The Future of Planet Rise is built on the dream of young Gamers
Updated: Feb 19, 2019
“Let us make our future now, and let us make our dreams tomorrow’s reality.” — Malala Yousafzai
I work on a digital strategy card game and I have seen its future.
I am not clairvoyant, but what I saw was real.
I would like to be able to tell the future.
The real future.
I would gamble in Vegas.
I would buy only winning lottery tickets and then you know, have fun. I would prepare for disaster and pretty much do anything I wanted.
I was in the Philippines on vacation and I saw the future of Planet Rise in a mall in Quezon City, Manila.
It was not in the form of lottery tickets or gambling. Although I swear I know how to beat the animals that play chess and tic-tac-toe.
My glimpse of the future came in the form of playing cards. Young men unloading them from backpacks and boxes. These men were sitting on white plastic chairs.
The white plastic tables covered with playing boards. They were laughing, chatting, and making challenges or laying down their defenses.
My wife and I were looking for a tattoo spot, which we would later find and you can read about elsewhere. While walking around the second floor I saw a restroom sign and made a sharp left, or was it a right?
These malls can feel confusing at times.
Either way, I made the turn and saw the crowds.
Then I saw the neon sign for the store Courtside, and the games on the walls and the posters promoting them. I took a closer look and introduced myself to the two young men working the registration table.
My Tagalog is non-existent and their English limited to yes and no and vague nods. I did my best trying to say that I was working on a game back home. I said that it was strategy-based and got no response. Then I broke out my universal translator = the phone.
I considered Google translate, but I didn’t have a travel data plan like my wife. No data plan meant that my only option to show my Twitter or Facebook depended on wifi.
Manila sprawls like Los Angeles.
The attraction for international tourism equates to free public wifi. Everywhere. Hotels, coffee shops, and all malls, of which there were 12 within the 4 blocks of where we were staying had Wifi. But, logging on was spotty. Connection was intermittent.
Instead, I clicked on my photos app. I pulled up screenshots from the Blue Alchemy Studio Twitter and Instagram posts. They gave me thumbs up on the pictures and then pointed at me with a questioning look and a head tilt.
I nodded and translated through images and sign language that I worked on a game too. I even tried to mime card strategy game. It was humbling.
Then I mimed/asked if it was ok to walk around and take some video and pictures. They smiled and gave the international thumbs up.
It was a great feeling to watch the excitement of the players. The camaraderie of friendly rivalry.
What happened next was not prophecy or time travel in the traditional sense. The room didn’t get hazy or time begin to speed faster with the moving hands of a clock.
But, I had a feeling.
I had a want.
I wanted to break out a deck of cards. I wanted to sit down to play.
I wanted it to be the cards with Nia and Imani Kasai. I wanted to see the Planet Rise logo, the symbol for Blue Alchemy Studios.
At that moment, I knew that one day it would all be true. That I would pull up a chair and look across the table. That my friend, Jabari, the company founder, the visionary, would sit across from me.
Then one of us would smile.
"Game on old friend."
"Let's see what you've learned."