The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

All the Winners from the 2018 Game Developers Choice Awards

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The 18th annual Game Developers Choice Awards took place Wednesday, March 21, right in the middle of the Game Developers Conference. The awards honor the best game of the year, as selected by game developers.

The biggest winners of the evening were The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Game of the Year, Best Audio, Best Design), Gorogoa (Best Mobile Game, Innovation Award), and Cuphead (Best Debut, Vest Visual Art). See the full list of winners below, and watch the archived stream via Twitch.

GAME OF THE YEAR

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo EPD / Nintendo)
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG Corporation)
Nier: Automata (PlatinumGames / Square Enix)
Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla Games / Sony Interactive Entertainment)
Super Mario Odyssey (Nintendo EPD / Nintendo)

BEST AUDIO

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo EPD / Nintendo)
Cuphead (StudioMDHR)
Nier: Automata (PlatinumGames / Square Enix)
Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice (Ninja Theory)
Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla Games / Sony Interactive Entertainment)

BEST DEBUT

StudioMDHR (Cuphead)
Team Cherry (Hollow Knight)
Sidebar Games (Golf Story)
Infinite Fall (Night in the Woods)
Jason Roberts / Buried Signal (Gorogoa)

BEST DESIGN

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo EPD / Nintendo)
Super Mario Odyssey (Nintendo EPD / Nintendo)
Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla Games / Sony Interactive Entertainment)
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG Corporation)
Nier: Automata (PlatinumGames / Square Enix)

indie

BEST MOBILE GAME

Gorogoa (Jason Roberts / Buried Signal / Annapurna Interactive)
Reigns: Her Majesty (Nerial / Devolver Digital)
Hidden Folks (Adriaan de Jongh and Sylvain Tegroeg)
Monument Valley 2 (ustwo games)
Bury Me, My Love (The Pixel Hunt / Figs / ARTE France / Playdius)

INNOVATION AWARD

Gorogoa (Jason Roberts / Buried Signal / Annapurna Interactive)
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo EPD / Nintendo)
What Remains of Edith Finch (Giant Sparrow / Annapurna Interactive)
Everything (David OReilly / Double Fine Productions)
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG Corporation)

BEST NARRATIVE

What Remains of Edith Finch (Giant Sparrow / Annapurna Interactive)
Night in the Woods (Infinite Fall / Finji)
Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice (Ninja Theory)
Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla Games / Sony Interactive Entertainment)
Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus (MachineGames / Bethesda Softworks)

BEST TECHNOLOGY

Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla Games / Sony Interactive Entertainment)
Destiny 2 (Bungie / Activision)
Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice (Ninja Theory)
Assassin’s Creed: Origins (Ubisoft Montreal / Ubisoft)
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo EPD / Nintendo)

BEST VISUAL ART

Cuphead (StudioMDHR)
Persona 5 (P-Studio / Atlus)
Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla Games / Sony Interactive Entertainment)
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo EPD / Nintendo)
Night in the Woods (Infinite Fall / Finji)

BEST VR/AR GAME

Superhot VR (SUPERHOT Team)
Star Trek: Bridge Crew (Red Storm Entertainment / Ubisoft)
Lone Echo (Ready at Dawn / Oculus Studios)
Resident Evil 7: Biohazard (Capcom)
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim VR (Bethesda Game Studios / Bethesda Softworks)

The award show also awarded the Audience Award, which is chosen via a public voting process, to NieR: Automata and PlatinumGames. Rami Ismail was awarded the Ambassador Award for his outreach to game developers around the world, while veteran game developer Tim Schafer was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award.

“Every year sees countless amazing games worthy of recognition, but this year in particular has seen some of the strongest titles to arrive this generation. The GDCAs give us an opportunity to reflect on and honor the games that provided us with endless joy,” said Katie Stern, General Manager of the Game Developers Conference. “The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild helped us rediscover a childlike sense of adventure and discovery. Titles like Gorogoa and What Remains of Edith Finch offered us distinct creative visions that can only be experienced in games, and games like Cuphead and Horizon Zero Dawn crafted worlds we could lose ourselves in. Congratulations to all of tonight’s nominees and winners and thank you for your creativity and dedication.”

ark: survival evolved

Dino-Rider ARK: Survival Evolved Headed to Switch

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During the Game Developers Conference this week, Studio Wildcard announced ARK: Survival Evolved is headed to the Nintendo Switch. It’s launching this fall.

“The Switch’s handheld mode provides a fantastic new capability for survivors who want to fully immerse themselves in the vast worlds of ARK,” said Jeremy Stieglitz, lead designer and director at Studio Wildcard. “With this new version, Switch players can go directly from hunting and taming while sitting on the couch, to forming online tribes and searching out new conquests when on the bus, waiting in line, or wherever they happen to be.”

The Switch port is co-developed with Abstraction Games to bring the full ARK experience to the Switch, with over 100 prehistoric and fantastical creatures roaming on a shared island world.

The announcement comes just one week after Studio Wildcard announced that ARK: Survival Evolved is also headed to mobile devices. The mobile port is developed by War Drum Studios. Closed beta invites for iOS players have begun to go out. GDC 2018 attendees can be among the first to play the iOS version in the Epic Games booth on the show floor (ARK runs on the Unreal engine).

ARK: Survival Evolved originally launched via Steam Early Access in Summer 2015. It officially launched last fall on PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4. The survival-crafting game has been praised for its visuals, depth of content, and consistent updates and patches. It’s been criticized for its time requirements, reliance on grinding, and obtuse designs.

Both the mobile and Switch ports should be out later this year. ARK: Survival Evolved is rated T for Teen with Violence, Blood, Crude Humor, and Alcohol.

game developers conference

The 32nd Annual Game Developers Conference Runs this Week

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The 2018 Game Developers Conference takes place this week in San Francisco, California. The conference will feature the 2oth annual Independent Games Festival Awards, 18th annual Game Developers Choice Awards, and the third annual Virtual Reality Developers Conference.

GDC is the primary meeting grounds for video game developers to network, seek mentors, and show off games and projects. Big name attending publishers and developers include Nintendo, Electronic Arts, Ubisoft, Riot Games, and Naughty Dog.

Both award shows will take place Wednesday, March 21. The GDCA will give out special achievement awards to two prominent game developers: Rami Ismail (Ambassador Award) and Tim Schafer (Lifetime Achievement Award). GDC originally announced Nolan Bushnell for the Pioneer Award, but has since rescinded it based on Bushnell’s controversial past regarding sexism in the workplace. Bushnell released a statement accepting the GDC’s decision.

Both award ceremonies will be livestreamed on GDC’s official Twitch channel.

This year’s conference will introduce the first-ever GDC Film Festival. The festival will highlight documentaries and narrative films that focus on the art and culture surrounding video games.

In total GDC 2018 will feature over 750 panels and lectures, with over 550 companies showing games and products on the expo floor.

GDC has recently announced a new event, XRDC. XRDC is a spin-off of the VRDC. It goes beyond virtual reality gaming to encompass entertainment, healthcare, education, training, and more. The two-day conference will feature networking and training. XRDC will take place in October in San Francisco.

The 2018 Game Developers Conference runs from March 19-23.

2018 Game Developers Choice Awards to Honor Tim Schafer, Rami Ismail [Update]

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[Update 02/01] The Game Developers Choice Awards Advisory Committee has rescinded the Pioneer Award due to controversy surrounding Nolan Bushnell, who has been accused of sexual harassment in the past. In the wake of community feedback and the #MeToo movement by women in the workplace, the GDC released an official statement deciding not to give out a Pioneer Award this year. Bushnell also released a statement applauding the GDC’s decision and apologizing for his actions.

Original Story:

The 18th Annual Game Developers Choice Awards have announced the recipients of this year’s special awards. Indie developer and advocate Rami Ismail will receive the Ambassador Award, Atari founder Nolan Bushnell will get the Pioneer Award, and Double Fine Founder and former LucasArts developer Tim Schafer will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award. The Game Developers Choice Awards ceremony will take place Wednesday, March 21 at the San Francisco Moscone Center during the 2018 Game Developers Conference.

“Tim, Rami and Nolan have each given so much to the video game industry through their creative passions, advocacy and leadership, it’s only fitting that they are each recognized for their unique contributions to making games and game development accessible, open and fun for everyone,” says Katie Stern, General Manager of the Game Developers Conference. “Each has worked hard to become leaders in their fields, and serve as an example of how developers who pour their passions into their projects can create something really wonderful. This is a model for all GDC attendees to aspire to.”

The Ambassador Award ‘honors individuals who are helping video games advance to a better place through advocacy or action.’ Rami Ismail co-founded Dutch indie game studio Vlambeeer, producing titles like Nuclear Throne and Ridiculous Fishing. Ismail also created the development tool presskit(), designed to help indie studios easily organize and distribute press information. Ismail dedicates large portions of his year to traveling around the world and engaging game development communities throughout Europe, Asia, and the Middle East.

Nolan Bushnell is widely recognized as one the founding fathers of video games. Bushnell co-founded Atari in 1972, along with over 20 tech and entertainment brands over the next four decades. He helped usher in the era of Pong and the Atari 2600, paving the way for the modern video game industry. He will receive the Pioneer Award for his numerous successes in business, tech, and game design.

This year’s prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award will be given to Tim Schafer. Schafer began his career in the late 80s as a programmer and writer for LucasArts. His comedic writing helped define the studio’s beloved adventure games throughout the 90s, including Day of the Tentacle and Full Throttle. Schafer formed independent studio Double Fine Productions in 2000, producing large titles like Psychonauts and Brutal Legend and smaller games like Costume Quest.

psychonauts

Double Fine famously broken open the crowd funding era in 2012 by going to Kickstarter to fund their own LucasArts-style adventure game, earning over $3 million during the campaign. Schafer, along with other crowd-funding-success indie developers, formed the video game crowdfunding platform Fig in 2015. Its first crowdfunding project was Psychonauts 2, which raised over $4 million.

Schafer and Double Fine are recognized as advocates for indie gaming and developers. In 2o14 Double Fine began publishing other indie games under the label Double Fine Presents.

Schafer will join previous Lifetime Achievement Award recipients Shigeru Miyamoto, John Carmack, Sid Meier, and others.

The Game Developers Choice Awards will take place Wednesday, March 21 at 6:30 pm Pacific/9:30 pm Eastern.

horizon zero dawn

Nominees Revealed for the 18th Game Developers Choice Awards

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The 18th Annual Game Developers Choice Awards will take place on March 21 during the Game Developers Conference. The list of nominees for all ten categories have been announced, including Game of the Year, Best Narrative, and the Innovation Award.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and Horizon Zero Dawn both lead with six nominations each, including Game of the Year. Nier: Automata, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, and Cuphead follow with three nominations each. Super Mario Odyssey received two nominations.

The nominees are selected by the International Choice Awards Network, which is comprised of game creators.

The other big annual gaming award show, The Game Awards, took place last month. Nominees and winners were selected by both game creators and journalists. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild took home Game of the Year, winning three categories total. Horizon Zero Dawn was nominated six times but didn’t win any categories.

Here is the full list of nominees for the 18th Game Developers Choice Awards.

BEST AUDIO
Cuphead (StudioMDHR)
Nier: Automata (PlatinumGames / Square Enix)
Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice (Ninja Theory)
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo EPD / Nintendo)
Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla Games / Sony Interactive Entertainment)

BEST DEBUT
Team Cherry (Hollow Knight)
Sidebar Games (Golf Story)
StudioMDHR (Cuphead)
Infinite Fall (Night in the Woods)
Jason Roberts / Buried Signal (Gorogoa)

BEST DESIGN
Super Mario Odyssey (Nintendo EPD / Nintendo)
Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla Games / Sony Interactive Entertainment)
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG Corporation)
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo EPD / Nintendo)
Nier: Automata (PlatinumGames / Square Enix)

BEST MOBILE GAME
Reigns: Her Majesty (Nerial / Devolver Digital)
Hidden Folks (Adriaan de Jongh and Sylvain Tegroeg)
Monument Valley 2 (ustwo games)
Gorogoa (Jason Roberts / Buried Signal / Annapurna Interactive)
Bury Me, My Love (The Pixel Hunt / Figs / ARTE France / Playdius)

INNOVATION AWARD
Gorogoa (Jason Roberts / Buried Signal / Annapurna Interactive)
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo EPD / Nintendo)
What Remains of Edith Finch (Giant Sparrow / Annapurna Interactive)
Everything (David OReilly / Double Fine Productions)
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG Corporation)

BEST NARRATIVE
Night in the Woods (Infinite Fall / Finji)
Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice (Ninja Theory)
What Remains of Edith Finch (Giant Sparrow / Annapurna Interactive)
Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla Games / Sony Interactive Entertainment)
Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus (MachineGames / Bethesda Softworks)

BEST TECHNOLOGY
Destiny 2 (Bungie / Activision)
Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice (Ninja Theory)
Assassin’s Creed: Origins (Ubisoft Montreal / Ubisoft)
Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla Games / Sony Interactive Entertainment)
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo EPD / Nintendo)

BEST VISUAL ART
Persona 5 (P-Studio / Atlus)
Cuphead (StudioMDHR)
Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla Games / Sony Interactive Entertainment)
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo EPD / Nintendo)
Night in the Woods (Infinite Fall / Finji)

BEST VR/AR GAME
Superhot VR (SUPERHOT Team)
Star Trek: Bridge Crew (Red Storm Entertainment / Ubisoft)
Lone Echo (Ready at Dawn / Oculus Studios)
Resident Evil 7: Biohazard (Capcom)
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim VR (Bethesda Game Studios / Bethesda Softworks)

GAME OF THE YEAR
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG Corporation)
Nier: Automata (PlatinumGames / Square Enix)
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (Nintendo EPD / Nintendo)
Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla Games / Sony Interactive Entertainment)
Super Mario Odyssey (Nintendo EPD / Nintendo)