As announced today via an official blog post, Google’s chief game designer Noah Falstein has stepped down citing his inability to build influential and money-making games at the tech giant. He was hired by Google back in May 2013 with a vision to flag its presence in the gaming industry. However, failing to advance its footprint the gaming industry, Noah is now seeking opportunities in the field of neurogaming, interactive VR films, and other gaming provinces.
The latter declared 6th April as his last at the company and shared his decision to depart via his personal blog. He wrote,
Google is a tremendous company and I know I will miss the perks, the excitement, and most of all, my colleagues there. But with 37 years as a professional game developer, making games is in my blood. I’m not ready to give up on it, certainly not when there are exciting new fields just opening up.
Noah Falstein entered the gaming domain in 1980, devoting around 37 years of his life to the realm. Prior to Google, he has worked with Lucasfilm Games (now LucasArts Entertainment), DreamWorks Interactive (now EALA), and The 3DO Company. He’s been appreciated for several titles including Hungry Red Planet (Windows) as a designer, Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis (DOS) as the co-designer and The 400 Project among others.
Reading his statement, you can easily make out that Falstein is much more attracted towards spending his time at a dedicated gaming company. Also considering his past work experiences — Google is certainly not exactly one of them. Although the tech giant brings in hefty profits through its GooglePlay Store titles and has its own gaming divisions and projects, it continuously strives to stand out as a platform giant — rather than a gaming biggie.
He further noted his fascination with the confluence of games, neuroscience, and VR. He believes that the emotional connections possible in VR — most prominently shown in the empathy evoked by a sense of physical proximity and eye contact that no previous technology can match is going to open up an entire new merging of movies, interaction, and games that may need a new name. The latter wants to thrust himself back into the constantly diversifying and feasible gaming market, where he deems himself a better fit.