If you listened to my rant HERE on the Paranerds Podcast, you know I think the VGAs didn’t really get a fair shake. Its important to note that this is only the 9th annual event, meaning a decade ago we didn’t even have a mainstream award show for games. That being said, I think we could all stand to be a little more appreciative of the attention our medium is getting, even if every pretentious ass with a Twitter account thinks they could have run it better.
However, I must concede that there were some glaring problems that need to be addressed before next year’s show:
- Hire translators – It’s a generally accepted truth among gamers that Shigeru Miyamoto and Hideo Kojima are pretty smart guys. It’s not fair to put them on stage in front of an English-speaking audience and watch them squirm like a kid who just remembered he’s got a 3rd period trig exam. It’s embarrassing watching the industry giants of our favorite entertainment medium stammer and stutter and struggle to be understood. No offense to Miyamoto or Kojima. Full offense to Spike TV. Bad form.
- The Hall of Fame – I’m upset about the induction of Zelda into the gaming Hall of Fame, but that’s just symptomatic of my much larger beef with Nintendo and retro gaming in general. What really bugs me is that to the best of my knowledge, no guidelines were given for how induction was decided, or how it would work in the future. Normally a Hall of Fame inducts a new “class” at a predetermined interval of time. We got Zelda. Apparently the whole franchise? Does that mean future classes or inductees will all be franchises, meaning impressive brands with fewer titles to their names like, say, Mass Effect or Halo will get passed over because they have 3 and 4 titles to Zelda’s 6,000? If that’s the case, you might as well just call the Hall of Fame “A List of Nintendo and Sega Games” no other franchises are prolific enough to be able to compete with that. Furthermore, if that’s the case, aren’t we just promoting stagnation in the industry by encouraging reuse of intellectual property? I’d love to see Goldeneye 64 get a Hall of Fame nod for its contributions to first-person shooters, but how could it compete with 9,000 Donkey Kong games or 12 million Sonic games? Sure, maybe this is unfounded doomsaying, but without any indication as to how the system works, it could just as easily be true. I want to know what consideration is given, and how selections are made. It’s just common sense.
- Celebrity choices – I understand the need for celebrities at an awards show. It’s kind of become gospel in this country that TV, music and movie stars have a monopoly on award distribution. What I’m not sure Spike understands is that gaming has its own celebrities. Don’t get me wrong, I was more than thankful for Felicia Day’s dress, but where’s Yahtzee or James Portnow or the Penny Arcade guys or even, to a lesser extent, JonTron or the guys from ScrewAttack or Blistered Thumbs, every big name you involve is one less Twitter account flaming you non-stop all night.
Well, that’s all the kind advice I can come up with for now. But seriously. Felicia Day. In my dreams. Dressed as Spider-Man.