The Grammy Awards are keeping up with the times by adding a category for video game soundtracks. That, and four other awards, including Non-Classical Songwriter of the Year, Best Alternative Music Performance, Best Americana Performance, and Best Spoken Word Poetry Album. A new special merit award, Best Song for Social Change, is also being added.
The Best Score Soundtrack For Video Games And Other Interactive Media award will recognise “excellence in score soundtrack albums composed primarily of original scores and created specifically for, or as a companion to, a current videogame or other interactive media released during the qualification period.” It is one of five new categories added to the Grammy Awards in 2023, along with Songwriter of the Year (Non-Classical), Best Alternative Music Performance, Best Americana Performance, and Best Spoken Word Poetry Album.
— Recording Academy / GRAMMYs (@RecordingAcad) June 9, 2022
How it all started
To give you an idea of how slowly award shows move on this kind of thing, video games haven’t even gotten their own billing in over a decade. Video games were previously classified as ‘other visual media’ prior to 2011. Only tv channel and film were given their own billing.
For years, video game music has been a distinct fandom—our interest began in 1995 with Mechwarrior 2. (The excellent soundtrack was saved on the game CD as standard audio tracks, so it could be played in a regular CD player.)