The nominations for the British Academy Video Game Awards have been announced, and make for really rather dull reading.
For the sake of it: Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare has seven nominations; Grand Theft Auto IV has six; Fable II and LittleBigPlanet have five each.
Anyway, what struck me were the categories.
I can see rough real BAFTA equivalents for Best Game, Artistic Achievement, Technical Achievement, Original Score, Use of Audio, and Story and Character.
The ‘genre’ awards are curious: Action & Adventure, Casual, Sports and Strategy. Not enough to be comprehensive, but too many to be self-explanatory. For example: Sports encompasses driving games, and the Strategy category includes both Civilization Revolution and Viva Pinata.
An award for Multiplayer makes sense, but I’m not sure that a separate Handheld category should be necessary.
Game of the Year is voted for by the public. I like the fact that the public have their own special award, rather than being able to influence the real Best Game category, like the idiots they are. The BAFTA Ones to Watch Award celebrates new talent.
But it’s the delightfully vague Gameplay category which pleases me most. I can see the distinction they’re trying to make, but I think the Casual and Multiplayer categories cover the same bases already. And a Gameplay award just sounds childish – but maybe that’s just me.