Flickr founder launches trippy new game

Flickr cofounder Stewart Butterfield is having another shot at marketing a massively multiplayer game.

Last time he tried, it turned out that players were much more interested in the photo-sharing feature than in the game itself, and Flickr was born. Game Neverending itself died a quiet death.

The new 2-D, Flash-based game, called Glitch, comes from Butterfield’s recent start-up, Tiny Speck, and is now available in alpha. There’s a rather trippy video demo on the company site.

Tiny Speck admits that the current avatars look “kind of lame”, but says they’ll be replaced with something rather more impressive by the time of launch.

The central premise is a slightly Mario-esque time-traveling quest to save the world, but the developers promise it’s a little different from the norm.

“For starters, it’s all one big world. Which means everyone is playing the same game and anyone’s actions have the ability to affect every other player in the game,” they say.

“It also involves very little war, moats, spaceships, wizards, mafiosos, or tapestries. Also: we have egg plants. Egg plants make it very different.”

Built mostly in Java and Javascript, the game can be updated on a daily basis with new characters and places.

Glitch is set for launch late this year.