Mason's Take on the Awards posted 3/24 at 9:07:30 PM PST by Mason McCuskey
The GDC is really trying to make these awards the Academy Awards for video games. This attitude is reflected in the stage layout, the tables immediately in front of the stage, and the general glitz and glamour of the event. The only thing missing was fashion, because as we all know game developers don't do fashion. They do jeans, and when they dress up, they usually pick something like an all-leather suit.
The speeches were a lot more relaxed, as well. We game developers don't take ourselves as seriously as Hollywood, and in my opinion this is a good thing, because it kept the event itself alive and interesting. No-one really droned on and on about thanking their family and friends and pet goldfish; quite the opposite. Kudos to the winners who said merely "Thank you, we appreciate it."
Technically the event went off really well. There were a few minor glitches (including the mispronunciation of Warren Spectors name as "Warren Spencer", which was pretty funny considering the God-like status of the Deus Ex creator). It ended somewhat roughly, as well - there wasn't much of a conclusion, it was just like, "OK, that's it, thanks for coming!" Other than that though it was a really well done event.
I really like that they include the IGF awards as part of the event. When I was in the IGF, our awards were held on a make-shift stage in front of the entrance to the Expo, and as a result we didn't have a really large audience, and there wasn't really a sense that these awards were prestegious. When I watched the IGF awards in the event, though, I was thrilled to see independent games being displayed on the huge projection monitors as the winner's name and company were narrated. This really gave the awards some clout, and made me (and I'm sure, many other people) resolve to enter the IGF just for the chance to see your work and name displayed on 20 foot square screens.
Every year, it's getting better. Congratulations to the organizers for pulling it all off with nary a real glitch.