About Me

My Bio Picture

I was born in 1972 in Englewood, Colorado. When I was 3, my parents moved to Parker where I lived until I was 7. Due to a change in work, my father relocated the family to Bellevue Washington where I lived for nearly 15 years. Since then, I have lived in Mt. Vernon Washington, Kennesaw Georgia, Kailua-Kona Hawaii, Tokyo Japan, Sedona Arizona, Mesa Arizona, Boulder Colorado, Irvine California, Chandler Arizona and San Diego. My primary background is in software engineering & development, and executive business management with recent focus on business and technology virtualization. My hobbies include writing short stories and scripts, which I have been doing since I was 11 years old.

My father worked for Control Data Corporation (CDC) which gave me the unique opportunity to access the PLATO network, the birthplace of online gaming. Throughout the 80’s I was fortunate enough to play historic PLATO titles such as Avatar, Empire, Journey, Wilderness, Drygulch, Labyrinth, Angband, and other online games that defined an upcoming industry (covered in an article I wrote called The Origins of Modern Online Gaming).

My software creations include titles such as Mordor, Demise, Horizons, and Alganon. I also became a published author in 1995 when I wrote my first book “The Visual Basic 4 Network Gaming Adventure Set”, published by the Coriolis Group.

After founding Artifact Entertainment in 1999 and creating Horizons, I started a new company in 2001 called “Pharaoh Productions” but was unable to secure funding for my hybrid MMOG game known as Dominion. In 2004 I decided to take a position with a software company in Irvine, CA as CTO.

In mid-2005 I relocated to Arizona, and in January of 2006, co-founded a new company (QOL) which was the first virtual company in the industry to produce a commercial-grade MMOG. Alganon initially released in December of 2009.

I left QOL in March of 2010 and began private consulting services with a focus on helping companies utilize the latest in software technology, acquire top notch talent, and streamline both productivity and efficiency.

I am an avid supporter of 2nd Amendment Rights and recommend Frontsight Firearms Training Institute to anyone who wishes to receive the best firearms training available in the country. I believe in accountability, responsibility, honor, integrity, and standing against those who inflict harm upon or steal from others. I have a passion for creating worlds, products, companies and teams, and express that passion through programming and development, product design, management, leadership, and productivity.

  1. Thank you for the awesome guides, im still quite new to grim dawn and rely on your guides to help me better understand the game. its a shame that the grim dawn forums are such a toxic environment you had to relocate.

    I would like to point out that typing with yellow text with a white background is very hard to see, so far this only occurs in the below fields of entry.

  2. Thanks, Shane; I appreciate the support! BTW where are you seeing yellow text on a white background? I changed the theme of this site to have a global dark background – is there a page where that’s not happening?

  3. When i leave a reply the comment section is black text on white background, but when i enter my name and email. its yellow text with white background, but only when you are entering text.

    http://prntscr.com/nymxnl – this is a link to a print screen using lightshot program.

  4. Interesting; I just tested this (leaving a reply on the About Me page) and while the background turns white, the text is dark – not yellow. My system looks very different from yours. What browser are you using, and do you have the same problem with another browser?

  5. Hi, I just tried it with both Opera (Main Browser) and Google Chrome, and the text boxes appear with yellow text with white background.

    http://prntscr.com/o05jqv (this is a new print screen of when im using it on Google chrome. I am sorry to cause trouble for you.

  6. OK looking into this. It’s a bit weird; the comments field has a dark text color, but the Name/EMail does not. I’ll get this fixed. Thanks for bringing it to my attention!

  7. Dear David Allen,

    I spent thousands of hours playing Mordor 1.1 and I enjoyed it very much. Huge fan! I still tell my friends and students about it many years later haha. Played Demise, it was alright but just didn’t feel as good as Mordor. I’m just wondering, is there any chance you’ll create a third installment?


  8. Probably not. With the indie dungeon crawler games like Darkest Dungeon (and there’s another that’s similar to Mordor/Demise that actually cited them that’s very popular), I’m not sure there’s much of a market for an old-school game like that. Admittedly, if I were to do a new game, it would be a hybrid ARPG. Who knows what the future holds! 🙂

  9. We have a little bit in common David. I was born in 1972, same age almost. My kids and ex wife live in Irvine ca. I was there for quit a while, bouncing from Irvine to San Diego. Yet I was also deployed a ton to Iraq and South America. I was on a LEDET which was a special operations team that conducted counter narcotics and anti terrorism operations. We made large drug seizures (2.5 – 15 metric tons) of cocaine, heroine, and meth. In the Middle East we seized weapons and Insurgents being smuggled into Iraq. Mentioned this because seems like you are into shooting. I attended Special forces CQC training with a ton of other like schools. I was injured in 2005 during a fast roping operation and fell 40-50 feet to a tarmac. I ended up finishing my 22 years as being an instructor in CQC, Law, Use of Force and Tactics. That injury lead to 20 surgeries and a lot of time on my hands that got me back into gaming. Had not played much since the Commodore 64, Atari, and some Nintendo days. Now I am a retired disabled vet with all the time in the world to play poker at the card houses and video games on my 5,000 dollar rig, lol. I do consult with the local Sheriff Dept. a little as my gf is a deputy and they enjoy some training outside the box. Ill stop blabbing on now. Thought I would share a bit with a like minded person (it seems anyway) of the same age.

  10. Nice to meet you Brian, and thanks for sharing! I am very much into self defense and fully supportive of teaching others the same. Think you’ll ever become a private firearms instructor? We definitely need more schools and instructors spread throughout the country. Where are you currently located?

  11. Yah I heard the latest update is a bit brutal; I assume you’re in Veteran mode? Might want to hop back to Normal – I think a lot of people are doing that. I haven’t played since the latest patch, so I can’t comment on how tough the changes are just yet 🙂

  12. I love the NMS guide, thank you!! I think it’d be really great to split out the tips from the walkthrough, as some of us get nervous of specific spoilers!!

    That said, there’s a spoiler that I wondered why you didn’t include? Under ‘secure facility farming’ http://requnix.com/the-complete-no-mans-sky-beyond-guide#Language_Secure_Facility_Blueprint_Farming, you include a link to a video, why not instead (or as well) just include the text:

    ‘In order to find secure facilities, purchase maps from the explorer’s guild representative on a space station until you get one that says ‘Directions to a Secure Facility’. Then, if that’s the only type of blueprint you have in your inventory, purchasing more maps will ALWAYS give you maps of the same type.’

    🙂 Thanks again!

  13. Oops! I could have sworn I wrote the details on how to prepare for the process – thanks a ton for the information! I’ve updated the guide. Let me know if the added content addresses the missing details. Thanks!

  14. Hey David, just dropping here to say hello!
    I was cleaning old stuff and found my binder with the Mordor 1.1 help printed on sheets.

    Can’t even describe what Mordor has been for my young gamer career!
    Thanks for everything 🙂


  15. That’s awesome – thanks a ton for the feedback, and you’re welcome! It’s great to hear how Mordor influenced gamers back in the 90’s.

  16. I was cleaning out a dusty closet and came across my old Demise CD, which then led me here. Wow, reading this page is a real blast from the past. I spent hundreds of hours in my teenage and college years playing Mordor/Demise and obsessively following your website forums. Mordor 2, Infinite Worlds, all the Horizons stuff like maps, concept art, design materials… I remember it all very fondly. You should write a book some day about all the chaos that happened in the early 2000’s. No soap opera can compare to how gripping the events of your professional life were in those times. I sincerely hope you can look back and laugh at it all now. As I always tell myself, the best revenge is living well. Take care, buddy.

  17. thanks for posting these nice guides, they are a big help if you get stocked, or wanna try something new 😀 I´m sorry to hear you problems with Crate, and the forum.

  18. Hi David!

    I also want say thank you for the guides, kind of missed your “Harvest Best Starter Builds” as I loved the previous recommendations of you 😉

    Today I have realised you did update the “[Insert League] Top Builds” site and now I am starting a bladefall/ bladeblast based on your recommendations. Your builds and recommendations never disappoint!! Looking very forward to it and many many thanks for the good work!


  19. Just wanted to say, I’m glad to have found your site, and your Grim Dawn builds. I definitely agree with regards to lack of explanation for builds, and some of the regular’s attitudes. And then Crate made it about twenty times worse with that abomination they call a ‘forum’ now (two years later, and still can’t figure out how the damn thing works).

    I’m sorry to hear they soured you on the game, however, I’m glad you decided to still post your builds for those of us scratching that ARPG itch.

  20. Thanks for the support; I appreciate it! Yah, the forums and community support for GD and any future Crate product will never change. I actually think they’ll get even more toxic as such terrible behavior is tolerated (like we’re seeing a breakdown of ethics and such on Reddit). It’s sad, because only 5% of people are truly toxic, yet they seem to make 80%+ of the posts. This is why good community administrators are essential. Have a great week!

  21. Hello there,

    Just want to say thank you for creating detailed and fun builds for me to follow for GD. I agree with you on the points saying the guides are not detailed and just showing what the build will be at the end game. Part of the experience is leveling itself and not knowing how to level up properly would definitely turn off some people from the game. I never experienced the toxicity because, as you said, the forums is hard to navigate.

    Again, thank you for helping not quitting GD because the game is very good in my opinion. Then again, it is my first ARPG experience ever. Hope you continue to put more fun and detailed guides for GD. Cheers 🙂

  22. You are very welcome, and I’m glad the guides are helping! Just give it a few weeks and you’ll become an expert at Grim Dawn 🙂 It’s a fantastic game, no question!

  23. Dude I’ve been aware of your site because of PoE stuff, but I’ve just recently found out you were a creator of Demise: Rise of Ku’Tan, which is responsible for a lot of happy hours of gaming. Thank you David!

  24. Oh wow, I thought you had vanished into the wind back in the early 2000’s after you had sold the company to Decklin (iirc?). It’s still one of my all time favorite games and I still have character files from it saved on my pc!

    I also remember talking to you on the phone a couple times back in ’94 or ’95 when I was in college and called for some troubleshooting help on Mordor (another great classic in line with the early Wizardry games). I remember being surprised when the troubleshooting number went straight to you lol. You even asked me for feedback on a future Mordor II game you were planning to make (which became Demise) and I told you I’d love to see some super bosses like a Dragon King/Queen, Vampire Lord, Spider Queen etc.. And all of them did end up making it in as far as I remember :).

    I happened to find your site here by accident when I was doing a google search on Grim Dawn related stuff (have played the heck out of it for the past 4 years or so). I also played POE for a few years but stopped playing it out of frustration due to 1 shot kills on hardcore. Always prefer to play hardcore to softcore on ARPGs. Feel free to add me on Steam if you’d like. StubbornMule is my handle. Sorry for the tldr.

  25. Thanks for the comment, Bret; always great to hear from fellow gamers! PoE is still my favorite ARPG, but I don’t play HC because of exactly what you said (plus I’m constantly distracted by real life so HC games just aren’t a good match). Still love the game though. I rarely use Steam as a communication platform; only as a launch platform. AFAIK Decklin is still selling DEMISE and it’s still being played by legacy gamers. Happy Holidays!

  26. It is a small world! I actually went to Kindergarten at the school next to the tennis courts with the big white domes over them! Lived in Parker until 1979 before moving to Bellevue, WA. I was there for the “big blizzard” of (I think) ’77? So much snow we couldn’t even get out the front door. I remember the blizzard blew so hard it pushed snow into our attic through the small holes, and my parents were up in the attic and putting it down the sink to keep it from thawing out and drenching the ceiling. Ahhh the good ol’ days 🙂

  27. David, it’s a small world. I go down to Parker, CO quite regularly but I live in Aurora and I also lived in San Diego for 6 years. Coincidentally I’m also an avid 2nd amendment rights supporter. What brought me to this site, was your Valheim guide. I just wanted to let you know the link to the mistlands article isn’t working.

  28. Nice to meet you, Will! Thanks for the heads up on the Mistlands guide link – I have another guide I’ve been working on and the clone copied the shortcut for the draft, so it messed things up. Should be fixed now. Always good to meet another freedom loving American! We were just doing some handgun and AR CQC training weekend before last. Gotta stay frosty! Stay warm up there; Colorado’s no joke when it comes to those crazy winters!

  29. Hi David, will you update any of those awesome builds for Grim Dawn, when the next dlc pops up? Your work helped me get into the game as a beginner, thank you so much,

  30. Hey Mr3z! Unfortunately not; I don’t play Grim Dawn anymore and won’t ever play a Crate game again because of the company personnel and community issues. Crate makes a great game, but they have rotten people on their team and facilitate a rotten community.

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