BAFTA (British Academy of Film and Television Arts) is an independent charity that promotes and celebrates the "moving" forms of media. Well known for its film and television awards, BAFTA is one of the few world renowned organizations that has a dedicated award for video games. Since 2003, the BAFTA Game Awards have been regarded as among the most prestigious awards one can receive for contributions to the video game industry.
With categories ranging from "Artistic Achievement" to "Performer in a Supporting Role", the awards are a holistic celebration of the art form. It was independent video games studio Supergiant Games that took home a whopping 5 awards out of 9 nominations for their renowned action role-playing game Hades, quite the achievement for the 20 person team.
The night of the BAFTA Games Awards is a huge event in the video game industry. Although not as popular in North America, it seems everyone in the United Kingdom knows what a BAFTA is. Thus, being able to win such a landmark award for work in the gaming industry is incredibly important in validating video games as an art form in its own right.
This year, BAFTA seems to be putting inclusion and diversity in the limelight more than ever as 2021 marked the first year where the BFI Diversity Standards were used when evaluating entrants. With this year's BAFTA Fellowship Award (the highest accolade given to an individual) going to Media Molecule's Siobhan Reddy, who was specifically recognized for her advocacy on diversity, hopefully we'll continue to see more representation in the industry for years to come.
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