I've been reading a lot lately about game developers and publishers. I can never tell the difference. Some people only buy from one company or the other. But really, whats the difference? Over the next couple weeks, I will be breaking down some of the highlights of some of the biggest names in video game development.
Bethesda Softworks -USA. 1985. Best known for their works on the long running series Elder Scrolls. They also recently acquired and were responsible for the transformation of console-crossover hit Fallout 3. Bethesda originally began developing exclusively for the PC, but switched to multi-platform in the early 2000's. While they have more recently found success in RPGs, they have a strong history of gaming titles based in both sports and movie franchises. They are credited with being the first developers to use real physics-based sports simulation. So every time a player has an epic fail of a shot in a sports game, you can thank Bethesda for that. Traits of Bethesda games in recent years have been: RPGs, First/Third person interchangeable, intricate level systems, and huge, interactive, non-linear maps. Here at Game-On, we love Bethesda. Or at least I do.
Bioware - Canada. 1995.Although they have been in the game for 15+ years, Bioware has a limited list of games. However few, the titles are still impressive. Bioware has created several engines to support the gaming landscape. Their latest endeavor is called the Aurora Engine (cool name right?). The Aurora Engine allows for a simultaneous control of real-time lighting, shadowing, and surround sound. So every time you control your character, this game makes its visual and audio interactions intensely more real. Popular titles include Baulder's Gate, Knights of the Old Republic, Mass Effect, and Dragon Age. Some common themes in Bioware games include massive, open worlds, intricate leveling systems, and the dual persona template. Meaning, they are the latest and greatest pioneers of giving you two games in one. Play as a good guy or a bad guy. Each giving you different experiences and endings.
Both Bethesda and Bioware are amazing game developers. I personally tend to lean towards the Bioware side. Their graphics seem to be more smooth and manageable. Bethesda has had more games be successful that Bioware. But a higher percentage of Bioware's games have been obscenely major hits. Ultimately, both developers produce amazing games. The stories are great and the play is amazing. You cant go wrong with a purchase from either company.