Uses This

Interview

What do people use to get stuff done?

Mel Croucher

Mel Croucher

Pioneering video game developer

Who are you, and what do you do?

My name is Mel Croucher. The history books say I'm the founder of the UK video games industry. My wife says I'm a benign idiot. I started out as a musician because you had to be in a band by law back then. Later I became an architect, but I wasn't very good, so I ran away to join the circus. I called the circus Automata, which was in November 1977, and began by broadcasting my games software over the radio.

I have done many things and experienced many wonders, but I seem to come back to videogames when I want to push the boundaries a bit. My current game features the last performance of Sir Christopher Lee, the old tart. It's called Eggbird and involves the creative uses of avian bodily wastes.

What hardware do you use?

One of those big iMacs, one of those little iPads, one of those pocket-fondler iPhones, a giant Korg Music Workstation, a hollow-body cherry red Ibanez guitar with a weapons-grade tremolo arm.

And what software?

Pages for writing books, Logic Pro for editing and mixing soundtracks, ScreenFlow for cobbling video. I also use an app called Paper for sketching graphics and animations, and of course GarageBand for sketching audio. And the most important software of all.. a warm, damp Irish Setter.

What would be your dream setup?

I have achieved my dream setup, right here in the future. When I was young and the world was monochrome, I imagined a setup where I could travel everywhere and anywhere I wanted, lugging some sort of transportable machine, that would allow me to create the stuff of my imagination. Well, it's even better than I thought.

When I'm not wandering the planet and working away, I work from my home base on the South coast of the amusingly-named United Kingdom. It's a very tall, very old house by the sea, with miles of beach and ancient ramparts to walk on, a co-op on the corner to shop in, and a micro-brewery across the road to drink in, the National Health Service to patch me up when I am broken, and the Welfare State that pays me a senior citizens pension once every four weeks. Truly, this is paradise.

Thank you for reading this. Now go and do something wonderful.

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