Who are the People Behind YoYo Games?
From YoYoGames Wiki
Here is a copy of a post taken from the original YoYo Games Glog. It was first posted in February 2007 and was intended to give a , slightly humorous, insight into the main people behind YYG.
Note, most of us have some other business interests, so we don’t all work full time at YoYo (except me at the moment !), also there are some deliberately misleading statements below….see if you can spot them
Me (Sandy Duncan). I’m 46. Got an MA at the University of Aberdeen, Scotland…played with computers …got a job with computers at the phone company, decided it was more lucrative selling computers than designing and programming them, so joined Hewlett Packard in sales and marketing, got frustrated working for a big company,heard about a job at Microsoft ..took it…loved it…in 1986 it was an EXCITING place to be….it was a SMALL company then with less than 1,000 people worldwide…. I ran various European businesses from Reading (UK), Seattle, Paris and finally London, including my last 4 years doing one of the best jobs in the world setting up and running the European part of Xbox…got frustrated in a big company (then about 35,000 people !), left, did a job that taught me life isn’t JUST about money…so created YoYo Games . Live on a farm in England with 4 (very young) kids and a red Volvo. Love to play console games, especially FPS (Halo of course) and I think “Wii” is the worst name ever for the best gaming experience I’ve ever had…especially playing Wii Sports (Tennis and boxing) with my 7 year old hyperactive son….
James North-Hearn A “proper” games industry guy….wears a lot of black, drives a fast car (badly…), drinks even more than I do(badly)…. He might even be slightly older than me, but the important thing is like me, he’s never grown up ! James was a founder of Gremlin and VP of Publishing at Infogrammes/Atari before he got a “proper” job when he helped to found Sumo-Digital about 4 years ago. ”Sumo” are now one of the UK’s leading game developers and do a LOT of work for SEGA (check out Outrun2 or the PSP version of Virtua Tennis) as well as Sony (they actually wrote a Sudoku game for Sony which topped the charts in Japan !!). Interestingly…Jacob Hapgood, who wrote The Game Maker’s Apprentice” with Mark works at Sumo……are you starting to spot the coincidences ?? James has 2 kids (one young, one difficult) and lives in Sheffield, Outer Mongolia and drives a tractor.
Michel Cassius …another “games industry veteran”. Wasted a few years of his life at Apple (he even uses one of those MacBook thingies). Spent a few years at “EA” running their online business in Europe..they closed it down…so he left…joined me at Xbox as director of publishing where he spotted the potential of “Splinter Cell” and did the deal that probably saved Xbox in it’s early days..he also setup and ran Xbox Live in Europe…and stayed there till last year. He’s been running a US based online games/gaming company in Europe for the last year. He’s French (so he chooses the wine), lives in a Castle in London, with his wife and 3 children and drives a very powerful scooter with a built in umbrella.
Spencer Hyman Definitely NOT a games industry veteran. Spencer spent a lot of his formative years working for Hasbro in Japan and the Far East where he did everything but get involved in their PC/Video games business. After that he helped setup and develop Amazon’s UK subsidiary where I met him because he fell out with Microsoft….since then he’s been a venture capitalist and is most likely to be found working as COO of Last.fm. …trust me the website is much cooler than Spencer….if you haven’t been “scrobbling” yet…then check it out at www.last.fm. YoYo is something that Spencer has helped to create in his spare time and I don’t expect that to change much…but he’s a really important influence over us nonetheless. Spencer lives in London with his family where he is planning to build a Mosque in his back garden with the profits from YoYo Games
Prof Mark Overmars After a long career with more than 500 appearances for Ajax, Arsenal and Barcelona…only kidding…no need to Introduce Mark to the community !! Suffice to say that he IS the creator of Game Maker and remains the single most influential person in YoYo Games. Mark lives in a boat beside a small canal in the Netherlands and allegedly takes the occasional phone call on behalf of a former Dutch international footballers (only one of these 2 facts is indeed true !)