Second Annual Game Developers Choice Online Awards Finalists

Related: Gaming, GDC

FrontierVille, Rift, Ravenwood Fair and Others Receive Multiple Nods; Industry Veteran Mike Goslin Returns to Host the Awards Ceremony at GDC Online in Austin

SAN FRANCISCO, Aug. 23, 2011 — (PRNewswire) — UBM TechWeb Game Network, organizers of the Game Developers Conference® Online (formerly GDC Austin), have announced the finalists for the second annual Game Developers Choice Online Awards, the premiere awards show honoring the best in persistent online gaming, from social network titles to major MMOs and beyond.

In the Awards' second year, Three Rings Design's co-op RPG Spiral Knights leads with a total of four nominations. The title is followed by Trion Worlds' big-budget MMO Rift and social network titles FrontierVille (Zynga) and Ravenwood Fair (Lolapps), each of which earned three nods, showcasing the massive variety of online games nominated this year.

The two top prizes, Best Live Game and Best New Online Game, also see a huge diversity of entries, with veteran titles like Blizzard Entertainment's World of Warcraft battling it out with Mind Candy's Moshi Monsters and KingsIsle's Wizard101 in Best Live Game, and Best New Online Game adding surging social network titles like Playdom's Gardens of Time to the mix.

The Game Developers Choice Online Awards are a sister event to the Game Developers Choice Awards which takes place annually at GDC in San Francisco, and the ceremony will be held on the evening of October 12, 2011 during the Game Developers Conference Online (GDC Online), which takes place at the Austin Convention Center in Austin, Texas October 10-13.

Industry veteran and popular host Mike Goslin of Mindspark Interactive Network returns to present the "for developers, by developers" awards ceremony. Following community-led nominations, winners in all regular awards will be selected by the Choice Online Awards-specific International Choice Awards Network (ICAN Online), an invitation-only group comprised of 400 leading game creators from all parts of the online game industry.

The complete list of finalists for the 2011 Game Developers Choice Online Awards are as follows:

BEST ONLINE VISUAL ARTS

  • DC Universe Online (Sony Online Entertainment)
  • Rift (Trion Worlds)
  • Spiral Knights (Three Rings Design/Sega)
  • Dragons of Atlantis (Kabam)
  • Vindictus (Nexon)

BEST SOCIAL NETWORK GAME

  • CityVille (Zynga)
  • Gardens of Time (Playdom)
  • Dragons of Atlantis (Kabam)
  • FrontierVille (Zynga)
  • Ravenwood Fair (Lolapps)

BEST ONLINE GAME DESIGN

  • Ravenwood Fair (Lolapps)
  • Pocket Frogs (NimbleBit)
  • Zuma Blitz (PopCap)
  • Spiral Knights (Three Rings Design/Sega)
  • FrontierVille (Zynga)

ONLINE INNOVATION (New Award Category)

  • Dragon Age Legends (EA2D)
  • Shadow Cities (Grey Area)
  • Empire Avenue (Empire Avenue)
  • Pocket Frogs (NimbleBit)
  • Zombie Lane (Digital Chocolate)

BEST ONLINE TECHNOLOGY

  • World of Tanks (Wargaming)
  • CityVille (Zynga)
  • DC Universe Online (Sony Online Entertainment)
  • Rift (Trion Worlds)
  • LEGO Universe Online (The LEGO Group/Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment)

BEST COMMUNITY RELATIONS

  • Wizard101 (KingsIsle Entertainment)
  • World of Tanks (Wargaming )
  • Minecraft (Mojang)
  • EA Sports FIFA Superstars (Playfish/EA)
  • World of Warcraft (Blizzard Entertainment)

BEST AUDIO for an ONLINE GAME

  • Clone Wars Adventures (Sony Online Entertainment)
  • Spiral Knights (Three Rings Design/Sega)
  • Ravenwood Fair (Lolapps)
  • FrontierVille (Zynga)
  • Dragon Age Legends (EA2D)

BEST NEW ONLINE GAME

  • Rift (Trion Worlds)
  • Gardens of Time (Playdom)
  • Vindictus (Nexon)
  • Spiral Knights (Three Rings Design/Sega)
  • Monster Galaxy (Gaia Online)

BEST LIVE GAME

  • Wizard101 (KingsIsle Entertainment)
  • Moshi Monsters (Mind Candy)
  • League of Legends (Riot Games)
  • World of Warcraft (Blizzard Entertainment)
  • Minecraft (Mojang)

**Voting for the Audience Award opens in September at www.GDCOnlineAwards.com

A category to watch this year is the Online Innovation Award, new category to the Choice Online Awards. Games nominated in this category have provided some of the most unexpected gameplay twists and turns - or business model surprises - in the online game industry over the last year.

As noted above, the nominees are Grey Area's Shadow Cities, which cleverly integrates real-life locations into a mobile social game, NimbleBit's Pocket Frogs, a free-to-play mobile game integrating ingenious breeding mechanics, EA2D's Dragon Age Legends, a viable core social game built out of a AAA property, Digital Chocolate's Zombie Lane, a crafty undead-filled twist on exciting social game genres, and finally, Empire Avenue, a title with built-in game mechanics to increase a player's social capital.

In addition, the Choice Online Awards will include two Special Award categories, celebrating iconic developers and games that have left an everlasting impression and shaped massive online games that are played worldwide.

Previously revealed, this year's Online Game Legend Award will be presented to John Taylor and Kelton Flinn, the founders of Kesmai Corporation and the creators of landmark online games such as Island of Kesmai and Air Warrior. The second persistent online game to be inducted into the Choice Online Awards Hall of Fame will be Sony Online Entertainment's beloved fantasy game EverQuest, a still-operating game which was one of the most important early 3D MMO titles launched.

More information about the Game Developers Choice Online Awards is available at the official website at www.GDCOnlineAwards.com.  GDC Online takes place in Austin, Texas from October 10-13, 2011. Information about sessions and registration is available at www.GDCOnline.com.  All GDC Online pass holders, including the Expo Pass, will have access to the awards ceremony.

About the UBM TechWeb Game Network 

A core provider of essential information to the professional game industry, the UBM TechWeb Game Network – formerly known as the Think Services Game Group - offers market-defining content, and drives community through its award winning lineup of print, online, event and research products and services. These include the Game Developers Conference®, the Webby Award-winning Gamasutra.com and network of sites, the Game Advertising Online ad network, the Game Developers Conference® Online, the Game Developers Conference™ Europe, the Game Developers Conference™ China, Game Developer Magazine, Game Developer Research, the Game Career Seminars and GameCareerGuide.com, the Independent Games Festival and Summit, and the Game Developers Choice Awards.  Visit www.jointhegamenetwork.com

About UBM TechWeb

UBM TechWeb, the global leader in technology media and professional information, enables people and organizations to harness the transformative power of technology. Through its three core businesses – media solutions, marketing services and paid content – UBM TechWeb produces the most respected and consumed brands and media applications in the technology market. More than 14.5 million business and technology professionals (CIOs and IT managers, Web & Digital professionals, Software Developers, Government decision makers, and Telecom providers) actively engage in UBM TechWeb's communities and information resources monthly. UBM TechWeb brands includes: global face-to-face events such as Interop, Web 2.0, Black Hat and Enterprise Connect; award-winning online resources such as InformationWeek, Light Reading, and Network Computing; and market-leading magazines InformationWeek, Wall Street & Technology, and Advanced Trading. UBM TechWeb is a UBM plc company, a global provider of news distribution and specialist information services with a market capitalization of more than $2.5 billion .  Visit: www.ubmtechweb.com


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