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The Game Awards recently held its 2019 ceremony on December 12, 2019. Viewers turned in to hear new game announcements, music performances, and the Game of the Year award.
As many gamers cheered at the announcement of Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice making Game of the Year, it’s the fact that they tuned in that made big news.
The Game Awards were available to livestream on a variety of platforms like YouTube, Twitch, Mixer, and more. The showrunner, Geoff Keighley, announced the viewership numbers on Twitter.
The way the event is structured is that there are a variety of trailers placed in between the awards ceremony with a few live music performances in-between. Viewers interested in either the awards or trailers had to wait for their event of choice to appear. In typical award show format, the Game of the Year wasn’t announced until the end of the event.
Keighley stated that there was a record of 45 million livestreams for the 2019 program. This was an increase of 73% since 2018 (though the graphic Keighley shared states 72%).
This year, more people watched The Game Awards than the 91st Annual Academy Awards. The Oscars brought in 29.6 million viewers, which was up 3.1 million from the previous year.
The Game Awards brought in around 15 million more viewers than the Academy Awards this year, with viewership for both increasing each year.
There may be several explanations as to why The Game Awards had more viewers. The Game Awards was more accessible to viewers across the globe for free. Meanwhile, the Academy Awards was available on cable tv and through the ABC app. Both require an active cable tv subscription.
The reason why more viewers turned in may simply be due to being more accessible worldwide instead of primarily US-based, like the Academy Awards.
Geoff Keighley initially produced the Spike Video Game Awards, which ran from 2003 to 2012, then in 2013 as the VGX awards. The cable tv awards didn’t bring in the same viewer numbers but did combine some console features, like live voting, with the event.
While there are many reasons why more people watched a video game awards ceremony, this is hopefully a glimpse into the future of award ceremonies. Making the event more accessible to viewers worldwide and adding interactivity might make more audiences interested in watching.
The Game Awards are still free to rewatch on the event’s official website.
THE GAME AWARDS