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Cliff Bleszinski | Control Freak: My Epic Adventure Making Video Games

Control Freak pops the hood on the gaming industry and shines a light inside.

In 2021, the global games market generated over $180 billion in revenue—bigger than movies and music combined—and is projected to hit over $200 billion in 2022. Yet despite being a global economic juggernaut and having massive cultural impact, there hasn't been a definitive insider account about the industry. Until now. Enter legendary videogame designer Cliff “CliffyB” Bleszinski and his rollicking, colorful memoir Control Freak.

A twenty-five-year veteran of the industry, Cliff shipped his first commercial title, Jazz Jackrabbit, before graduating high school. During his long tenure at Epic Games, he became design director and was a key visionary behind the bestselling franchises Unreal and Gears of War and lent his expertise to the global obsession Fortnite.
As Cliff writes, “no one is weirder than a nerd with money.” In Control Freak, we follow his life from the 80s as a shy, awkward acne-riddled teen bullied by classmates and coping with the sudden loss of his father to a flamboyant personality in the gamer world who flourishes and connects with his flock of fellow nerds. His career takes off with massive hits and catapults him to a life as a hot rod-driving celebrity rubbing shoulders with Bill Gates and appearing on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon.

Cliff will be in conversation with Amy Power.


Event date: 
Tuesday, November 1, 2022 - 7:00pm to 8:00pm
Event address: 
North Hills
4209-100 Lassiter Mill Road
Raleigh, NC 27609
Control Freak: My Epic Adventure Making Video Games By Cliff Bleszinski Cover Image
ISBN: 9781982149147
Availability: On our shelves
Published: Simon & Schuster - November 1st, 2022

The designer of Unreal and Gears of War offers an eye-opening personal account of the video game industry as it grew from niche hobby to hundred-billion-dollar enterprise.

Video games are dominating the planet. In 2020, they brought in $180 billion dollars globally—nearly $34 billion in the United States alone.

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