Thursday, 7 October 2010

Sean Dahlberg moves on to Faxion Online development

Sean Dahlberg has been, for nearly two years, the Community Manager for Star Wars: The Old Republic. Then about a month ago news came that he had left BioWare.

We now know where he went to as Massively reports that he's working on design for the free-to-play PvP MMO Faxion now. Here's Massively's news:
For some of our readers, the idea of managing the community for Star Wars: The Old Republic would be a dream job. (How well this lines up with understanding what community managers actually have to do is debatable.) Sean Dahlberg, however, has apparently decided that he's had quite enough of that scene, so he's packed up and moved on to UTV True Games and Faxion Online. It's a bit of an odd move, and Dahlberg has put up a short entry on his personal blog explaining why he's moved on and what he's moving on to do.

Faxion Online is a free-to-play game focused on the war between Heaven and Hell, with what Dahlberg describes as a sense of humor resembling that of the inimitable Dungeon Keeper franchise. He explains that while he enjoyed working with communities, he wanted to get back into designing fun systems for an actual game, and he felt that he could make a larger contribution by shifting focus to his current occupation of Senior Game Systems Designer for Faxion. For more details and a few more tidbits about what's planned for the free-to-play title, take a look at his full entry.
As the news mentions Sean posted some details about the move on his blog.

Having never heard of Faxion before it came as quite a happy coincidence that has a chance to check the game out at GDC Online (which is going on in Austin as I write this). Here's an excerpt:

True Games, recently acquired by UTV, has several online games in their development stable. They include Warrior Epic, Mytheon, Sky Legends and Faxion (Fac-shun) Online. Faxion is their first completely internal project and Creative Director Mike Madden was on hand to show off the game. Mike’s game credits include stints at Ubisoft, Wolfpack Studios and Stray Bullet. With MMO Shadowbane under his belt, he is no stranger to PvP focused MMOs which is what Faxion Online is all about.

You are a lost soul, finding yourself in Limbo. You can redeem yourself… or not. In Purgatory City, you make your choice. Will you fight for Heaven or for Hell? Will you gain your horns and demon wings or will you gain your halo and angel wings? Who will command the seven deadly sins? Heaven, or Hell?
I'm not sure if it's my kind of game, but I can understand wanting to work on developing a game rather than managing a game's community. And perhaps I'll give the game a shot when it's out (though somehow I doubt it; PvP isn't my thing). Either way, the best of luck to Sean and the team at UTV True Games.

[link] to news at Massively.
[link] to Sean Dahlberg's blog post.
[link] to Faxion impressions article at MMORPG.

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