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Awards: Best MMO Studio of 2008: Winner

By Jon Wood on January 08, 2009


2009 is now upon us and we here at would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a Happy New Year. As is our custom here, we want to kick off the year by announcing the winners of the 2008 Reader's Choice Awards. In each entry, we will give you the choice of the fans, as well along with a little bit of "editor's choice" commentary. M

Before we announce the results of the voting for Most Innovative Feature of 2008, we want to take this opportunity to thank everyone for taking the time to vote. In the overall awards, more than 26,000 votes were cast.

In the voting for Favorite MMO Studio of 2008, 4334 votes were cast. The editorial nominees were: Blizzard, CCP, Mythic Entertainment, Ncsoft, Turbine, Funcom

With a stunning 46% of the vote, the winner of the Favorite MMO Studio of 2008 was Turbine.

The voting broke down as such:

Mythic Entertainment
(login to vote)

There are many, many studios out there developing MMORPGs. So many, in fact, that it can sometimes be difficult to keep track of. History has shown that these studios run the gamut from upstanding and excellent to devious and underhanded. As in any industry, there are good studios and bad studios. The Favorite MMO Studio award was added to the Reader's Choice Awards so that we could recognize the best of the best in the business of MMORPGs.

On its corporate website, Turbine claims to be the largest privately-held online gaming studio in North America. The studio itself currently has three projects running concurrently with Asheron's Call, Dungeons and Dragons Online and Lord of the Rings Online.

2008 has been a busy year for the folks at Turbine as they continue to work on and improve Dungeons and Dragons Online (including a new player experience revamp) and Asheron's Call, as well as the highly anticipated release of the first expansion for Lord of the Rings Online.

The Mines of Moria expansion aims to improve upon the gameplay experience and add to the story of the company's flagship game.

Editorial Commentary

Personally, I'm thrilled that we added this category to the awards this year. It wasn't an easy decision. After all, by what criteria do you judge a game studio? On their product? On their Customer Service? In the end, we left it in your hands to choose the best overall studio, from product to community to customer service and you overwhelmingly told us that Turbine was your favorite.

It isn't difficult to see why you chose Turbine. It isn't that the other nominees weren't worthy of some kind of praise, but when you consider the year that Turbine has had, numerous customer-friendly policies and one of the most successful current titles in Lord of the Rings Online, and the pieces really fall into place.

Turbine impresses me for a number of reasons. First, they released a top-notch first expansion for Lord of the Rings Online in the form of Mines of Moria, which not only continues the epic story on which the game is based, but also introduces new classes, raises the level cap, introduces new systems like the epic weapons system and more. They also have a reputation for releasing a great deal of free content to their users via the book updates.

While it might be their most popular game, Turbine doesn't stop at Lord of the Rings Online, running both Asheron's Call (launched all the way back in 1999) and Dungeons and Dragons Online.

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