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Game Developer

2009 Front Line Award winners unveiled, with Bink Video entering Hall of Fame.

SAN FRANCISCO—Jan. 7, 2010— The editors of Think Services’ industry-leading Game Developer magazine have named the winners for the 2009 Front Line Awards, the twelfth annual ranking of the best tools enabling game development for professional video game creators. Front Line Awards are given every year in the categories of programming/production, art, audio, game engine, middleware, books, and the Hall Of Fame.

This year, Game Developer is pleased to honor RAD Game Tools’ practically ubiquitous video codec Bink Video as its inductee to the Front Line Awards Hall of Fame. The codec and associated tools were used in many of last year's top-selling AAA titles, and has served developers for over a decade. The Front Line Awards Hall of Fame is reserved for those landmark tools that have served developers mightily over multiple iterations and multiple years, including past winners such as Microsoft DirectX, Adobe Photoshop, and Epic's Unreal Engine series.

Overall, the Front Line Awards represent the best tools in the game industry, as nominated and voted for by Game Developer’s expert readership. All winners have been profiled in the January 2010 issue of Game Developer magazine, available now in print and shortly in digital editions. The editors congratulate the following winners of the 2009 Front Line Awards:

Hall of Fame:

Bink Video

RAD Game Tools

Art Tool:

Autodesk 3ds Max 2010


Audio Tool:

Pro Tools 8



Havok Physics



Unreal Engine 3

Epic Games

Programming/Production Tool:

Adobe Flash CS4



Mastering Unreal Technology: Vol 1 by Jason Busby, Zak Parrish, and Jeff Wilson

Sams Publishing

Game Developer's mission for more than fifteen years has been to provide game developers with information, news, and articles that pertain directly to them. The Front Line Awards are an official way of recognizing one specific aspect of the industry: the tools that developers need to do their jobs better.

As for the Front Line Awards' methodology, Game Developer looks at the powerful lineup of new products and new releases of favorite tools for professional game developers – from game engines to books. Following an open nomination period and consultation with the magazine’s editors, finalists were selected based on criteria such as utility, innovation, value, and ease of use. The resulting Front Line Award winners represent the most innovative, user-friendly, and useful products from behind the scenes of the world’s best video games. Nominations for this year’s Front Line Awards were open to all new software products (and new versions of software products) related to game development which were released between September 1, 2008 and August 31, 2009.

"As ever, these awards allow developers to honor those tools that actually make their lives easier, and represent the best in the industry,” said Brandon Sheffield, editor-in-chief of Game Developer. “We would like to congratulate both the winners and the also-notable finalists for 2009's Front Line Awards, and wish the industry a prosperous 2010."

For more information and a full list of finalists, please visit the official Front Line Awards website at, or visit Game Developer magazine online at

About Game Developer (

Game Developer, the print publication written specifically for creators of entertainment software, provides technical and industry information to over 35,000 professional game developers. Each month, industry leaders and game development experts share technical solutions, review new products, and discuss strategies for creating innovative, successful games. Game Developer features articles written by professional game developers on cutting-edge game development techniques in the areas of graphics and AI programming, audio design and engineering, art and animation, QA/testing, game design, and project management.

About the Think Services Game Group

A core provider of essential information to the professional game industry, the Think Services Game Group offers market-defining content, and drives community through its award winning lineup of print, online, event and research products and services. These include Game Developer Magazine, Game Developer Research, the Webby Award-winning,, and other Gamasutra Network websites, the Game Developers Conference®, the Game Developers Conference® Austin, the Game Developers Conference® Europe, the Game Developers Conference® China, the Game Developers Conference® Canada, GDC Mobile, the Game Career Seminars, the Independent Games Festival and Summit, and the Game Developers Choice Awards. To learn more, visit

About Think Services, a division of United Business Media

Think Services connects specialized communities worldwide using educational events, consulting, training, certification, membership, and innovative media. Providing comprehensive opportunities for people to learn from, network with, and inspire each other, Think Services builds strong brands and works within communities to foster a unique affinity with its products and services. The division's flagship products include the Game Developers Conference, the Webby Award-winning, Game Developer magazine, the International Customer Management Institute (ICMI), and HDI. Think Services is a subsidiary of United Business Media (, a global media and marketing services company with a market capitalization of more than $1.6 billion. To learn more, visit

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Think Services Game Group

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