Tonight marks the 3rd annual Game Awards hosted by Geoff Keighley, the premiere event for honoring the best, or at least most acclaimed, video games of the year.
The Game Awards were previously known as the Video Game Awards, which have been around since 2009. The Game Awards have taken on a distinctly different tone than before, however, under the stewardship of host Geoff Keighley.
Here's everything you need to know about the 2016 Game Awards, including where to watch, when the awards are airing, and what to expect from the show, as well as a list of nominees in ten different categories.
When do the 2016 Game Awards go live?
This year's award ceremony begins tonight, December 1st, beginning at 8:30 pm ET. That first half-hour is the "pre-show" however. The ceremony officially begins at 9:00 pm ET.
Where can I watch the 2016 Game Awards?
There's a bunch of options for watching the ceremony this year, including VR devices. Here's a list:
You can also watch on Steam, PlayStation, or Xbox, as well as NextVR.
Despite being a huge, multi-billion dollar industry, there's still no place to watch the Game Awards on traditional TV.
How can I keep track of the Game Awards?
The best way, naturally, is to read Forbes Games!
You can also follow the award show's Twitter account, or Geoff Keighley's Twitter account.
If you're feeling super awesome, you cane even follow my Twitter account. I'll be posting humorous and insightful tweets this evening, you betcha.
Paul Tassi will also have a live-blog this evening, so stay tuned.
What's being revealed during the show?
Not everything has been announced, but here are some highlights:
As always, there will be surprises and announcements that we haven't been made privy to just yet. Hopefully there's some good ones. In the past we saw some big reveals like Batman: Arkham City. No Man's Sky was also hyped and, given the controversy surrounding that game, Keighley has said the Game Awards will now focus more on showing games being played rather than souped up B-roll. We shall see...
What are the nominees for the best games of 2016?
There are ten categories. Here are all the nominees for 2016.
For a game that delivers the absolute best experience across all creative and technical fields.
For outstanding storytelling and narrative development in a game.
For outstanding creative and technical achievement in artistic design and animation.
For outstanding audio, inclusive of score, original song, licensed soundtrack and sound design.
Awarded to an individual for voice-over acting, motion and/or performance capture.
Honoring exemplary games that take on real-world issues and advocate for social change.
For outstanding achievement in a game made outside the traditional publisher system.
For the best game playable on mobile phones and dedicated gaming handhelds.
For the best game experience playable in virtual reality.
For the best game experience focused around first or third person combat.
For the best game experience that combines combat with traversal and puzzle solving.
The best game designed for rich player character customization and progression, both offline and online, including massively multiplayer.
For a game designed primarily around head-to-head combat.
Best game focused on real time or turn-based strategy.
Best game for family play, including toys-to-life, rhythm/music/dance, and other genres.
For traditional and non-traditional sports and racing games.
For outstanding online multiplayer gameplay and design, including co-op and massively multiplayer experiences.
An upcoming game that has shown significant ambition and promise in moving the gaming medium forward.
For a notable influencer, online streamer or media personality in 2016.
For fan-created content, such as mods, fan films, and other player content.
The esports player judged to be the most outstanding performer in 2016, irrespective of game.
The esports team or organization judged to be the most outstanding for performance in 2016, irrespective of game.
The esports game that has shown creative and technical excellence in 2016 with the best gameplay, community support and content updates.
Some quibbles about the nominees and categories.
A couple interesting things to note: Rainbow Six: Siege is on here in spite of being a 2015 release. Also, some games like Pokemon Sun/Moon aren't in the running at all. The Witcher 3, last year's GOTY, is up for best RPG for an expansion which also seems a little unfair. So is WoW. I get that both games had solid expansions this year, so why not make an expansions/DLC a category?
I also don't like the fact that there's not a "Shooter" category, and instead we have "Action." That seems too broad. All the games in this category are shooters anyway.
Also, what's up with Dark Souls III not being in the best Action/Adventure category? It's up against two expansions in the RPG category and is more of an action game than an RPG to begin with. Silly.
That's about it. If there's anything else I'm missing, please let me know in the comments or on Twitter. Will you be watching the 2016 Game Awards this evening, or are award shows silly wastes of time?