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Raph Koster announces his new company

Veteran online game designer Raph Koster, most recently of Star Wars Galaxies and EverQuest publisher Sony Online Entertainment, has finally gone public with his new venture.

He's calling it Areae, and says it's a venture-funded startup based in San Diego.

Koster is not divulging much about Areae, but the company's site alludes to its pure, massively-multiplayer online game DNA: "WeÂ’re working on some new tech that will literally change how virtual worlds are made. WeÂ’ve got a cool world or two incubating on the back burner."

For now, that's all that Koster, who left Sony Online in March, or Areae will reveal. But as a pioneer in the MMO space--he was a force behind Origin's Ultima Online--you can bet that the company has something interesting up its sleeve.

Stay tuned to find out more.