Legendary Ultima Series Developer Richard Garriott to Keynote 2011 Game Developers Conference Europe

Industry Mogul to Discuss Why the Current Era of Social and Casual Game Development is the Most Crucial

Jun 15, 2011

BERLIN, June 15, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Richard Garriott, legendary creator of the genre-defining Ultima series and founder of social media games developer and publisher Portalarium, will give a keynote address at the 2011 Game Developers Conference™ Europe (GDC Europe). The keynote, titled "The Three Eras of Gaming and Why This One is a Game Changer," will provide attendees with special insight into the current era of social and casual games, and will discuss whether or not traditional development can and should make that transition to this new mode of interactive entertainment. GDC Europe 2011, presented by the UBM TechWeb Game Network, brings the pan-European game development community's premiere forum for learning, networking and inspiration back to the Congress-Centrum Ost Koelnmesse in Cologne, Germany on August 15-17, 2011.

Richard Garriott has had a long and fruitful career in game development, beginning in 1980 as a designer and programmer on Akalabeth: World of Doom. In 1983, Garriott and his brother established Origin Systems, Inc., then later sold the company to Electronic Arts in 1992 after several years of success.  Origin was recognized as one of the innovation leaders in the ever-changing world of entertainment software and responsible for the groundbreaking series of Ultima role playing games. Ultima I: The First Age of Darkness, is considered the genesis of a series of seminal, defining games within the RPG genre. Following their success on Ultimas I-IX, Garriott and his team went on to create another groundbreaking title within the Ultima franchise, Ultima Online (1997), which became the world's first commercially successful massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) and which continues to be enjoyed by hundreds of thousands of players the world over.

Garriott retired from Electronic Arts in 2000 to form Destination Games and then almost immediately sold Destination Games to Korean gaming giant, NCsoft. Along with a core management team of ex-Origin alumni, he then proceeded to grow NCsoft into a major MMO studio group and publisher.  Most recently, Garriott formed Portalarium, a social media games developer he helped found in 2009, where he currently serves as vice president and creative director. Over the course of his career, Garriott has won numerous awards for his contributions to the game development community, including being named Entrepreneur of the Year from Inc. magazine, being listed among Computer Gaming World's 15 Most Influential Industry Players and receiving a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Game Developers Choice Awards in 2006. Garriott also made national headlines in 2008  and realized his lifelong dream of space travel, when he launched aboard the Russian Soyuz TMA-13 spacecraft to the International Space Station.

"There are few developers with Richard Garriott's history, pedigree and vantage point, having been a defining force in the realm of traditional hardcore games, birthing the RPG and MMORPG genres, to now helping lead the way within the world of social games," said Frank Sliwka, Vice President of European Business Development and Event Director GDC Europe. "His participation in GDC Europe shows that a legend such as Garriott finds great value in addressing our pan-European game development attendees, and that he recognizes that GDC Europe is the essential platform and epicenter for discussions relevant to that community."

GDC Europe takes place August 15-17, 2011; for more information on the Richard Garriott keynote or GDC Europe, visit http://www.gdceurope.com.

About the UBM TechWeb Game Network 

A core provider of essential information to the professional game industry, the  UBM TechWeb Game Network – formerly known as 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 the Game Developers Conference®, the Webby Award-winning Gamasutra.com and network of sites, the Game Advertising Online ad network, the Game Developers Conference® Online, the Game Developers Conference™ Europe, the Game Developers Conference™ China, Game Developer Magazine, Game Developer Research, the Game Career Seminars and GameCareerGuide.com, the Independent Games Festival and Summit, and the Game Developers Choice Awards.  Visit www.jointhegamenetwork.com

About UBM TechWeb

UBM TechWeb, the global leader in technology media and professional information, enables people and organizations to harness the transformative power of technology. Through its three core businesses – media solutions, marketing services and paid content – UBM TechWeb produces the most respected and consumed brands and media applications in the technology market. More than 14.5 million business and technology professionals (CIOs and IT managers, Web & Digital professionals, Software Developers, Government decision makers, and Telecom providers) actively engage in UBM TechWeb's communities and information resources monthly. UBM TechWeb brands includes: global face-to-face events such as Interop, Web 2.0, Black Hat and Enterprise Connect; award-winning online resources such as InformationWeek, Light Reading, and Network Computing; and market-leading magazines InformationWeek, Wall Street & Technology, and Advanced Trading. UBM TechWeb is a UBM plc company, a global provider of news distribution and specialist information services with a market capitalization of more than $2.5 billion.

Visit: www.ubmtechweb.com

About Portalarium

Portalarium is revolutionizing role-playing games for social media. Formed in September of 2009 in Austin, Texas, Portalarium is developing and publishing premium online games and virtual worlds for popular social networks and mobile platforms. Portalarium games maximize the fun and social play experience between friends, making it is easy to find each other and play together regardless of where you are or what you are playing. Portalarium is funded by London-based m8 Capital, Founders Fund of San Francisco, and a group of notable angel investors.


Brian Rubin

fortyseven communications

(212) 391-4707


Dieter Marchsreiter

+49 89 519 199 42



Frank Sliwka, VP European Business Development

+49 (0)171 1288898


Ben Veechai, Sandra Lew, North America

+1-415-947-6280, +1-415-947-6232



SOURCE UBM TechWeb Game Network