Schafer on Kotick: Maybe He Should Sell Ball Bearings

July 14, 2010 -

Double Fine Productions founder Tim Schafer didn’t pull any punches when talking about Activision CEO Bobby Kotick at this week’s Develop Conference in the UK.

To be fair, as Crave notes, Schafer’s Brutal Legend game was originally going to be published by Activision before it merged with Blizzard. The game was dropped and eventually published by Electronic arts, which could have contributed to some of the bad taste in Schafer’s mouth.

Among Schafer’s comments on Kotick:

[Kotick] makes a big deal about not liking games, and I just don’t think that attitude is good for games in general. I just don’t think we’re an industry of widgets. We can approach it like we approach bars of soap, where you’re just trying to make the cheapest bar of soap.

I don’t think he’s great for the industry, overall. You can’t just latch onto something when it’s popular and then squeeze the life out of it and then move on to the next one. You have to at some point create something, build something.

Hopefully he’ll go back to another industry scene. He could go to an industry that makes more money. Ball bearings… something that suits his passions more. Weapons manufacturing?

Ouch! More comments from Schafer can be found in the Crave Online article.


Pic from
StaticPixel


Comments

Re: Schafer on Kotick: Maybe He Should Sell Ball Bearings

Kotick is right about one thing, artistic types tend to be poor at Business. The problem is that most businessmen, being businessmen, see that as something that can be exploited and manipulated, it's like something small and squeaky to a cat, they see a chance to use people who enjoy what they do and turn it into an enterprise centred around money instead of the sheer pleasure of creativity. That quite often kills the creative heart of the venture, you only have to look at the number of sequels, both in Movies and in Computer games to see how dry the well of creativity is actually getting.

Re: Schafer on Kotick: Maybe He Should Sell Ball Bearings

What we need are artist with business sense. People who love games and know how to run a company.

Re: Schafer on Kotick: Maybe He Should Sell Ball Bearings

Kotick is cut from the same cloth as the suits and MBAs (fuck MBAs) who ran Atari into the ground in the 80's. 

Ray Kassar and the MBAs of Atari were responsible for disasters like the deal that spawned the E.T. game (5 months to make the game), the terrible quality of 2600 Pac-Man, Video Rubiks Cube, and all the shovelware shit that doomed the industry. 

Mr. Kassar (who was not a gamer) had a reputation of being an uncaring prick who treated developers poorly and thought of games as package goods.  He did indeed take all the fun out of making games. 

How ironic is it that Activision, founded as a force for good in the games industry, is now run by a man who is just like the man who destroyed Atari?

Re: Schafer on Kotick: Maybe He Should Sell Ball Bearings

Not just Atari but the entire North American videogame industry.  Kassar is pretty much responsible for the crash of '83.

However, to be fair... It was his business acumen that made Atari the $100 million company that it was (in the 80s!).  But that's the problem isn't it?  These suits just care about making the most money right now and not the future of the business.

------- Morality has always been in decline. As you get older, you notice it. When you were younger, you enjoyed it.

Re: Schafer on Kotick: Maybe He Should Sell Ball Bearings

They want a generous severance package so they can keep their mansion while cutting their employees adrift.

Re: Schafer on Kotick: Maybe He Should Sell Ball Bearings

Tim is echoing the statement I have made for a long time now. "Suits" have brought nothing but heartache and loss to gaming.

I miss the heady days when games took a long time to come out but they were unique and of high quality.

Gaming since the "suits" arrived is one large beta test where we consumers are the testers and the value of the games is half of what it used to be.

(There are exceptions, BIOWARE, and maybe a few more.)

Re: Schafer on Kotick: Maybe He Should Sell Ball Bearings

 What you say about "suits" applies to just about EVERY creative medium. Really, when it comes down to it, i really do wish all of these companies were run by creators and not businessmen... or at the very least people who take part and indulge in the kind of media they produce.

Re: Schafer on Kotick: Maybe He Should Sell Ball Bearings

Rather than an article with a few choice quotes, why not go to the original source?

http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/double-fines-tim-schafer-develop-interview

He also says that he doesn't know why Kotick is such a prick about games development too. :)

 
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Have you visited a video game arcade in the last year?:

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MechaTama31I sure have. Dorky's barcade in Tacoma, WA.08/20/2014 - 5:56pm
Matthew WilsonI have not been to a arcade in years. I know arcades are still big in japan.08/20/2014 - 5:38pm
Sleaker@AE - Ah no it's called GroundKontrol - I was just referring to it as a Bar-Arcade.08/20/2014 - 4:39pm
Andrew EisenStill looking for confirmation that High Moon Studios (dev behind the PS3/360 versions) isn't working on it.08/20/2014 - 4:38pm
ZenGotcha.08/20/2014 - 4:37pm
Andrew EisenI already updated the story with it!08/20/2014 - 4:36pm
Zenhttp://www.gonintendo.com/s/235574-treyarch-isn-t-working-call-of-duty-advanced-warfare-for-wii-u-either08/20/2014 - 4:36pm
ZenLet me send the link for the Tweet as well...they state Treyarch is not working on it. Grabbing it now.08/20/2014 - 4:34pm
Andrew EisenWhere does it say that "NO dev is working on it"?08/20/2014 - 4:33pm
ZenHere's the link for my last comment: http://www.ign.com/articles/2014/08/20/call-of-duty-advanced-warfare-not-coming-to-wii-u08/20/2014 - 4:24pm
ZenWell, Call of Duty is skipping Wii U completely it seems...they updated that NO dev is working on it. Great way to just skip a market.08/20/2014 - 4:24pm
Andrew EisenYeah, Dave and Busters back in 2011 was the last time for me.08/20/2014 - 4:16pm
ZenWell, I tried lol. We just got a Dave and Busters on the beach but haven't been there yet...may go this weekend.08/20/2014 - 3:52pm
Andrew EisenIt's called The Bar-Arcade? Missed opportunity. I would have gone with Barcade.08/20/2014 - 3:25pm
SleakerThe Bar-Arcade however did have a lot of good pinball machines, they were however always taken as the place was packed..08/20/2014 - 1:17pm
Sleakerso I've been to an Arcade-Bar, not that great of a place has some okay machines, but generally over-packed. And then all the kid-friendly ones have is ticket-games nothing actually good unfortunately :(08/20/2014 - 1:14pm
Andrew EisenIf it has an area dedicated to arcade machines, I'd say it counts. Arcade machine in your house though, nope.08/20/2014 - 12:16pm
ZenDoes it count if you have actual arcade machines in your house?08/20/2014 - 12:01pm
E. Zachary KnightWith the current poll, I guess it all depends on how one defines "arcade". If Chuck E Cheese or similar multipurpose businesses count, then that is a yes for me.08/20/2014 - 11:59am
ZenLet the ax fall Sleaker...lessons MUST be learned...08/20/2014 - 11:44am
 

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