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Exclusive Kevin 'Karune' Yu Interview

By Mokon - 28th January 2008 - 03:01 AM

GameReplays: Hello Kevin, thanks for taking the time to talk with GameReplays.org. Why don't we start by introducing you to our readers? For those who don't know, Karune use to work at GameReplays as a Game Administrator where he was known as Sageking. He then went onto Petroglyph, where he acted as community manger, and well, this last year he's been working at Blizzard, doing a excellent job as their community manager. Now I'm sure there is a lot you want to add to this, so why don't you tell us a little more about yourself - the man behind the high templar avatar!

So, how did you end up at your position as a 'community manager?' Did some great opportunities just fall in your lap, or did you focus on going towards community management and game development during college?

Kevin 'Karune' Yu: In college, I had actually studied Communications and International Relations, which does have some relation to what I'm doing now; but I think the passion for gaming and community building was the bulk of my 'qualifications.' As a child, I had always loved strategy titles - turn based games like the Civilization series, Master of Magic/Orion, Jagged Alliance, and then real-time-strategies as they began to come out, with Westwood's Command and Conquer series, and obviously Blizzard's Warcraft and StarCraft series.

My start in the industry came from getting a job (through gamasutra.com) to work at Petroglyph, a company based in Las Vegas founded by ex-Westwood Studios members after Westwood was bought by Electronic Arts. For me, it was a priceless experience working with the old Westwood guys and learning more about the business of game development, as well as helping to pioneer and implement my own projects at Petroglyph. Petroglyph allowed me much flexibility to start new community projects in addition to basic forum community building, such as frequent updates on game development (for the Star Wars: Empire at War expansion and Universe at War,) lots of two way communication with fans and fan sites, as well as releasing consumable media updates like podcasts and video podcasts.

From there, I was offered the opportunity to work with the StarCraft and Warcraft communities and to build the StarCraft 2 community as well. Needless to say, this was quite difficult to pass up, and I have since been very happy to be serving all of you here as Karune.