This year’s Game Awards, for the first time, has carved out one category — Most Anticipated Game — to be exclusively decided by fan votes on Twitter.
Fans will have the opportunity to vote for the 2020 Game Awards’ Most Anticipated Game via Twitter DMs and share the vote to their timelines. The nominees will be announced Wednesday, Nov. 18, at 9 a.m. PT, and shortly thereafter voting will open on Twitter for the Most Anticipated Game (which will comprise six nominees). The other Game Awards categories, including the marquee trophy for Game of the Year, will be open to fan voting on thegameawards.com.
In addition, under the Game Awards and Twitter partnership, the social network is creating a special, animated “like”: On the day of the Dec. 10 broadcast of the awards show, tweets that include the hashtag #TheGameAwards will feature a custom animation with the awards trophy that will appear when Twitter users like the tweet. Twitter has produced similar animated likes for select partners around specific events, including for Apple, Sony’s PlayStation 5 launch last week, and the NBA.
“Twitter’s like your one-stop shop this year for the Game Awards,” Geoff Keighley, creator and producer of the Game Awards, told Variety, adding, “I’ve personally used Twitter more than any other platform.”
The 2020 Game Awards ceremony recognizing the year’s best video games, creators and publishers will take place Dec. 10 starting at 7 p.m. ET, streaming live from sets in Los Angeles, London and Tokyo across 45 global video platforms, including Twitter. (There’s no live in-person audience for the Game Awards because of the COVID pandemic.)
The deal between the Game Awards and Twitter that includes making Twitter the exclusive voting partner for the Most Anticipated Game category is a barter arrangement. The goal for both parties is to boost discussion on Twitter about the video-game kudofest, and Twitter sees an opportunity to sell advertising against the Game Awards (revenue that it will share with the Game Awards).
“It’s been such a strong year for gaming – it feels like an important year for the show,” Keighley said.
Twitter, which has worked with the Game Awards since the show first launched in 2014, wanted to boost the momentum it has seen with the show to capture more of the social conversation. In 2019, the Game Awards yielded some 2 million tweets and viewership of the show on Twitter increased 50% from the year prior, said Rishi Chadha, Twitter’s global head of gaming.
“For us, we wanted to look at, how do we continue to innovate,” Chadha said. “It’s, How do we continue to push the envelope with the biggest gaming event of the year?”