A Conference Call with
Individuals who have been employed in the industry for decades (and are
still at the top of their game) are treated as veritable gaming gods.
Last week, Cody "Micajah" Bye felt like he had stumbled into Mount
Olympus when he hopped onto a conference call with Chip Morningstar and
Randy Farmer, two of the minds behind the first avatar-based MMOG,
Habitat. Since their work on that game, Chip and Randy have worked in a
variety of different cyberspace fields and have discussed their work on
Habitat on their ongoing blog, The Habitat Chronicles.
In our first part of the extensive interview, Chip and Randy fill us in
on their backgrounds in the industry, their work with MMOGs, and what
they think of Raph Koster's upcoming Metaplace project. Enjoy!
I know that Ten Ton Hammer has a focus on the game
side of things, but
games and social media (or social networking) have all been blending
into each other since the whole concept emerged. When we were working
on the American Information Exchange (AMiX), there were game design
elements throughout the product. However, the game elements are a lot
easier to see in a product like Flickr, which is nominally a website
about uploading photos, but if you look closely it has reputation
systems and all these pieces that make it into a big game. Game
mechanics and social media have always been intertwined.