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. :)

 
Forgot your password?
Username :
Password :

Poll

Will Code Avarice's Paranautical Activity make its way back onto Steam?:

Shout box

You're not permitted to post shouts.
E. Zachary KnightAE: some devs here in Oklahoma got accepted to make WiiU games. They are college kids who haven't graduated and are making games out of their dorms. They deserve it too.10/24/2014 - 6:25pm
MechaTama31CMiner: Raising such a concern now would get you branded as a GGer regardless of whether you're actually waving the flag or not.10/24/2014 - 6:19pm
Andrew EisenMore on how Nintendo runs the eShop today (no parity clause, no concept approval, devs can run sales when they want, indies don't need an office): http://www.develop-online.net/news/nintendo-eshop-has-no-parity-clause/019921110/24/2014 - 6:13pm
Papa MidnightAndrew Eisen: https://www.reddit.com/r/eyebleach (Seriously. If you ever need pictures of kittens, and the like).10/24/2014 - 3:58pm
Andrew EisenDammit, now I'm all depressed. I must find pictures of kittens.10/24/2014 - 2:38pm
MaskedPixelantehttp://www.businessinsider.com/shooting-at-pilchuck-high-school-in-marysville-washington-2014-1010/24/2014 - 2:15pm
Andrew EisenIn case anyone was wondering, Nintendo's eShop no longer does that "you don't make money until you've sold x units" thing. http://www.develop-online.net/news/nintendo-no-minimum-sales-needed-for-eshop-revenues/019921010/24/2014 - 1:52pm
MaskedPixelanteGOG needs better web developers. Someone dug into their countdown timer, found numbers using fonts from Indiana Jones, Star Wars and Monkey Island, and pretty much confirmed that LucasArts is coming on Tuesday.10/24/2014 - 1:43pm
Papa MidnightI've seen glowing reviews for Bayonetta 2 so far.10/24/2014 - 1:17pm
Andrew EisenI'm not picking up Bayonetta. Today. Tomorrow's not looking good either. I'll get it eventually though!10/24/2014 - 12:23pm
Infophile@MP: No it doesn't. You're a terrible human being for completely unrelated reasons. (/snark)10/24/2014 - 12:15pm
MaskedPixelantePicked up Bayonetta 2, which according to Polygon means I am now a terrible human being.10/24/2014 - 11:58am
Matthew Wilsonofcourse not he did a video on the new civ game just yesterday.10/24/2014 - 10:32am
Papa MidnightYou think a bit of cancer surgery would keep The Cynical Brit from railing about bad PC ports? Not a chance! :)10/24/2014 - 10:15am
Matthew Wilsonmight be a bit soon only becouse he got out of cancer surgery last week, but ask his email is public.10/24/2014 - 9:56am
Papa MidnightHell, set up a Google Hangout or Skype call, and I'll be happy to join in.10/24/2014 - 9:34am
Papa MidnightBring Totalbiscuit on SuperPAC for Saturday!10/24/2014 - 9:32am
CMinerThere is no journalism/ethics concern that you've raised that would be made weaker by not raising it under the umbrella of GamerGate.10/24/2014 - 9:32am
CMinerNeo: You want to start some healing? Stop using the GamerGate hashtag. Even if you don't believe that it originated with harassers, you have to see that it's been irrevocably tainted by their actions.10/24/2014 - 9:31am
MaskedPixelanteGOG has a four day countdown to their next publisher. All hints suggest Disney, but no guarantee it'll be LucasArts.10/24/2014 - 6:58am
 

Be Heard - Contact Your Politician