The VGX awards were held last night in LA, and per host and creator Geoff Keighley’s Twitter feed we were supposed to be treated to a “very different” show than the ones we’d gotten in years past. Unfortunately, very different didn’t necessarily equal out to an enjoyable or interesting three-hour TwitchTV broadcast. Here are 5 reasons why we think they might need to go back to the drawing board.
1. HIRING PEOPLE WHO DON’T CARE ABOUT VIDEOGAMES.
I’m starting to really feel bad for Geoff Keighley at this point. I think he’s extremely smart and passionate about games, I mean who would go through the trouble year after year to attempt (and fail) at creating the “Gaming Emmys” for an audience that really doesn’t want it and “hosts” that sabotage you at every turn.
Joel McHale from Community and The Soup, has the quick wit and snark that lots of gamers would be comfortable with but it seemed like last night all that was gone. A phoned-in co-hosting gig with a person who you could tell didn’t want to play along. His body language and off-topic, tourette-like interjections seem to undermine everything Keighley was trying to accomplish this year. You could even see that the very buttoned up Gametrailers host at times let his frustration creep in when he had wrangle the show back on course.
2. TRYING TO BE “HIP”
Tyler The Creator and friends…….should never have been there. They should have been drug tested and kicked the hell out before stepping on set. Again: if you want people to take the VGX’s seriously you must have people on camera who want to take your event seriously. Sure, Tyler and crew might play games, but if every other word out of their mouths is an incoherent bleep-bloop about cheese, hookers or something that has nothing do with the segment you are supposed to be introducing, then they shouldn’t be involved.
It feels like the producers either didn’t do their homework or they were all backstage crapping their pants every time they cut to Tyler the Creator and his crew of malcontents. It was cringe-worthy, sad, and bad television.
3. “DOING IT LIVE!”
If you are doing a three-hour show, you either need bigger games to show OR more gameplay of the games you are showing. Dying Light and Broken Age were cool to see running but besides that there were no other live demos shown. The audience wants to see the games and only the games. The surrounding fluff feels disingenuous and panders to people who don’t care about gaming at all.
The production was all over the place with hosts missing cues, lighting and cameras not being on or on their marks. The show came off in an unprofessional manner. You want it all to seem off the cuff, but shirtless is a different thing altogether. Also, does the show need to be this long? You could totally condense that show down to a 45 min livestream and hit all the marks while not boring folks to death. IF the VGX’s continue, hopefully Keighley and crew will take that time into consideration.
4. THIS AND THIS
5. NOT COMING WITH THE GOODS
With the exception of No More Sky and Broken Age, there wasn’t much meat on the bone for folks to really be that excited about. Sure the new Titan types were interesting but that was akin to showing off different classes in any shooter. Telltale–who I love–had some announcements but they were small and not very detailed. Nintendo did what Nintendo did although the interaction between Geoff and Reggie is always funny. But at the end of the day it didn’t feel like there was much to call or text a friend about and that was disappointing–especially because that is what this show is supposed to be for.
Another VGA/VGX has come and gone and all the hope that we might have had for a bigger, better awards show seems to have let me down again. If feels like another case of two steps forward, one fall into a pit of spikes (no pun intended) or at least another year of waiting to be sadly disappointed yet again.