Representatives from Cambridge, Massachusetts-based SparkForge Entertainment have announced the formation of the new company, as well as plans to create games and platform technologies for “massively scalable online games,” or MSOGs.
According to a note released by the newly formed company, MSOGs are intended to focus on the interests of the leisure gamer, a segment of game enthusiasts who “enjoy challenging games that offer persistence and community without the time-sinks and financial commitment of the typical massively-multiplayer game.” The company notes that this largely unrecognized portion of the gaming community resides between the extremes of what is traditionally referred to as the "hardcore" or "casual" audience.
SparkForge is currently developing a MSOG that will be built upon what it called the "SparkForge Platform," an environment that allows online games to feature access to game content through a web browser, though specifically how this is done remains uncertain. In addition to its proprietary game development, SparkForge also plans to make this platform available to select licensees in the online game industry.
"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.
He added: “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.” Radoff previously founded web software vendor Eprise Corporation, and has also worked as the CEO of NovaLink, an early internet service provider. While at NovaLink, he developed Legends of Future Past, one of the earliest commercially available MMORPGs.