You may recall the Positech front man Cliff Harris called Epic VP Mark Rein a jerk and told him to f**k off. This week things seemed to have calmed down a bit and several Epic employees – including Rein himself – tried to clarify his comments.
According to a Gameindustry.biz report several Epic employees including Cliff Blezinski, Tim Sweeney, and Mark Rein tried to clarify things and put the issue to bed as amicably as possible. Cliff Blezinski said via Twitter that Mark probably thought his comments were silly:
"I haven’t spoken with Mark today, but I’d wager he thought the comment was silly that only indy devs reply or interact to customers," he wrote.
Epic founder Tim Sweeney stopped by Harris’ blog to comment, and to apologize on Rein’s behalf:
"Yeah, Mark Rein can jump in with guns blazing sometimes, invited or not. It’s all intended to be in good fun, but I guess it didn’t work out that way this time. Sorry!," he said.
"When you have millions of customers, you can’t talk to them all. Many of the Epic folks are in frequent contact with enough gamers that we have a pretty clear idea of what the community is thinking, but with this scope of product you can’t respond as quickly or as pervasively. It’s a nice but real problem, and one smaller teams like y’all will share when faced with a runaway success."
Meanwhile, Harris said via his Twitter feed that he had "got an email from Mark Rein. Angry devs are now not angry. Ceasefire declared."
But the most interesting part of the story comes from Mark Rein, who posted a lengthy response in the comments section of the Gi.biz story, taking issue with certain commentary about what he said:
"Oh come on!
‘this time also claiming that larger companies such as Epic would leave little room for smaller developers on those platforms.’
That’s not what I said! What I said was that, as the hardware inevitably developed, to make the kind of games we play on console today, and the installed bases of gamers on those platforms swelled to be as big as the mainstream gaming platforms today, big companies, and I was talking about PUBLISHERS, would be spending huge amounts of money turning mobile into the next triple-A battleground with major marketing budgets making it harder for little guys to (a) compete against larger dev budgets and (b) to get heard above the noise.
‘Rein was unconvinced by GamesIndustry.biz’s observation that history suggests smaller developers might move onto whatever proves to be the next upcoming technology while big studios busied themselves with the current zeitgeist.‘
Perhaps but mobile IS the next upcoming technology. It is still very MUCH in the "upcoming" phase and there are thousands upon thousands of smaller developers already trying to address it today. "