Doom, Quake Programmer John Carmack Getting BAFTA High Honor

He will join Shigeru Miyamoto, Peter Molyneux, and Gabe Newell when he receives the Fellowship award in April.

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The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) will honor mastermind and visionary game programmer John Carmack with the Fellowship award at the upcoming British Academy Games Awards, the organization has announced.

In a statement, BAFTA described Carmack as a "pioneer" of 3D graphics, working for more than two decades to shape the landscape of gaming with his work. The Fellowship award is the highest honor that BAFTA gives out to individuals, recognizing an "outstanding and exceptional contribution to film, television, or games." Previous recipients have included Shigeru Miyamoto, Will Wright, Peter Molyneux, and Gabe Newell.

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Specifically, BAFTA cited Carmack's popularization of techniques such as tile refresh, raycasting, binary space partitioning, and surface caching as being revolutionary for gaming.

He co-founded id Software and was the lead programmer on influential first-person shooter games such as Wolfenstein 3D, Doom, and the Quake series.

Carmack left id Software in 2013, joining virtual reality company Oculus VR as its chief technology officer in August of that year. His departure from id Software has not been without controversy, however, as id Software parent company ZeniMax sued Oculus, claiming Carmack took ZeniMax IP to Oculus to help create the Rift headset. Oculus, which is owned by Facebook, has vehemently denied this.

"Receiving a BAFTA Fellowship is a great honor," Carmack said in a statement. "Over the course of my career, I've remained passionate about the potential for engineering and technology improvements to expand the range of human creativity. Graphics, networking, extendable platforms, and now virtual reality; each has enabled magnificent new things that delight millions of people. I am as excited about the future today as I was when I started."

This year's British Academy Games Awards will take place on Thursday, April 7. The ceremony will be hosted by comedian Dara O'Briain and will be streamed live through BAFTA's Twitch channel. As for game awards, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, Rocket League, Life is Strange, Fallout 4, Everybody's Gone to the Rapture, and Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain are nominated for overall Game of the Year.

You can see a full list of nominees across all categories here.

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