will wright on sculpting possibility space

will wright, the creator of the sims, is speaking now. will is showing funny episodes from his online world “here i am hanging out with my boyz, enjoying refreshments” (pictures of a bad neighborhood on the screen). now he talks about the concept of possibility space. (reminds me of the all possible universes discussion). “you can describe the meaningful verbs of a game very easily: kill, race, manage.” “we found that user were quickly comfortable with the idea of shopping, it soothed them.” will asserts that science has been moving away from calculus to simulation, while games have gone in the opposite direction. thus the creation of elaborate physics engines. now he is showing lots of interesting slides in quick succession about feedback mechanisms in games, topologies, and patterns. he is talking far too quickly for me to summarize it. “failures are entertaining, it becomes boring quickly to just explore the path of success”. Cybernetics, System Dynamics, Cellular Automata and Chaos Theory are some approaches to model reality that have been developed. Will also mentions the old favorite of the blogosphere, the Power law distribution. “Relativity theory and quantum mechanics describe different aspects of the universe (very successfully), but taken together they cannot explain a duck.” Game development is moving from 1 person efforts in 1984 to several hundreds for The Sims 2. Extrapolating from that quickly gets you $500M games with 2.5M developers. “People are increasingly designing their environments: Cell phone covers, fashion, interiors..” Machinima is becoming increasingly popular: shooting film in virtual reality. In the future, metrics are becoming important for the further development of these games. Looking at purchase history, relationships allow to devise elaborate model of user behavior. Based on these patterns, potential matches can be found (think tickle on steroids). someone asks about copyright protection, and will says he personally uses cracks “its the easiest.” :)
You really need to see his presentation on DVD to get the full effect, i am trying to snag a copy.

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