Over the past few years, the Game Awards have quietly become the most-watched awards show in the world. Part of this is the growing popularity of video games around the world, and part of it is the effort creator and host Geoff Keighley has put into elevating the show’s profile and stature.
But it’s also due to the show’s innovative use of cutting-edge technology, which has set it apart from more conventional award ceremonies.
This year’s The Game Awards drew a record-breaking 103 million viewers across YouTube, Twitch, Twitter, Steam, Facebook, TikTok Live, and Instagram Live, surpassing all previous records. That is an increase of 20% from 2020 and includes an increase of 20% from 2021 in the number of peak concurrent viewers on Twitch (1.9 million).
The Game Awards have seen incredible audience growth over the course of the last decade, as shown by the following statistics.
2022: 103 Million
2021: 85 Million
2020: 83 Million
2019: 45.2 Million
2018: 26.2 Million
2017: 11.5 Million
2016: 3.8 Million
2015: 2.3 MIllion
2014: 1.9 Million
The Oscars’ 16.6 million viewers in 2022 were the biggest “success” story in entertainment this year, up from a dismal 10.5 million in 2021. This is, of course, only available on network TV, which severely limits the show’s potential audience because it can’t be streamed almost anywhere and definitely not on all the social platforms that The Game Awards have embraced.
The audiences for the Emmys, the Grammys, and so on are all similarly low. Obviously, we can’t directly compare sales figures. TV commercials for the Academy Awards still bring in more money than Twitch inserts for the Game Awards.
Keighley’s show, on the other hand, serves as a launch pad for world premiere trailers and footage for upcoming games, and he strikes major brand deals with sponsors.
Therefore, it is now almost as important as the summer’s E3 show in terms of being the year’s single biggest event for gaming debuts, and its awards are now considered prestigious enough to really mean something by the industry, which was not the case during the SpikeTV VGA era.
Although, at this point, the Game Awards could potentially have ten times as many viewers as an event like the Oscars. This bodes well for future expansion, in terms of both audience size and commercial support.
Extra new international premieres, as usual. How much longer do you anticipate this expansion to last? OK, let’s revisit this in 2023.