Michael Kirchhoff

Workin’ On A HEX Farm

Today the company I work for, Cryptozoic Entertainment, announced the existence of our brand-spankin’-new MMO/TCG, HEX: Shards of Fate.

This is the largest creative project I have ever worked on … hell, it’s probably the biggest project, period. HEX has consumed most of my waking thoughts for the past year and a half, and now I’m finally allowed to talk about it publicly.

In December of 2011, Cory Jones (President of Cryptozoic and an old friend) asked me to be a part of this wackadoodle new idea: combining a digital trading card game with a massively multiplayer role playing game. I won’t lie, it took a bit of convincing, and a year and a half later, I’m still biting my nails to see if this crazypants idea is actually going to work.

My role on the HEX team is Lore Guy. Cory and I created the basic structure of the game’s massive story, then I was tasked with taking all those ideas and mold them into a narrative framework. Telling a story in a TCG is difficult; telling a story in an MMO is extremely challenging; and combining the two is ridiculous and, to my knowledge, has never been done before. It has been quite the learning experience, and most of the scars I’ve accumulated in my game development career so far can be covered by a long-sleeved shirt.

I’m not going to give you the hard sell for the game here, that’s what the HEX web site is for. My responsibility is to make the “Story” section of the site palatable for those brave or insane enough to venture there. Once HEX releases, I will be in charge of making sure that the RPG-style story works within the game world.

I’m just happy that I can finally disclose what has been consuming nearly all of my creative energy lately, which is the reason this blog has been so dormant (well, that, added with the fact that I nearly have 100% map completion for my charr ranger in Guild Wars 2, with my inherent catastrophic laziness smooshed on top of the blog-neglecting sundae).

After all these years of hurling my lithe and optimistic body against the sharp and indifferent spikes of creative rejection, it is both a triumphant and validating moment to finally have my name attached to a writing project of this scope and visibility.

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