IAG DECEMBER 2016 WEB - page 14

inside
asiangaming
December2016
14
Tony
Industry
profile
InsideAsianGaming: Beforewe talk
about your career in thegaming
industry, canyou tell us abit about
your background?
TonyPayne:
I grewup in LosAngeles
and spentmost ofmy life there. I went to
university in LA and thenmoved toSan
Francisco, studiedbiology and thenmoved
to film. I went to film school, graduated and
went into the film industrywhere I planned
onmakingmy living. I workedmyway up
in the industry andbecame an associate
producer so I was often responsible for
budget scheduling and that sort of thing.
Oddly enough, I had theopportunity from
workingondifferent films towrangle small
parts formyself. The benefit of that wasn’t
actually becoming an actor but being able
toget health insurance through theScreen
ActorsGuild! It was abigplus.
IAG: Soat that stagegamingwas the
furthest thing fromyourmind?
TP:
Yeah. I actuallyworked in the film
business for quite some time and then in
the early 90s I was recruitedby a traditional
game company doinggames for Sega and
soon. Theywere looking for people that
had someproduction experience and an
appreciation for highproduction values.
Wewanted to raise the bar for traditional
videogames away fromgames likePong –
introducing fullmotiongraphics and that
sort of thing. So I went towork for a great
start-up company inSiliconValley and it’s
where I really thinkmy entrepreneurial spirit
was fostered. I considermyself a start-up
specialist. I’mnot suited tobig companies
and I like the adventureof getting towear
a lot of different hats, work around a lot of
peoplewho aremotivated andhigh energy.
IAG: Sohowdidyougo from
traditional gaming togambling?
TP:
I was toldby a recruiter that therewas
another company that had its ownhardware
looking for someone.My first reactionwas
that I wasn’t interestedbecause at the time
Sega, Sony and 3DOwere really trying to
fight it out and therewas somuchbattle
goingon for themarket I knew anew
company hadno chance.
But the guy said, “Comeondown
anyway, I think you’ll be interested in this.”
So I went down toPaloAlto andmet with
this company and it turnedout theywere
doing slotmachines – someof the first
President of Shanghai-basedslotmachine
manufacturerAspectGaming,
TonyPayne
,
tells
IAG
about his fascinatinglyunorthodox
journey into thegaming industry.
Eastern
Aspect
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