The BioWare wiki last edited by nahgwihoafj on 10/11/13 05:54PM View full history

Overview

BioWare is a Canadian development studio owned by Electronic Arts. It is most famous for its highly praised role-playing games including Baldur's Gate and the Mass Effect series. There are currently three studios using the BioWare name: BioWare Edmonton, BioWare Montreal, and BioWare Austin. The developer has received multiple awards including Spike TV's 2010 Video Game Awards: Studio of the Year.

History

Dr. Ray Muzyka and Dr. Greg Zeschuk

Bioware is one of the most acclaimed RPG developers in the western world. It was founded in February 1995 by Ray Muzyka, Greg Zeschuk, and Augustine Yip. Zeschuk and Muzyka previously completed medical degrees at the University of Alberta. Zeschuk has recently finished his MBA at Queen's School of Business. Yip left the company in 1997 to return to medicine, but Zeschuk and Muzyka remained and still acted as heads of the studio untill they left the company in 2012.

Bioware is famous for such Dungeon and Dragons inspired games as Baldur's Gate and Neverwinter Nights. The company originally developed games exclusively for the PC platform, but In 2003 the company released Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic for the Xbox in collaboration with LucasArts. This game was the first of several games that Bioware would develop for Microsoft's consoles. It was followed in 2004 by Jade Empire and in 2007 by Mass Effect for the Xbox 360. In 2005 Bioware merged with fellow developer Pandemic Studios.

Acquisition by EA

Soon after releasing Mass Effect, Bioware and Pandemic were purchased by publishing giant Electronic Arts. Ray Muzyka became a general manager and senior vice president at Electronic Arts after he and Zeschuk sold the company. Their first multi-platform release with EA was Dragon Age: Origins in Nov. 2009, dubbed a spiritual successor to the Baldur's Gate series. Less than three months later, they released the award winning Mass Effect 2.

BioWare's first expansion separate from the Edmonton headquarters, BioWare Austin, was created 2006 to make Star Wars: The Old Republic. The game launched in December 2011 as an MMORPG with a payed subscription model. The Old Republic has since adopted a free-to-play model and remains in continuous development.

On Mar. 2, 2009 BioWare announced another new studio, this time in Montreal. BioWare Montreal worked on parts of Mass Effect 2 and Mass Effect 3, and are now making the fourth major Mass Effect game.

Engines

Bioware along with developing games, has created several Engines, including the Infinity Engine, Aurora Engine, and the Odyssey Engine. Their latest is the Eclipse Engine that powers the Dragon Age: Origins and Dragon Age 2.

The first three Mass Effect games used the Unreal 3 engine. Dragon Age: Inquisition and the fourth Mass Effect game use Dice's Frostbite 3.

Awards

  • In 2010, co-founders Ray Muzyka & Greg Zeschuk were inducted into the AIAS Hall of Fame.
  • BioWare were awarded in the "Best Studio" category at Spike VGA 2010.

Games

Game

Platform(s)

Release Date

Genre(s)

Shattered Steel

DOS, Mac OS

September 30, 1996

Sci-fi mech simulator

Baldur’s Gate

Microsoft Windows, Mac OS

November 30. 1998

RPG

Baldur’s Gate: Tales of the Sword Coast

Microsoft Windows, Mac OS

April 30, 1999

RPG

MDK2

Dreamcast, Microsoft Windows, Playstation 2, Wii

Dreamcast - March 21, 2000

Microsoft Windows - May 21, 2000

PlayStation 2 - March 26, 2001

Wii - May 9, 2011

Third-person shooter

Baldur’s Gate II: Shadows of Amn

Microsoft Windows, Mac OS

September 24, 2000

RPG

Baldur’s Gate II: Throne

Microsoft Windows, Mac OS

June 21, 2001

RPG

Neverwinter Nights

Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux

Microsoft Windows - June 18, 2002

Mac OS - August 2003

Linux - June 20, 2003

RPG

Neverwinter Nights: Shadows of Undrentide

Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux

Microsoft Windows - June 21, 2003

Mac OS X - August 2003

Linux - June 30, 2003

RPG

Neverwinter Nights: Hordes of the Underdark

Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux

Microsoft Windows - December 2, 2003

Mac OS X - August 2004

Linux - December 17, 2003

RPG

Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic

Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Xbox

Microsoft Windows - November 19, 2003

Mac OS X - September 7, 2004

Xbox - July 15, 2003

Steam - September 5, 2009

App Store - February 18, 2011

Sci-fi, Fantasy, RPG

Jade Empire

Microsoft Windows XP, Mac OS X, Xbox, Xbox 360

Microsoft Windows XP - February 26, 2007

Mac OS X - August 18, 2008

Xbox - April 12, 2005

Xbox Originals - July 21, 2008

Action, RPG

Mass Effect

Microsoft Windows, Xbox 360

Microsoft Windows - May 28, 2008

Xbox 360 - November 16, 2007

RPG

Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood

Nintendo DS

September 30, 2008

RPG

Mass Effect Galaxy

IOS

June 22, 2009

Action, RPG

Dragon Age: Origins

Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, Mac OS X

Xbox 360 & Microsoft Windows - November 3, 2009

PlayStation 3 - November 3, 2009

Mac OS X - December 21, 2009

RPG

Mass Effect 2

Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3

Xbox 360 & Microsoft Windows - January 26, 2010

PlayStation 3 - January 18, 2011

Action, RPG

Dragon Age: Origins - Awakening

Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, Mac OS X

March 16, 2010

RPG

Dragon Age II

Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, Mac OS X

March 8, 2011

RPG

Star Wars: The Old Republic

Microsoft Windows

December 20, 2011

MMORPG

Mass Effect 3

Microsoft Windows, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3

March 6, 2012

Action, RPG

Dragon Age 3

Microsoft Windows, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3

TBA

RPG

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