Sony vet helped launch original console in '94

Ken Kutaragi, the driving force behind Sony’s industry-changing PlayStation vidgame consoles, will receive the lifetime achievement award at the Interactive Achievement Awards in February.

Widely regarded as “father of the Playstation,” Sony vet Kutaragi helped launch the original console in 1994, as well as the even more succesful PlayStation 2, which put the conglom atop the vidgame biz. More recently, Sony has seen mixed success with its handheld PSP and a disappointing launch in the past year for the Playstation 3.

He resigned as CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment in April.

Kutaragi was nominated by a subcommittee of the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences board and endorsed by a vote of the entire board.

“Kutaragi-san helped to shape home entertainment above and beyond what anybody expected,” said Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences prexy Joseph Olin. “None of us would have jobs without him.”

Though 2008 will be the 11th annual Interactive Achievement Awards, which honor excellence in videogames, Kutaragi is receiving only the second lifetime achievement nod. Last year, Minoru Arakawa and Howard Lincoln, who helped launch the Nintendo Entertainment System, were honored.

“We realize we need to recognize people who made significant contributions to our industry, but not through the design and production of games,” said Olin.

Award will be presented at AIAS’s annual D.I.C.E. summer in Las Vegas in February.

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