This year the award is awarded in 12 categories, including 4 new ones: “the best VR and AR experience”, “the best multiplayer game”, “the best social effect”, and “the best available application”. The latter include applications or games that allow people with disabilities to interact.
Nominees are evaluated on criteria such as the rating on Google Play, performance and novelty (release or large-scale application updates should be no earlier than April 2016).
6 of the 12 categories of the Play Awards are dedicated to games.
Standout Indie Game: Games developed by indie developers focused on artistic design, gameplay mechanics.
Best VR Experience: The most fascinating and exciting experience of the optimal use of Daydream UI.
Best AR Experience: Applications and games that creatively use Augmented Reality.
Best App for Kids: Applications or games encouraging creativity, research and education.
Best Multiplayer Game: Projects designed to involve gamers in contests and a joint game.
Best Game: Games with strong mechanics and excellent graphics, exciting and restraining gamers.
Play Awards winners will be announced at the Google I/O annual conference 2017 which will be held May 18.