Sandy Petersen

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Sandy Petersen
Sandy Petersen in May 2004.jpg
Sandy Petersen in May 2004
Born Carl Sanford Joslyn Petersen
(1955-09-16) September 16, 1955 (age 59)
St. Louis, Missouri
Occupation Game designer

Carl Sanford Joslyn Petersen (born September 16, 1955) is an American game designer.

Biography[edit]

Petersen was born in St. Louis, Missouri and attended University of California, Berkeley, majoring in zoology.

He is a well-known fan of H. P. Lovecraft, whose work he first encountered in a World War II Armed Services Edition of The Dunwich Horror and other Weird Tales found in his father's library. In 1974, Dungeons & Dragons brought his interest to role-playing games.[citation needed] He became a full-time staff member at Chaosium.[1] His interest for role-playing games and H. P. Lovecraft were fused when he became principal author of Chaosium's game Call of Cthulhu, published 1981,[2] and many scenarios and background pieces thereafter. While working for Chaosium he co-authored the second edition of RuneQuest, for which he also co-wrote the critically acclaimed Trollpak and a number of other Gloranthan supplements. He still plays and runs role-playing games, and is a frequent guest at conventions where he usually runs a freeform game of his own devising, and/or helps to run someone else's game.

He worked some time for MicroProse, where he is credited for work between 1989 and 1992 on the video games Darklands, Hyperspeed, Lightspeed, Sid Meier's Pirates! and Sword of the Samurai. He also made some contributions to Civilization.

Primarily interested by the first-person shooter Wolfenstein 3D, Petersen joined id Software about 10 weeks before the December 1993 release of Doom and in that time created 19 levels for it (of which 8 were based to some extent on early drafts by Tom Hall). He later created 17 of the levels for Doom II, and 7 levels for Quake. His Lovecraftian influences also resulted in some changes to the monster designs for these games.

He left id Software for Ensemble Studios in June 1997. There, he has worked as a game designer on several of their Age of Empires titles, including Rise of Rome, Age of Kings, and The Conquerors. During this time, he was a frequent poster on the HeavenGames forums under the username ES_Sandyman. He ran an extremely popular series of threads, "Ask Sandyman", where forum members could ask him about anything they wanted.

Petersen was the Executive Producer for the movie The Whisperer in Darkness (2011) which was nominated for awards at the Chicago and Warsaw International Film Festivals. It was produced by H.P. Lovecraft Historical Society Motion Pictures in the style of a 1930's black and white horror movie.

He currently[when?] serves as the publisher of horror magazine Arcane: Penny Dreadfuls for the 21st Century.[3]

Petersen took a professorship at The Guildhall at SMU in 2009 following the closure of Ensemble Studios, where he now teaches several courses on game design.[4]

In mid-2013 Petersen led a highly successful Kickstarter campaign by his company, Green Eye Games, to produce the Cthulhu Wars boardgame. Over US$1,400,000 was raised achieving over 3,500% of the initial target. This success allowed the creation of more figures (60), map expansions and additional scenario options. In most, if not all, previous Cthulhu games "you strive to avert the impending catastrophe. But in Cthulhu Wars you ARE the catastrophe! The Great Old Ones have returned to claim the ruins of Earth, and you are one of them!".[5] Green Eye Games also produces Cthulhu World Combat (iOS, Android, Windows, PSN, Xbox Live).[6][7][8]

Petersen now[when?] works at Barking Lizards Technologies as their Creative Director, and worked on their recent iOS release, Osiris Legends.

Personal life[edit]

Petersen is a Mormon, but sees no conflict between his Christian faith and his design of games involving Satanic elements. While working on Doom, he said to John Romero: "I have no problems with the demons in the game. They're just cartoons. And, anyway, they're the bad guys."[9]

Sandy is married, has five children, and six grandchildren.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]