GDC 2002: Grand Theft Auto III wins top award

The IGDA reveals the winners of the second Game Developers Choice Awards.

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The International Game Developers Association (IGDA) presented this year's Game Developers Choice Awards last night during the 2002 Game Developers Conference (GDC) in San Jose, California. The nominations for the awards were open to all game developers in order to ensure an accurate reflection of the game development community's opinion.

"The Game Developers Choice Awards are a special moment during the year when we pause to honor fellow developers who create exceptional and innovative games," said Jason Della Rocca, program director of the IGDA. "Recipients of these accolades know they are being recognized by their peers, and there is no greater honor than that."

This year's Game Developers Choice Awards recipients are:

Game of the Year
Grand Theft Auto III (DMA Design/Rockstar Games)

Rookie Studio of the Year
Bohemia Interactive Studio for Operation Flashpoint

Original Game Character of the Year
Daxter from Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy

Excellence in Audio
Marty O'Donnell and team for sound effects in Halo

Excellence in Game Design
GTAIII team for gameplay in Grand Theft Auto III

Excellence in Level Design
Fumito Ueda and team for level design in ICO

Excellence in Programming
Richard Evans for artificial intelligence in Black & White

Excellence in Visual Arts
Fumito Ueda and team for art direction in ICO

Game Innovation Spotlights
Black & White (Lionhead Studios)
Grand Theft Auto III (DMA Design/Rockstar Games)
ICO (Sony Computer Entertainment)
Majestic (Electronic Arts)
Rez (United Game Artists)

In addition to the awards listed above, the following special honors were presented:

Lifetime Achievement Award
Yuji Naka, president and CEO of Sega's Sonic Team, for the innovative and award-winning work he has produced during his career, including the creation of Sega mascot Sonic the Hedgehog.

First Penguin Award
Hubert Chardot, for his work on Alone in the Dark, the game that started the survival horror genre.

IGDA Award for Community Contribution
Jeff Lander, for his writings on game development, community building efforts, and student outreach.

For more information about the awards and the recipients, visit the official IGDA Web site.

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