|Fantastic 4 (2005)||(Additional Design)|
|Medal of Honor: Frontline (2002)||(Designers)|
|Interstate '82 (1999)||(Design)|
|Heavy Gear (1997)||(Mission Designer)|
|Heavy Gear II (1999)||(Internal)|
|Battlezone 98 Redux (2016)||(External Beta Testers)|
|Civilization: Call to Power (1999)||(Play Balancers)|
|Battlezone (1998)||(External Beta Testers)|
|Dark Reign: The Future of War (1997)||(External Play Balancers)|
|Santa Fe Mysteries: The Elk Moon Murder (1996)||(Internal Beta Testers)|
|Blast Chamber (1996)||(Creative Affairs)|
|Interstate '76 (1997)||(The Team Thanks)|
|Santa Fe Mysteries: Sacred Ground (1997)||(Special Thanks)|
|Shanghai: Dynasty (1997)||(Special Thanks)|
Written by John Harris on Apr 28, 2012:
My name is John Harris. I was named after John Lennon (my mom was a Beatles freak).
I started at Activision in 1995 in the Customer Service department, where I lightly contributed to several games, including "Spycraft" and "Return to Zork." Six months later, my work play-balancing these games was recognized and I was called up to the Creative Affairs department, where I worked as a Senior Games Analyst for ~1 year, during which time I worked with many teams and on many titles, including Blast Chamber (working very closely with Tom Sloper), Ghost Bear for console, Elk Moon (a terrible FMV game, I don't mind telling you), Shanghai: Dynasty (also with Tom Sloper), early versions of Civilization: Call to Power and Battlezone, and too many others to name atm. For the last few months of my time in Creative Affairs, I worked as a Creative Executive. At that point, I was given my choice of position, and I chose to become a Game Designer.
My first Game Design job was on Heavy Gear. I designed and implemented the first 10 levels of the game. Once that had released, I moved on to my second game, Interstate '82, for which I designed and implemented roughly 1/2 the missions (levels, scripts, characters, and cutscenes), many objects, much of the HUD and interface, and various bits of voice-over. In fact, if you look at the members of Rank Dick's biker gang in the game -- the Dickies -- you'll see that I was actually the model for the character (that's my face!).
From there, I worked on a number of games in various stages of completion, including Civilization: Call to Power (during the final crunch before release), Dark Reign (mostly play-balancing and design cleanup), etc, etc.
After 6 years and many, many games, I worked briefly as an artist for a company called YaYa (which created "advergames" during the dot-com bubble and went out of business shortly after the bubble burst).
Immediately afterward, I was hired by Dreamworks as a Game Designer on the sequel to a Clive Barker game called Undying (or something -- it's been a while). Sadly(?), in between the time Dreamworks hired me and the time I actually started working there (roughly 2 weeks to 1 month), EA purchased the Dreamworks studio to create EA-LA, scrapped the Clive Barker game, and put me instead to work as a Game Designer on Medal of Honor: Frontline (for which I designed the D-Day missions that started the game). I worked on two other TBA action titles for EA that were eventually set aside indefinitely in favor of more Medal of Honor games.
A short time later, I took a job with a small developer related to Activision, Seven Studios, where I worked as a Game Designer on the Fantastic Four game (which was not only a terrible game, but a terrible experience; seriously, I think only "Apocalypse Now" had a rougher production than we did).
Last updated: Jan 11, 2016