Spike's 2010 VGAs Were Lowest Rated in Program's History

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Spike's 2010 VGAs Were Lowest Rated in Program's History

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The ratings for the Spike TV Video Game Awards keep getting worse every year.

The 2010 Spike TV Video Game Awards were meant to be huge this year. The event had more announcements and reveals than any previous show, and put Dr. Horrible at the helm. Unfortunately for Spike, ratings still dropped.

Variety reports that the ratings figures for the 2010 VGAs were the lowest in the program's history. In 2007, the VGAs had 921,000 viewers. In 2008, there was a big drop to 680,000, 2009 saw 647,000 people tune in, and in 2010 just 627,000 watched.

Despite improvements in certain demographics, such as the number of males ages 18-34 that tuned in rising from 218,000 in 2009 to 251,000 in 2010, this is still an overall drop. Even with DVR playbacks that will be counted through December 18, there wasn't any kind of marked improvement in what was surely meant to be a big year for the awards show.

I didn't watch the VGAs this year so I can't criticize its showing in 2010. In previous years they weren't all that enthralling, but I think the problem with VGA viewership at its root is that the awards just don't matter, partially because of a lack of credibility. Gaming is a personal experience, so why do I care what a television network says is good? A television network that airs programs like Manswers and Hooters: Snow Angels no less?

Even though Spike TV doesn't choose the winners itself, there are a million other avenues, such as websites like The Escapist, to find out what great games came out in 2010 with detailed descriptions of exactly why they're so good. The only real reason to tune into the VGAs for someone like me is to check out the exclusive reveals, but why set aside a couple of hours to watch a bunch of skits and "witty" banter in between things I care about when all of those reveals will be posted on the internet within minutes? I like that a network is at least trying to replicate something like the Grammys or the Golden Globes for the game industry, but something needs to be done to make people actually care about who gets what.

Source: Variety

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I watched like 5 min of it, as soon as someone said kratos was a horrible wing man I changed the channel, lest the stupid infect my brain

I didn't watch it either for the reasons stated above (Manswers, etc.) but I would watch the hell out of it if it was done like the SAG Awards (Screen Actors Guild) where the actors, directors, producers, and people vote for the films that they thought were the best of the year. Get the developers to do a video game version, then you would have industry experts who know this stuff, and I would be all over it.

I was only planning on watching it for the premiere trailers which were online anyways.

Unfortunately, I'd estimate about 75% of that total audience was made up of games journalists forced to watch so they could report on what an embarrassing affair the awards are.

To be completely honest, nobody cares about who wins Grammys and Oscars anymore either... it's all the industry pandering to itself. Their viewership numbers are down as well. When anyone with a brain can tell they're rigged (Sandra Bullock anyone) it just becomes the industry telling you what's best in the industry when it should really be the consumers.

If this was at least about the developers but no.
There's a bunch of actually gaming-unrelated celebrities that make awkward jokes about gaming. Oh and really the nominations are just poor.

That's exactly what I don't want a game award event to be.

Hopefully this is the sign developers need that it isn't worth supporting the VGAs with their announcements.

It probably doesn't help that they held the show in mid-December, when everyone's too busy dealing with college finals, holiday-shopping, travel, cold weather, and who knows what else.

I didn't watch it, and from the sound of things, I'm probably better off this way. Award shows (video games or otherwise, viewer's choice or not) are largely a farce and have absolutely no impact on my opinion of games.

Tom Goldman:
Even though Spike TV doesn't choose the winners itself, there are a million other avenues, such as websites like The Escapist, to find out what great games came out in 2010 with detailed descriptions of exactly why they're so good. The only real reason to tune into the VGAs for someone like me is to check out the exclusive reveals, but why set aside a couple of hours to watch a bunch of skits and "witty" banter in between things I care about when all of those reveals will be posted on the internet within minutes? I like that a network is at least trying to replicate something like the Grammys or the Golden Globes for the game industry, but something needs to be done to make people actually care about who gets what.

Exactly. BUt then I have that problem with music and TV and Movies. Why do I care who wins? Like crash. Depressive fucking movie, hated it with a passion, but it won movie of the year. All these experiances are subective, so if people arte gonna try to generalize and objetify it, they'll need to make me give a shit first

Wonderful article, and well said

It was horrible. I DVRd so I was able to fast forward the Garbage for example Dane Cook. But honestly how does NPH win Best voice acting for spiderman over Red Dead. Rigged I am guessing.

Well, isn't this a surprise?

That's right. It isn't.

Nobody cares for the popularity contests and the celebritites, and we can watch the trailers later, thank you very much.

They should take the Awards part out of the show and just have it be a serious of upcoming gaming presentations. Spend more time with longer trailers and dev/game Q&As and less time watching Celebrities make lame jokes.

I watched about 15 minutes of the show before turning it off. If you caught any of it, you would quickly realize the problem: it was terrible. A lot of that stemmed from the way the show brought in many famous people, but it was clear that these people weren't interested in games. At best, some people (like that guy from How I Met Your Mother) were merely awkward (this guy made the dumbest sex jokes). One actress came onscreen and it was clear she never played any games, she didn't know a thing about what she was talking about, and she was reading off a teleprompter (very poorly, I might add). It just wasn't worth watching when the trailers would be online hours later.

It feels like spike wants the VGAs to be like the oscars or grammys or what have you, but the way they bring in people from non vide-game industries makes it painful. But also, I believe awards were given based on online voting systems, so the show turned into a popularity contest. Black Ops won more awards (I believe) than it should - just look at who won "Best Character". That also takes away from its legitimacy.

I almost vomited when they gave the best graphics award to God of war 3. Heavy rain showed immense and amazing graphics! And best zombie game... Red dead redemption!??! THAT'S NOT EVEN A ZOMBIE GAME, except for it's DLC. WHAT THE HELL!? if anything best zombie game should have went to Dead rising 2. :/ I am pissed off on so many other subjects aswell.

I quite enjoyed them. I mean, the hosting was cheesy to the extreme at times but I liked to announcements for new games and I was just please to see Bioware take away a load of awards. However, I'm not surprised that not many people watched. I wasn't actually able to watch it over here in GB but after some clever web searching by myself and my cohort, we did manage to find a channel to watch them on. Even so, if you can't stream your show worldwide given the technology we have today, you don't deserve high ratings.

fare777:
I almost vomited when they gave the best graphics award to God of war 3. Heavy rain showed immense and amazing graphics! And best zombie game... Red dead redemption!??! THAT'S NOT EVEN A ZOMBIE GAME, except for it's DLC. WHAT THE HELL!? if anything best zombie game should have went to Dead rising 2. :/ I am pissed off on so many other subjects aswell.

I think the bigger problem is that "Best Zombie Game" is a category they thought was worthy of airtime.

Didn't the VGAs go out at the same time as UFC 124? That's a torn audience right there...

I didn't watch it if just for the reason that every trailer and big story to come out of the show would be available nearly instantly after it airs and without having to wade through the slog of another terrible awards show. As much as I appreciate the people that make games, award shows are only good for the people getting awards or those so tied up in fanboyism so much that they're trying to grasp a small amount of that glory vicariously.

I'm glad they have fun with it. Games may be trying to be a SERIOUS BUSINESS these days, but I enjoy seeing stupid, ridiculous award shows that don't take themselves seriously.

Every year, I try and watch The Oscars, and every year, I turn it off. But the VGAs are something that I can watch.

That said, the Neil Patrick Harris Voice Acting Award was stupid.

two words for why i didnt watch
Dane Cook

If I wanted to watch Z list celebrities chat about a subject they knew nothing about i'd watch reality TV, stay away from our medium and stop trying to emulate hollywood

I watched the VGA's, apart from NPH, they stunk on ice.

I just remember being angry for those 2 hours. More so when the Bioware Trailer wasn't for a new game :(

Gamegodtre:
two words for why i didnt watch
Dane Cook

O i think that was y i was angry now that i think about it!

The VGAs really should just be the New Game Trailers with Awards' Show. Because thats already what it is. <.< they hand out like 7 awards and the rest are just mentioned in passing as a list >.>

I watched about 2 hours of it. I believe it was written/directed by monkeys throwing thier fecies at paper. The jokes were bad, really bad, i mean really really bad. The "guest appearances" by game characters either had no context or made no sence. The entire show was "Here's an Ad, "Stupid joke", Another Ad, Some out of place animated sequence, oh ya i guess we'll do an Award. repeat" It ran about 1/2 a hour long, can't imagine why...

Award show in general are bad, IMO. But the VGAs are one of the worst. What's more, they seem to be aimed at the gamer stereotype (adolescent males with serious social issues) rather than the gaming audience. Plus, the fact that they give no attention to Nintendo or PC takes away from their credibility. If you want to be the representing awards for gaming, include all forms of gaming!

I actually thought it was pretty good. The special effects were very cool, and there was some huge announcements. NPH also did a great job. Unfortunately, the show was brought down by Dane Cook and other unfunny people trying to be funny. Even so, the show is improving.

I noticed that Super Mario Galaxy 2 wasn't even nominated for GOTY yet Call Of Duty was. I instantly disregarded EVERYTHING said on that show to be bullshit.

Tom Goldman:
I like that a network is at least trying to replicate something like the Grammys or the Golden Globes for the game industry, but something needs to be done to make people actually care about who gets what.

That would be the Game Developers Choice Awards.

As for the topic of the VGAs themselves, it's no surprise that viewership is down. More and more people are realizing that the VGAs are meant for slobbering idiots and not for the people who really care about whether a game's quality is good or not.

Tim Latshaw:
Unfortunately, I'd estimate about 75% of that total audience was made up of games journalists forced to watch so they could report on what an embarrassing affair the awards are.

75% might be a conservative estimate. Personally im glad that the VGAs are burried deep on UK TV is on at all, i didn't check this year as i thought the stupid might be catching. Ever since i watched Snoop-Dogg's soul crushed before my eyes in 2009 i decided that i couldn't even enjoy the VGAs ironically. If i wanted to watch the dying throws of peoples careers i would go so soap-star panto.

It's like they distilled everything i hate about chuckle-head 'Bro-Gamer' culture into an ultra concentrated paste then threw wads off it at the camera in true monkey-flining-it's-own-poop fashion.

Maybe if i was like REALLY stoned... after a head injury....

You shouldn't let people vote for these awards, fanboys that won't even watch the show vote. Who voted Neil Patrick Harris for best Male voice actor(just because he did a pretty excellent spiderman...) The fact that he beat John Cleese is just bullshit. Female lead was pretty bad too(someone from New Vegas was nominated, really).

People still watch the VGAs? I couldn't even stomach the first one.

I couldn't watch them for long, I felt the jokes were insulting my intelligence. You can still have a funny award show without just being stupid, but Spike TV doesn't seem to get that and plays for the lowest common denominator.

I didn't even know it existed!

Besides Geoff Keighley is the executive producer of the VGAs and he's a complete douchebag. Angry Joe did an interview with him and all Geoff did was insult him when he asked him a question but when someone later asked the same question he gave them the same answer but without all the sarcasm and douchebaggery. Geoff also didn't know that Final Fantasy 14 Online was released this year when he was asked about why there was no Best MMO category. I was certain that anyone producing the VGAs should be aware of all the games that came out this year.

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