The Knewton Blog

Our monthly newsletter features edtech and product updates, with a healthy dose of fun Knerd news.

Diablog III

Posted in Knerds on June 1, 2012 by

When my sacred mountain homeland was shattered by the 2008 financial crisis, I nearly lost faith in my fellow man. Haunted by my investment banking past, I wandered aimlessly, traveling from place to place without honor or direction. But by the light of the falling market, I found a group of heroes, a band of Knerds, to join in the fight against evil.

This is our story.

Jayson Phillips, Software Engineer

  • Name: “Black Sampson” – it’s a nickname given to me by some friends when I first started training in Mixed Martial Arts, partially due to the dreadlocks I had wore at the time. If I ever went professional, that was going to be my ring name. Instead, I named my character that.
  • Class: Barbarian – Why not? He’s brutal, wields crazy weapons (right now I have a Mighty Rare cleaver and a Rare Axe). And he does battle cries that make him look like a Super Saiyan (Dragon Ball reference)
  • Current Level* (and why Gavin’s probably beating you): 17. Gavin’s beating me because I’ve only put in about 8 hours of total playing time thus far.
  • Why are you playing? Because I loved Diablo and Diablo II. So it’s part nostalgia, plus I’m a big fan of RPGs in various forms.
  • Favorite thing so far? Laying waste to hordes of evil like I’m back in high school/college again
  • How many times have you died? 3
  • Anything else to add? Yes. I will be upgrading my home PC this weekend so I can play Diablo 3 in full HD on my home theater with all settings at MAX. /geek

Eric Garside, Computational Biologist

  • Name: Tark; I chose it cause it sounded like a cool name.
  • Class: Barbarian; Cause I want to tear demons limb from limb.
  • Current Level* (and why Gavin’s probably beating you): 14; Cause hardcore mode is stressful and I’m playing with friends.
  • Why are you playing? Because f*ck demons, that’s why.
  • Favorite thing so far? I’ve played 4 different characters from 1-10 and had a different game experience each time. That’s pretty great.
  • How many times have you died? 0 deaths; because dying is for demons.
  • Anything else to add? Nothing can repel firepower of my magnitude.

Katie Kurtz, VP of Business Development

  • Name: Atalanta. She was a Greek princess/hunter but often described as a goddess. She had many suitors and no desire to marry. So she challenged them all to a race and those who lost would be killed, which is kinda badass. In the end she was beguiled by a man but only with an assist from Aphrodite. And Marlo Thomas loves her.

  • Class: Barbarian, because I was told it was the easiest to play. But I hate her thighs.
  • Current Level* (and why Gavin’s probably beating you): Level 2 (I’ve only played for 30 minutes total)
  • Why are you playing? Charlie and Karim convinced me to buy it after shots of bourbon at the Cinco de Knewton party.
  • Favorite thing so far? The fact that I haven’t died.
  • How many times have you died? 0!

D. Bradley McIlquham, Director of Academics

  • Name: Couleuvre (it’s a reference to non poisonous snakes in french/creole)
  • Class: Witch Doctor (because no one else was going to be one and I’m good from afar, but far from good)
  • Current Level* (and why Gavin’s probably beating you): 9, but evolving (he has better priorities)
  • Why are you playing? I’m not, I’m writing this blog post… also FOMO.
  • Favorite thing so far? The emerging love story around Gavin & Karim.
  • How many times have you died? Just once, but that had more to do with playing alongside Karim and Charlie than it did the Skeleton King,
  • Anything else to add? Zombie dogs should be a thing… so now I have a hack day project!

Jose Ferreira, Founder

  • Name: Knewton
  • Class: Wizard. I like shooting things with magic
  • Current Level* (and why Gavin’s probably beating you): 26
  • Why are you playing? Um…
  • Favorite thing so far? Kicking ass in a dream world of magic
  • How many times have you died? 12?

Karim de Coster, Partnership Manager

  • Name: Cookies – short for Cookies and Karim, the Champion of Light, Fighter of the Nightman and Savior of the World

  • Class: Monk, because he is so badass
  • Current Level* (and why Gavin’s probably beating you): 21, I think I’m only a level behind Gavin
  • Why are you playing? Cause I want to beat Jose at something
  • Favorite thing so far: Co-op gameplay
  • How many times have you died? Lost count but I died a dozen times at the end of ACT I
  • Anything else to add? This is the best blogpost ever

Alex Companioni, Junior Software Engineer

  • Name: Sorc
  • Class: Wizard
  • Current Level*: 24
  • Why are you playing? I’m playing because I’ve always seen Diablo as a fun social experience. My friends and I would constantly play Diablo 2 late into the night, running around, fighting these weird demon monsters, and talking about whatever loot we picked up. As an awkward nerdy kid, it was a great way to develop some friendships that still exist many years later. Those friends are playing Diablo III now, so my sorceress heroine — or my “sorc,” as we called her — has come out of retirement! Anyway, I don’t have nearly as much free time now as I did a decade ago, but I’m happy that Diablo III provides some options (the auction house, more powerful items) to keep people like me in the loop.

Gavin Linkins, Systems Administrator

  • Name: Artra (Similar to the name of a WoW character I have. Also, naming characters is the weakest part of my game)

  • Class: Wizard (Ranged > Melee)
  • Current Level* (and why Gavin’s probably beating you): Only 27 (I am my own worst enemy)
  • Why are you playing? I am drawn to Blizzard releases like a moth to the flame.
  • Favorite thing so far? As of right now it would have to be the storyline. I am looking forward to grinding out normal and getting into the harder modes.
  • How many times have you died? 4 times I think.
  • Anything else you want to add? I have been getting the stink eye by my gf because she thinks that I have not been playing enough. Also, the scorpion on my banner represents Devils Goalie Marty Brodeur and his “Scorpion Save” against the Rangers

Charlie Harrington, Business Development Analyst

  • Name: Herodotus, also known as ‘The Father of History’ – my history major is clearly paying off
  • Class: Barbarian (this little guy apparently gets a skill that turns him into a Super Saiyan – I should have named him Goku)
  • Current Level* (and why Gavin’s probably beating you): 17 (I haven’t played in the five days since I started reading ‘Game of Thrones’ – I know, I’m way behind in that, too).
  • Why are you playing? Diablo II is the reason my family got a new computer back in the day – I owe so much to this series.
  • Favorite thing so far? The cutscene between Act I and Act II. I hope I get to fight those jerks.
  • How many times have you died?  III
  • *Anything else to add? These surveys were conducted on May 24. I expect the full wrath of my comrades when they recognize the disparity between the levels in this blog post and their current levels. So much for loyalty. These are dark times.