Goodbye, Stupid Ideas

I’m retiring my recurring feature that was called “That’s a Stupid Idea.”

For posterity, I’ll paste the contents of the feature’s page, so that everyone can still have access to it. The context: I will soon be converting this into a multi-author blog about stories in games. While it will no longer hold the same focus on fixing MMO problems, I have no doubt that MMOs will still be involved a good chunk of the discussions.

If you are interested in contributing to this blog about stories in games, contact me at “” (yup, that’s a double “@” so the spammers don’t find me 🙂

Anyways, here’s the retired feature page:

On my desk sits a little blue notebook, in which are written incoherent thoughts about MMOs. Leafing through the pages, it appears that I’ve written it in a sort of substitution cipher, which I suppose is how my mind must work when awoken by an idea early in the morning.

While downright inspirational at the moment, I often find the ideas to be completely stupid when I review them in a fully-conscious state. And so, for the good of the internets, I’ve taken it upon myself to decode these notes and start putting them online for your cynical pleasure.

“Some men see things as they are and say why – I dream things that never were and say why not” – George Bernard Shaw

Join with me for a moment to suspend your disbelief, and ponder some of the stranger “What If” questions. Perhaps from the most ludicrous extremes, we’ll be able to refine a gem or two.

2012-August-2 [Altaholics Anonymous]

2012-August-8 [The End is Near!]



Find The Key Podcast #7: A Villain We Love To Hate

Should a villain be more complex than just a ball of hatred and evil? Can we make game villains that are intelligent enough to creatively antagonize the players?

Find out in our latest episode of the “Find The Key” podcast

A quick outline of our show notes:

  • What makes a game character hate-able?
  • Should the primary villain be completely irredeemable or must they be more complex?
  • How might a villain work in a “Living Story”?
  • What about the idea of a “Global Villain”? Or villains that take the collaborative efforts of hundreds, if not thousands of players to topple?


For the first-timers, Find The Key is primarily about “stories in games,” which differ thematically and structurally from other fiction (books and movies). We talk about what makes game stories great, examples of classic or new interactive stories, and fiction in general. As always, you can add your voice to ours here with your own opinions on our latest subject.