Send News. Want a reply? Read this. More in the FAQ.   News Forum - All Forums - Mobile - PDA - RSS Headlines  RSS Headlines   Twitter  Twitter
Customize
User Settings
Styles:
LAN Parties
Upcoming one-time events:

Regularly scheduled events

NY Times on 38 Studios

NYTimes.com offers "Curt Schilling, Rhode Island and the Fall of 38 Studios," a very lengthy and detailed look at the startup studio that ended up costing baseball star Curt Schilling and the state of Rhode Island a lot of money. Nobody comes out looking too good after all this, as the article details the na´vetÚ of game development neophyte Schilling taking on the most ambitious type of game in undertaking an MMORPG, and the sketchy history of politics in Rhode Island ("Rhode Islanders are used to being played by their politicians. What makes them cringe is the suspicion that virtually all their elected leaders might have been played by someone else."). They touch on an interstate rivalry with Massachusetts which played a part in Rhode Island's overreach here, and the behind-the-scenes machinations to facilitate the state's hefty loan to the company, which prompted the one dissenting voter to say: "Scandal finds money." The article is filled with detail on problems inherent in this situation, such as 38 Studios needing to control costs at the same time they were trying to live up to the pumped-up promise that they would bring new jobs to the state and how former 38 Studios CEO Brett Close urged releasing Amalur in smaller phases, rather than "trying to build the skyscraper horizontally and then standing it up." They sum up the current legal proceedings between Rhode Island and Schilling, and offer this interesting take: "At bottom, 38 Studios may be that rare political scandal that grew not from any lies that anyone told the public, but from the stories that desperate politicians told themselves." Thanks nin via Kotaku.

View
50 Replies. 3 pages. Viewing page 3.
< Newer [ 1 2 3 ] Older >

10. Re: NY Times on 38 Studios Apr 22, 2013, 10:50 Cutter
 
Mr. Tact wrote on Apr 22, 2013, 10:36:
Actually, the sports athletes and Hollywood stars making millions makes more sense. Many (most?) go to sporting events and movies because of those people. There isn't a single product I've bought because of a CEO.

Apple would disagree with you. I buy - or don't - plenty of products based on who runs the company because their views - political and otherwise - affect both the product and myself in the world. Then again I've never been into the cult of personality and could care less about sports and other celebrities. In fact that sort of idol worship makes me throw up in my mouth a little when I think about it.
 
Avatar 25394
 
"The South will boogie again!" - Disco Stu
Reply Quote Edit Delete Report
 
9. Re: NY Times on 38 Studios Apr 22, 2013, 10:48 Creston
 
Good article, though it's all basically been said before.

The thing that still baffles me is that Rhode Island thought that bringing over 38 studios was going to "create jobs." 38 Studios was bringing its own people over, so it's not as if "hey, a new place to work with 400 openings!" suddenly popped up. And while they might have hoped that 38 Studios would grow (it's laughable that anyone took Schilling's grand-standing of "We'll be the new Microsoft" at face value), 400 people is already a pretty large studio. By how many more jobs was it really going to grow? A hundred? A quick glance around many other game dev studios would have shown that 400 people is pretty sizable for an individual studio.

Giving a 75 million dollar loan in an effort to maybe create 100 jobs seems like the worst foolishness possible. It's cheaper to just pay those 100 people Social Security.

Edit : They do actually mention later in the article that 38 was hiring hundreds of new employees, which should have struck anyone as unsustainable. What are you paying these people with? Money from loans? 38 studios had no income!

And before anyone mentions it, 400 high-tech jobs isn't anywhere near enough to have a noticeable trickle-down effect, where the presence of these 400 jobs invigorates other industries to the point where THEY grow in an effort to support these people. You'd literally need to bring Microsoft to Rhode Island in order to have that kind of effect.

I don't know that there really was any crime being committed, though, as being terrible at running a business isn't actually a crime (Schilling may have made claims that he likely knew he was never going to be able to keep, but then Rhode Island should have done its homework and realized it was all smoke anyway,) and I can't help but feel that these criminal proceedings are just more wasted money in an effort to find a scapegoat.

This one quote really stood out for me: "When we talked, Mr. Carcieri emphasized to me that the board, far from being bullied by the governor or star-struck by Mr. Schilling, had engaged in a laborious process of due diligence and had come to see 38 Studios as a solid opportunity."

Obviously the people on this board are utterly clueless. It's fine if you don't know anything about games (though I might add to that "wake the fuck up. It isn't 1993 anymore,") but if this was such a solid opportunity, why wasn't 38 Studios being floated any money in its current location, the so-called High Tech Corridor of Massachussets? Maybe because the lenders there realized that this WASN'T a great opportunity, but rather a ridiculously risky proposition, like pretty much any MMO? And so why didn't this throw up massive warning signs to them?

This Economic Development Board is made up by CEOs of Rhode Island "big shots", so if this due diligence is any indicator, it's a miracle that their companies still exist.

Creston

This comment was edited on Apr 22, 2013, 11:09.
 
Avatar 15604
 
Reply Quote Edit Delete Report
 
8. Re: NY Times on 38 Studios Apr 22, 2013, 10:46 Cutter
 
Shut up. You know I'm always right about that sort of nonsense, so don't poke the bear.

Curt Schilling is Still a Teabagger, says it all pretty well about the hypocrisy of republicans like Schilling.
 
Avatar 25394
 
"The South will boogie again!" - Disco Stu
Reply Quote Edit Delete Report
 
7. Re: NY Times on 38 Studios Apr 22, 2013, 10:36 Mr. Tact
 
Actually, the sports athletes and Hollywood stars making millions makes more sense. Many (most?) go to sporting events and movies because of those people. There isn't a single product I've bought because of a CEO.  
Truth is brutal. Prepare for pain.
Reply Quote Edit Delete Report
 
6. Re: NY Times on 38 Studios Apr 22, 2013, 10:31 wtf_man
 
I was just pokin' at him... nudge nudge wink wink knowwhatimean?

That said... I'd rather see someone responsible for a multi-billion dollar company get paid stupidly, than an athlete or a Hollywood celebrity with the "double digit IQ". That's just fricken wrong.
 
Avatar 19499
 
Reply Quote Edit Delete Report
 
5. Re: NY Times on 38 Studios Apr 22, 2013, 10:26 Mr. Tact
 
Well, I'd agree with Cutter on that, a lot of CEO's pay is ridiculously high. The kind of CEO like Steve Jobs is the exception. Most of the time CEOs are simply management wonks who "run a company" no better than I could.

My comment was more of a comment that if you spend most of your life concentrating on one thing, odds are you aren't great at any other.
 
Truth is brutal. Prepare for pain.
Reply Quote Edit Delete Report
 
4. Re: NY Times on 38 Studios Apr 22, 2013, 10:17 wtf_man
 
Mr. Tact wrote on Apr 22, 2013, 10:14:
Shocking eh? Someone who spent their entire life playing baseball not being a good businessman / CEO. Certainly it's possible he could have done both well, but not surprising in any way that he couldn't.

This.

There is a reason why most CEOs make a stupid amount of money... not that Cutter would agree.
 
Avatar 19499
 
Reply Quote Edit Delete Report
 
3. Re: NY Times on 38 Studios Apr 22, 2013, 10:14 Mr. Tact
 
Shocking eh? Someone who spent their entire life playing baseball not being a good businessman / CEO. Certainly it's possible he could have done both well, but not surprising in any way that he couldn't.  
Truth is brutal. Prepare for pain.
Reply Quote Edit Delete Report
 
2. Re: NY Times on 38 Studios Apr 22, 2013, 10:09 Beamer
 
Yeah, Schiling was absolutely inept.  
-------------
Music for the discerning:
http://www.deathwishinc.com
http://www.hydrahead.com
http://www.painkillerrecords.com
Reply Quote Edit Delete Report
 
1. Re: NY Times on 38 Studios Apr 22, 2013, 10:01 avianflu
 
A great article: the bond investors (basically 3 banks) are to be faulted for lack of due diligence equally as well as the state and the business. All 3 entities wanted to believe the cash would start flowing in.

Chafee's usual aloofness did not help him in the aftermath, but then again, he would never have allowed this deal to happen on his watch.

Schilling though, comes off looking completely inept as a CEO. Poor business decisions from the get-go. I love the part where there's not a new investor that will go anywhere near "38 Studios," then Schilling asks Chafee in person for millions more and Chafee simply and correctly says no.
 
Reply Quote Edit Delete Report
 
50 Replies. 3 pages. Viewing page 3.
< Newer [ 1 2 3 ] Older >


footer

.. .. ..

Blue's News logo