How Is God of War Ragnarok Up For So Many Awards When None of Us Have Finished It Yet

God of War Ragnarok is pretty damn long. Our reviewer Eric Switzer clocked in 57 hours before hitting the credits and filing his verdict. Granted, this playthrough featured a bunch of different side content alongside the main campaign, but the latter will take most players the better part of 30 hours to see it through. By all accounts, it is an absolute chonker.

Not only is it as beefy as Kratos, but it hasn’t even been out for a week, yet The Game Awards nominations for this year are absolutely ruled by the damn thing. Ragnarok has more nominations than any other game – and that includes Elden Ring and Horizon Forbidden West – despite the fact that the large majority of media and those across the public haven’t seen everything it has to offer. If you have, you either reviewed the game like our boy Eric, or you’re a stinky little liar.

Unless you were reviewing the game, guiding it, or happened to stumble across an early copy that fell off the back of a truck, you’d have to had marathoned the fucker to reach credits and justify all of these nominations. I don’t tend to rush games I’m not playing for the purposes of work, meaning I often fall behind and there are dozens of things from this year alone that I’m yet to play. But I’d rather take that approach than risk burning myself out just to be a part of the dwindling conversation. In that context, Ragarok stinks of recency bias.

This article is very stinky so far, but it’s warranted. God of War is up for all the following categories at The Game Awards:

  • Game of the Year
  • Best Game Direction
  • Best Performance (x2)
  • Best Art Direction
  • Best Score and Music
  • Best Audio Design
  • Best Action/Adventure
  • Innovation In Accessibility
  • Best Narrative

I haven’t finished God of War Ragnarok so can’t effectively gauge its legitimacy in all of these categories, but neither had much of the jury I imagine, and much of their decision stemmed from the hype surrounding its review cycle and inability to distance themselves from it as critics before the deadline for submissions reared its head. The cynic in me would label this as a deliberate move on Sony’s part, who absolutely knew a prestige title like this would clean up at The Game Awards purely because it ticked all the boxes. It’s ambitious, long, beautiful, mainstream, and the sequel to a beloved game. Forbidden West benefitted from all the same things, which goes on to explain its own domination of the ballot.

Do we all just assume that Ragnarok is going to be incredible and thus nominate it for everything as a collective and call it day? Because that sure seems like what has happened. The loudest voice in the room has been allowed to dominate instead of engaging in a reasonable debate. Even if only one person at any given outlet has played it, we all expect it to be great, and therefore no one would object to putting it up for every award going. Really, it should be in Best Fighting Game too. Hey, if Sifu is, why not, right?

This clean sweep wouldn’t be a big deal if the huge number of awards weren’t being filled with a very small number of the same games. It is currently the God of War, Horizon, Elden Ring, and Stray show – with others only getting a chance because it’s only fair right? It’s a down year, but we still need to be doing so much better, and maybe finish the games before we start shouting about them from the rooftops.

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