Games for Change unveils 2022 video game and XR award winners

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Dot’s Home won Game of the Year and Best Narrative winner at the 2022 Games for Change Awards.

With thousands of votes, BeatNic Boulevard was awarded the annual People’s Choice award (presented by Facebook Gaming). The winners, representing 13 countries, were announced this evening during the 2022 Games for Change Virtual Festival’s Awards Ceremony.

I attended the event for the first time in-person this week in New York and I’ll have more to say about it. I enjoyed it and had some good discussions about the metaverse in a couple of roundtables, as well as a good fireside chat with Stanley Pierre-Louis, CEO of the Entertainment Software Association.

Here’s the 2022 Games for Change Award winners:

Game of the Year, Best Narrative — Dot’s Home (Weathered Sweater & Rise-Home Stories Project)
Dot’s Home is a single-player narrative-driven video game where Dot, a young, Black woman in today’s Detroit, travels through time to key moments in her family’s history to see how individual decisions — however seemingly inconsequential, let alone right or wrong — have long-lasting collective impact.

Most Innovative — The Vale: Shadow of the Crown (Falling Squirrel)

The Vale is an action-adventure that utilizes the full potential of 3D audio to deliver visceral gameplay that shatters the barrier between player and character. The Vale also sets out to breathe new life into medieval combat and provide a truly novel experience for visually impaired and sighted gamers alike.

Most Significant Impact — Svoboda 1945: Liberation (Charles Games)

Svoboda 1945: Liberation is a unique blend of adventure gameplay, full-motion video interviews with real actors, and historically accurate interactive memories of people who lived through the chaos of the aftermath of World War II. Made by professional historians.

Best Student Game — There You Are (Funky Dango)
There You Are is an exploratory narrative game that features stop-motion-styled graphic design and two endings from players’ choices and actions. In this game, players will role-play the girl, Su, to deal with her father’s relationship, move away from the past and accept the loss of her mom.

Best Learning Game — Ava (Team Ava)
Ava is a role-playing platform adventure game series that follows an autistic star mapper as she works through social challenges with space pirates, battles self-doubt, and finds community. Our game-based approach helps neurodiverse youth fail safely and embrace their identities for social-emotional success beyond the screen.

Best XR4C Experience — The Choice (Joanne Popinska)

The debate about abortion is often heated. But behind every decision, there is a human story. Using volumetric video and creative design, this XR interactive documentary lets us see from a different perspective the emotional and complex nature behind one woman’s Choice.

G4C People’s Choice Award, Best Health Game — BeatNic Boulevard (skillsgapp)
Big tobacco spends big money on addicting kids to vape products. Here is the place to fight back. Using volunteers, you’re in control of your town’s health and happiness. The healthier and happier, the more influence you have on who smokes what and where…as in somewhere else.

Best Civics Game — VOXPOP (Gigantic Mechanic)

VOXPOP brings civics & history to life through in-person, media-rich, collaborative role-plays. The teacher guides the experience using VOXPOP’s easy-to-use software, accessible from any web-enabled device. With VOXPOP’s immersive, live-action role-plays, students explore different perspectives and work together to navigate defining moments in American History.

Best Gameplay — Before Your Eyes (GoodbyeWorld Games)

Embark on an emotional first-person narrative adventure where you control the story—and affect its outcomes—with your real-life blinks. With this innovative technique you will fully immerse yourself in a world of memories, both joyous and heartbreaking, as your whole life flashes before your eyes.

Other Special Recognitions

In addition to the above recognition, the Games for Change Award ceremony recognized Eve Crevoshay as the 2022 Vanguard Award recipient, Schell Games for the Industry Leadership Award, Child’s Play for the G4C Giving Award, and Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart, and Insomniac Games as the inaugural Accessibility Award winner.

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