The British Academy of Film and Television Arts have announced that they will be awarding David Braben, founder of Frontier Developments and co-creator of Elite, with the renowned fellowship at next month’s British Academy Game Awards ceremony.
The BAFTA fellowship is the highest accolade presented in recognition of an outstanding contribution to film, television, or games. Previous recipients of the prestigious award include Rockstar Games, Gabe Newell, Peter Molyneux, Shigeru Miyamoto, and Will Wright for their contribution to the advancement of videogames.
The Chairman of the BAFTA’s Games Committee, Harvey Elliot, said of Braben at today’s announcement, “As Elite nears its 20th anniversary this September, David Braben’s enthusiasm for the medium remains as undiminished today as it was back then. David is a genuine pioneer, not just in terms of game design or cultural significance but also in the field of computing, having championed the Raspberry Pi that recently became the most successful British computer of all time. The Academy fellowship could not be more appropriate.”
British-born David Braben founded Pioneer Games in 1982 when he co-created the original Elite for the home computer systems with Ian Bell. Braben has since gone on to work on such title as Wallace and Gromit, Trillville, and fan-favorite Rollercoaster Tycoon. He is also a trustee at the Raspberry Pi Foundation, who seek to promote the study of basic computer science in schools across Britain.
“I am absolutely delighted to be receiving a BAFTA fellowship; it is an incredible honor,” Braben said earlier today in a press release, “I have a truly great team behind me at Frontier, and without them I would not be receiving this, so the honor is effectively for all of us.”
You can catch David Braben at The British Academy Game Awards hosted by Rufus Hound next month on Tuesday, March 12th, which is also set to be hosted on Twitch
Braben’s latest game comes in the form of Elite: Dangerous, a Kickstarted space simulation game which raised over $1.5 million. I reviewed the game for Continue Play a few weeks back, and found that it did end up consuming a lot of my time. I said of the experience, “Elite: Dangerous suffers from the same problems that many large scale space simulators do: the strive for realism also brings excessive lulls in pacing. Elite is trying to be more of a realistic space experience than it is trying to be an adventure game, and that distinction should be made to unaware players before they purchase. Much like EVE, Elite will require a certain level of dedication and significant time investment that not every player will be willing to make.”You can check out the full review here.