The Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences is in the final stages of preparing for next month's annual Las Vegas-based D.I.C.E. Summit, revealing the rest of the speaker lineup and the recipient of its first-ever Pioneer Award.
David Crane, creator of such iconic video games such as Pitfall!
and A Boy and his Blob
, will receive the Pioneer Award, Wired.com reported Tuesday
. His games played a large part in defining the Atari era.
"The Atari 2600 was by far the most challenging platform in the history of gaming. And the very challenges that had many people tearing out their hair made it the most fun for me," said the programmer, who also co-founded Activision after leaving Atari in 1979.
Crane will accept the award during the D.I.C.E. Summit's 13th annual Interactive Achievement Awards on February 18. The summit runs from February 17-19 this year at the Red Rock Resort in Las Vegas.
D.I.C.E. organizers also announced the rest of the event's speakers, including Electronic Arts COO John Schappert, Gearbox president and CEO Randy Pitchford, Vigil Games' Joe Madureira and David Adamsand, and Greg Short and Geoffrey Zatkin of research firm EEDAR.
The summit will also host a special event held by EEDAR and moderated by G4-TV host Adam Sessler. The event is comprised of three debates over casual games, innovation, and independence. Participants include Eat Sleep Play founder and God of War
creator David Jaffe, Telltale Games' Dan Connors, Doublefine's Tim Schafer, and Gas Powered's Chris Taylor.
D.I.C.E. presenters include OnLive CEO Steve Perlman and Remedy Entertainment president Matias Myllrinne, among others.
D.I.C.E. organizers recently announced that Naughty Dog's Uncharted 2: Among Thieves
was nominated for the majority
of Interactive Achievement Awards. Also receiving special notice during the awards is former Entertainment Software Association head Doug Lowenstein, who will be accepting the Lifetime Achievement Award
, and industry veteran Mark Cerny, who is joining the AIAS Hall of Fame