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VSDA News 2006

VSDA Announces 2006 Video Game Rental Award Nominees
May 25, 2006 by Scott Weiss

The Video Software Dealers Association (VSDA), a non-profit international trade association for the home entertainment industry, announced the nominees for the PlayStation 2, Xbox, and GameCube Game of the Year for its annual Home Entertainment Awards. The winners will be announced on July 11 during the VSDA's Home Entertainment 2006 Awards Show at the Venetian Resort Hotel Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Although primarily focused on DVD video releases, the list of nominees also includes a total of 15 video games across the three major console platforms, including popular titles such as Halo 2 (apparently so popular that it won last year, and can be nominated again this year) and Madden NFL '06, the latter of which was nominated for all three consoles. No Xbox 360 category has yet been added to the awards, though it seems likely that next year's awards will feature one.

Besides Halo 2 and the latest Madden iteration, other Xbox video games nominated for Game of the Year honors include Need for Speed Most Wanted, Star Wars: Battlefront II, and Ubisoft's latest adventure in the life of Third Echelon's Sam Fisher, Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory. PlayStation 2 nominees include the aforementioned Madden NFL '06, as well as Namco Bandai's 3D fighting game Soul Caliber III, Tony Hawk's American Wasteland, Star Wars: Battlefront II, and Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith.

Titles nominated for the GameCube include Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch & the Wardrobe, Tony Hawk's American Wasteland, Lego Star Wars: The Video Game, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, and the previously mentioned Madden NFL '06 from Electronic Arts.

The award categories and nominees were determined by VSDA's Home Entertainment Awards Nominating Committee, comprised of retailers, distributors, and journalists. 130 nominations were submitted for awards in 26 categories, with committee members taking into consideration the rental and sales success of each title and the strength of the marketing campaign launched by the studio or distributing label of the title, both to consumers and to retailers.

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