Help us with Discussions with the Most Fascinating People in Videogame History - Who do you want to read about?

Bill Loguidice's picture

There's a potential project that's a bit too early for Matt and me to talk about in detail that I thought would be worthwhile to seek everyone's help with, since many of you were so helpful with the Vintage Games book. Who do you think are the most fascinating people in videogame history? There are some obvious ones, like Ralph Baer, Richard Garriott, Roberta Williams, Bill Budge, Chuck Peddle, etc., and I've already come up with a list of roughly 23, but it really needs to be fleshed out (and Matt still needs to take a crack at adding to it). The goal is to get as many names as possible. The only criteria is that they must be living, live in North America or be readily available via e-mail (or Skype) if elsewhere, and probably speak English reasonably well. They might have helped create a great computer or videogame console or some component thereof, they might be great programmers, they might be great tools or middleware developers, etc. Any fascinating person in our industry's history. Who do you want to read about? Let us know as soon as you can as it would be a huge help. There's no reason to share the current list, as it would be helpful to validate some of the names I/we've already come up with independently. Thanks everyone!

Comments

Bill Loguidice
Bill Loguidice's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/31/1969
Founders at Work
Matt Barton wrote:

I'm not sure we "can't touch him," Bill, are you? I haven't read the book you're talking about, but I wonder if it's focused as much on his gaming relationship as we would take the interview. What do you think? I can't believe everyone who'd buy our book will also be familiar with the founders book, so some overlap seems okay to me.

You have the book we're talking about. It was sent to you too as an e-book in the same e-mail it was sent to me in. There's enough names out there where we don't need to retread what's in "Founders at Work".

Vintage Games book!
Xbox 360: billlog | Wii: 1345 2773 2048 1586 | PS3: ArmchairArcade
Bill Loguidice, Managing Director | Armchair Arcade, Inc.

n/a
Calibrator
Offline
Joined: 10/25/2006
Some more...

I second the idea to put names like Brodie Lockard and J.D. Sachs into play. These people are not as well known as Sid Meier, Peter Molyneux and Warren Spector but have had *at least* as much influence on video game culture. Sometimes these aforementioned figureheads are way too often interviewed anyway, IMHO...

To keep the wheel spinning I'd like to add:

- the classic Activision guys which are nearly forgotten today, like David Crane, Steve Cartwright, Garry Kitchen etc.

- Doug Church and Paul Neurath: The real masterminds behind Ultima Underworld and System Shock - igniting the 3D adventuring trend

- Steve Meretzky: One of the best and most versatile Infocom stars

- David Kaemmer: One of the founders of Papyrus Design Group (the first good NASCAR racing game, Grand Prix Legends)

- Tony Crowther: English workhorse

Finally, there are various artists like musicians (Chris Hülsbeck and other famous C64-composers for example) which may have something to add, too.

take care,
Calibrator

n/a
Mark Vergeer
Mark Vergeer's picture
Offline
Joined: 01/16/2006
Sid Meyer Peter

Sid Meyer
Peter Moulieux
Some of the famous video game music composers - Rob Hubbard, Jeroen Tiel (Dutch) for instance amongst other great c64 composers

Xbox 360: Lactobacillus P | Wii: 8151 3435 8469 3138
Armchair arcade Editor | Pixellator | www.markvergeer.nl

n/a
Matt Barton
Matt Barton's picture
Offline
Joined: 01/16/2006
Nice suggestions! I think

Nice suggestions! I think the real challenge here will be selecting people with broad appeal. Obviously, those of us from the C-64/Amiga days will be very well disposed to some people that the majority of folks wouldn't give two shits and a whistle about. I just hope we can find people who are generally well known or truly interesting, but will be able to ask more penetrating and provocative questions than have been put to them before. As I told Bill, I'm most interested in people with really fascinating stories that will make for great reading more than who did X first or whatever.

n/a
Rowdy Rob
Rowdy Rob's picture
Offline
Joined: 09/04/2006
Fascinating people
Matt Barton wrote:

Nice suggestions! I think the real challenge here will be selecting people with broad appeal. Obviously, those of us from the C-64/Amiga days will be very well disposed to some people that the majority of folks wouldn't give two shits and a whistle about.

I suggested Brodie Lockard, but perhaps that one might need to be scratched off the list. I found an excellent article,The Shanghai Story, as told by Brad Fregger, the Producer of Shanghai for Activision. Highly recommended reading! I don't know how you guys would top this, although getting Mr. Lockard's point of view might be worth pursuing.

Another possible "broad appeal" personality is the successful techno musician Moby, who I understand made a name for himself as a computer musical "mod" artist before he hit the mainstream.

qoj hpmoj o+ 6uo73q 3Jv 3svq jnoh 77V

Matt Barton
Matt Barton's picture
Offline
Joined: 01/16/2006
I think the difficulty of a

I think the difficulty of a book like this is that some people who did great and wonderful things never got famous or the recognition and success they deserved. Ralph Baer is a good example of that--very innovative, but of course far more people know about Atari and Bushnell than Baer and Magnavox. I can think of countless people like Sachs who are endlessly fascinating to us because of our Amiga backgrounds, or Hubbard out of Commodore 64, but who else cares? I'd like to stick to people like Romero, Meier, Crane, and so on, people who are pretty much known to anyone who knows games.

n/a
Bill Loguidice
Bill Loguidice's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/31/1969
My take on it is that it

My take on it is that it should be a mix of a handful of marquee names and then the rest - regardless of recognition factor - who would make the most compelling interviews. Of course we won't know how that pans out until we talk to some people. I bet we'll need to do three interviews for every one winner, which is why I prefer having the list of 80+ names that we have right now and just order it in from most preferred to least preferred. I have a feeling we'll get pretty far down the list and have lots of extra content. Still, it might be useful for the documentary regardless...

Vintage Games book!
Xbox 360: billlog | Wii: 1345 2773 2048 1586 | PS3: ArmchairArcade
Bill Loguidice, Managing Director | Armchair Arcade, Inc.

n/a
Matt Barton
Matt Barton's picture
Offline
Joined: 01/16/2006
Yes, that's a good point.

Yes, that's a good point. Some people we simply won't be able to get no matter what, and others will be so lame that it's not worth printing their "interviews."

n/a
Catatonic
Offline
Joined: 05/20/2006
Yeah I bet there are lots of

Yeah I bet there are lots of interesting people from the 8-bit days who I don't even know about, even as their work changed my life.

Bill Loguidice
Bill Loguidice's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/31/1969
We have a list now of 80+

We have a list now of 80+ names, so that should be sufficient for the time being. However, if any other names pop into your head of someone you'd like to see interviewed, by all means let us know going forward as it is unlikely to be too late to at least add them to the bottom of the list for at least the next several months. Thanks to everyone for their help and we'll let you all know soon what happens with this and the other project.

Vintage Games book!
Xbox 360: billlog | Wii: 1345 2773 2048 1586 | PS3: ArmchairArcade
Bill Loguidice, Managing Director | Armchair Arcade, Inc.

n/a

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.