Saturday, January 7, 2012
Designing a Classic Game
I'm fortunate to have grown up at a time when I could experience the design of console and online games evolve from infancy. I remember playing 8-bit Pong and Adventure on my Atari console in high school, and watching single-player role-playing games move to a nascent Internet with Ultima Online and Everquest.
The article below is a look back at the original team and how Everquest came to be. It's a great story of a small group of people with a vision for a product, no budget, and learning quickly from mistakes. Working from an 80-page design document John Smedley and his team created a game that would inform and inspire enormous and incredibly varied worlds such as Dark Age of Camelot, City of Heroes, World of Warcraft, Star Wars Galaxies, and the upcoming and wildly-anticipated Guild Wars 2. Game design details like instanced missions, corpse runs, connectivity management, and a host of other design and technical challenges all started with Everquest, it's peers and predecessors. Fun memories.
EverQuest: The Making of a Classic