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The Best Seats in the House (11 May 2004)
Steven Drucker and a team from the Next Media group at Microsoft Research saw it all coming. They knew that as games moved online, there would be the type of competitive drama that drew crowds. So they developed a Spectator mode for games, following the rules of cinematography to make it more interesting to the viewers.

"When you go to see a football game or one of the other spectator sports, you get a sense of a whole bunch of people watching with you and that's part of the fun. Even when you're watching a Super Bowl game, a lot of times you're watching it at a party with a lot of other people. We wanted to create some of that feeling of belonging to a group," said Drucker.

They developed an automatic camera control for the game MechWarrior 4: Mercenaries, which was released in fall of 2002. Mercenaries is a game set in the future, where players do battle from the helm of a sophisticated, fully articulated machine called a MechWarrior.
Article URL: http://research.microsoft.com/displayArticle.aspx?id=406

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