With an absence of big industry events this year, it fell to The Game Awards – increasingly a platform for announcements rather than celebrating the best games of the previous year – to pick up the slack, and as well as notable appearances from familiar faces outside the gaming world, there were also just a few upcoming games featured.
The early days of the new console generation for both PlayStation and Xbox means the platforms are brimming with potential, and both console-makers were eager to make a big splash, but which caught our attention? Read on for our top picks from the show.
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Sam | The Callisto Protocol
Seeing Laura Bailey win best performance for her portrayal of Abby in The Last of Us Part II was my awards highlight. Mostly because it’s well-deserved, but also because of the unnecessary fan controversy that surrounded the character and role. Things finally came full circle and Bailey’s warm, emotional acceptance speech was perfect.
Unlike other awards shows, whether you love it or hate it, The Game Awards places its largest focus on new game reveals. Of the night’s several exciting announcements, Striking Distance Studios’ The Callisto Protocol was my favorite of the bunch.
Led by Glen Schofield, best known for co-founding Call of Duty developer Sledgehammer Games, the team’s debut project is a next-gen survival horror title aiming to be the scariest to date. That alone is exciting, though Schofield is also the original creator of Dead Space and The Callisto Protocol looks to be somewhat of a spiritual successor.
Fans of sci-fi horror already know that’s something special, but the added Alien vibes elevate it into dream game territory. Not much is known and it isn’t due out until sometime in 2022, but The Callisto Protocol has already shot right up my most anticipated games list.
For horror fans this is excellent, for the rest of us, just more nightmare fuel.
James | Dragon Age
Outside the news that Vin Diesel is now officially a game developer, serving as President of Creative Convergence for Ark 2 developers Studio Wildcard, what had me most excited was the return of Dragon Age.
BioWare hasn’t had the best time since Dragon Age: Inquisition came out, and the seasoned developer could use a win. While there is, of course, a twinkle or excitement in the form of the next Mass Effect, let’s see a little more of that before we get too carried away, lest it end up like last time...
So, what do we know? It’s probably just called Dragon Age, which seems fine, and if the voiceover is anything to go by then longtime companion Varrick the rogue is back once again. The beats of the trailer hints at a deeper level of personalisation to the experience this time, which can, hopefully, only make exploring this particular fantasy world more engaging.
There’s plenty of competition for our attention in that space however, so while it may have pedigree (one incredible game, one slightly disappointing game and one pretty good game), it will take more to win over a gaming community with high standards than ever before. Fortunately, the absence of detailed peeks at the game so far in this case is keeping expectations well-managed, so we don’t end up with another Anthem on our hands.
James might not be boarding the hype train just yet, but we've all been there.
What was your highlight of the show? Let us know below.