Mystic Riders MMO is the brain child of two proud creators – Ginny O., a writer/design maven, and Rebecca M. Horner, a writer/research genie. Best friends since 2008, they share a brain, so at least one joint project making use of their talents was somewhat inevitable.
Ginny is a native of New York who has spent time in warmer climes. Having formally studied fashion design, she learned writing through reading extensively and writing fanfiction. She is experienced in working on visual and technical kinks to make it all work. Now she self-publishes two series of books, one a science fantasy dystopian adventure series about werewolf motorcycle clubs, and the other a series of broken fairy tales centered around one stubborn princess who refuses to hide in a tower. She is the decidedly punk influence of the duo, and responsible for the cohesive visual theme, game mechanics, and holiday tomfoolery. (Don’t get between Ginny and her holiday shenanigans.)
Rebecca is firmly located in Oklahoma by family, though occasionally she travels for the sake of writing research, more family, and rodeos. With her masters in Professional Writing with a focus on middle grade/young adult/new adult fiction, she brings the knowledge of the target market to the table. She is working on her own book series, an urban fantasy about a teenage girl who finds a unicorn in her grandmother’s barn and has a very sucky senior year as a result. While a lot of the Lolita influence is her fault, she is the Western riding expert who focuses on story, timelines, and practicality. (Don’t get clover leaf patterns wrong, she gets cranky.)
Why did we come up with an idea of a non-combative MMO, horse-based RPG? Mostly, frustration. Neither of us particularly like the necessary competitive play of many games that are out there that are both player vs. player (PvP) and player vs. enemy (PvE), but most of the emphasis by the more powerful players leans towards PvP. We both want the focus to be on the story, crafting, and cooperation (within limits—no needing extra people to finish a quest!). We also don’t want games that require a lot of babysitting, where if we don’t log in every three hours, it all falls apart. There is also a lack of “serious” games for girls that allow customization and aren’t designed for the male gaze even if it was meant for female players.
Plus, horses are awesome.
We intend to create a real brand, rather than just one virtual product. Both of us are fans of Monster High/Ever After High brands (pre the relaunch that removed the articulation, the latest relaunch with new body types might pull us back in), and we would have collected them if we had the money! The Lisa Frank brand was a huge part of both of our childhoods, and we want to bring something similar to a new generation of girls…without the tacky or cheapness. Building an actual brand is also practical. It brings additional revenue into the game, which funds future expansions and projects. (…There’s a list.)
For more information on Ginny O., you can check out her blog at https://ginny0.wordpress.com/. Similarly, Rebecca’s blog can be found at www.rebeccamhorner.com. Both are also easily found on Twitter, and love talking about writing, deving for the game, or answering some general (not personal) questions. Ginny is @GinnyZero, Rebecca is @RebeccaMHorner, and for a trifecta, Mystic Riders can also be found @MysticRidersMMO!