Game makers for whom I will buy a beer

So why not a counterpoint to the old punch in the nose? It’s a new year, let’s accentuate the positive, all that rot. So here are some folks for whom I will gladly put money down to buy a drink.

First, the folks who make Mass Effect. Yes, I single them out from Bioware because I love these games far more than anything they have ever made. I have never been big on D&D or Lord of the Rings-type fantasy, and, I’ll be honest, I thought the KOTOR games were merely ok. But both Mass Effect games were like an explosion of galaxy-traipsing, robot-shooting, reporter-punching, blue alien chick-romancing fun for me. Yeah, both had some details I wasn’t too fond of but the net effect is still so great that it amazes me.

Second, the folks at Telltale. I think I’ve played just about every game they make, even the CSI games, and they are one of the very few studios that I will pretty much drop money for a new game sight unseen. Even the ones I’m not completely sold on conceptually, like Jurassic Park. You guys do great work, and I thank you for it. Now how about some more Sam and Max please?

Lastly, for now, will have to be Steve Meretzky. This guy is probably the person who has the single most influence over my getting into computing and gaming. I know I am in the minority of people who still miss interactive fiction games (and yes, I know there are still indies being made) but I will never forget the time I spent trying to get a babel fish in my ear and trying to figure out how to get the station back online with Floyd. Here’s to you, man.

I would like to point out finally that this is not a hypothetical or empty gesture. If any of these people find themselves in Seattle and are a little dry and don’t mind being harangued with lots of silly questions about their work, just look me up or pm me. First round is on me!

Charles, for implementing the fighting system in my favorite game series of this generation (or at least the first two versions of it)

Everybody involved with Jagged Alliance 2 except for that art guy, Eric Cheng.

X-COM, same deal.

First of all: the mass effect 2 guys

then the pinball fx2 guys from hungary

and if any of them are muslims i will buy them coke instead

The guys at Obsidian, for being underappreciated geniuses.

And the guys at Fricitonal Games, who still blow me away with what they’ve managed to do with a 5-man team.

Soren Johnson, anyone at Firaxis, George Fan (lead designer for Plants vs Zombies), anyone who worked on Arkham Asylum, Paul Preece (lead designer of Desktop Tower Defense), Stephen Barcia (lead designer of Master of Magic), Daniel Dociu (art director on Guild Wars), Kekai Kotaki (artist on Guild Wars) and many others I’m sure I have forgotten.

Pretty much all of them. It’s a lousy business for the most part, and I admire the work they do. Even when it doesn’t turn out so well.

However, there are some game makers for whom I will buy two beers!


Whoa. Expensive.

I actually did help buy beer for the Dynamix devs who worked on the original Tribes.

Dan Cermak for SSI’s Colonial Conquest, Martin Campion for Rails West, and Jeffrey Johnson for Roadwar 2000/Europa.


Lucky bastard.

Me, I want to buy bears for everyone who worked on Thief 1 and 2.

You hated the games that much?

Yeah, that’s a little beyond punching them in the nose.

Maybe he means carebears and teddy bears.

Jade Raymond.

Ironic thread, as the guys over at RED5 just got beer sent to them… (makers of the FireFall F2P MMO coming out this year).

With underslung cheek spikes, no doubt! I’ll pitch in.

Looking Glass got the beer

I’ll buy beers for folks involved in the following games:

Starflight 1 or 2
X-Wing and Tie Fighter
The Wing Commander Series (or anything made by Origin Systems really)
Freespace 1 and 2
Pretty much anything made by Looking Glass

And likely any other designer who’s helped make a game I enjoy, those are just the ones I can come up with off the top of my head.