> *Tuesday February 10th at 11:45 AM*
> *Corey Bridges
> *An Introduction to Virtual Worlds*
> Corey Bridges is co-founder, Executive Producer and Marketing
> of the Multiverse Network, Inc., a company founded in 2004 by
a team of
> Netscape veterans, and aiming to become the world’s leading
> Massively Multiplayer Online Games (MMOGs) and 3D virtual
> Multiverse has pioneered a new technology platform designed
> the economics of virtual world development by providing
> developers with the resources they need to enter and compete
in the $2
> billion online game market.
> Corey was a member of the original launch team for Netflix,
> pre-IPO employee at Netscape, where he worked as product
> the company's flagship Internet browser.
> Corey also has written and directed a number of short films,
> produced commercials and TV specials. An award-winning
> has collaborated with well-known technology expert John
> multiple books. He has spoken internationally about the
> virtual worlds.
> Corey, who oversees business development and developer
> thousands of game development teams, ranging from garage
> Fortune 100 companies to Hollywood legends, will introduce
> of virtual worlds and describe Multiverse's unique technology
> which is expected to change the economics of virtual world
> by empowering independent game developers to create
> MMOGs and non-game virtual worlds for less money and in less
> ever before.
Corey began his summary of the history back in the 1980s, when
Multi-User Dungeons (MUDs) began appearing. They were text based
approximations of the dungeons and dragons role playing games that many
kids of the time were already familiar with. You moved by typing "go
forward" or whatever. This would produce a few lines of text describing
your new situation. Later they got more elaborate, adding graphics and
more sophisticated user input.Ultima Online was the first massively
multi player game where emergent user behaviors produced an interesting
culture. That idea has since been run with by many other developers.
World of Warcraft is now the 800 lb. gorilla of MMOGs. Their
system consists of backbone servers that the company controls and
client applications that users buy for $50ish or download (about 6
Gigabytes) and then play from their home computers, paying about
$15/month for connect time. This works out to about $1 Billion per
year, and makes World of Warcraft the #1 media property in the world.
Typical users play for about six months before moving on to other
things. Not only does the company make a lot of money off the system,
but there is a healthy aftermarket for things like weapons and
developed characters on eBay and craigslist that results in many
millions of dollars changing hands every year.
Lately products like Second Life have shown that MMD can be used
for non-game applications. Multiverse has stepped into this relm by
designing a system that makes it easy for developers to build up
whatever kind of multi player universe they want. Many of the designers
worked at Netscape on their famous browser and servers, so the
Multiverse system is built starting with many of the lessons learned
from that experience. Like most such systems it boils down to client
software on the user's computer and a server where everything is
Corey explained that the company gives away its developer kit and
client software. Then when a product gets good enough that it develops
a revenue stream they take ten percent. Multiverse began developing
their technology about four years ago now. At this point in time they
have about 25,000 users in a variety of settings. He expects client
applications to be developing revenue streams this year for the first
During Q&A a number of interesting things came up:
Multiverse gets its funding from angel investors. A lot of the
development was done on the cheap, with a lot of the key people working
out of their homes etc. Hopefully now it will start paying off. At this
point the stock is informally worth about a buck a share. So far they
have raised and spent about $4 million.
A college in Florida designed a game where you could "level up"
your character by demonstrating a detailed understanding of the laws of
There have been several religious groups that have used the system
to do something. One group made a simulation of Jerusalem so that you
can visit a historically accurate simulation of the place as it was at
various times in history. A Christian group did something else a bit
more tongue in cheek.
If you want to play with their software to try it out please visit: