We’re honored to announce that Geoff Keighley, host of Spike TV’s Game Trailers TV with Geoff Keighley television show, will host a fireside chat for our upcoming GamesBeat@GDC executive game conference. The topic will be How to Build a Blockbuster Franchise, and this fireside chat will have some heavy firepower.
The event is set for March 10 in San Francisco at the Game Developers Conference in the Moscone Convention Center. Keighley has covered video games for more than half his life, starting at the age of 13.
He is a journalist, television personality, and producer. Today, he is the host and executive producer of the No. 1-rated videogame show on TV and has a talent and development deal with MTV Networks Entertainment Group. Behind the camera, Keighley is one of the most prolific producers of videogame television, including Gears of War: Race to Launch for MTV, the landmark 5-hour documentary “I, Videogame” for the Discovery Channel, and various live event specials at the G4 network. He serves as co-chairman of the Game Critics Awards, an independent group of journalists who award the annual Best of E3 and Game of the Year awards.
Keighley will host a chat with two of the most interesting blockbuster producers in the video game industry:
Joseph Staten, design director at Bungie, the developer of Microsoft’s Halo series of video games, which have sold more than 30 million units since 2001. Staten joined Bungie in 1998 as the company was getting ready to ship Myth II for the PC and Mac. He has worked on every Bungie title since then. Bungie was acquired by Microsoft in 2000 in preparation for the launch of the original Xbox game console. Staten worked on the original Halo, which became the smash hit that established Microsoft’s presence in the console game business. He worked as cinematics director on subsequent Halo games and was the creative director for the now-canceled (we think) game collaboration with film director Peter Jackson. His contribution was as writer and creative director for Halo 3: ODST, which sold millions of units last fall. In 2007, Tor Books published Staten’s Halo: Contact Harvest, the fifth in a series of novels about Halo. It shot to No. 3 on the New York Times bestseller list. He is now working on a non-Halo, unannounced title at Bungie.
Ray Muzyka, general manager and CEO at BioWare, senior vice president and group general manager of RPG/MMO Group at Electronic Arts. Originally trained as a doctor, Muzyka began making games with his pal Greg Zeschuk. They co-founded BioWare in 1995 and built BioWare into one of the hottest makers of role-playing games for the PC and consoles. Their hits included Shattered Steel, the Baldur’s Gate series, MDK2, MDK2: Armageddon, the Neverwinter Nights series, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, Jade Empire, and Mass Effect. Elevation Partners invested $400 million into BioWare as well as Pandemic and then sold the combined company to EA for $800 million in 2008. At EA, BioWare has just published a couple of big hits — Mass Effect 2 and Dragon Age Origins — and it is at work on a new Star Wars online game, The Old Republic.
Here’s a review of our Disruption 2.0 theme for the conference:
We’ll focus on the next disruptions that will happen in the video game industry. In the past couple of years, social games with virtual goods business models have proved themselves and shaken up the status quo. The iPhone has become a hot platform, and Apple hopes to extend further into games with the iPad. Digital distribution and online games are growing. Will these trends gather more momentum and prove to be sustainable, or will new platforms and business models disrupt the disruptors?
The big game companies and brands are maneuvering into the market, even as successful startups are consolidating their gains and acquiring companies. Are console game makers poised to make a comeback as the recession ends? As growth returns to the industry in 2010, who will be poised to take market share and define the next-generation of games?
Game companies that are doing the disrupting, adapting and growing will be speaking at the conference.
Who’s Got Game contest: Our deadline is fast-approaching for the contest for best game startup. We’ll close off applications for the contest at 5 pm Pacific time, on Friday, Feb. 26, so get your entry forms filled out. The top finalists will appear on stage at GamesBeat@GDC before a panel of expert judges. Those judges will select the winner.
For more conference info, check out our GamesBeat 2010 web site and our Facebook Group for GamesBeat@GDC. Our sponsors include the Georgia Department of Economic Development, PlaySpan, AdMob, and hi5.