The gaming awards season might be over for the most part, given we are now almost a third into the year, but for BAFTA, the venerable organization representing the best of British film and television, their gaming awards session has just begun. The British Academy of Film and Television Arts recently revealed their selections for its Game Awards, listing what the member believe to be the best nominees of 2018. The winners of each category will be announced via a ceremony on Thursday April 4, 2019. The awards are run in conjunction and as part of the London Games Festival, a 2-week long even that consists of 40 events across various locations in the English capital.
Given that the BAFTA is a more formal affair, most of the categories are predictably standard. In the press release provided by the organization, there are a couple of standouts amongst the 17 awards to be handed out. Consistent with its year of success, Sony’s megahit God of War picked up 10 nominations alone, while unsurprisingly, Red Dead Redemption 2 received an impressive 6. The British clearly appreciate the value of indie and mobile games as well, since Return of the Obra Dinn and Florence both matched Rockstar’s darling gem in nomination count.
Naturally, Celeste was nominated for 5 categories, one of which is the Games Beyond Entertainment award, along with Nintendo Labo, Florence, Life is Strange 2, My Child Lebensborn, and 11-11: Memories Retold. These games express themes and messages applicable to real life struggle, allowing video games as a medium to transcend mere entertainment.
In other less conventional categories, the EE Mobile Award will be the only category voted on by the general public, an alternative to the Best Mobile award that is still exclusively critic-based. The Evolving Game category is exactly as it sounds, highlighting titles that are constantly given development updates such as Overwatch and Destiny 2. Aside from the usual Music award, the BAFTA also included an Audio Achievement award as well. And, appropriately, there is a category for Best British Game, to honor and celebrate the origins and accomplishments of the Academy’s homegrown talent.
For the complete list of nominees, check out the BAFTA website here.