When I'm asked for the secret of being the first designer to introduce major products in new categories so many times, I answer:
"I'd rather risk failure by innovating too early than guarantee failure by imitating too late."
Don Daglow is a three-time Inc. 500™ CEO, a pioneering game designer and 2008 Technical Emmy® Award recipient whose career spans the history of the video games industry.
He advises game, app and technology companies with innovative online and mobile products, serving clients ranging from small startups to large international publishers. Most projects are based on technology and business models that did not yet exist just a few years ago.
Don's teams have shipped over $1 billion in software products. He was one of the first developers to create online games, one of the first to design for smartphones and one of the first to design microtransaction-based titles.
He also serves as an Advisor at the Founders Space Accelerator in San Francisco, and as the founding President of The Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences Foundation, the charitable wing of the Academy.
Daglow has delivered keynotes and speeches at The Smithsonian Art Museum in Washington D.C., BAFTA in London, the Biennale in Frankfurt, Medientage in Munich and many international games conferences.
He is the only executive in the history of the games industry who has held leadership positions for titles on every generation of video game consoles, from 1980 to the present iteration of Sony vs. Microsoft. It's no coincidence that he coined the industry term, "Console Wars."
He designed computer games before the invention of Pong, and created online games before the opening of the public Internet. In 2003 he received the CGE Award for "groundbreaking achievements that shaped the Video Game Industry."
Don Daglow is the only games industry pioneer who is credited with creating seminal games in four different game genres:
• Role Playing – First computer RPG (Dungeon, 1975); first graphical MMORPG (Neverwinter Nights, 1991, Emmy® Award 2008)
• Sports – First interactive sports game (Baseball, 1971); first use of multiple camera angles in video games (Intellivision World Series Baseball, 1983); produced two of the first three EA sports titles (1984-87)
• Sim & God Games – First simulation video game (Intellivision Utopia, 1981)
• Real-Time Strategy – First game with RTS elements (Intellivision Utopia, 1981); first 3D display in RTS games (Stronghold, 1993)
As a programmer on mainframe computers, Daglow also created key early milestones in the development of chatbots (ECALA, 1972) and the machine translation of natural language (Spanish Translator, 1977).
Along with John Carmack of id Software and Mike Morhaime of Blizzard Entertainment, Daglow is one of only three game developers whose work has been honored at both the Technology & Engineering Emmy® Awards and at the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences Awards.
In addition to game design, he is also an accomplished writer, with a playwriting award from The National Endowment for the Humanities and multiple book awards for his literary mystery novel, The Fog Seller.
Don holds a B.A. (Playwriting) from Pomona College, and an M.Ed. (Multicultural Education) from Claremont Graduate University.
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Clockworks photo credit: Kathryn, accessed 9/6/14