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It seems like the media in the gaming industry has still a lot to learn from the examples such as Cyberpunk 2077 and Anthem - hype is not everything. Why do I mention it? No, I’m not gonna talk about Cyberpunk 2077 again, some other title caught my attention and by pure coincidence it was a Polish game as well.


I’m with stupid

The Medium, a horror game from Polish studio Bloober Team, premiered in January 2021, and it was met with... let’s just say not great reception. Yes, the graphics were good, the atmosphere was pretty good, while the gameplay not so much. Why do I mention it? For one particular reason alone - The Medium was nominated for Gamescom Best Action Adventure Game of 2020 and Best Indie Game of 2020.

What is important about that? Apart, of course, from the fact that Gamescom did not take place in 2020 (at least not in the traditional way). For once, The Medium was planned to premiere on December 10th 2020, which is about 4 months after Gamescom was supposed to take place.

Due to (officially) unforeseen difficulties caused by the pandemic (like Cyberpunk 2077 premiere being moved to that exact date) The Medium finally premiered in 2021. And while faced with a lukewarm reception, it became pretty obvious that it had some adventure elements in it, but action... not so much.

To put it another way - it was supposed to be the best action adventure game of 2020, the year that it did not premiere, but also it did not belong to the category it was assigned to. Not to mention that the game is not really that good either, so... zero out of three. Well done Gamescom!

The sheer stupidity of giving awards to games that did not premiere yet is astonishing itself, but even if The Medium would turn out to be the best game of the genre, what is the point if the award was given before the premiere, so no one actually had a chance to play it? It would be based on what? A hunch?

Another funny detail - with hundreds of games being published on Steam each week (of course I take under consideration that most of them are on crap-fest level) you can’t find a game that was already published to nominate?

I can’t name a single other industry, in which awards are given to products that don’t actually exist. Can you recall a car that was given an award before it left the factory? The movie was given an Oscar before it left post-production? Or TV show was given an Emmy before the first episode? Nope. It is a gaming industry specific weird practice - why wait and see what people think? They might not like our product, so let’s give ourselves some awards just for the sake of giving them.

Let’s not forget that Cyberpunk 2077 had received dozens of awards before its infamous premiere, but to be honest, it does not look like it’s gonna get many after. I realize it is frustrating for the developers to wait years until the premiere of their product, but at the same time, the media should learn that the difference between what was promised in the product and its final state is usually significant. Not because of bad faith of the developers (at least usually), but because of the hard reality of working on such a complicated project and facing financial and technological obstacles.

Yet, gaming industry media, if you keep giving away awards just for the ideas or promises, you might end up like Cyberpunk 2077 - slightly embarrassing and mostly forgotten.



15-04-2024


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