The International Game Developers Association (IGDA) today announced that it will recognize Mark Cerny for his lifelong contribution to the games industry with its Lifetime Achievement Award. Cerny will be honored with the award at the Game Developers Choice Awards ceremony on March 24, during the 2004 Game Developers Conference (GDC) in San Jose.
"We're proud to recognize Mark Cerny with the Lifetime Achievement Award," said Jason Della Rocca, program director, IGDA. "It's rare to find a 'jack-of-all-trades' who not only has the high-level vision for great game design but can act as the glue to adhere all the pieces together. His unusual but highly effective methodology has brought us some of the most entertaining games in history."
Before the age of 20, Cerny was already working as a team leader, designer, and graphics programmer for Atari's Marble Madness. After leaving Atari, Cerny spent several years with Sega in Japan, where he founded and managed the Sega Technical Institute and oversaw the creation of Sonic the Hedgehog 2 and Kid Chameleon. Cerny then joined Universal Interactive Studios as vice president, becoming the company's president two years later. While at Universal, Cerny also served as an executive producer and made significant creative contributions to both the Crash Bandicoot and Spyro the Dragon series.
Cerny is now the president and founder of Cerny Games, a game design consultancy that has contributed to the release of no fewer than seven million-selling titles, including Jak II and Ratchet and Clank: Going Commando.
"If there has been one constant theme over the last two decades, it is the drive and talent of those around me," said Cerny. "This award is a tremendous honor that I'd like to share with the friends and colleagues who have invited me into their projects and given me their support."