Video games took center stage at the annual British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) Games Awards 2022, with a total of 18 accolades presented on Thursday across various categories.
“This year we celebrate BAFTA’s 75th anniversary and its 18th year of honors games as well,” said host Elle Osili-Wood.
“Games as an art form continue to surprise and innovate in the way they engage us all, from the way they play to the way they look. Games are unlike any other media. They don’t just tell us a story, they ask us to play a role. In movies and television, the characters change. In games, the player does too.
She described the event as “our chance to share our passion for this revolutionary industry and our appreciation for the incredible worlds it creates”. Emerge as the event’s biggest winner was a PlayStation exclusive Returna rogue-like third-person shooter developed by Housemarque that won a total of four awards – Best Game, Audio and Music Direction as well as Performer in a Leading Role for Jane Perry who played Selene Vassos in the game.
Return sees players take on the role of Selene, an explorer who crash-lands on a shape-shifting alien planet where she must fight to survive. However, each time she is defeated, she is forced to start her journey all over again.
On accepting the Best Game award, CEO and Co-Founder of Housemarque Ilari Kuittinen said:
“It was such an honor to be nominated for so many awards and to win this one is truly amazing.”
“Over the years we’ve made so many different games, best known for maybe shooters like Super Stardust or Resogun.
“We’ve also done platformers, even point-and-click adventures – we’ve done so many things. We started doing something else five years ago when we took on the Returnal Challenge.
Sharing some remarks from Returnal game director Harry Krueger, Kuittinen said, “We poured a lot of love into Return and it’s incredibly humbling to have our hard work recognized in such a profound way.
“Doing Return we all found ourselves in uncharted territory. We’ve never made a game of this caliber and ambition before. In many ways, we took a leap of faith and had to build our wings as we fell.
“But everyone on the team who put in an incredible effort and the end result far exceeds even our wildest expectations of what Return could be.”
Ratchet & Clank, a PlayStation exclusive: Flaw apart was also among the winners, winning two BAFTAs for animation and technical direction. Developed by Insomniac Games, Flaw apart is the latest entry in the Ratchet & Clank series, which sees intergalactic adventurers Ratchet and Clank take dimension-hopping as they face off against an evil Emperor from another reality. The game also introduces Rivet, an all-new playable character from the series.
Another title to win two awards was It Takes Two, which won the Multiplayer and Original Property categories. Developed by Hazelight Studios and published by Electronic Arts, It Takes Two is described as “a genre-platforming adventure created purely for co-op”.
He added: “Play as the couple who clash Cody and May, two humans turned into dolls by a magic spell. Trapped in a fantasy world, they are reluctantly challenged to save their fractured relationship by the suave guru of love, Dr. Hakim. A wide variety of happily disruptive gameplay challenges stand between them and their return to normal.
Unpacking also won two awards. Developed by Witch Beam and published by Humble Bundle, Unpacking is described as “a zen puzzle game about unboxing a lifetime” and won the BAFTA for Narrative as well as EE Game of the Year, the only award voted by the public.
The prize for artistic achievement was awarded to Beethoven’s artistic escape & Dinosaur and Annapurna Interactive. This platformer is about a guitar prodigy who embarks on a psychedelic journey to inspire his stage persona and confront the legacy of a deceased folk legend.
racing game Forza Horizon 5 by Playground Games and Xbox Game Studios won the UK Game award, while hand-drawn adventure title TOEM by Something We Made won in the First Game category.
hello games“No Man’s Sky, a sci-fi survival game in which players explore a galaxy filled with planets and unique lifeforms, won the evolving game award, while rogue-like deck-building title Inscryption from Daniel Mullins Games and Devolver Digital won the Game Design award.
The prize in the Family category was awarded to Chicorée: A colorful talea painting adventure game developed by Greg Lobanov, Alexis Dean-Jones, Lena Raine, Madeline Berger, A Shell in the Pit and published by Finji.
Before Your Eyes, a first-person narrative adventure from GoodbyeWorld Games and Skybound Games that tells the story of a soul’s journey into the afterlife, won Game Beyond Entertainment’s award, while Kimberly Brooks took home the BAFTA for performer in a supporting role for her. performance as Hollis Forsythe in Psychonauts 2.