Last updated: October, 2012
fleck99pf on Twitter
Here’s a random biographical rundown:
Occupation: Sr Technical Product Manager, Disney Interactive
Location: San Diego, CA
First RPG: The Bard’s Tale, C=64
First Online: KoBra MUD
First MMORPG: Star Wars Galaxies
Favorite Coding Experience: AI development
Favorite Math Word: Eigenvector
If I Couldn’t Code, I’d: Run a restaurant
Favorite Author: Charles Bukowsky
Wow, I was a barrel of fun in those days.
WorldIV role: Website maintenance, sound, music, coding, game ideas, resident drunkard.
Got a private response to something? Email me at tachevert at worldiv dot com.
This all came about, for me, because of Star Wars Galaxies. I adored that game. I did EVERYTHING I could find to do. I was enchanted with the “sandbox” nature of the game, and yet there was still a surprising amount of “stuff” to do from a content perspective. One night, I’m grinding for cash in a solo group on Dantooine (the pre-Combat-Upgrade standard routine — SWG veterans will recognize that. Boy, did those Kunga and Janta hate me!), and our group chat switches over to good-natured griping about this and that that’s done wrong in the game. OK, so I started it. I didn’t mean to — I just mentioned that I wouldn’t be grinding through Jedi, because it was pointless and wrecked the game (from my perspective — I didn’t want to abandon the social nature of playing, but didn’t have time to deal with the “bounty hunter” effect on a Jedi; as a result, I never pursued it and just stuck with my existing build). Surprisingly, the group was sharply divided and the discussion got awfully vitriolic. At one point, the inevitable line came up: “So if you think you can do better, why don’t you go do it?” And it struck a chord with me… “Hey, I’m a professional coder. Why not give it a try?”
I wrote this bio what feels like an eternity ago. Since then, I’ve put my money where my mouth is. That’s right, I picked up stakes, left a cushy job in Atlanta, and headed to San Diego to sign up with a little startup called Metaplace, founded by a bunch of game industry veterans including several of the brains behind SWG. We went through the ups and downs of startups, came very close to the edge of nonexistence, and then released a social game. It caught on with a small audience. So we released another one. It caught on with a bigger, and remarkably dedicated, bunch of fans. After that, things moved quickly; we were acquired by bigger and bigger companies, culminating with a little brand you may know called Disney. My own role shifted over time, from a wet-behind-the-ears game scripter through the worlds of engineering, game design, production, and management. And through it all, this site still has special meaning to me, so here I find myself after the better half of a decade, shouting into the quite loud wind that is the Internet.