Should Activision be eligible to win a "Best of E3" award even though they are technically not a participant in the show?
That's apparently one of the issues driving a reported flareup between the embattled ESA, which owns and operates E3, and the Game Critics Awards, an independent group which makes the annual "Best of" selections.
According to Kotaku, the issue has become "heated:"
[ESA] assumed that the departed companies' games would no longer be eligible for any of the annual "Best of E3" awards, given out by an independent group of Game Critics' Awards judges at each year's show.
However, Geoff Keighley (left), executive producer of GameTrailers and co-chair of the Game Critics' Awards, told Kotaku that no decision has been made on eligibility. And while several publishers have said they will not participate in E3, the recently-departed Activision and Vivendi apparently will have some sort of unoffical presence outside the July expo's L.A. Convention Center venue. Said Keighley:
The fact that Activision is not a registered exhibitor for E3 has brought to light the issue of how to determine the eligibility of games... A precedent has been set that in the past, judges have voted on games that have been presented off the show floor at hotel suites and across the street from E3. It would be a shame for me if the best game of E3 didn't win the Best of Show award because it was demoed across the street from the show floor...
The fact we are independent awards [lets us] define our own rules for eligibility... Our organization isn't for profit. It's a volunteer organization, a consortium of journalists, so we can be pure.
Both Activision and the ESA declined to comment.