Ex-Second Life CEO Creating New Virtual World Sim Called… Life by You

Well this is an interesting reveal from Paradox Interactive (watch at 16:10): Life by You, a new life simulation game that’s getting a full reveal later this month.  

Project lead of Life by You is Rod Humble, the game industry veteran who was once CEO of Linden Lab, and before that, was VP at Electronic Arts, where he worked on The Sims franchise (among many other tiles). From the brief glimpses we get from the teaser, Life by You looks like a cross between Second Life and The Sims, with some suburban sim living gameplay, but also quite a lot of user creativity enabled:

The home-building UI (above), for example, has a wide range of building options; plus there’s hints of a wider virtual world to explore.

But no point speculating too wildly just yet — Humble is set to offer an extended preview on March 20, so stay tuned for that.

Interesting title choice for sure, as it (intentionally?) evokes Second Life. When Rod became Linden Lab’s CEO in 2011, I asked him if the name itself was a problem. He argued otherwise:

“If I was to tell you there’s this product [where] you can be whoever you want to be, and you can play games, listen to music, watch videos, attend roleplaying games, run a business and fashion shows, you’d probably think I’m crazy…

“I don’t think the offering itself is unappealing… over time, the perception of Second Life has changed and it’s kinda been yanked around by us.” He noted the company variously offered up Second Life as a business platform, a virtual platform for adults, or a game, “and we’ve kinda mushed it up… It’s foremost a tool where you can make and do whatever you want. Over time, that [negative] brand perception will change as we do the right thing…”

“When it comes to names and perceptions like that, I think those things can always change over time… I still remember [the mockery] when the Wii was announced… then it blew everyone away.” With The Sims, he noted, “For awhile there, people were saying ‘Why do I want to go into a game and pee?’” Then the game franchise became a monster hit. So with the name Second Life, “I don’t think it’s going to be an anchor.”

Shifting the perception of Second Life proved difficult during his tenure. Then again, no one else has managed to solve that challenge. My impression is that he’s better suited for leading development on a specific project, as opposed to leading what Linden Lab was dealing with back then — a mostly unsuccessful struggle to grow beyond its existing user base with a number of other products that weren’t quite a suitable fit.

Stay in the Loop

Get the daily email from CryptoNews that makes reading the news actually enjoyable. Join our mailing list to stay in the loop to stay informed, for free.

Latest stories

- Advertisement - spot_img

You might also like...