Brad McQuaid’s Blog
One of the many blogs that I enjoy reading is Brad McQuaid’s. It doesn’t get updated very often (seems to be about once every month at the moment) and the guy’s only written five posts but I always savour his articles and keep them saved on my iPhone so I can slowly digest them at some convenient point on the toilet at work.
If you don’t know who Brad McQuaid is, you can check out a post here that I wrote when he first resurfaced in June this year. Essentially he’s the father of Everquest, the first 3D MMORPG and one of the most famous of them all, and the creator of Vanguard, one of the biggest flops of all MMOs and perhaps the most infamous of them all.
His blog posts are well written and currently he’s covering an extensive dissection of what went wrong with Vanguard. His latest post about the issues surrounding the size of the virtual world they wanted to create is both very fascinating and enlightening. I really enjoying reading about MMORPG design and I can’t help but be morbidly intrigued by all of the problems that plagued Vanguard and led to it’s eventual downfall and disgrace. It’s also really interesting to hear Brad’s thoughts behind it all and what he thinks the mistakes were and how they came to be.
I think we forget about the human faces behind MMORPGs and tend to treat them just as mechanical tools of enjoyment that should be both flawless and yet meet our ever increasing demands. The customer, of course, has this right and it’s no excuse for poor quality of services, bugs, queues and all of the problems we tend to often face. Still, it’s always good to remember the people who have spent years slaving away trying to bring these beasts to life.
Brad’s blog reminds me a lot of a book I read about 6 or 7 years ago called the Everquest Companion: The Insider Lore of a Gameworld. It’s very old now but still an interesting read, giving a very open and honest appraisal of the game, how it came to be and all of the good (and bad) events that surrounded it. I wish more companies would bring out these sorts of books for current MMORPGs.