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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MaskedPixelantehttp://m.tickld.com/x/something-you-never-realized-about-guardians-of-the-galaxy Right in the feels.08/29/2014 - 6:56pm
AvalongodAgain I think we're conflating the issue of whether Sarkeesian's claims are beyond critique (no they're not) and whether its ever appropriate to use sexist language, let alone physical threats on a woman to intimidate her (no it isn't)08/29/2014 - 5:04pm
prh99Trolling her or trying to assail her integrity just draws more attention (Streisand effect?). Which is really not what the trolls want, so the only way to win (if there is a win to be had) is not to play/troll.08/29/2014 - 5:02pm
prh99Who cares, just don't watch the damn videos if you don't like her. Personally, I don't care as far as she is concerned as long there are interesting games to be played.08/29/2014 - 4:34pm
Andrew EisenZip - And yet, you can't cite a single, solitary example. (And no one said you hated anyone. Along those lines, no one claimed Sarkeesian was perfect either.)08/29/2014 - 3:51pm
Andrew EisenSaint's Row: Gat Out of Hell was just announced for PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One making it the 150th game For Everything But Wii U! Congratulations Deep Silver!08/29/2014 - 3:49pm
ZippyDSMleeI do not hate them jsut think its mostly hyperlobe.08/29/2014 - 3:40pm
Andrew EisenSleaker - I'd say that's likely. From my experience, most who have a problem with Sarkeesian's videos either want to hate them in the first place (for whatever reason) or honestly misunderstand what they're about and what they're saying.08/29/2014 - 3:16pm
james_fudgeWe appreciate your support :)08/29/2014 - 2:55pm
TechnogeekIt gives me hope that maybe, just maybe, the gaming community is not statistically indistinguishable from consisting entirely of people that your average Xbox Live caricature would look at and go "maybe you should tone it down a little bit".08/29/2014 - 2:49pm
TechnogeekI just want to say that while I've disagreed with the staff of this site on several occasions, it's still good to see that they're not automatically dismissing Anita's videos as a "misandrist scam" or whatever the preferred dismissive term is these days.08/29/2014 - 2:49pm
E. Zachary KnightZippy, So you can't find even one?08/29/2014 - 1:04pm
ZippyDSMleeAndrew Eisen:Right because shes prefect and never exaggerates... *rolls eyes*08/29/2014 - 12:53pm
SleakerAnd honestly, nearly all of the games she references, or images she depicts I've always cringed at and wondered why they were included in games to begin with, from pinups through explicit sexual depictions or direct abuse. I think it's cheap storytelling.08/29/2014 - 12:35pm
Sleaker@AE - aren't most people fundamentally misunderstanding her at this point? haha.. On a related note I think a lot of the backlash is coming from males that think she is telling them their 'Generic Male Fantasy' is bad and wrong.08/29/2014 - 12:33pm
Andrew EisenAnd no, I don't think the female community would be upset over the performance of a case study in and of itself. Possibly the mostivations behind such a study, the methodology or conclusions but not the mere idea of a case study.08/29/2014 - 12:29pm
Andrew EisenAmusingly, these videos aren't saying you can't/shouldn't use tropes or that sexual representations are inherently problematic so those are very silly things to have a problem with and indicate a fundamental misunderstanding of the series.08/29/2014 - 12:29pm
SleakerDo you think the female community would get extremely angry over a male doing a case study on the negative impact of sex-novels and their unrealistic depiction of males and how widespread they are in american culture?08/29/2014 - 12:25pm
SleakerThe other thing that people might find problematic is that they see no problem with sexual representations of females (or males) in games. And realistically, why is there anything wrong with sexual representations in fiction?08/29/2014 - 12:24pm
SleakerTo even discuss or bring up these issues at a cultural level to begin with. Going straight for games to many probably feels like a huge overstepping given that it's interactive story in many cases, and when you're telling a story why can't you use tropes.08/29/2014 - 12:21pm
 

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