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Epic Assisting Big Huge Games

An update from Dr. Michael Capps on the Epic Games Website explains how Epic Games is stepping up to the aide of Big Huge Games, the developer of Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning that was closed by the recent demise of 38 Studios. The post outlines plans to launch a new studio in Baltimore centered around the former BHG staff, and in the meantime Epic is bringing in some of them to do contract work. Here's a bit:

It’ll take a while to find space, set up desks and PCs, purchase sufficient Nerf weaponry and Dr. Pepper, etc. But some of these folks have been going too long without a paycheck to wait for that. So, as soon as we can, we’re going to try to get people working down here at Epic headquarters in Cary, NC as contractors.

There’s a million things to work out. How many of the team can we hire? What will it be called? What will they be working on? We don’t know all the answers yet. Please give us some time to figure it out; we hope to have more to share soon.

The way we see it, there’s been a big storm in Baltimore, and we’re taking in a few of the refugees — as are the awesome folks at Zynga East, Zenimax Online, and other southeastern studios. Epic’s in a situation where we can do this, and it very clearly fits with our company values, so we’re going to give it a whirl.

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12. Re: Epic Assisting Big Huge Games Jun 4, 2012, 13:11 Ruffiana
 
Beamer wrote on Jun 4, 2012, 10:19:
Verno wrote on Jun 4, 2012, 10:09:
Shineyguy wrote on Jun 4, 2012, 09:39:
I agree, it's great to see someone step in and help all the people put out by Curt Schilling and his shady dealings.

I don't think it was shadey so much as Curt is just an enthusiast who didn't realize what a huge endeavor this was. His only other successful business was a little boards game company and this wasn't exactly to that scale. They quite simply tried to go way too big, too soon. Amalur wasn't even a terrible game, it was just very average. Unfortunately for a company employing nearly 400 people your first product can't be simply average in this industry.

They just misspent the money (things like millions to Salvatore and Mcfarlane), I don't think it was particularly shadey so much as just poor decision making from top to bottom. I do get why people are upset with Curt though, he needs to take some responsibility for this mess. Their problems were obvious for awhile now and not having sufficient cashflow to even meet payroll indicates a terrible lack of planning.

I get Schillings' point, though - the RI government owed them more money, and had it paid that money they'd still be in business. Had they not opened their mouths 38S would have had opportunities for external funding, too.

But I get the governor's point, too. That cash would have allowed 38S to survive longer, but there's no proof it would have led to sustainability - there's plenty of reason to believe it just would have held this disaster off 6 months or so. And it's flat-out stupid for a local government to invest this kind of cash into video games.


Whole thing is a disaster, but the only finger I'll really point is at the idiot that approved this deal in the first place. Schilling definitely had too big dreams and didn't control his studio or spendings well, but I won't call someone "shady" for being a bad businessman with huge dreams that's offered $100million to realize them.

Yes, except the vast majority of the money lent to 38 studios goes right back into the local economy as they use it to pay interest on said loans, taxes, rent, utilities, and payroll to their employees (who in turn turn around and put their share back into the local economy through taxes, rent, utilities, food, gas, clothing, etc etc.)

It's not like this money just vanished into the ether or ended up in a foreign bank account.
 
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