BioShock's Creator Could Become One of TIME's Most Influential People

Mike Kayatta

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Aug 2, 2011
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BioShock's Creator Could Become One of TIME's Most Influential People



Ken Levine will compete against George R.R. Martin, Kony 2012, and Barack Obama for one of only 100 spots in TIME's famous issue.

Each year, TIME magazine publishes a list of people that its editors (and readers) deem to be the 100 most influential leaders, artists, innovators, icons and heroes on the planet. And if public polling goes well, the 2012 edition may recognize the videogame industry via Ken Levine, cofounder and president of Irrational Games, the creator of BioShock, and the creative director of the upcoming BioShock Infinite.

Levine has been selected by TIME as an official nominee for the honor, among the usual group of politicians (Obama, Santorum, Putin), sports stars (Tebow, Lin), and run-of-the-mill mega celebs (Clooney, Lady Gaga, Oprah). The famed developer almost sticks out as an odd inclusion, at least until you hit the stranger entries, such as the women of Mad Men (Elisabeth Moss, Christina Hendricks and January Jones) lumped into a single contestant, or the fact that Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie's parenthood is on there.

While the magazine's editorial staff determines the final list, they do allow a public poll to influence their thinking. All results from the voting are counted, but only the top-voted person is guaranteed a slot. You can visit TIME's website [http://www.time.com/time/specials/packages/completelist/0,29569,2107952,00.html] before April 6th if you'd like to vote, then check out the full list of winners on April 17th.

Maybe you didn't like BioShock, or perhaps you've never forgiven Ken Levine for sort of looking like Ben Stiller, but even if you can think of a hundred reasons why he shouldn't be on there, and your favorite developer should, Levine is the only videogame designer even nominated this year. I'd say that a vote for Levine is a vote for the influence of videogames in general, so would you kindly click his name in support of the community?

Image: G4TV [http://www.g4tv.com/thefeed/blog/post/716300/ken-levine-from-irrational-games-tells-you-what-video-game-job-to-start-with/?utm_medium=twitter&utm_source=twitterfeed]

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Fappy

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May 1, 2020
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Looks like Ben Stiller...

Wow, thanks.

I can't un-see that now :(
 

Klitch

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Jan 8, 2011
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I'm not even sure he's the most influential guy in the video game industry (didn't Tim Schafer just essentially re-write the publisher/developer relationship?). While we're at it, I'd put guys like Notch or Casey Hudson over Ken Levine.

Edit: Reading their description of him, they seem to be essentially giving him credit for creating the perception of games as art. :/
 

LevROLL

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Jun 12, 2011
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Looks like Ben Stiller? ...Ben Stiller? Does that make that look... the Magnum?
 

Waaghpowa

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Apr 13, 2010
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I swear sometimes I'm one of 10 people in the world who thought Bioshock was boring and over rated.
 

viranimus

Thread killer
Nov 20, 2009
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Kony 2012 is in the running for times most influential people too? For what? For the love of god, I hope it isnt referring to drunken public masturbator Jason Russell because even before all that came out and .. well started floppin around, the Kony 2012 campaign was a really bad joke

Seriously... is it still considered influential if it only worked on the incredibly gullible and too lazy to do independent research?

On Topic:

Anyway, On Levine, Absolutely, The guy, despite having an incredibly forgettable face deserves to be in line with other game industry icons like Will Wright, Cliff Blesiekwurweljgeruredfiyugski, Tim Schaffer, Sid Meyers, etc. Hell there is no reason he should not be every bit as notable by name recognition as the rest of these. Honestly as the industry matures (still waiting for that one) it makes sense we will pick up more and more "icons" and hes just as influential.So Kudos Time, though it seems like it would have been a better choice in say 2008, but ehh, take it where you can get it
 

maddawg IAJI

I prefer the term "Zomguard"
Feb 12, 2009
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I'm more intrigued by the fact that some of these people are still considered 'influential' Micheal Phelps? Really? The editors still think he's influential?
 

Daymo

And how much is this Pub Club?
May 18, 2008
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More importantly, what the hell is Santorum doing on that list? I'm not American so I don't hear too much, but if he had done something important, shouldn't he be destroying the primaries?

OT: He's basicly representing the gaming industry as the sole nominee, so I hope he gets a reasonable spot on the list.
 

toomuchnothing

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Jul 5, 2010
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Daymo said:
More importantly, what the hell is Santorum doing on that list? I'm not American so I don't hear too much, but if he had done something important, shouldn't he be destroying the primaries?
You didn't hear? Hes a frothy mix of fiscal responsibility and religion

OT: I'm not going to support someone simply because they are the only person representing a field I think is growing in importance. If hes done something to actually merit the spot on the list then that's fine but Bioshock was sometime ago, the verdict is still out on Infinite until it actually releases and beyond that I can't think of much hes done to be considered so influential in the past 12 months without actually researching.
 

therandombear

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Sep 28, 2009
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Wolfram23 said:
Fappy said:
Looks like Ben Stiller...

Wow, thanks.

I can't un-see that now :(
Pff no, totally Steve Carell
Steve Carell and Ben Stiller had a baby, it's name was Ken Levine. :p

OT: Cool, he really is an expressive guy with great ideas imo.
 

Mischlings

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Feb 18, 2011
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Wolfram23 said:
Fappy said:
Looks like Ben Stiller...

Wow, thanks.

I can't un-see that now :(
Pff no, totally Steve Carell
Good, I'm not the only person who sees that.

As for the nomination, sure, go right ahead. If he's the only game designer on the list, then go right ahead and vote for him -- we need our more influential people being recognized across all areas of the current culture.
 

Rooster Cogburn

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May 24, 2008
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Daymo said:
More importantly, what the hell is Santorum doing on that list? I'm not American so I don't hear too much, but if he had done something important, shouldn't he be destroying the primaries?
He did more than any other candidate to turn brazen, unabashed madness into a political strategy. He may change the U.S. into a theocracy in a very real sense, he has reframed the War on Terror (a title designed to be abused) into the War on Radical Islam (read: War on Islam), he was trying to outlaw contraception before it was cool, he glorifies war and death and the murder of innocent civilians (I am not exaggerating), and along with Newt Gingrich he's the most tangible proof of the pathetic state of the American voting population. Oh, and he helped legitimize the racist view of African-Americans as lazy good-for-nothings.

Santorum proved how close not only bad candidates, but absolute fucking sadistic, provincial loonies can come to controlling the richest and most powerful nation in history. It does not seem like he has much chance of winning the Republican nomination, but remember some of our worst presidents were long-shots in their turn (Reagan). His powers would include the extralegal murder of anyone for any reason or no reason.

I say make Santorum Man of the Year.
 

bobmus

Full Frontal Nerdity
May 25, 2010
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This list is kinda hilarious. Who the fuck thinks Bon Iver is influential? And to whom? 12 year old girls thinking they're listening to music against the mainstream?
And Lana Del 'I'm Useless Live' Rey? What about her two hit wonder status makes her influential?

How in the hell was this list drawn up?
 

Therumancer

Citation Needed
Nov 28, 2007
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To be honest I'd say that the guy's big work that got him recognized on this level is several years old, and "Bioshock"'s big point is little more than a one sided political rant that doesn't hold much weight because the system being criticized only really failed on the level we see due to infiltration and civil war. He made a fun game, but I don't think he deserves recognition years after the fact as being especially influential. To be honest while he has showed the potential for a game to somehow be a major influential force, he did not personally acheive it, just cast the shadow of what might somehow be, if someone better than him comes along (so to speak).

I don't think Bioshock really changed what anyone thought, it mostly just promoted beliefs a lot of people already had.

Most of the big political names on the list like Santorum and others are guys who haven't really gotten into the "big seat" yet and mostly seem to be making noise because of the upcoming election, that happens every election from both sides, and really I don't think
you can say there is anything special about it. If one of those guys becomes President and radically alters America, then yeah okay, but crap talking from either party is still just the expected crap talking come election time.

Really, I think the US has gotten to the point where everyone is so used to the media blitz that you really don't have influance coming down to specific individuals as much as you used to, the people who are greatly influanced by specific entertainers, politicians, etc.. to the point of it being noticible are usually exceptions and kind of mocked.

For example if someone went walking around wearing a bubble dress, acting like Lady Gaga's stage performance, and claiming that she is the most influential person in their life, it might make an amusing "WTF" video on Youtube or whatever, but that's not going to be considered normal or even respected.
 

bobmus

Full Frontal Nerdity
May 25, 2010
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The fact that Anonymous has a higher rating for 'Should definitely appear on the list' than the Queen of England makes me a little bit sick inside (especially as a Brit!). Oh world, what are you coming to...
 

Zen Toombs

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Nov 7, 2011
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To be honest, of the people nominated Obama is all of the most influential.

Also, of the two, I'd prefer George R.R. Martin to win over Levine.

However, both shall receive my vote. (ninja multiple voting HO!)
 

CpnChaos

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Sep 20, 2010
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I wasn't going to vote, but I felt really compelled to after that last sentence... No clue why either, it just spoke to me...