Wednesday, September 23, 2009

A homage to the Crusader Ixobelle

He doesn’t need to grind reputation with Bloodsail Buccaneers. He’s obviously a bit insane in the brain by birth. And that is exactly why I think he might succeed in his epic quest for the Holy Grail.

A couple of months ago Ixobelle left Japan with his mind set to one thing: to follow his heart and aim for a position in the game industry. Currently he’s storming the castle of Blizzard in Irvine, reporting about it on his blog.

Regardless of security guards, locked gates and other restrictions, Ixo has set his mind to get a foot inside. He has put up a sign across the street, trying to attract some attention from the employees. And he’s handing out a booklet containing the artwork and ideas for a dungeon that he’s created all on his own.

Employer POV
I’ve been on “the other side”, employing people, not in the game industry, but at a very popular NGO-alike organization, and I can imagine that it was a bit similar to the Blizzard case, even though the office was smaller.

To tell the truth we just hated “spontaneous applications” as the one from Ixobelle. If we wanted to hire people we did it in an organized manner, putting together an ad, letting the human resources people help us to do pick out the few plants among the abundance of weed.

People like Ixobelle, without a formal education and a background as a professional in the area we were looking for, wouldn’t stand a chance. If he just turned up at the office, we would politely tell him to sod off. And if he kept hanging around we’d call the police. I wouldn’t be surprised if Blizzard had the same approach. They want to be left alone. They don’t want to have their office stormed by hordes of fan boys who think they were born to become game designers.

However, Ixobelle isn’t just an ordinary fan boy. He hasn’t only got passion; he’s also got real artistic talent and a solid understanding of game construction. I’ve seen his portfolio booklet, since he was kind enough to send a pdf of it to me. And I tell you: he’s telling the truth. It’s bad ass looking. I can’t possibly see how anyone in his full senses could resist having a closer look at the creative mind behind it. The crucial point is to get it into the right hands, to make someone who has any kind of influence at least have a quick glance at it.

The American Dream
I’ve always had a week spot for the myth about the self made man. The US mantra: if you only try heard enough you can achieve anything. I agree about it. Sure there are exceptions, people who are born under extreme circumstances that their destiny is out of their hands, but most of us still have the freedom – and burden, since all this freedom actually can be a bit painful - to create our own destiny.

No matter if they’re clichés and lies – I can’t help loving those refrains from American TV series telling us that we can reach the stars. Does anyone remember Fame? “But fame costs. And right here is where you start paying. With sweat!” Or why not quote ST Enterprise:

I’m going where my heart will take me/I got faith to believe I can do anything/I got strength of the soul and no one’s gonna bend or break me/I can reach any star. I got faith. Faith of the heart.

As poetry regarded, it’s crap to tell the least, but I like the attitude. I really do.

Ixobelle. don’t know what’s most insane about this. His fearless attacks to the Blizzard headquarters or the fact that he’s publishing the full story at his blog. How brave isn’t that? I wouldn’t take the risk myself to be honest. I might go for the break-in mission, but I certainly wouldn’t tell anyone about it, in case I would fail. It would be too humiliating. I would rather go to my hamburger flipping job without having to sharing my disappointment with the world.

I’ll finish this post with a humble request:

Dear Blizzard employees, if anyone of you happens to read my blog (there might be one who does it, I actually do get regular hits from someone in Irvine. It could of course be just a coincidence, but you never know): PLEASE let Ixobelle in and have a look at his booklet. You won’t regret it.

Edit: Accordning to tha latest report, Ixo is facing some difficulties. But considering his energy and dedication I'm certain he'll be back to it soon.


Tesh said...

Aye, he's a bit touched in the head. I like him. :)

If nothing else, he's got guts, and here's hoping this pans out for him in one way or another.

Anonymous said...


Rich said...

you are loved <3

Anonymous said...

I'm afraid that I'm the person from Irvine, Ca who regularly reads your blog but alas I'm not (yet) a Blizzard employee though I often toy with the idea of applying for their GM supervisor position.

Best wishes to Ixo in his quest!

Larísa said...

@Ixobelle: /hug

@Anonymous: actually you seem not to be alone. Not to say that the other visitors are Blizzard people. As I said - it could be just a coincidence.

Stabs said...

Well don't forget people like Ixobelle made WoW.

Tigole and Furor were hired because of the passion they showed as Everquest players.

nugget said...

^_^ do you suppose if I comment really nicely he'll send me a pdf too?

I'm curious now!

nugget <-- graphics and other sauces

Rich said...

the PDF will be released the instant I touch back down on the Home Soil. The project has lost all of it's usefulness to me at this point, best to spread it around at this point... no sense keeping it all bottled up, anymore, ne?

Larísa said...

@Ixo: I'm not sure about it. You may want to consider looking at it twice before making it all available on the web. Maybe there are things in it that you want to recycle in another form in your upcoming Ixobelle's portfolio 2.0.
Things you could put into antother game or use in an application for another company.

I don't say you shouldn't publish it. But think an extra time. Maybe there's someone reading this who is in the gaming industry that could give you some advice?

Hatch said...

Go go Ixo! Even though he didn't get in the door, he did make progress, and get his book in the hands of some people on the inside (even if they can't "legally" read it, I guarantee you some of them did anyway). The book is really impressive. I hope Ixo isn't embarrassed about the results and posting them publicly. If anything, I found the posts impressive and inspiring. Keep it up dude!

Tesh said...

Portfolios may as well be public. Mine is, I just don't have it currently hosted online. As the PR guys at Blizzard noted, devs can't legally read the stuff anyway. (Which means that if you *do* make it public, and they wind up using it, they can be sued. If anything, publishing it in a public place is a "poor man's patent" sort of thing; it makes sure that you have it on record somewhere as your work.)

Unknown said...

Kinda reminds me of TK409 going to get a job(though he did have a bit more luck...)

Good luck Ixobelle

nugget said...

Yup, agree wif Tesh.

If you're doing graphics (which was implied from what Larisa The Pink wrote), then it's better for your portfolio to be public than hidden somewhere...

(Same with my own portfolio, incidentally. And it is available on ze web. Zeezeezee.)

^_^ woot viewage of graphicy doomage!

Carra said...

It's Blizzard. They have millions of people who would love to join their company. I would.

There are also lots of other game companies. I'd try and get into one of those, get some experience and retry at Blizzard.

Hinenuitepo said...

Nice post!
Bit late in finding the blog, but I like your passion and writing style. :)