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Part video game awards show, part previews and news announcements, The Game Awards 2018 starts at 5.30pm PST on Thursday, December 6 (9.30am Malaysia Time on Friday, December 7).

With eight category nominations apiece, Wild West adventure Red Dead Redemption 2 and fantasy action epic God of War are among several titles contending for overall Game of the Year at 2018’s edition of The Game Awards.

In existence since 2014, and descended from the Spike Video Game Awards that ran for ten years from 2003, The Game Awards present themselves as a mixture of promotional preview and retrospective celebration (or pre-Holiday shopping reminder), intrinsically associated with Canadian producer, host, and hype-man Geoff Keighley.

New looks at Anthem (February 2019), Rage 2 (first half of 2019), and Ancestors: The Humankind Odyssey (date TBA) have been confirmed.

Season 7 of wildly popular battle royale game Fortnite is to begin on December 6 and the game’s Creative Director is to be present for a world premiere; likewise, Nintendo’s Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is another December 7 launch and company executive Reggie Fils-Aime has promised “something special” to mark the occasion; Head of Xbox, Phil Spencer, is another known stage presence.

Keighley has said that over 10 new games will be announced.

Role-playing adventure studio Obsidian Entertainment, recently acquired by Xbox, is to announce a pre-existing project with the same publisher behind Ancestors, and it has two of the Fallout franchise’s creators on board.

There’s reasonable speculation that PlayStation’s 1999 kart racer Crash Team Racing is being revived, and a new Dragon Age fantasy action adventure is anticipated.

Plus there’ll be a presenters’ cameo from Joe and Anthony Russo, directors of 2018’s biggest box-office blockbuster Avengers: Infinity War and its 2019 counterpart, as well as Stranger Things creators Matt and Ross Duffer.

Other celebrity presenters include actors Jonah Hill, Rosa Salazar, Christoph Waltz and Aisha Tyler, Weezer frontman Rivers Cuomo, and a number of high-profile YouTubers and Twitch streamers, while several video game composers have been invited, with musical performances afoot.

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