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Richard Garriott re-enters games atmosphere with new social media project: Portalarium

Known spacefarer and castle-owner Richard Garriott isn't going to let a relatively unsuccessful MMORPG launch keep him down. Lord British himself, along with former NCSoft colleagues Dallas Snell, Fred Schmidt and Stephen Nichols, has revealed the launch of a "broad-based" social media company dubbed Portalarium. The outfit is working to first offer "online game apps" and then hopes to expand into "open learning, open health, open science/environment, open government and much more." Whatever that means.

The announcement was kind enough to detail the company's first big project: The Portalarium Player, a browser plug-in that allows games developed on a number of platforms (i.e., not just Flash) to work within the confines of social networking sites like Facebook and MySpace. Garriott is speaking more about the young company's future at D.I.C.E. -- so we'll flag him down later today to find out what gamers can expect from the studio. (At the very least, we hope to get some totally awesome space stories.)

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