Awards are fine. The Games Magazine "Games 100" and the little red Spiel des Jahres pawn have both convinced me to buy games I've grown to love & adore. I'm a big fan of the Deutscher Spiele Pries and the Gamer's Choice Awards. [Note: these are now called the International Gamers Awards.]
And then there are the awards we love to hate... the Origins awards, where a couple of years back Stephensons Rocket (a game about developing the British rail system in the 1800's) was put in the science fiction category - or the Mensa Mind Game awards, which are awarded after a marathon weekend of play... with most of the people making the decisions only getting one shot at playing each game.[Another note: both of these awards are somewhat improved... but still not terribly helpful.]
The problem with the majority of the awards, however, is simpler than that. Most awards attempt to compare apples to oranges, pitting family games & strategy games released in the same 12 months against each other. It's downright futile to compare a party game with a two-player abstract... but year after year, that's the way lots of awards are given.
Enough is enough. I have little power to change the structure of the awards, their nomination process, and I've only got one vote. But I've got a website, and I managed to gather a group of like-minded gamer/experts to help me create...
The Apples Project!
That's right... The Apples Project. An attempt to compare apples to apples... by nominating & voting on games in categories rather than by chronological years.
And with that, I began posting the results on my website, Game Central Station. (In fact, you can go look at them right now.)
So why is all this ancient history so darned important? Tune in Wednesday to find out!