By Aimee “Ashlanne” Rekoske
We’ve spent the month of March celebrating EverQuest’s 14th anniversary, so let’s finish the month with an SOE Employee Spotlight that features an employee that has a long history with EQ!
Please meet Rosie Rappaport, the Art Director on EverQuest Next at SOE! Take a moment to find out about what a typical day in the office is like for her, what her favorite SOE game is, and other fun tidbits. As a special bonus, we include a screenshot from her favorite SOE game!
Tell us about yourself! What’s your name and what do you do here at SOE? How long have you been working at SOE?
My Name is Rosie Rappaport and I am the Art Director on EverQuest Next. I’ve been working at SOE since the beginning; I was on the original EQ team, which I joined around 1996.
How did you get into the industry?
I got an internship with some guys making an indie game. One of them recommended me to Blue Sky Software so I moved to San Diego and worked on 8 bit games, which I loved!
Tell us what a typical workday is like for you.
My days are pretty busy because the team size has ramped up. We are doing lots of development right now and its getting extremely exciting. The mornings start with many quick meetings where we review all the work from the day before. That usually creates lots of other meetings for the rest of the morning to discuss the direction and philosophies, and bring up questions or other issues that need to be solved.
Right now we are working hard to finalize a strong style, which makes giving feedback easier and easier. Working on a prototype is very different than other stages of game development and it takes a special mind set. It’s like trying to find a specific location with only a compass – and no map. You might know generally which direction to go, but you don’t know exactly how to get there. On a prototype team, it’s more important than ever to stay positive and optimistic because it’s nerve wracking for the artists. And above all, it’s critical to always be moving forward.
EverQuest just celebrated its 14th anniversary. What does that mean to you? Do you have a memory to share?
Well the anniversary always makes me because EverQuest just exploded beyond what anyone thought.
Which SOE Game is your favorite? In that game do you have a favorite zone/location? Can you share other things you like about the game?
Of course I always have a soft spot for EQ. When it launched it was a little quirky – just like its creators. I loved the stuff that we came up with late at night just to be silly. Like that the Halflings wore Zoro masks and the Kobolds looked like dogs with their tongues hanging out. It cracks me up that the Dark Elves were originally supposed to be black, but we couldn’t pull it off because with the older tech- black models couldn’t have any detail…so instead we made them blue. At the time there was a lot of concern over the fact that Dark Elves are “supposed” to be black, not blue. Anyway today, now that we have all this awesome tech, I bet if suggested that we make our Dark Elves black, everyone would say that Dark Elves are supposed to be blue!
If you could be any fictional character, who would you be?
I would be Elizabeth Bennet from Pride and Prejudice, of course. Or maybe Jane Eyre…I know that probably sounds super lame in my world of nerds…but I can’t help myself!
Do you have a hobby?
Yea, I garden. I hope no one is reading this because I sound like a senior citizen right now, but my mom is this botanist, artist, and teacher. She taught me to paint and garden, and then to paint my garden. I also like to play piano and I just bought a guitar, so I’m trying to learn some chords, but I completely suck. I draw of course, and sometimes I paint. I tend to stop sleeping when I’m drawing a lot, and that turns me crazy.
What is your favorite book? Tell us, what’s the last book you read?
Ok, you caught me with this one. I’m actually in the middle of The Charisma Myth …so I can buff my charisma points. Yea, it’s not as juicy as Fifty Shades, but it’s pretty interesting.
Enjoy this screenshot from EverQuest, Rosie’s favorite SOE Game!
We hope you enjoyed meeting Rosie and will join us next month for another SOE Employee Spotlight!