Page last updated at 15:50 GMT, Thursday, 31 December 2009

New Year Honours for game makers

Screengrab from Football Manager, Sports Interactive
Football manager lets players decide team and tactics

Veteran British game makers have featured strongly in the Queen's New Year Honours list.

In total, four games figures won honours including Oliver and Paul Collyer, the brothers behind the Championship Manager series.

Also honoured were Rodney Cousens, head of Codemasters and Paul Jackson former head of industry group Elspa.

Dr Andrew Herbert, who manages Microsoft's Research labs in Cambridge, was given an OBE.

The two brothers were made Members of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in recognition for their services to the UK's computer games industry.

The pair founded Sports Interactive in 1992 and have been behind the iconic Football and Championship Manager games.

In a statement posted to the Sports Interactive site, the pair said: "We are really proud to have been given this honour, which is something we never thought would happen to us."

"We're still heavily involved in the games, with Paul heading up the match engine, and Ov heading up Football Manager Live, and we look forward to many more years making games with the rest of the team that so many people out there enjoy to play."


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Rodney Cousens, currently boss of Codemasters, was made a Commander of the British Empire (CBE) also for services to the computer games industry. Mr Cousens began his career in gaming in 1981 and has worked at Activision and Acclaim.

Recent games from Codemasters include Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising and Fuel.

Paul Jackson was given the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for his long service at EA and on the board of the Entertainment and Leisure Software Publishers Association (Elspa). He is currently head of specialist game firm Rail Simulator.

An OBE was also awarded to Andrew Herbert, who is current managing director of Microsoft's UK research labs in Cambridge. He won his honour for services to computer science.

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