Over the past two weeks we have seen developers going head-to-head in March Mayhem: Developers’ Showdown. It has been a gruesome and exciting tournament, as industry veterans like Blizzard decimated smaller studios, only to be taken down by a giant-killer a round later. As the smoke clears and the defeated are dragged from the field, four developers (none of whom were No. 1 seeds!) are left standing.

Bethesda Softworks

Location: Rockville, Maryland
Founded: 1986
Games of Note: Elder Scrolls series, Star Trek series
Recent Recognition: “Best RPG of the Year,” Shivering Isles, Game Industry News’ Top Games of 2007; “Top 5 Developers to Watch Out for in 2008,” X-Play
The Beaten Path: No. 14 Croteam (110-25), No. 11 TimeGate (60-21), No. 7 Crytek (111-28), No. 5 Firaxis (85-71)


Location: Westwood, Massachusetts
Founded: 1994
Games of Note: Lord of the Rings Online, Dungeons & Dragons Online, Asheron’s Call
Recent Recognition: “Best MMOG of 2007,” LotRO, Voodoo Extreme; “Best Persistent World Game of 2007,” LotRO, IGN
The Beaten Path: No. 11 Arena Net (140-47), No. 14 Gas Powered (66-23), No. 2 Capcom (128-78), No. 5 BioWare (214-146)

Valve Software

Location: Belleview, Washington
Founded: 1996
Games of Note: Half-Life 2, Team Fortress 2, Portal, Counter-Strike
Recent Recognition: “PC Game of the Year 2007,” The OrangeBox, multiple media outlets; “Best Multiplayer PC Game of the Year,” Team Fortress 2, multiple media outlets; “Amazing Crafting Achievements,” Portal, multiple media outlets
The Beaten Path: No. 13 Human Head (135-20), No. 5 Namco Bandai (63-18), No. 8 Rare Ltd. (111-56), No. 14 Double Fine (100-96)


Location: Cambridge, Massachusetts
Founded: 1995
Games of Note: Guitar Hero, Guitar Hero 2, Rock Band
Recent Recognition: “Best of Show,” Rock Band, multiple media outlets; “Game of the Year 2007,” Guitar Hero II, GameSpy; “Family Game of the Year,” Guitar Hero, AIAS
The Beaten Path: No. 15 Linden Labs (96-20), No. 10 Ensemble (36-26), No. 3 Lucas Arts (134-111), No. 5 Epic (194-144)

The semi-finals begin around 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, April 5. No. 2 Harmonix goes up against No. 4 Valve, and No. 3 Bethesda kicks off against No. 6 Turbine. The winners of each game will go onto the finals!

To look at the whole tournament, visit its main index. Click here for more information on March Mayhem: Developers’ Showdown.

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