This week was a special one in games. I mean, it's the games industry, so we're never short for absurd debacles to highlight in this space, but THQ Nordic running an AMA on 8chan is hands down a first-ballot inductee for the Terrible Ideas Hall of Fame. Waive the waiting period, retire the jersey number, close the Acclaim Marketing of the 1990s wing so it can be renovated and expanded to properly honor this one.
I'm not sure any of us will live to see this again. We are all witnesses to the opposite of Greatness. gREATNESS? (Ugh, absolutely hideous. Yeah, that works.) And then that statement after the fact? Wow. It's like a PR nightmare where they wake up to find it was not only real, but they've soiled the sheets as well. Oooof.
QUOTE | "I do not condone child pornography, white supremacy, or racism in any shape or form." - THQ Nordic PR and marketing director Philipp Brock clarifies his stance on a few things after he hosted an Ask Me Anything session to promote THQ Nordic games on 8chan, a message board known for racism, hate speech, organized harassment campaigns, and child pornography.
QUOTE | "It's an anonymous posting board, right? So it's something the people that go there don't want to be associated with. And you're putting THQ Nordic's name right up there with it?" - Me, trying (and failing) to make some sense out of THQ Nordic's actions on the GamesIndustry.biz podcast.
QUOTE | "Internet and gaming culture have become fruitful ground for neo-Nazi and fascist movements. They love to play and recruit around games. They enjoy the fascist aesthetic these games provide, and because [games] do not challenge their views on the world, they can still happily deny the Holocaust and play historical games." - Paintbucket Games' Jörg Friedrich talks about how games have failed to accurately depict the danger of fascism.
QUOTE | "If we're going to crunch early for something, we made them team-wide. Everything can benefit from getting more done. If the artists were on schedule, then they crunched and they got ahead." - From our 10 Years Ago This Month column, Gears of War 2 producer Rod Fergusson advocates for crunch as a necessary part of making a great game.
QUOTE | "It was just the normal stuff. This isn't clicking in the game. Some people didn't like the story at certain points. People freaking out about puddles three weeks before the game ships. Those are just normal bumps in the road." - Spider-Man creative director Bryan Intihar discusses the low points of development for the PS4 blockbuster. It certainly reads like the puddles thing is (ironically) dry humor, but I promise you, it sounded 100 percent earnest in person.
QUOTE | "At a show like DICE, other publishers come by and say, 'Yeah, how's that going? If anything happens, give us a call.' With Psychonauts 2 having been high profile and already having a great trailer out there, there would be enough interest in other people funding it and finishing it if something happened. But I've got no reason to believe Starbreeze isn't going to come through and publish it well." - Double Fine Productions' Tim Schafer says even if Psychonauts 2's troubled publisher Starbreeze collapses, the studio and game will endure.
QUOTE | "We made a principled decision that we're not going to withhold technology from institutions that we have elected in democracies to protect the freedoms we enjoy." - Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella takes a stand against employees unhappy that the company took a contract with the US Army to use HoloLens technology to "increase lethality" of soldiers in battle. Nadella's principles will bring in $479 million for the company.
STAT | 13 - Number of people who will be laid off as Dying Light developer Techland shutters its Polish publishing and distribution division by the end of the year.
STAT | 13 - Number of people laid off as indie dev Wish Studios shut down. Wish was founded in 2012 and created Sony PlayLink titles like That's You! And Knowledge is Power.
STAT | "Around a dozen" - Number of people laid off at GOG as the digital storefront restructured, reportedly due to greater pressure from platforms like Epic Games Store and Discord Store offering higher revenue shares.
QUOTE | "I've come to appreciate that 'Something Clone' is just a necessary, if slightly uncomfortable, step games must go through if they aspire to help turn great games that defined an archetype into new genres." - Colin Anderson, who worked on "Rocket League Clone" Axiom Soccer, dives into how many thriving genres began as one hit game with a slew of clones.