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SparkForce Developing Massively Scalable Online Game

by Rainier on Sept. 21, 2006 @ 3:01 p.m. PDT

SparkForge Entertainment announced its formation, stating that it will create games and platform technologies for a new category it called “Massively Scalable Online Games.”

According to Parks Associates analyst Michael Cai, the online game market is expected to grow to $4.4B by 2010. Much of that market includes a type of player referred to as a "leisure gamer," a segment largely ignored by the current trend toward designing games for the extremes of "hardcore" or "casual" gamers. Massively Scalable Online Games (MSOGs) are intended to focus on the interests of the leisure gamer—people who enjoy challenging games that offer persistence and community without the time-sinks and financial commitment of the typical massively-multiplayer game.

"Massively Scalable Online Games (MSOGs) bridge the gap between the single-player market, which tends to be dominated by expensive hit-driven development, and the massively-multiplayer world, where thousands of players interact in universes under the exclusive control of publishers,” explained SparkForge founder and CEO Jon Radoff. “We're going to make fun, challenging, massively-multiplayer games that players can make their own. The big difference is the “scalable” word—players will have the choice of using company-sponsored servers, or guilds will be able to setup and run their own customized gaming sites.”

SparkForge is currently developing a MSOG that will be built upon the "SparkForge Platform," an environment that allows online games to expose access to game content through websites. In addition to its proprietary game development, the SparkForge Platform will be made available to select licensees in the online game industry.

Mr. Radoff previously founded Eprise Corporation, a Web software vendor that went public on NASDAQ in 2000. Prior to that, he was CEO of NovaLink, an early Internet Service Provider. While at NovaLink, he developed Legends of Future Past, one of the first commercial MMORPGs on the Internet.

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