Alan Smithee

Gabe Newell Wants Your Money

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Gabe Newell is another one of these game developers who really shouldn’t be spending time in front of a camera. You guys are better suited at making games than talking about them in interviews, get over it already.

My case in point is the latest interview he did with Good Game, where he expounds the virtues of allowing communities to help fund game development instead of the company having to kowtow to large publishers (like EA).

“One of the areas that I am super interested in right now is how we can do financing from the community. So right now, what typically happens is you have this budget – it needs to be huge, it has to be $10m – $30m, and it has to be all available at the beginning of the project. There’s a huge amount of risk associated with those dollars and decisions have to be incredibly conservative.

What I think would be much better would be if the community could finance the games. In other words, ‘Hey, I really like this idea you have. I’ll be an early investor in that and, as a result, at a later point I may make a return on that product, but I’ll also get a copy of that game.’

So move financing from something that occurs between a publisher and a developer… Instead have it be something where funding is coming out of community for games and game concepts they really like.”

Sounds like a novel idea, but what would be the end-user’s rights be to said investment? I mean it would be awesome to know that you had hand in making the new Half-Life, even if it were just a monetary contribution to the game. It just stinks to high heaven when you start taking in money from outside sources that don’t have the same powers as the heavy investors. I can guarantee that the big developer would be able to earn back it’s losses if the game tanked, I can’t say the same thing for you and I.

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