An Imp

Ptah is one of the founding immorts of Legend, along with Kaige, Sadist, and Charity. He and Kaige, his wife, have built around 1/2 of the mud world.

The areas Ptah has built include Roman Britain, with Isle of Man, Orkney Village and Picts; Beowulf; Ancient Nazca and Andes; Viceroyal Peru and Andes; Victorian London; The China Tea Trade, including the docks at Bengal, and the South Seas, and the ever-popular Sargasso Sea; and the Jungle Book's Seoni Jungle.

Among the stuff Ptah has coded and/or designed are the moods and speech system, vehicles, guns, the new skills system, countless skills and spells, the fight system design, including wary/agg, and the Out Of Character Lounge.

Ptah got his Masters in Fine Arts from the University of Alabama but doesn't know that he recommends it that highly. :) But he does recommend his undergraduate school, Washington College on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, a great liberal arts school. He's taught grade school Spanish, and college-level literature and writing courses, has edited magazines, and lived in many countries in the Americas.

Ptah spends a lot of time playing acoustic guitar and writing his own material, largely in the contemporary folk genre, writing in general (his degree is in poetry but his first love is science fiction and fantasy), and of course doing game design, which he has been doing freelance. He and Kaige once designed a Virtual Mall for db Technologies. He produced the Online Folk Festival tape for the folk_music discussion group (send an email that says "info folk_music" to listserv@nysernet.org to find out about this list).

Ptah is currently working for Verant Interactive on the Star Wars Online project. Previously, he was the Lead Designer on Origin Systems' Ultima Online.

He also spends a lot of time discussing issues of virtual ethics, and has been interviewed on the subject a couple of times, including by academics researching the issue. You can find the text of an interview on this subject and other issues in the back issues of the Legendary Times, which Ptah edited for a long time.

In previous year's Expies Ptah collected player-voted awards for best admin as well as awards for building in various categories--as as a player, for roleplayer as well, under another name of course. :)


A few quotes:

"People tend to think that muds alter how people perceive one another. That gender and race and handicaps cease to matter. It is a noble vision, sure, one shared in general by these frontier netters. In truth, muds reveal the self in rather disturbing ways. We all construct 'faces' and masks to deal with others. Usually in interpersonal relationships, the masks can slip, they evolve and react, and they have body language and cues. On a mud, on the net, whatever---they cannot. And people see specifically this: what you choose to represent yourself as, and THAT is more revealing of your true nature than gender, race, age, or anything else... it's not a matter of how we hide, it's a matter of how we are revealing ourselves."

"A Hidden Tunnel: It feels like a feather, but you know it must be a leg. Probably a cockroach leg, long and spiny, delicately rubbing against your ear. You can't feel the beetles and larvae crawling over your hair except when they weigh down one strand or another and a lock dangles before your face, holding multifaceted eyes inches from your nose. Slimy trails of gunk drip from your hands as you climb, crushing bugs with every grunting inch you move. Long legged creatures whisper their trails along your cheek and brushothe palm of your hand, bubbling and boiling all around you in a metallic refracting mass of black and brown and feathered antennae and pincer legs." - Best Room on the Mud, 1994 Expies Awards

" The mudding community offers no real self-evaluation, has no clear vision of its role within the Net. There is no standard set as to what is competent. There are no critics. I believe that mud design is game design -- for which there is a well-established tradition of criticism and it is also more -- world design and server design -- for which no basis exists yet. Muds cannot mature until the people who work on them agree to reward the good themselves . All the effort to take muds seriously has sprung from outside the community."

"There are plenty of people willing to live under the rule of jerks."

"I tend to think of muds in general and especially this mud as being not just games and not just rp environments, but also societies."
Ptah also has built a home page for himself that delves deeper into these kinds of issues and more... You can find that by following this link.