The British Academy for Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) has honoured Atari founder and technology guru Nolan Bushnell with its annual Fellowship award.

The coveted award has only ever been given to one other gaming luminary, designer Will Wright, and it marks yet another positive move forward for the games industry.

Bushnell is perhaps most famous for being the man who made Pong, arguably the game that kicked off the videogame industry.

His maverick (and usually bang on the money) approach to life has meant he's become a legend to many gamers, designers and execs alike.

BAFTAs in March

Bushnell will be on hand at the GAME-sponsored British Academy Video Game Awards to pick up his BAFTA.

"I am humbled to be selected for this honour from the British Academy of Film and Television Arts," said Bushnell

"The British people are not only great game players but have historically been some of the best game creators. The pub culture and country house drawing room environments have been instrumental in spawning games and game players.

"I am very grateful to receive an award from the people with a history of creating and embracing this type of entertainment."

BAFTA chairman David Parfitt said: "His contribution is nothing short of remarkable; he ushered in an era, the legacy of which is the vibrant, evolving industry we see before us today."

As an interesting aside, TechRadar was blissfully unaware until today that Bushnell was also the founder of the successful Chuck E. Cheese's Pizza Time Theaters chain and that Leonardo Di Caprio is set to play Bushnell in a movie about his life next year.