Multiplayer and Mobile Game Leaders to Speak at Austin Game Conference September 9-10, 2004

AUSTIN, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Austin Game Initiative today announced details of the 2004 Austin Game Conference (AGC), to be held September 9-10, 2004, at the Austin Convention Center. The critically acclaimed conference will begin with a unique event special to the Austin Game Conference as Microsoft and Sony will take the stage and deliver a shared keynote: "Massively Multiplayer Console Is Coming". Scott Henson, Director, Platform Strategy, Microsoft Xbox, will discuss Microsoft's approach to bringing MMOGs to the Xbox and Glen Van Datta, Director of Online Technology, Sony Computer Entertainment, will discuss Sony's PlayStation 2 strategy. Separately, Professor of Economics Edward Castronova will provide a keynote on digital economies.

The 2004 Austin Game Conference will deliver critical information on developing multiplayer and massively multiplayer games as well as mobile games for industry professionals with special emphasis on next-generation technologies and business strategies for emerging products and platforms. The unique program will consist of panel sessions and workshops for consoles, PCs and mobile game devices plus a technology pavilion so developers, technologists and business professionals can network in a relaxed atmosphere.

In addition to the special Sony and Microsoft shared keynote discussing the future of massively multiplayer console gaming, the packed schedule will include 48 sessions across six tracks from veterans including Sony Online, Microsoft, NCSoft, Ubisoft, Electronic Arts, Red Storm, Disney, Monolith, Turbine, Taldren, Mythic and others.

"As the third-largest region in the United States for game development, Austin is once again pleased to host the most innovative creative and business minds in game development from around the world," said Christopher V. Sherman, executive director of the Austin Game Initiative. "With more than 850 people at last year's event, the Austin Game Conference has earned the reputation as the definitive conference for multiplayer game development. We look forward to a larger event this year."

Special Features:

The Austin Game Conference will provide attendees with an opportunity to attend special sessions that focus on the latest PC and console tools, hardware and technologies to streamline the design processes. Conference tracks are designed to allow individuals to pursue their specialized interests, learn from industry leaders and scout out the latest technology (track details below). Once again, the Austin Game Initiative and Criterion Software have teamed up to produce LivePitch GameON!, a matchmaking initiative that provides an opportunity for developers to meet with and pitch PC and console game demos to the world's leading publishers.

Austin Game Conference Highlights:

-- Multiplayer Online Games Tracks: Discussions with visionaries and veterans, providing detailed insight with four tracks: Tech, Design, Service and Production. The definitive conference on multiplayer online games.

-- Future of the Development Pipeline: Focuses on streamlining the design process. With the length of today's development cycle, don't be left behind. Includes PC and console focuses.

-- Mobile Market Design and Profits: Revenues and profits are just now being realized. Understand this fragmented market and the opportunities. Learn how to get product out the door and make a profit.

-- LivePitch GameON! -- Developer/Publisher Pitch Sessions: Independent developers vie to pitch with leading publishers at the show. Register online at

-- Technology Pavilion: Showcasing the latest tools, technologies, products and services. The only place to nationally showcase until next year. Booths and/or private meeting rooms available.

-- Machinima Theater: Machinima is the convergence of filmmaking, animation and game development. By combining the techniques of filmmaking, the flexibility of animation production and the technology of real-time 3D game engines, Machinima makes for a very cost- and time-efficient way to produce films.

Registration Information

Early Registration for the two-day event is now open and can be accessed by logging on to Early registration for professionals prior to August 15 is $125. After August 15, the price is $145 for professionals. Onsite registration price is $175 for professionals. Early registration for students prior to August 15 is $85. After August 15, the price is $110 for students. Onsite registration price is $135 for students. One day passes are also available. Conference Registration gains access to the AGC, technology pavilion and the Women's Game Conference which runs concurrently with the Austin Game Conference.

About The Game Initiative

The Game Initiative is chartered with the growth of the computer and video game industry by serving the needs of companies and individuals involved in producing interactive entertainment software and hardware for video game consoles, handheld devices, personal computers and the Internet. The Game Initiative assists in growing the game industry through events, public awareness, information and supporting programs. Game Initiative events include the Austin Game Conference, the Women's Game Conference and the How to Break into the Game Industry national conference series. More information about the Game Initiative can be found at or


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