Media Consumption: GameHouse's Garr Godfrey

Today’s Media Consumption, a weekly column that digs deep to find out what our favorite game developers have been devouring in the four basic food groups of audio, video,...
Today’s Media Consumption, a weekly column that digs deep to find out what our favorite game developers have been devouring in the four basic food groups of audio, video, printed word and games, speaks to GameHouse CTO and co-founder Garr Godfrey. Godfrey has an extensive thirteen-year history in the software industry, beginning with a role as the sole Windows Software Engineer for the '93 and '94 editions of Microsoft's Bookshelf program. He was also the Lead Software Engineer for a number of Windows 95 games for Dreamworks Interactive, and was responsible for the Windows NT version of the popular 3D modeling software, Maya, between 1996 and 1998. As CTO of major casual games firm GameHouse, a division of RealNetworks, Godfrey has been responsible for coding and designing a good deal of popular games, and is currently working on some unannounced titles for Microsoft's upcoming Xbox Live Arcade for Xbox 360. Sounds: "I haven't been listening to music as much as I used to," said Godfrey, via a phone interview taking place in the middle of a coding session, "mostly I've been listening to local talk radio. It's kind of braindead, so it's easy to listen to." On the actual music front, Godfrey has been devouring massive quantities of Devo and the notorious Michigan-based rapper, Eminem. "Not any albums in particular; all of them, really," he said. "I do have a habit of listening to David Bowie every night," he continued. "It's kind of a ritual." Moving Pictures: "I stayed up until about 3:30 in the morning watching the entire second season of Arrested Development on DVD," he said. "Arrested Development is probably one of the only shows that makes me laugh out loud." He also just purchased a handful of DVDs he hasn't gotten around to watching just yet, including Star Wars: Episode III: The Phantom Menace, and some "older stuff," including Caddyshack and the entire Godfather trilogy, the conclusion of which Godfrey has never seen. Words: "I read The Kite Runner over the past couple weeks," he said, referring to author Khaled Hosseini's debut novel, a disturbingly realistic fictional account of two boys growing up in 1970s Afghanistan. "I've also been reading Reader's Digest. We did a deal with them, the downloadable game Word Power, they have that up on their website now," he said. "I've also been reading a script someone sent me, a movie this guy wants me to fund. I can't give any details, obviously." Games: "I've been playing Sudoku for the past couple weeks almost nonstop," he said, referring to the recent GameHouse-published title. "It's a classic puzzle game, it's kind of a big craze in the UK, and is starting to break in the U.S. It's kind of a number puzzle, and we're doing an electronic version." When asked if his playing is for business for pleasure, he jokingly says, "a little of both. I probably use work as an excuse." Having just fixed his problematic Xbox, Godfrey is also breaking into SSX Tricky. "My son has been really into Rise of Nations," he said, "and I guess I have too. I played it when it came out, and then started up again recently." [Frank Cifaldi is a Las Vegas-based freelance author whose credits include work for Nintendo Official Magazine UK, Wired, and his own Lost Levels website.]

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