The Massachusetts Game Challenge

38 Studios has announced the first Massachusetts Game Challenge. Students who want to participate are tasked with creating a playable video game featuring the 38 Studios mascot, Munch, and his alter ego, Mean Munch. Full details can be found in this handy Rules PDF, with further details contained in the press release (below the fold). Get together a team of 2-3 aspiring game developers and knock our socks off, or at least have fun getting a little additional experience. Good luck! Continue Reading »

How to Become a Game Designer

Game Designer is one of those mythical positions everyone wants to fill. What isn’t cool about getting to actually make the games you love so much? What isn’t cool about being able to brag to all of your old-school gaming buddies that you are a real live game designer? What isn’t cool about getting to come up with awesome ideas and having the programmers and artists implement them? Well, there isn’t anything uncool about any of that. Unfortunately, reality is a bit different. Continue Reading »

Boston Post Mortem = December 2007

This month’s Boston Post Mortem meeting is almost upon us. It is tomorrow (Tuesday, December 11th). The speakers will be from the Singapore-MIT GAMBIT Game Lab, which looks to be an interesting one. As always, it is at The Skellig in Waltham. More details on the Boston Post Mortem site. I’ll be attending my company’s annual Christmas (yeah, CHRISTmas, not “holiday,” heathens) party so I won’t at the game developer meeting. I think I’ve only been to one or two since I got married… maybe next month! 😛

Selling Your Soul for Pageviews

People know me. I say what I mean, even if it hurts a feeling or two. I’m sure I’ve driven a few people from my blog with my rants. In fact, I know I have, even though I keep most of my articles pretty tame. Lucky for me, I don’t make any money off people who visit Nerfbat. Losing viewers just means I’m talking about something people are passionate about. One fewer visitor doesn’t cost me anything. Continue Reading »

How to Win Friends and Influence Gamers

What is a grassroots effort, in relation to gaming? They’re essentially methods of getting people to play your game by appealing to the community in a variety of ways. To me, grassroots efforts focus on one thing: the gaming community and treating them the way they deserve to be treated. Continue Reading »

Activision + Vivendi & Blizzard = Activision Blizzard

Holy Cow Level, Batman! As seen on Massively, Vivendi Games, including World of Warcraft developer Blizzard Entertainment, is now owned as a subsidiary of Activision. This is a mega deal, even bigger than the recent EA buyout of BioWare/Pandemic. Honestly, there’s not a whole lot I have to say specifically about this, other than it’s huge. Read the press release and Blizzard Activision FAQ about it for all the details.

William Shatner and Mr. T’s WoW Commercials

You read that right. William Shatner and Mr. T are now in World of Warcraft commercials. Guess what… they are awesome. I actually think the Mr. T commercial is the funnier of the two. There is apparently a Verne Troyer commercial coming soon as well, which you’ll likely be able to find with the other two at the Official WoW Website. Blizzard has evil geniuses in marketing and public relations… how many times have I, a game developer for a different MMO company, linked to their hilarious commercials? Ah, brilliant.

Boston Post Mortem ^ November 2007

The Boston Post Mortem meeting is TONIGHT! I usually try to post these things at least a day or two before, but I’m slow this month apparently. It’s at 7:00PM at the Skellig in Waltham, and Jim Buck of Twitchy Thumbs Entertainment will be talking about physics for games. You can find out more at the Boston Post Mortem website. Since I didn’t let my wife know earlier, I probably won’t be attending this month. 🙁 Let me know how it goes.

EverQuest II: Rise of Kunark

It looks like the first EQII expansion that I had absolutely nothing to do with has now come out. Scott Hartsman talks about Kunark’s Eve and how the day before the launch of anything is pretty awesome. Grimwell has an RoK Launch Day Blog up to keep people informed during the server downtime. Congratulations to my old coworkers at SOE for completing another expansion. I’m getting my patch going now so I can join the throng of Sarnak newbies in decimating Timorous Deep.

Fansy the Famous Bard

Do you remember Fansy? If you weren’t big into the EverQuest (the first one) community or didn’t play on Sullon Zek, you probably don’t. What do you get when you mix a wild personality, a dose of immaturity, likely some sort of alcohol, creativity, and a “no rules” server that lets you train mobs on people while players are immune to PvP until level 6? Correct, you do get Fansy the Famous Bard. An article in the Escapist discusses Fansy and his impact on a game and its rules. If you’ve never read the exploits of Fansy, you can catch up on the Fansy the Famous Bard archived pages. They are simultaneously hilarious and interesting.