The Game Awards 2021 is this week, the year-end event where we get to watch ads and trailers for new games. Oh, and they hand out awards for the best games of the past year — even though many of those awards happen off-screen before the stream even begins.
Snark aside, The Game Awards have become one of the biggest annual events for the gaming industry, and there’s plenty to look forward to this year. Let’s go over how to watch, and what you can expect to see.
How to watch The Game Awards 2021
The Game Awards take place on Friday, December 10. The main show starts at 12:30 pm AEDT.
As always, Geoff Keighley is hosting this year, and several big-name gaming industry figures, celebrities, and influences will present many of the awards throughout the night, including Guillermo Del Toro, Giancarlo Esposito, Reggie Fils-Aime, Carrie-Anne Moss, Keanu Reeves, and more. There will also be musical performances by Sting and Imagine Dragons.
This year’s show will feature an in-person audience at Microsoft Theatre in Los Angeles, California for the first time since the 2018 awards, but you’ll be able to watch the entire thing live on a variety of platforms including:
You can see the full list of participating platforms and sign up to be alerted when the show is live on the Game Awards website.
What to expect from The Game Awards 2021
This year, several great games are in the running for the Game of the Year award, including Deathloop, Psychonauts 2, Metroid Dread, Resident Evil Village, It Takes Two, and Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart. Personally, I’m pulling for Metroid Dread, but all of the six nominees are excellent games.
There will of course be plenty of other awards handed out, like best direction, art, and narrative, as well as the best games in specific genres like action games, RPGs, racing games, and more. A list of all categories and nominees are available on The Game Awards website, and there’s even time left to sign in to cast your votes.
Let’s be honest, though: most people aren’t watching just for the celebrity appearances or awards ceremony — there’s also sure to be tons of big new game announcements just like in years prior. We know several of the games already, including Gearbox’s Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands, The Matrix Awakens, and the first look at the game from ex-Bioware General manager Aaryn Flynn.
Keighley even teased that several massive trailers will air that will be as exciting as the big Elden Ring reveal during Keighley’s Summer Games Fest event earlier this year.
These trailers could be for anything: the much-anticipated sequel to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Metroid Prime 4, the rumoured Chrono Cross remaster, Final Fantasy XVI, the new Fable sequel — something all new and unexpected? No one really knows.
Beyond its nominations, I can confirm that Activision|Blizzard will not be a part of this year’s #TheGameAwards
— Geoff Keighley (@geoffkeighley) December 4, 2021
What we do know, however, is that no Activision-Blizzard games or announcements will be present at the show. Keighley announced the publisher would not be included in the show due to recent allegations of widespread harassment and labour issues at the company. That means no news on Call of Duty, Diablo 4 or Diablo Eternal, Overwatch 2, or World of Warcraft. But honestly, after everything that’s come out about the company this year, their presence won’t be missed.