While the Tokyo Game Show 2020 was taking place, the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry was hosting its own ceremony: The Japan Game Awards 2020. The event was held entirely online due to the COVID-19 situation. The online event gave out awards for titles released from April 2019 to the end of March 2020 in Japan.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons took home the top award as the overall Grand Winner of 2020. The game was praised for its relaxed game experience that appealed to players across the world. Since the game is easy for anyone to pick up and play, it appealed to everyone from small children to seniors.
The game has been out for six months but continues to receive new updates, holiday events, and more. Popular businesses across the world are also releasing free content. Museums across the world also used the game to introduce players to well-known works of art since they couldn’t visit a museum in-person.
The game also received the 2020 Minister of Economy, Trade, and Industry Award. Not only did many layers rush to buy the latest installment of the Animal Crossing game, but also a Nintendo Switch console to play the game on.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons also received the Award for Excellence. The reasons why the game won this award was similar to why it won the overall Grand Prize for 2020.
According to the official press release:
Communication with close friends through the game and interaction with other players in events went beyond the bounds of a single game, and the game showed the power of entertainment from Japan, acquiring overwhelming support from many users of all ages, from children to senior citizens, in general voting, and won both the Award for Excellence and the Grand Award with unanimity.
While the game may be rated by the ESRB as “E for Everyone,” it’s a franchise that has been enjoyed by children into their adulthood. The company has previously announced the upcoming updates and events for later this year, which include the return of Jack for Halloween, Harvest Fest in November, followed by Toy Day in December.
Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield also received several awards. The games were the series’ first new titles on the Nintendo Switch console. Pokémon received the Award for Excellence, Best Sales Award, and Global Award for games made within Japan.
The Japan Game Awards are still available for public viewing on YouTube.