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Google hires a chief game designer, but isn't saying why
Google hires a chief game designer, but isn't saying why
May 2, 2013 | By Kris Ligman

Newsbrief: Industry veteran Noah Falstein will be joining Google's ranks as its new chief game designer, as reported by TechCrunch this morning. But the reasons behind the move remain a little unclear.

Theories abound that Falstein may be coming on to develop for the Android market or for Google Glass, which poses unique design opportunities. Whatever the reasons, Falstein brings with him a considerable portfolio. As one of the founding members of LucasArts, Falstein has a long list of shipped titles stretching back to 1980, and has consulted for Disney, Dreamworks and Microsoft.

When reached for comment, a Google representative confirmed Falstein's hiring but declined to discuss specifics. We have also reached out to Falstein directly and will update as more information becomes available.

Update: Falstein got back with us about our inquiry, but his specific duties at Google are still under wraps: "I can confirm that the title and job is accurate," he said. "Can't say more at this time, sorry!"

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Philip Wilson
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There is already leaked info that a handful of gaming specific panels are going to be at Google I/O later this month. They're probably working on something along the lines of Apple's GameCenter thing

Michael Perna
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I recently had the opportunity to meet Noah at a convention. His specialty, and surely his passion, is serious games. I spoke with him for quite a while after his session. We spoke about Daniel H. Pink and self actualization theory. He is a very nice guy and very interested in the psychology of games, obviously important. Based on my conversation with him and my own experience on the business side of things, I'd wager that Google is looking into gamification. When I say "gamification" I mean gamified experiences. Something like Glass has the ability to blur some lines between digital worlds and the meat world, smartphones have already taken a pretty significant step in this direction. Having an understanding of how technologies like this can be fully utilized is an obvious goal of Google, Noah is qualified to consult or maybe even build out a team (which he has been doing if you look at who he has been linking in with lately).