- So, this year's European iteration of Game Developers Conference - co-created by my colleagues here at Think Services alongside the nice French folks at Connection Events - just finished up in Paris.

The Paris GDC show encompassed a bunch of interesting talks from leading European (and non-European!) developers, and luckily, Gamasutra and Game Developer's Brandon Sheffield was there to write a lot of it down and pass it along to us, yay.

Here are the highlights from the show, from Blizzard to Baer and... beyond:

Blizzard's Pardo: World Of Warcraft Originally Planned As Free-To-Play
"Talking as part of a keynote Q&A at the Paris Game Developers Conference, Blizzard SVP Rob Pardo has been discussing the history of world-leading MMO World Of Warcraft, revealing the game was originally planned as a free-to-play title."

Paris GDC: 2K's Kline On Why BioShock Should Have Failed
""BioShock should’ve failed," said lead programmer Chris Kline at his Paris GDC session, from its beginnings as a direct System Shock followup to its initial Little Sister designs featuring a dog in a wheelchair -- a full look at how the 2K team iterated to success within."

Paris GDC: The Rob Pardo Experience
"As one of the final lectures of this year's Paris GDC, Blizzard SVP of game design Rob Pardo sat down for a detailed Q&A on World Of Warcraft, StarCraft II, the Activision/Vivendi merger, and the future of online games - quotes galore inside."

Paris GDC: McCarthy On Bringing EA Sports To The Wii
"Speaking at Paris GDC, Electronic Arts vice president and executive producer David McCarthy discussed how EA Sports intends to evolve EA Sports based on what its learned from Wii Sports and current video game trends."

Paris GDC: McCarthy Teases EA Sports Peripherals
"As part of his Paris GDC lecture, Electronic Arts' David McCarthy has been discussing EA Sports' move to new platforms such as the Wii, revealing that consumers will see EA Sports titles using bundled peripherals within the next 12 months."

Paris GDC: DICE's Cousins Talks Battlefield Variety
"In his Paris GDC keynote, EA DICE executive producer Ben Cousins revealed that the studio is currently developing five titles for the Battlefield series, also discussing development methodology and web games' eventual dominance."

Paris GDC: PlayFirst On The Casual Gaming Revolution
"In a Paris GDC lecture on the casual games revolution, publisher PlayFirst’s (Diner Dash) CEO and president, John Welch, noted that, even with bigger publishers now entering the casual gaming field, smaller studios will continue to dominate the market."

Paris GDC: Quantic Dream Considering Second Next-Gen Title
"Speaking at the Paris Game Developers Conference, Quantic Dream’s Guillaume de Fondaumière revealed that the developer is considering developing two titles with two studios, including its PlayStation 3 exclusive Heavy Rain."

Paris GDC: Acclaim Bringing For-Pay Item Trade To Facebook
"At his session in the ongoing Paris GDC, Howard Marks, head of the revived Acclaim brand, explained the reasons why he has taken the brand down the path of free-to-play games, also revealing plans for a new Facebook game with for-pay in-game item downloads -- full coverage within."

Paris GDC: Media Molecule On Making LittleBigPlanet
"Talking at their opening Paris GDC keynote, Media Molecule's Mark Healy and Alex Evans have been discussing the creation of upcoming LittleBigPlanet and the advantages of player tool constraint - tongue in cheek welcoming 'questionable' user-generated content for the upcoming PS3 title."

Paris GDC: Baer On The Industry’s Birth, Preserving History
"Game pioneer and Odyssey console creator Ralph Baer delivered a lecture at the Paris Game Developers Conference covering everything from building the video game industry with limited technology to the importance of preserving history."