8:38PM But that's it, that's all she wrote. And by she, we mean Tim Schafer. Sorry, Tim.
8:37PM We just spoke with Infinity Ward's Robert Bowling, who suggests really scrubbing through that video by the by ... also, that lack of Call of Duty branding? Yeah, he noticed it too! We'll tell you more about that when we learn more.
8:26PM Oh, did we mention we're totally sitting next to Infinity Ward? It's Modern Warfare 2!
Not Call of Duty 5: Modern Warfare 2. There's no Call of Duty anywhere here. It's just Modern Warfare 2, and you can check modernwarfare2.com they say. Oh and ...
11.10.09 people! MARK IT DOWN!
8:24PM Tim is introducing the special treat from Infinity Ward: "It's the complete opposite of a picture of my baby."
8:23PM Wow! If you thought LittleBigPlanet was a shoo-in, you were wrong. DEAD WRONG. Well ... maybe not dead, but certainly mutated. It's Fallout 3! Todd Howard and his team at Bethesda is on stage.
Howard said that when his wife and kids left on one of the many vacations without him, she hugged him and told him "This game better be good." Wow, we're practically tearing up here, Todd. Thanks. Now we're going to get beat up.
8:19PM The lifetime achievement award goes to Mr. Kojima who says he doesn't plan on retiring just yet. Promise? Good.
And now it's time for the Game of the Year award, but not before looking at the last nominee: Grand Theft Auto IV. (Oh, and we forgot to tell you about Left 4 Dead before ... but that's it: Fable 2, LittleBigPlanet, Fallout 3, Left 4 Dead, and GTA IV).
8:15PM The third nominee for Game of the Year is Fallout 3 by the folks at Bethesda.
But it's not GOTY time yet; for now, the Innovation Award. And you know who out-innovated the entire industry right? You're seeing the trend here? It's LittleBigPlanet!
The final Mega 64 video of the evening ... Metal Gear Solid 4 time! Cartwheels abound and, OH MY GOD WHAT IS THAT? We won't ruin it with our "words."
8:07PM The Pioneer Award goes to Harmonix's Alex Rigopolous and Eran Egozy for ... well, for basically single-handedly perfecting (and popularizing) the rhythm music genre. Duh! Can't believe you guys didn't know that.
Alex thanks Award presenter Masaya Matsuura and notes that Parappa the Rapper changed the trajectory of Harmonix while Eran says "the best is yet to come" and they're not done pioneering.
8:01PM Best Visual Art time – and the winner is Ubisoft Montreal's gorgiferous Prince of Persia. Producer Ben Mattes accepts the award for Mikael Labat, PoP's art director – for our money, there wasn't a better looking game all year. Congrats, Ubi!
7:57PM Best Writing award time – and Fallout 3 takes the honors. Yeah, but what's so good about writing? What we care about is the TECHNOLOGY, the gigglebites, the RAMs, the Blu-rays. The Best Technology award goes to LittleBigPlanet.
We're gonna share some famous blogger insight with y'all: Just because Media Molecule makes the game look simple doesn't mean there's not a lot going on under the hood. That's industry talk for "stuff we wouldn't understand."
Now, a Mega 64 video for Shadow of the Colossus. We'll find them for you. We promise. Don't you worry about it.
7:46PM It's time for the Ambassador Award, introduced by Mr. Dave Perry. Honored this year: Tommy Tallarico. Having met Mr. Tallarico many times, we can attest to his deserving of said award – Tommy's a tireless advocate for the gaming industry, and a true gaming nerd. Congrats!
7:43PM Best handheld game goes to the excellent God of War: Chains of Olympus by the crew at Ready at Dawn.
And now we've got the trailer for the second Game of the Year – LittleBigPlanet. (We totally forgot to tell you about the first Game of the Year introduction, which also happened to be OUR favorite game last year: Fable 2).
7:41PM MEga 64 is back – with a Mirror's Edge skit. We can't wait to find all of these to share with you. Until then, you can have this pic:
7:37PM Wow – Tim just made a joke about ghosts, strippers, little strippers, and Jonathan Blow. Masterful. Bravo, good sir. Bravo.
Best Downloadable Game time. Andddddd ... it's World of Goo! It's a game, you can download it, and it's great. All necessary components to winning "Best Downloadable Game" to be sure. Notice how many of those games were once former IGF nominees? Yeah, we did too.
7:33PM It's Best Game Design time – wow, this is a competitive category this year. The award goes to LittleBigPlanet – do you remember when the folks at Media Molecule blew our collective minds in this very room two years ago at GDC? ... we do.
... we do.
Also, in case you didn't know, Mark Healey is way cooler than you or us.
7:31PM Tim takes the stage, cracks wise about having his kidneys stolen, and being trapped by a butterfly net, and introduces the Best Debut game – LittleBigPlanet by Media Molecule. "Best debut? We've been doing this shit for twenty years!" Mark Healey jokes. Next up, Best Audio – preceded by a rather ... curious introduction by Tim involving a shark, arms being eaten.
But the winner: Dead Space! The cats from Infinity Ward sitting next to us seem particularly pleased with this accomplishment. The team from EA Redwood Shores takes the stage for their prize.
7:24PM Enough indie stuff – it's time for the major game development fat cats to pat themselves on their money-stuffed hump backs. Can we give up the populist thing yet? Alright, phew! We're treated to Tim Schafer's charming adventure game. Then, GDC director Megan Scavio and Gamasutra publisher Simon Carless take the stage to introduce the event. But what's this? They said they're going to be sharing a special unveiling courtesy of their friends at Infinity Ward, at the end of the show. Whoa, a first look at Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2?
7:13PM Petri "Crayon Physics" Purho introduces the Seumas McNally Grand Prize, while reminding us that winning the IGF's most prestigious prize can change a person's life (he would know, having won last year's!)
And this year's top independent game? Blueberry Garden! This is the game you're going to want to play before all your friends download it on XBLA, PSN, WiiWare, iPhone, PC, Mac, and it becomes totally played out but you were a fan before all that, of course!
7:08PM Another Mega 64 video comes up a winner! With the mantra "If you're not indie F*** YOU!" coupled with a montage of people being PUNCHED, it clearly embodies the struggle of independent game devs (and also their killer guns).
But enough of that fun stuff. Independent gaming is serious business, and we're up to the Direct2Drive Vision Award. So, who's got the most Vision? Osmos! These fat cats get a cushy distribution deal thanks to D2D's largesse. But what about The People? The Audience Award goes to Cortex Command. Thanks to a bet with 2D Boy's Kyle Gabler, the winner takes off his shirt. I know you may not believe this but ... yeah, dude's ripped. Hey buddy, turn in your indie gamer card stat!
7:01PM The "Innovation" and soon-to-be "Nuovo" Award goes to Between. We just want to say that the video for "You Have To Burn The Rope" ruined the entire game. Literally. The winner of Between says he's been a two-time IGF reject, and this is his first GDC. It really is nice to see the little guy win.
6:50PM Just to get you up to speed, the first category was best student game, won by "Tag" straight outta DigiPen. The next category was "Technical Achievement" and the award went to Cortex Command. The "Excellence in Design" award is being dropped on Musaic Box.
6:45PM Our updates are getting started a little late here, so we'll just start with the Mega 64 video they created for the event. We PROMISE we'll find it later, but in the meantime think about this lyric. "Have you played World of Goo? It feels like God is kissing you." Yeah ... it's that good.