Indie game Hades is the first game ever to win a Hugo Award. These awards are for the best science fiction and fantasy stories of the past calendar year. For the first time, a ‘Best Video Game’ award was presented.
Hades is a rogue-like dungeon crawler, meaning that when players die, they largely have to start from scratch and most of the upgrades and power-ups are lost. Hades’ creative director, Greg Kasavin, said in a video message very honored by the award. “At Supergiant, we tried to connect the traditions of science fiction and fantasy with the unique interactive component of video games so that the worlds you maneuver in feel alive, so we’re very grateful that our work on Hades stood out in that way.”
The other nominees for the Best Video Game category were Spiritfarer, The Last of Us Part II, Animal Crossing: New Horizons, Final Fantasy 7 Remake and Blaseball. Games were eligible for the award if they are available on a ‘major game platform’, were released in 2020 and had interfaces with science fiction, fantasy or related topics. At the beginning of this year, members of the 2020 and 2021 WorldCon conventions were able to submit nominations. Subsequently, only members of the 2021 edition of WorldCon were allowed to vote from the aforementioned list of six nominees.
The organisation said this year to have added a game award because games have played a major role during the corona pandemic. It’s not a permanent category, so the prize may not come back next year.
First held in 1953, the Hugo Awards primarily honor literary science fiction and fantasy works, with major categories such as Best Novel and Best Novel. Over the years, several non-literary prizes have also been awarded, such as Best Magazine and Best Draftsman.