Saturday, January 16, 2010

The Kraken, Linode, Wufoo and my muses

I need to tell you a story.

Last year we did a project at Fabrique for Heineken for the Champions League called the "Star Final". Its was game where you needed to sail from South Africa to Thailand. To win it you needed to get the highest score and to receive points you needed to join fleets and also do some Champions League pop-quizzes.

While designing Bram and I were convinced that when you have a game where you are sailing the world's oceans on a raft you're going to need your basic mythical creatures or at least a few pirates. So our idea was that when a player cancels her account a Kraken would appear and would drag the raft down into oblivion.

Right? Seriously.. how cool is that!

Anyway, initially the PL and Designer said "no". The reason being that it did add anything of value to the game.

Pff!

But we persevered and in the end The Kraken made its appearance in the messaging system. We (concept by Joris) created a way to send messages from one player to the other by using a "message in a bottle". When you removed the message a tentacle would creep up along the sides of the bottle and drag it down. It was a minor detail, BUT! we got the Kraken in there.

Victory at last.

(UPDATE; Lots of thanks to the hard and loving work, the epic struggle of Joris. Dedicating his own precious time to create, I dare say, a Legend. Couldn't have done it without you. Our hero.)

Mehhh...

But it didn't end there. During the project we talked about the Kraken for so long and with such intensity that it started to become a meme at Fabrique. Now everything had to have a Kraken somewhere. It was getting out of hand. We had to do something.

This was last week.

We decided to create getkraken.org. A website about all things "Kraken".

Bram registered the domain and I needed to fix the hosting. I chose Linode. We now have our very own linode VPS running our brand spanking new site getkraken.org.

Having this new server to play with, I decided to redirect all my domains to that very same server. I've had some ideas about applications and websites over the years and every time I had a "Holy Shit I'm Going To Get Rich"-thought I registered a domain for it. Tim Ferris calles these things "muses".

But there it always stopped for me.

Until today!

Today I actually did some work toward at least testing the ideas to see if there is any market for it. For every domain I registered and that was just sitting there I created a landing page like this: www.mashed.nl.

Though it isn't a proper test (because there isn't anything of value yet), at least I've got all the domains set up and can now start to write copy and do some SEO for all these pages individually.

To give you an idea of how many domains were talking about here. This is the complete list:
allprose.com
cardgameplanner.com
carrierematch.com
contractveiling.com
doodlen.nl
doodling.nl
geekrecruit.com
geocontent.nl
gotender.nl
hetmilieudieet.nl
mashed.nl
milieudieet.nl
mystakespoker.com
nietvoormeisjes.nl
phrasable.com
phraseable.com
pokenizer.com
transalot.com
verbodenvoormeisjes.nl
verselike.com

The contact form you see there is actually a form from Wufoo where you can design and create your own forms and just plunk them in the site with a bit of javascript. Done. Saved me a lot of time not having to create any mail handling code for some kind of homegrown form. I was also very impressed by their interface, I can recommend it. Especially for stuff like this.

So there is some forward motion. Lets see how long it lasts.

5 comments:

Joris said...

You should be ashamed! If you tell the Heineken story, at least tell the truth. First of all it was the designer that made up the message in a bottle concept. And secondly it was the designer that animated the kraken in his own time (because the project was way over budget!) Besides claiming an url you and Bram have done nothing for the Kraken yet! ;)

nick said...

Cool stuff Martijn! Also I am glad you liked wufoo, they indeed rock! Keep us posted on your market explorations.
Nick

Jackets said...

Oakley's distinct game Discount Oakley Sunglasseswere created to stay in position during sports along with Oakley Sunglassespursuits and then there might be a large amount of actual movements included. However Oakley Holbrook Sunglassesin addition have a engineered zoom lens that assists to guard the attention through harm whilst actively playing.

Jackets said...

The north face jackets is so popular now, and more and more people like to wear it in the cold winter. And the reason, I think most people know. Because north face outlet berkeleyand North Face UKhave a high quality, and it keep warmth well.

Jackets said...

Oakley's distinct game Discount Oakley Sunglasseswere created to stay in position during sports along with Oakley Sunglassespursuits and then there might be a large amount of actual movements included. However Oakley Holbrook Sunglassesin addition have a engineered zoom lens that assists to guard the attention through harm whilst actively playing.