The Game Awards 2022: Blue Protocol, Diablo IV, Wayfinder, Nightingale, Dune Awakening

All the MMO and multiplayer reveals from the show


We’ve updated with all the big news and trailers now – scroll down to the end for the announcements! Original post follows.

Gamers who aren’t particularly interested in an Oscars-esque awards show for the industry might be inclined to bypass Geoff Keighley’s Game Awards every December. But gamers who’ve realized that The Game Awards have basically become the new – and blessedly condensed – E3 will probably want to pay attention, as the last few years have shown that in between the obvious ads and cheeseball patter are major reveals, announcements, and trailer drops for the industry. So it happens again tonight, as The Game Awards returns for another glitzy go at 8 p.m. following the preshow already underway.

MOP’s Chris Neal will be streaming reactions to the show from the MMO-player perspective, so you’re invited to join him for the festivities. We’ll also be blogging the big MMO and multiplayer highlights right here in this post, so refresh and scroll down to the end to spy the latest as the show progresses tonight.

MMORPGs seldom factor into the awards themselves, though if you’re a multiplayer fan, you’ll be pleased to see Elden Ring as a major factor this year. Final Fantasy XIV is also in the running for Best Ongoing Game (in a list that includes Destiny 2, Apex Legends, Fortnite, and Genshin Impact) and for Best Community Support (in a list that again includes Destiny 2, Apex Legends, Fortnite, and this time, No Man’s Sky). All of the titles nominated for Best Mobile are multiplayer as well: Diablo Immortal, Marvel Snap, Tower of Fantasy, Genshin Impact, and Apex Legends (Marvel Snap won during the preshow.) And as for Best Multiplayer, none of the nominees is an MMO; Overwatch 2 will face off against Multiversus, Splatoon 3, TMNT, and Call of Duty Modern Warfare II.

We’re expecting multiple announcements relevant to our interests here in the MMO and multiplayer space, including news from and about Digital Extremes/Airship Syndicate, Blue Protocol, Diablo IV, a new game from Epic Games, and Destiny 2: Lightfall. You can probably make some educated guesses about what’s in store based on who’s been promoting the event, too, like Nightingale. Final Fantasy XIV’s Naoki Yoshida is also slated to make an appearance!

For what it’s worth, this year’s Game Awards is the most organized and dense one we’ve seen to date, and you know companies consider it a big deal when they’re trying to email us NDAs to sign before they’ll give us a press release. Not kidding. Anyhow, on with the show!

Pre-show notes
Not much happens in the preshow for us, but this year it did; Marvel Snap won the best mobile game. Yes, that’s Ben Brode accepting the award for the team in person.

Multiversus took Best Fighting game.

Among Us’ new trailer teased a new game mode launching tomorrow called Hide and Seek. Innersloth promises “new surprises,” new cosmetics, pets, pet petting, and screaming. I’m not kidding.

Rogue Snail and Gearbox released a trailer for Relic Hunters Legend, a cutesy online looter shooter RPG with open closed beta sign-ups right now (click the Steam link and pick “request access”).

Liveblogging continues at 8p
Al Pacino is on the stage to kick things off and people are kinda losing their minds. We’re 25 minutes in now (plus one extremely long speech!) and so far it’s all single-player stuff.
Who ya gonna call?
Ghostbusters Rise of the Ghost Lord VR looks like local multiplayer!

Destiny 2 Lightfall
Destiny 2 is premiering its big trailer for Lightfall, which looks epic.

Party Animals
Party Animals is a surprise hilarious multiplayer pick. Oh my god. We have to play this.

Dune Awakening
Funcom and Level Infinite dropped a new trailer for Dune Awakening. They’re still calling it an open-world survival MMO. No dates still, just sign-ups. Keighley calls this the first in-engine video of the game so far.

Oslo, Norway – December 9, 2022 – Following the game’s reveal at Gamescom 2022, Funcom is now excited to show off the first pre-alpha footage of Dune: Awakening, their ambitious Open World Survival MMO. Inspired by the sci-fi masterpiece DUNE written by Frank Herbert and Legendary Entertainment’s award-winning, blockbuster film from Denis Villeneuve, Dune: Awakening is built with both Dune and Survival fans in mind by the veteran developers at Funcom. Witness the vastness of Arrakis in today’s brand-new teaser trailer.

Funcom has innovated in the Massively Multiplayer and Survival genres for over two decades, most recently with Conan Exiles. Dune: Awakening builds upon this strong foundation, weaving together Open World Survival and MMO aspects into a Dune tapestry that brings Frank Herbert’s epic universe to life in a completely unique way. With this gameplay teaser, Funcom has also updated the Dune: Awakening website, giving a panoramic view of the player experience.

In Dune: Awakening you strive to survive the countless dangers of Arrakis alongside thousands of other players. Explore your role and identity while experiencing an epic personal journey, from searching for water and building shelters against storms to controlling the flow of spice in the top echelons of the planet.
Spice lies at the center of conflict, advancement, and power in Dune: Awakening. Where spice blows appear, players converge. Fights can range from quick skirmishes to large-scale battles with infantry, ground vehicles, and ornithopters each providing an essential role.

The deserts hold a multitude of choices to make and paths to discover. Jump into an ornithopter to scout the deep deserts; equip advanced armor and weaponry to become a deadly mercenary; execute an efficient spice harvesting operation; gain influence among Great Houses — do all these things and more.

Joel Bylos, Chief Creative Officer at Funcom and Creative Director of Dune: Awakening, says, “Working with a universe as rich and expansive as Dune is the perfect fit for Funcom’s drive to create compelling multiplayer open worlds. With Dune: Awakening, we’re trying to push the boundaries of what people expect in the Survival space – and I can’t wait until we can get it into the hands of our players.”

“We are thrilled to bring the Dune universe to life in such an immersive and interactive way. The depth and detail Funcom is bringing to the Dune: Awakening PC and console experience is astonishing and we can’t wait for fans of Dune and survival games to join us on Arrakis and try their hand at surviving the most dangerous planet in the universe,” adds Sam Rappaport, VP, Interactive Media at Legendary Entertainment.

Dune: Awakening will come to PC, PlayStation 5, and Xbox Series X|S. In the months following today’s gameplay teaser, each aspect of the game will begin to be covered in depth, giving players a full understanding of the game before it enters its Beta. Sign up right now at and wishlist the game on Steam.

Inflexion Games just dropped a new trailer for Victorian gaslamp fantasy game Nightingale. This game was first revealed last year as a former-MMO-turned-multiplayer survival sandbox that is specifically focused on co-op PvE; we now know the number of players is set at six and limited to friends, that the studio itself will host all servers, that there’s a custom housing system called “respite realms,” and that the game will be balanced for solo play so multiplayer isn’t required.

We attended a press preview of Nightingale ahead of the show; we’ve got more information in our breakout piece right here.

Final Fantasy XIV won the award for best Community Support!
We just got the formal announcement of Wayfinder from Digital Extremes and Airship Syndicate. They’re calling it a F2P “character-based, online action RPG” with customizated gameplay, weapon crafting, live events, and apartments, though characters are premade. Visually, it has a lot in common with some, ahem, popular MMOs and multiplayer titles that will be immediately obvious to MMO fans. Early access on PC is planned for spring of 2023, though closed beta begins next week, and yes, you can already sign up!

You can read much more in-depth on this game in our breakout piece right here, including what the devs told us about its multiplayer MMO-ish nature.

Baldur’s Gate 3
Baldur’s Gate 3 (which has optional multiplayer) dropped a new trailer.

Diablo IV
The leak about Diablo IV’s trailer was true; Blizzard debuted a creepy new trailer from the upcoming title. The early access launch is set for June 6th, 2023. Prepurchase is live too.

Splatoon 3
Splatoon 3 took the award for Best Online Game.
Blue Protocol
Well, we knew Blue Protocol was en route eventually, and now we’ve just learned that Bandai-Namco has partnered with Amazon Games to bring the game westward as a free-to-play title in the bottom half of 2023. Closed beta will begin early next year, and our version will launch with five classes. MMO fans take note: Former ArenaNet boss Mike Zadorojny is spearheading the game’s western version.

We’ve got a bit more – including a gigantic gallery of images – in our breakout post right here:

Honestly this is the best clip of the night.

Best Ongoing Game
Final Fantasy XIV took the award for best ongoing game, beating Destiny 2, Apex Legends, Fortnite, and Genshin Impact. Accurate.
Wild Hearts
EA debuted Wild Hearts, which honestly looks spectacular. It’s merely multiplayer, however, not an MMO.

Flute guy
Game of the year to flute guy! (His name is Pedro Eustache and he’s currently the darling of Twitter thanks to that wild performance!)

Meanwhile, the kid who ran up on stage was apparently arrested.

The highs and lows of The Game Awards, folks.

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