Fans of Will Wright probably know about his bizarre hobbies. At times, he’s built Battlebots, collected Soviet space program relics and enjoyed a bit of illegal street racing. Those pursuits are probably easier when you’re a legendary game designer, the creative force behind Sim City, The Sims and Spore.
Effective today, Wright is taking his mind off computer games, at least partially, to pursue other creative endeavors. He’s leaving megapublisher Electronic Arts to run the Stupid Fun Club, which he founded in 2001 as a way to build competitive robots and experiment with other non-gaming ideas.
“The entertainment industry is moving rapidly into an era of revolutionary change,” Wright said in a press release. “Stupid Fun Club will explore new possibilities that are emerging from this sublime chaos and create new forms of entertainment on a variety of platforms. In my twelve years at EA, I’ve had the pleasure to work alongside some of the brightest and most talented game developers in the industry and I look forward to working with them again in the near future.”
While it’s certainly big news, the headline has more gravity than the story itself. Wright’s comments imply that he’s not totally leaving game design. Furthermore, MTV Multiplayer reports that EA has an equal stake with Wright in Stupid Fun Club — a third investor has a smaller share — plus first rights on any games that emerge from the venture.
If Wright is taking some sort of hiatus from game design, I’ll miss his creative influence on the medium. At the same time, I’m excited to see what happens when he tries to entertain the masses with his other hobbies.