His all-time favorite movie is 2001: A Space Odyssey and as a child, he aspired to be an astronaut so he can form colonies in space and help solve world overpopulation.
Now 48, Will Wright has yet to make it to the Milky Way, but he can take some pride in having created the best-selling PC game franchise of all time, The Sims. First released in 2000, the video game has sold over 100 million copies across the globe.
Developed at Maxis, which was co-founded by Wright and is now part of Electronic Arts, The Sims shot the American game designer to fame, earning him widespread recognition as one of the most important figures in the realm of video games.
Wright was in Singapore for the first time this week as part of a global promotional tour for EA's much-anticipated simulation game Spore, slated for mass release September 7.
During a game demo, he said the concept for Spore was spawned from a desire to encapsulate everything else that The Sims was unable to--leading to his initial moniker for the game, "SimsEverything."
His inspiration for the game also came from the Search for Extra Terrestrial Intelligence (SETI) Institute, an organization that aims to explore the origin of life and seek potential life-forms in the universe.
Wright explained that the fundamental concept behind entities such as SETI and the Drake Equation all seek to answer one simple question: "Is there somebody out there?" Developed by astrophysics professor Frank Drake, the Drake Equation attempts to estimate the number of extraterrestrial civilizations in the galaxy.
With these in mind, Wright laid the foundation for Spore. Set in the backdrop of space galaxy, the game lets players develop civilizations and create species, allowing these creatures to evolve from a unicellular organism into intelligent social beings.
Described by Wright as a unique hybrid of single-player and massively multiplayer online games, Spore can be played as a standalone single-player game, as well as an online real-time strategy game where players can develop and share their own user-created content.
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