All good internet comments begin with some variation of, “I shouldn’t even be commenting here.” Fortunately, prolific fantasy novelist and writer of Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, R. A. Salvatore, resisted his better instincts and made a series of lengthy posts about the state of 38 Studios in the wake of yesterday’s news that the developer had laid off all of its employees.
I’m not trying to be snarky here, but RI was trying to create a game hub in Providence – Hasbro is there (and is the state’s largest employer). Take a look at the success that is Austin, TX, or the huge game hub in Eastern Canada, heavily subsidized.
Take a look at how much Louisiana is pouring into movies to attract studios to New Orleans. Another risky business – did I just read that Disney wrote off something like $175 million on “John Carter”?
And here are a couple of other facts – since they’re reported, I can repeat them here (but again, I know only what’s been reported, repeatedly): Rhode Island doled out around $49 million of the $75 – the rest is still there, and 38 Studios had already generated nearly $20 million in revenue for the state. Yeah, it’s still going to sting.
Interesting, Salvatore also claimed his writer’s agreement with the studio, which dated back to 2006, was based on “back end compensation,” implying that he hasn’t been paid. “Maybe I’ll never see a dime for those hundreds of hours,” he wrote.
He also regretted that no one would have the chance to see the team’s work in Project Copernicus.
Truth is, most of what you’ve seen is rough compared to what we have. We had zones in WHITE BOX that were prettier than many you’ll find in running, completed, published games. And the combat and animation…super…top-notch all the way around.
And something else I probably shouldn’t say, but what the hell: Reckoning showed a TINY slice of the world 2,500 years BEFORE the MMO. A TINY slice of a past age that ties to the meta-story of Amalur in the way a tale of the Schism in the Catholic Church might relate to modern day Earth…yes, the world lore was THAT BIG.
Say what you will, that does sound big.