(Media provided by SXSW)

South by Southwest has announced the nominees for the seventh annual SXSW Gaming Awards, recognizing the most creative and influential titles, teams and individuals in the industry.

This year’s event is sponsored by GameMaster, and winners will be honored by hosts Wil Wheaton (host of the new show, GameMaster) and actress, musician, and filmmaker Janina Gavankar during the SXSW Gaming Awards at 7:00pm on Sunday, March 15, 2020, at the JW Marriott in downtown Austin. This event is open to all SXSW registrants, and will stream live at twitch.tv/sxswgaming and twitch.tv/ultimategamemaster.

Special recognition awards will be given to the following individuals who have impacted the Games Industry in a meaningful way.

  • Game Industry Champion of Change Award – Steven Spohn / Able Gamers
  • Journalist of the Year Award – Cecilia D’ Anastacio

When asked for comment Hugh Forrest, Chief Programming Officer for SXSW said

“Gaming is an important part of the creative ecosystem that comes together in Austin every March., […] The SXSW Gaming Awards provides our community with an opportunity to celebrate achievements and hear from the brightest minds in the field while taking advantage of the unique mix of industries that gather at our event.”

Host of the show Wil Wheaton said

“Like film, television, and music, gaming is an art form that inspires, entertains, and challenges. Transcending language and culture, genre and platform, tens of millions of gamers across the globe play games, alone and together, every day, […] It is such an honor and privilege to celebrate and recognize all the amazing humans who work so hard, for so long, to create and support the games we all love.”

The other host Janina Gavankar had this to day

“The artists in the games industry are among the smartest creators in modern culture. They are a powerful force and continue to see its potential expand,. […] I hope that in celebrating the exceptional talents of game creators and sharing the positive impacts games can have, we open the door for people across industries to become part of the community.”

The Gaming Awards Ceremony marks the eve of the SXSW Conference’s Game Industry Track, which features SXSW programmed sessions and is sponsored by JBL Quantum. This content runs from Monday, March 16-Thursday, March 18. Sessions will uncover gaming’s potential for growth and collaboration across industries for creatives in every field and will also feature Keynote Reggie Fils-Aimé. Because of its unique position at the heart of SXSW, this track offers game industry professionals unparalleled networking and learning opportunities outside their normal boundaries.

Winners of the 2020 Gaming Awards will be determined by a weighted total between staff and advisory board input and public voting. Voting will be available to the public starting today, Monday, February 17 through midnight on Sunday, February 23 via the SXSW Gaming Awards voting page.

2020 SXSW Gaming Awards Nominees

Video Game of the Year
Awarded to the game that exemplifies overall excellence and creates a distinct gaming experience across all platforms and genres.

  • Control — Remedy Entertainment / 505 Games
  • Devil May Cry 5 — Capcom
  • Disco Elysium — ZA/UM
  • Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice — FromSoftware / Activision
  • Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order — Respawn Entertainment / Electronic Arts

Mobile Game of the Year
Awarded to the game that exemplifies overall excellence and creates a unique gaming experience on any handheld device.

  • Call of Duty Mobile — TiMi Studios / Activision
  • Sayonara Wild Hearts — Simogo / Annapurna Interactive
  • Sky: Children of the Light — thatgamecompany
  • Where Cards Fall — Snowman
  • Whispers of a Machine — Clifftop Games / Raw Fury

Tabletop Game of the Year
Awarded to the game that exemplifies overall excellence and ingenuity of any tabletop game in any genre.

  • Paladins of the West Kingdom — Renegade Game Studios
  • Parks — Keymaster Games
  • Pax Pamir — Wehrlegig Games
  • Tainted Grail: The Fall of Avalon — Awaken Realms
  • Taverns of Tiefenthal — North Star Games

XR Game of the Year
Awarded to the VR game that exemplifies overall excellence in gameplay and design across any VR platform.

  • Blood & Truth — Sony Interactive Entertainment
  • No Man’s Sky BEYOND VR — Hello Games
  • Pistol Whip — Cloudhead Games
  • The Under Presents — Tender Claws
  • tori — BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment America, Inc.

Trending Game of the Year
Awarded to the game that consistently entertained and kept us watching on social platforms with its humor, stories, and more.

  • Apex Legends — Respawn Entertainment / Electronic Arts
  • Borderlands 3 — Gearbox Software / 2K Games
  • Death Stranding — Kojima Productions / Sony Interactive Entertainment
  • Pokemon Sword and Shield — Game Freak / The Pokemon Company, Nintendo
  • Super Mario Maker 2 — Nintendo

Matthew Crump Cultural Innovation Award
Awarded to the game that best challenges the “norm” of everyday gaming and offers a culturally innovative view of a game world, character, or gameplay.

  • Death Stranding — Kojima Productions / Sony Interactive Entertainment
  • Disco Elysium — ZA/UM
  • Knights and Bikes — Foam Sword / Double Fine Productions
  • Overland — Finji
  • Sea of Solitude — Jo-Mei Games / Electronic Arts

Most Promising New Intellectual Property
Awarded to a new property that risked creating something fresh and that excelled within its genre or category for the year.

  • Astral Chain — PlatinumGames / Nintendo
  • Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night — ArtPlay / 505 Games
  • Control — Remedy Entertainment / 505 Games
  • Katana ZERO — Askiisoft / Devolver Digital
  • The Outer Worlds —  Obsidian Entertainment / Private Division

Excellence in Animation
Awarded to the game with the most outstanding animations.

  • Apex Legends — Respawn Entertainment / Electronic Arts
  • Death Stranding — Kojima Productions / Sony Interactive Entertainment
  • KINGDOM HEARTS III — Square Enix
  • Luigi’s Mansion 3 — Nintendo
  • Mortal Kombat 11 — NetherRealm Studios / Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment

Excellence in Art
Awarded to the game with the most expressive and creative artistic style.

  • Control — Remedy Entertainment / 505 Games
  • Disco Elysium — ZA/UM
  • The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening — Nintendo
  • Luigi’s Mansion 3 — Nintendo
  • Sayonara Wild Hearts — Simogo / Annapurna Interactive

Excellence in Design
Awarded to the game with the best overall design concept and best execution.

  • Astral Chain — PlatinumGames / Nintendo
  • Control — Remedy Entertainment / 505 Games
  • Disco Elysium — ZA/UM
  • Luigi’s Mansion 3 — Nintendo
  • Outer Wilds — Mobius Digital / Annapurna Interactive

Excellence in Gameplay
Awarded to the game with the best gameplay mechanics.

  • Astral Chain — PlatinumGames / Nintendo
  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare — Infinity Ward / Activision
  • Devil May Cry 5 — Capcom
  • Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice — FromSoftware / Activision
  • Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order — Respawn Entertainment / Electronic Arts

Excellence in Multiplayer
Awarded to the game with the best player-to-player interaction experience.

  • Apex Legends — Respawn Entertainment / Electronic Arts
  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare — Infinity Ward / Activision
  • FINAL FANTASY XIV: Shadowbringers — Square Enix
  • Monster Hunter World: Iceborne — Capcom
  • Mortal Kombat 11 — NetherRealm Studios / Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment

Excellence in Musical Score
Awarded to the game that best exemplifies artistic excellence in musical score and how it progresses the narrative of the game.

  • Death Stranding — Kojima Productions / Sony Interactive Entertainment
  • Devil May Cry 5 — Capcom
  • Disco Elysium — ZA/UM
  • Outer Wilds — Mobius Digital / Annapurna Interactive
  • Sayonara Wild Hearts — Simogo / Annapurna Interactive

Excellence in Narrative
Awarded to the game with the best storyline and dialogue.

  • Control — Remedy Entertainment / 505 Games
  • Death Stranding — Kojima Productions / Sony Interactive Entertainment
  • Disco Elysium — ZA/UM
  • Outer Wilds — Mobius Digital / Annapurna Interactive
  • A Plague Tale: Innocence — Asobo Studio / Focus Home Interactive

Excellence in SFX
Awarded to the game with the most outstanding and impactful sound effects.

  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare — Infinity Ward / Activision
  • Luigi’s Mansion 3 — Nintendo
  • Mortal Kombat 11 — NetherRealm Studios / Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
  • Resident Evil 2 — Capcom
  • Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order — Respawn Entertainment / Electronic Arts

Excellence in Technical Achievement
Awarded to the game that pushed the capabilities of technology and programming.

  • Concrete Genie — Pixelopus / Sony Interactive Entertainment
  • Control — Remedy Entertainment / 505 Games
  • Death Stranding — Kojima Productions / Sony Interactive Entertainment
  • Devil May Cry 5 — Capcom
  • Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice — FromSoftware / Activision

Excellence in Visual Achievement
Awarded to the game with the most well-designed and stunning visuals.

  • Control — Remedy Entertainment / 505 Games
  • Death Stranding — Kojima Productions / Sony Interactive Entertainment
  • The Outer Worlds —  Obsidian Entertainment / Private Division
  • Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order — Respawn Entertainment / Electronic Arts
  • Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice — FromSoftware / Activision

SXSW dedicates itself to helping creative people achieve their goals. Founded in 1987 in Austin, Texas, SXSW is best known for its conference and festivals that celebrate the convergence of the interactive, film, and music industries. An essential destination for global professionals, the event features sessions, showcases, screenings, exhibitions, and a variety of networking opportunities. SXSW proves that the most unexpected discoveries happen when diverse topics and people come together. SXSW 2020 will take place March 13-22, 2020. For more information, please visit sxsw.com. To register for the event, please visit sxsw.com/attend.