It's a shame how even some people in my class (2.5 years into a Bachelors of Science in Video Game Design) didn't even know who he was. He was directly responsible for starting our industry. It's quite possible that every single one of us (the kind of people who'd visit this site I mean) wouldn't be where we are in our life without him.
Very excited about this. I downloaded their test client and played around with it last night. It changes so many fundamental things about the game. Truly crazy. I'm so stoked that I've already watched 3 separate 2+ hour patch analysis videos from prominent people in the dota community. It's getting in the way of my work!
And I'll be honest here, the newcomer stream has been better than the main stage stream. It's been a lot more playful and fun to watch. The other guys have been doing great too, but even for an experienced veteran, the newcomer stream is where it's been at so far.
I really love the AX series, but I do wish it would have evolved a bit more than it has, at least mechanically. Just like the pokemon series, they have far too many mechanics and menus that they haven't changed in years. When making sequels it is easy to think "well it worked last games so let's just make it work exactly the same" Most of the menus is AX are extremely tedious to go through. Like, try picking up mail when you're already holding a full amount of letters and you'll know what I mean. And while I understand why they took out all the NES games (they can make more money selling them online), it felt like a real step backward when they were removed.
The online is getting closer and closer to being great each game, but personally, it still feels crippled compared to other games. As with a lot of Nintendo games, Animal Crossing get's so much right, all the little things, the hidden secrets, the thousands of items (and way more if you include changing the colors of items), but they always feel just out of reach. Connecting to a friend online in the last 3DS AX takes three separate connecting and loading screens. I still have hope that the series will continue to grow even more than it has.
I interviewed for an intern position there (not long before they got bought by CBS) and before interviewing I ate lunch at Grumpy's across the street. Ryan Davis randomly came and sat a few seats away at the bar (he had no idea I was interviewing.) I said hi and talked for a bit, then went about lunch. He came up after eating, like a pro, and shook my hand and said "best of luck on the interview sir."
That's how I'll always remember him; just a classy, funny, professional-ass professional.