There are going to be a lot of cool things going on at Google I/O in a few weeks... and also the Google Play Awards. I don't mean to imply this annual tradition has no value, but do you remember what won last year? Hey, maybe this one will be different. Google seems to be making a bigger deal of it.
There are 12 total categories including best game, best app, best social impact, best app for kids, and so on. Each one has five finalists, which will be whittled down to one at I/O—specifically on Thursday, May 18th at 6:30pm. The nomination and award process is handled internally at Google, so it's all very vague. The blog post says the selection relies upon "high star rating, technical performance, and freshness."
Some of the finalists are befuddling, like Lineage 2 Attack (Revolution) in the games category—it really doesn't look like a game. The indie game category has some very good titles, though. You can see the full list of nominees and categories on the Play Store.