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Posts with tag DICE-summit

BioWare says WoW is the touchstone for Star Wars: The Old Republic

When game developers talk about massively multiplayer games these days, World of Warcraft is the proverbial big man on campus. At the DICE summit keynote panel in Las Vegas, Greg Zeschuk, co-founder of Bioware, stated that WoW was the touchstone for standards in the MMO sphere and for upcoming Bioware MMO Star Wars: The Old Republic. Essentially, Zeschuk was saying that breaking rules that World of Warcraft set as industry standards is a bad idea for any up and coming MMO.

Zeschuk said: "It [World of Warcraft] is a touchstone. It has established standards, it's established how you play an MMO. Every MMO that comes out, I play and look at it. And if they break any of the WoW rules, in my book that's pretty dumb."

What's interesting is how Zeschuk, sitting with Mike Morhaime at the keynote panel, gave WoW the reverence it deserves as the leading industry standard in MMO gaming. Instead of couching his remarks about the specific game he was in the process of making, he discussed how players expect a set of established standards that WoW has provided. Be it a sense of completion of polish, a game mechanic, core concepts, or even art direction and fluidity of art theme, World of Warcraft set the bar very high for other game developers and even Blizzard itself.

We know WoW is big, but I think we sometimes forget how important it is as well. Greg Zeschuk and the rest of the video game industry know this and acknowledge that breaking some clear-cut rules is a big mistake.

Filed under: Blizzard

AIAS nominates Wrath of the Lich King for three awards


The Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences has honored Wrath of the Lich King with three different nominations in their yearly awards. The game was nominated for both the Computer Game of the Year and Massively Multiplayer Online Game of the Year (both of which are pretty obvious choices, though as an expansion pack, it's probably not a complete shoo-in for either category), and also for Outstanding Achievement in Original Music Composition. That one's not really a surprise either, though, when you consider that the music in the game is terrific, and Wrath's music especially is great.

At this point, considering this is an expansion pack to a four year old game, it really does seem like it would be an honor just to be nominated for these. But we'll see -- the winners will be announced at the 2009 D.I.C.E. Summit, on February 18th-20th in Las Vegas. Good luck to Blizzard and their teams.

[via WorldofWar]

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Blizzard

Blizzard wins the Oscars of online games

As Oscar time gets closer, some of us gamers may start wishing for awards of our own. Mass Effect was at least as good as There Will Be Blood, right?

Luckily, on February 7th, we gamers got our own red carpet show, as The Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences hosted the 11th annual Interactive Achievement Awards in conjunction with the DICE Summit at the Red Rock Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada. Blizzard, of course, managed to snag a few rewards of their own. Not only did the Burning Crusade pick up Massively Multi-player Game of the Year, but Blizzard President Mike Morhaime was inducted into the Academy's Hall of Fame.

Gamespot had video coverage of the event, which you can check out here, or if you'd rather just cut to the meaty stuff, the Academy's website has a PDF with a list of the winners here. You can also check out some wider commentary on all the awards from our friends at Joystiq here.

We'll expect trophies for Wrath of the Lich King and Starcraft II next year!

Filed under: Blizzard, News items, The Burning Crusade

More Blizzard news from the D.I.C.E. summit

Blizzard Entertainment logoWired's games blog brings us more news from D.I.C.E., with word of a "never before seen" presentation about Blizzard's canceled games over the years. Some of the games were later released by other companies, but others... Well, if you can remember anything about them, you may be a true Blizzard fan, and we'd have to kneel in homage to you.

But really, some of the games sounded pretty awesome by the title alone. Around Blizzard these days, Nomad refers to a new human unit from the upcoming Starcraft II, but it seems at the presentation in question, it was on the list of canceled games accompanied by a picture of two giant Zeppelins. And we, of course, are all about the Zeppelins, so the game would have obviously been cool, if it had Zeppelins.

Starcraft:Ghost, amazingly enough, didn't make the list of games, which brings up the question of whether there's still plans to resurrect it - or if Blizzard, like Wired's blogger suggests, just wants to forget about it altogether.

Finally, no list of canceled Blizzard games would be complete without a reference to Warcraft Adventures. I was always disappointed that this one got canceled, being a big fan of the old adventure games, and it looks like I even have allies at Blizzard on this point. But the WoW team seems to like to fit the game's story in wherever they can, so it wasn't all in vain, right?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, News items

Mike Morhaime speaks at D.I.C.E. 08

Blizzard Entertainment logoThe D.I.C.E. Summit's official site describes the event, currently taking place in Las Vegas, as a meeting of "the video game industry's most influential leaders," so of course you know Blizzard's there. Gamesindustry.biz's coverage of Mike Morhaime's presentation today doesn't reveal anything too earth-shattering about the company or the World of Warcraft. It's about the same thing we've heard from him in the past, but hey, if the presentation isn't broke, don't fix it, right?

It's still good to hear that Blizzard's on the right track, of course, and it's actually amazing that even with Mike Morhaime about to get his eighth boss, Blizzard's stayed pretty consistent on quality and dependability, as almost anyone who's had to switch bosses can tell you. But it looks like that, even with the Activision merger, we can expect the same tradition of long development cycles leading to quality games, which is, if familiar news, also comforting news.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, News items

Morhaime headed to the AIAS Hall of Fame

Blizzard's Mike Morhaime is headed for the Hall of Fame-- the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences Hall of Fame, that is. The AIAS is going to honor him for contributing to "a significant advancement within the industry, while demonstrating proven success and leadership," and he's certainly done that, presiding not only over this, the most popular MMO of all time, but over years of amazing Blizzard success.

Morhaime will get the award as part of the D.I.C.E. Summit in February, and he'll join such videogame luminaries as Peter Molyneux (of Populous and Fable fame), Quake's John Carmack, and Shigeru Miyamoto, an old graphic designer that made some game about a plumber.

Congrats to Morhaime on the award-- definitely well-deserved. Now all we need to do is petition the Grammys for his contributions to the musical world.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Blizzard, News items

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