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Laralyn McWilliams's Blog   Expert Blogs


Laralyn McWilliams has designed and helped build award-winning social, strategy, simulation, platform, brawler, FPS, and massively multiplayer online games. She was Creative Director for the ground-breaking MMO Free Realms at Sony Online Entertainment, which the New York Times called “a triumph of the company’s own reinvention.” She was also lead designer for the critically acclaimed Full Spectrum Warrior, which was the most nominated game of E3 2003.

She shared the top spot in Massive Online Gaming’s 2010 list of the Top 20 Most Influential People in MMOs. She was also on Beckett’s list of the top women in MMOs for 2010, and one of Gamasutra’s 20 most influential women in games in 2008. She’s a frequent speaker on systems design, casual game progression, the use of metrics in the design and operation of live game services, and the importance of considering the player's experience.

She's currently Chief Creative Officer at The Workshop Entertainment.


Expert Blogs

Posted by Laralyn McWilliams on Thu, 30 Oct 2014 03:49:00 EDT in Business/Marketing, Design, Production, Console/PC, Social/Online
Conversations about bringing more women into game development and encouraging them to stay are always challenging. Lately, they've been almost impossible. Let's start thinking about it as a development problem and acknowledge flaws in our systems design.

Posted by Laralyn McWilliams on Sun, 03 Feb 2013 01:36:00 EST in Design
Graham Nelson created The Player's Bill of Rights in the 1990's. Since it primarily concerned interactive fiction, it didn't get wide distribution. It's an excellent set of design "rules," however, and with a bit of modernization it's very relevant today

Laralyn McWilliams's Comments

Comment In: [Blog - 10/30/2014 - 03:49]

I think it will come ...

I think it will come across the board, honestly, but by taking a good look at our processes and systems, we can better understand where there may be barriers we don 't even know exist. There 's an interesting article, for example, on how the language in job postings influences ...

Comment In: [Feature - 03/11/2013 - 09:35]

Yes, it is. Head and ...

Yes, it is. Head and neck radiation has other long-term effects too, like changing the structure of the jaw bone so it no longer heals itself. The side effects are manageable, though, and far better than the alternative treatment because there isn 't one... yet . :-