Game company employee
John Alvarado began programming games in high school in the early 80's on the Atari 800 and Commodore-64, back in the days when programmers created the artwork! He and his high school buddies, Gregg Tavares, Greg Marquez, Ron Nakada and Andy Brown worked under the name The Nighthawk Group.
After graduating with a B.A. degree in Linguistics and Computer Science from UCLA (1989), John reunited with his old friends Gregg Tavares, Greg Marquez and Ron Nakada under the name Echidna, later joined by Dan Chang. Echidna created the map/tile editing tool called tUME that was licensed by many companies in the early 90's for console game development.
Following Echidna, John worked for over three years as a lead programmer at Virgin Interactive Entertainment on PC and console titles. There he met the eventual co-founders of the company Seven, including artists Brandon Humphreys, Willis Wong, Barry ‘Baz’ Pringle, producer Barry Pringle (Baz’s father), and programmer Ron Mar. These five left V.I.E. with John and, joined by Gregg Tavares, worked for about a year on a launch title for the “M2” - codename for the never-to-be-released successor to the 3DO console platform.
After the short-lived Seven, John started Big Grub with Gregg Tavares, Brandon Humphreys and Willis Wong. Willis and Gregg moved on after about a year but John and Brandon forged on for another six years with John as President/Technical Director and Brandon Humphreys as Art Director. In addition to managing the business, John was actively engaged in game design, programming and production management.
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