Matt is a game developer who loves virtually exploding his friends while trying to convince them how amazing it would be to remake Zork in VR (it would). He also loves making award winning games with them (especially co-op ones) and has been doing it for over 20 years, making the iconic Half-Life 2, Portal 2, Left 4 Dead and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive.
Matt started making games professionally in 1997 when he became 3D Realms’ first level designer on its first true real 3D game, Prey, and then continued to work on Duke Nukem Forever as a designer, lead animator, and lead modeler. He also helped a tiny bit on Max Payne.
In 2003, Matt moved to Seattle to work with Valve on Team Fortress 2 and Half-Life 2. He is (as far as we know) the only person in the world to have worked on four of Wired magazine’s top-rated vaporware games. In 2004, Half-Life 2 shipped and Matt’s vaporware curse was broken. Matt is happy to say that, in addition to the games mentioned above, he’s since contributed to and shipped on multiple platforms: Counter-Strike: Source, Half-Life 2, Half-Life 2: Episode One, Half-Life 2: Episode Two, Left 4 Dead, Left 4 Dead 2, Alien Swarm, Portal 2, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and Destinations VR.
A founding member of the CS:GO project, Matt worked over six years as a game designer, level designer, UI designer, promoter, gameplay programmer and more. Matt enjoyed designing and creating The Operations, overall gameplay, spectator UX and spearheaded communication with our contributors, partners and professional community (players, casters, etc). CS:GO was released for Windows, OS X, Xbox 360, and PS3 in August 2012, and Linux in September 2014.
CS:GO is played competitively worldwide with prize pools reaching as high as 1.5 million. Over 10 million players play CS:GO every month.
Brought in late on the project to turn the rough cooperative concepts into a full experience, Matt worked with a small team of artists and designers to redesign, test, build and ship the complete co-op experience in about six months. Portal 2 was released on April 19, 2011, for Windows, OS X, Linux, Xbox 360, and PS3.
Portal 2’s Co-Op Was Perfect (Kotaku)
Co-op Review (Co-Optimus)
Matt worked as the level designer with the “choreo” team designing and building the interactive choreography scenes that included Kleiner, Eli, Alyx, Magnusson, citizens, etc. He also enjoyed working as a game and level designer building the complete “silo” choreo and combat experience, the Hunter Chopper confrontation and various other areas which helped define the “Hunter” enemy behaviors.
Half-Life 2: Episode 2 was released worldwide for Windows on October 10, 2007 and for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, OS X and Linux later.
Matt worked with two other level designers to create the Death Toll campaign, worked to develop some of the initial co-op UI features and managed the multi-platform testing for certification and shipping.
Left 4 Dead released on November 17, 2008 for the PC, OS X and Xbox 360.
Late in the Left 4 Dead 2 development cycle, Matt was asked to help ship the product where he built and shipped the Survival and Scavenge multiplayer modes as well as helped manage the shipping and certification testing process.
Left 4 Dead 2 released for Windows and Xbox 360 in November 2009, and for OS X in October 2010, and for Linux in July 2013.
Matt worked to help further develop the tools and systems used to create the game’s interactive “choreography” scenes. He also designed and built the game’s opening, the main introductions to the Citadel interior and rollermines, the Mossman Scene, the Stalker Car scene and preceding gameplay and various other experiences in the game.
Half-Life 2: Episode Two was released worldwide on October 10, 2007 for Windows and Xbox 360 and PS3 later.
Matt jumped at the opportunity to work with the original Alien Swarm mod team to develop a new version on Valve’s Source engine. For the final product, Matt did level design work, weapons and items design, UI HUD design, FX design, gameplay programming and developed all of the particle effects.
Alien Swarm was released for free on July 19, 2010 for Windows.
Matt worked with the Destinations team to develop systems to allow users to create hand-held virtual reality tools using lua script. He also managed a few very talented artists (under contract) to create two new custom made “destinations” to explore in virtual reality.
Destinations was first released in Early Access on Jun 9, 2016.
Matt helped to develop the tools used to create all of the interactive “choreography” scenes in the game, but worked primarily as a level designer, designing and building the “choreo” experiences and gameplay that involved the main (and most minor) characters in the game. With a small team, Matt created Kleiner’s Lab, Black Mesa East, Eli’s Scrapyard (with d0g), Breen’s Office and many, many other scenes throughout the game.
Half-Life 2 was released on Windows and ported to Xbox, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, OS X and Linux.