The Game Developers' Choice Awards has announced that it will recognize Doom designer John Romero and "the first female game designer" Mabel Addis at its award ceremony next month.
Romero will be receiving the lifetime achievement award for his contributions to the industry. This includes his early work at ID Software on titles like Wolfenstein 3D, Doom, and Quake, his independent work at Romero Games (which he co-founded along with his wife Brenda Romero), and his advocacy for diversity and inclusion in the games industry, particularly in relation to Indigenous and Latine youth.
Addis, meanwhile, will posthumously be awarded the Pioneer award, with her family accepting the honour on her behalf at the event. Addis passed away in 2004 but left behind a legacy that includes the 1964 text-based strategy game The Sumerian Game. As the GDCA website notes, some of the innovations present in her work included the early adoption of "game updates, in-game narrative experiences" and "iterations of what would become known as cutscenes." At the time, these were represented via photo slideshows with synchronized audio.
Stephenie Hawkins, the director of event production for media and entertainment at Informa Tech (the company behind the awards) issued this statement:
“This year, the Game Developers Choice Awards will recognize two of the most impactful game development talents in history, Mabel Addis and John Romero. The Game Developers Choice Awards are proud to honor two artists with wildly divergent career trajectories, who worked decades apart but shared a creative passion and ingenuity that would help define entire game genres for decades.”
The award ceremony will take place on Wednesday, March 22nd at 6:30pm PT, and will also simultaneously be broadcasted on Twitch. In other words, mark your calendars if you want to see these video game legends duly celebrated for their incredible contributions to gaming.