactly PBS that we’re talking about. If you want a serious award show that is truly created by the industry to pay tribute to the industry itself then you need to look to the AIAS Interactive Achievement Awards. Of course most of you won’t because you’ve either never heard of the awards, or blindly hate the awards because of some debacle that happened several years ago with Resident Evil 4. Hell, they had a stream of the event http://www.ifc.com/interactive-awards/, and I can’t think of one other person aside from myself that watched it. To be fair, though, it wasn’t that much fun to watch.
Now I know you’re probably still hating on the VGAs so let’s dive into why you should ease up on the hate. Yes, there are people on there that hardly have any �nerd cred� to be on a video game award show. I saw the clueless hot chicks that couldn’t tell the difference between Master Chief and Mario, but guess what, not every presenter at every award show is hardcore into that media that the show is for. Its eye-candy for an audience that’s mainly guys which is why you don’t see tons of eye-candy at the Tonys. Also, Spike is putting on the event so they want to promote their shows. Granted, some of those shows suck horribly and the only attention they get is from the VGAs, but then again, that comes with having a cable network put on the show instead of the industry itself.
Regarding the nominees and categories, I think the VGAs did a MUCH better job this year. It’s hard to argue with the choices unless of course you’re a fanboy that absolutely pissed off that their favorite game didn’t get any nod. Yes, there were categories that were missing, most notably to me, Fighting Game of the Year, but let’s face it, does anybody think there would be an actual debate on whether Super Street Fighter 4 would win this year? If there was a category and winner I really have a gripe with, it would be the Best Performance by a Human Male. I dig Neil Patrick Harris and his work in Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions is pretty good, but I believe there were some better performances out there, my nod would be to Martin Sheen as The Illusive Man in Mass Effect 2. Simply put, it just seems too much of a coincidence that he won the award. Also, do we really need to emphasize the �Human� part for a category for voice actors?
Were there some slip-ups and things that didn’t go over well? Damn right. But let’s look at some of other awards shows over the years and see how they’ve failed miserably. Most notable would be the Grammys giving �Best Hard Rock/Metal Performance� to Jethro Tull in 1988, and the 1998 Oscars that had interpretive dance numbers for the best movies of the year. How in the hell do you compare interpretive dance to Saving Private Ryan?
So after 2 hours of watching and getting a few douche chills here and there, I still don’t see the VGAs being a bad thing for gaming. The fact is, gamers need to enjoy it whenever videogames get their time in the sun. We need to stop being so overly critical of video game shows, and wishing that everyone in this country cared about gaming as much as we do. Let’s also not forget: It’s fucking video games! Stop being so damn serious, people!!
- Chris Morales
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