QuakeCon is infectious and exhuasting. It's a disorganized, seething mass of community involvement and chaotic impulse, and my desire to control every new experience is being overwhelmed; my resolve is slowly caving. Sitting in the BYOC, I am exposed to random shouts cascading into crescendoes of autistic choirs, and I can't help but take part. For ten seconds of every thirty minutes, the building sounds like a howling monkey society. It's an experience.

The press registration area is totally segregated from the BYOC, tournament, and exhibition areas. A minor shout session invades my thoughts. I do not participate. I had an interview with Steve Nix scheduled for 11AM this morning, and between the alcohol Bethesda fed to me last night, and my own inattentiveness caused by the string of random occurrences and interruptions I've been subjected to, I've utterly failed to uphold my commitment. This is my public apology. However, Steve agreed to meet with me 30 minutes later than we had scheduled, and considering the hectic nature of this event so far, that was an absolutely outstanding show of congeniality.

Steve Nix is a disturbingly average looking person. His hair is kept well, the veins in his forearms and the tightness of the skin of his cheeks and jaw indicate some dedication to personal health, and his eyes convey an attitude of subtle curiosity. Perhaps what is disturbing is not his appearance, but my awareness of it. His presence is casual yet necessary. He is collected and calm, and I can imagine that mindset trickling down to team members. He's also an interesting person to talk to, not simply because of the subject matter, but because of his behavior. He seems engaged and calculating. His handshake is relaxed but firm, indicating personal confidence and some level of respect for my position. I am instantly at ease. Perhaps this is all part of his grand scheme.

Steve is what I consider a success as a person. He has goals, and he achieves them. As we walked into the press dining area, I found myself actually anticipating the interview. It's an interesting change of pace from my normal drive for objectivity. I want to hear what he has to say; I want to get him to speak.

The interview is for the web site, so despite my urge to dig into his brain in order to discover his drive for success and accomplishment, I forge into the QuakeLive discussion. The setting is ideal, him on a comfortable black leather couch, my own seat similarly cushioned but not quite so lengthy. We're sitting in the corner of an open room, but the arrangement of dining tables gives the area a sense of seclusion. It's almost an interior decorator's metaphor for id's development philosophy.

The development team, Steve states, was utterly surprised by just how enthusiastically the professional gaming scene embraced QuakeLive, but considering the focus of the team on a few extremely concise goals, in hindsight it seems somewhat obvious. Quake players are looking for a consistent platform, and Steve seems highly aware of this.

His position is one of coordination and direction, and the development team follows the id philosophy with an ironic militance; blatantly obvious, considering it's id, but as John Carmack explained in his keynote speech, maintaining the adaptive approach to design and development is becoming increasingly difficult as the scope of games and the size of development teams grow. Steve's ability to manage and direct a team of 10 dedicated developers is somewhat inspiring, if only because at this point in my life I'm beginning to admire the sheer amount of effort necessary to achieve any substantial success in life, if we loosely define success as the realization of a desired outcome.

It's simple to be critical. Flaws are everywhere, and are inherent in any evolving system. Without flaws, evolution wouldn't be possible. The lazy approach to life is one of criticizing flaws with the intent of enabling your own infantile egotistical satisfaction. Sitting across from Steve, I'm impressed not only by his knowledge and appreciation of the various communities formed around the Quake series, but of his dedication to creating a service with the integrity required for the game to persevere for longer than the retail shelf life of the latest graphics cards, and that is how he refers to QuakeLive: a service. My attempts to display my theories about the nature of a consistent platform such as QuakeLive being necessary for the advancement of competitive gaming must have bored Steve, because he is already totally aware of everything I have to say. The team is utterly dedicated to providing a dynamic service that is simple to manage and touts as many features as is feasibly possible.
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