Mixed reality outfit CastAR hires game execs to lead consumer charge

"Darrell and Steve not only share our passion for pushing the boundaries of what's possible in mixed reality gaming and entertainment."

Mixed reality headset maker CastAR has made two big changes with the appointments of Darrell Rodriguez as CEO and Steve Parkis as COO and president. 

Parkis previously served as Zynga's SVP of games, where he oversaw the development of key franchises such as FarmVille and CityVille. Prior to joining CastAR he founded and led JoyfulMagic, a consumer tech advisory and investment company based in San Francisco. 

Rodriguez brings even more video game pedigree to the table, having held executive roles at companies including LucasArts, EA, and Trendy Entertainment. 

CastAR co-founders Jeri Ellsworth and Rick Johnson, formerly of Valve, hope the new hires will help them establish a foothold in the consumer space.

"Darrell and Steve not only share our passion for pushing the boundaries of what's possible in mixed reality gaming and entertainment," said the pair. 

"They are the one-two punch we have been looking for to drive CastAR into our consumer launch and beyond."

Just over a year ago the company received a $15 million investment and promised to use the cash to fine-tune its hardware and improve software compatibility. 

At the time, CEO David Henkel-Wallace told Gamasutra that CastAR was aiming to get its headset onto North American shelves in 2016, and would look to align the device with "recognizable brands in tabletop and interactive gaming."

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