Ritual Departures

Ritual's Tom Mustaine sends along news that because of the way things are playing out over there, they have been forced to release some personnel. Here's the word:
As most people know, Ritual Entertainment recently finished Star Trek: Elite Force II, a game we are all tremendously proud to have developed. We had three very engaging projects lined up for the team, but unfortunately, none of them came to actual fruition. We found ourselves unable to maintain multiple AAA teams and were forced to release some of the most gifted game developers back into the industry's talent pool.

Ritual continues to focus on our other two AAA titles: Counter-Strike for the Xbox and Counter-Strike: Condition Zero for the PC, both due out later this year.
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61 Replies. 4 pages. Viewing page 1.
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61.
 
Ritual...bargain?
Jun 18, 2003, 02:38
61.
Ritual...bargain? Jun 18, 2003, 02:38
Jun 18, 2003, 02:38
 
These guys have long been overdue for a recalculation of their priorities if you ask me. I personally have enjoyed many of their past releases (Scourge of Armagon, SiN, FAKK2, etc..) but believe that each and every one of their titles has lacked something. In some cases it is steady gameplay, in others it is straight out fun factor.
But whatever, companies are all a part of corporate america, right? Thus it's expected to be standard practice that they bubble and roil in the great cauldron of commerce.

Avatar 13202
60.
 
Re: No subject
Jun 17, 2003, 01:21
60.
Re: No subject Jun 17, 2003, 01:21
Jun 17, 2003, 01:21
 
Well, on one hand, StoryatEleven, they were handed the project contract to do sequels to both Elite Force and Counter Strike, so can you really say they're all that bad of a company? Something about them must have impressed some "suit" somewhere because of this.

59.
 
Re: No subject
Jun 16, 2003, 18:29
59.
Re: No subject Jun 16, 2003, 18:29
Jun 16, 2003, 18:29
 
My point exactally Storyateleven.

"I'm too much of a narcisist to really hate stupid people."
58.
 
cold, cold, world...
Jun 16, 2003, 16:54
h
58.
cold, cold, world... Jun 16, 2003, 16:54
Jun 16, 2003, 16:54
h
 
seriously...this guys were pretty awesome talent and it is a shame to see a fine team like this one get destroyed. Furthermore, seeing as how we all love games(we're here...)I think some of the comments I have read are a little insensitive...to me it sounds like another case of someone just HAVING TO HAVE MORE OR STAY HAVING DEEP POCKETS AT THE EXPENSE OF PEOPLES EMPLOYMENT/LIVELIHOOD! So to all of you that think people "just suck", when the same shite happens to you, we tell you its because "you suck" too...Times are rough...who needs that shit?! I wish them all well...and as history has it, great companies have been spawned from the same exact thing;D

57.
 
Re: No subject
Jun 16, 2003, 15:18
57.
Re: No subject Jun 16, 2003, 15:18
Jun 16, 2003, 15:18
 
We're talking about Ritual here, a bargin-bin developer. People are acting as if this news involves a development shop that actually has a released game or two that would rank in the top hundred of all time.

The company is/was filled with a lot gaming wannabes from the era where moving to Texas to get involved in the gaming industry was in fashion, yet many of these people had any industry experience and zero college education (See Chapter "Ion Storm" on previous similiar related stories).

Lay'em all off, we have plenty of other much newer companies that have accomplished a lot more in a lot less time.


56.
 
Re: More Info
Jun 16, 2003, 04:16
56.
Re: More Info Jun 16, 2003, 04:16
Jun 16, 2003, 04:16
 
Ah, Nonicknameforme, but half the people in here are being slanderous merely by arguing amongst yourselves in the manner you are. There's no need for half of what was said in here, truth or not. You can rest assured that Ritual knows the direct truth themselves, as of course, they're the ones suffering from the results of their direction.

55.
 
Re: No subject
Jun 16, 2003, 04:14
55.
Re: No subject Jun 16, 2003, 04:14
Jun 16, 2003, 04:14
 
It's about profit margins, granted, but distributors realize they've got to keep a consistent quality going with their prized franchises. "Making a good game doesn't have to do with being artsy or impressive," is quite true in most industries, however, I apologise that I must disagree in the case of gaming. Someone has to come up with the innovative ideas to actually propose to the "suits," as well as actually develop the product. Rather it's a pretty delicate balance that is maintained between the guys with the paycheck and the artists with the vision, so to speak.

54.
 
No subject
Jun 15, 2003, 20:31
54.
No subject Jun 15, 2003, 20:31
Jun 15, 2003, 20:31
 
By suck I should obviously mean "fail to make a product that makes money." I kinda figured everyone would get the obvious points, but you didn't. Making a game GOOD has nothing to do with being artsy or impressive, its about how well a game sells, period. The suits don't care about your vision they want to see profit, they are companies after all, or have you forgotten that publishers like to make cash. No sane company fires someone who is bringing them a profit, and even if Ritualistic has no decent games, i'll grant them the benifit of the doubt and say they are sane. You need to stop bitching about how its not fair and grow the hell up, you sound like 10 year year olds complaning that Johnny got 2 cookies and you only got one.

"I'm too much of a narcisist to really hate stupid people."
53.
 
Re: More Info
Jun 15, 2003, 19:52
53.
Re: More Info Jun 15, 2003, 19:52
Jun 15, 2003, 19:52
 
"If they didn't suck at there job's then Ritualistic would have fired someone else, they were the weakest link, so to speak."

Nope, I gotta disagree with that. Office politics and many other factors enter into it and sometimes stand out more than a developer's talent.

This comment was edited on Jun 15, 19:53.
52.
 
Re: More Info
Jun 15, 2003, 16:46
Jaz
52.
Re: More Info Jun 15, 2003, 16:46
Jun 15, 2003, 16:46
Jaz
 
The truth is your a maron...
..How would you feel if you just did a good job developing a game and then getting layed off? The fact is...whoever couldn't be used on Ritual's current projects got layed-off...I for one wouldn't keep on staff that have nothing to do...

51.
 
Re: More Info
Jun 15, 2003, 16:27
51.
Re: More Info Jun 15, 2003, 16:27
Jun 15, 2003, 16:27
 
The point is, I don't care that you game designers got laied off. Mostly because there isn't one Ritualistic game i've ever liked, but partly because I dont give two craps about the wellfair of anonymous game designers/artists. You don't choose game development as a job unless you're ready to accept the fact that at any time your job and work could be canned without warning. You nerds arguing about conspiracys and all this bullshit just want to look important in what is a very visable forum. Look we even have a guy from NWN posting over some "slander" about his company. I'd wager that jackass flaming me was probably one of the artists laied off. Like I care, all of your assholes smell just as bad as mine, aka: you're all people who's personal wellfair I dont care about. If they didn't suck at there job's then Ritualistic would have fired someone else, they were the weakest link, so to speak. Suck is a phrase that requires perspective and considering the perspective of "multiple game developers being fired while others are kept" has to suggest that those that are still with the company are better, or kiss more ass, than the ones fired.

I guess the truth sucks?

"I'm too much of a narcisist to really hate stupid people."
50.
 
Re: welp
Jun 15, 2003, 15:41
50.
Re: welp Jun 15, 2003, 15:41
Jun 15, 2003, 15:41
 
I wish I was one of the lucky ones that aren't having problems.

49.
 
Re: welp
Jun 15, 2003, 14:18
49.
Re: welp Jun 15, 2003, 14:18
Jun 15, 2003, 14:18
 
I know a couple guys who were working on the trek game and feel very sorry for them... But now even more sorry for myself seeing as I'll be competing with them for work since they are back on the market.

48.
 
Re: No subject
Jun 15, 2003, 13:56
Rigs
 
48.
Re: No subject Jun 15, 2003, 13:56
Jun 15, 2003, 13:56
 Rigs
 
...it really pissed off many people.

Yeah, you could say that...

=-Rigs-=
http://www.firstones.com

"Now, we gave you a promise and we are bound by that promise and damn you for asking for it! And damn me for agreeing to it! And damn all of us to hell, because that is exactly where we're going! We talked about peace. You didn't want peace. We talked about cooperation. You didn't want cooperation. You want war! Is that it? You want a war? Well you've got a WAR!"
- John Sheridan, Babylon 5
"...you're always 'Winner!' with BIG ****** RIGS!"-James Rolfe, 'AVGN'
"...for that, we salute you, you big glorious ****** RIGS!"-Matt McMuscles, 'Wha Happun?!'
Avatar 14292
47.
 
More Info
Jun 15, 2003, 12:15
47.
More Info Jun 15, 2003, 12:15
Jun 15, 2003, 12:15
 
There's a pretty good thread on the Ritualistic Forums that has more info about the layoffs. For all those that are thinking the people that were let go "just sucked" then you're wrong. We lost some of the most talented people at the company. Read this Ritualistic thread... has more info and posts by the team:

http://www.ritualistic.com//forums/showflat.php?Cat=&Board=UBB11&Number=121699&page=0&view=collapsed&sb=5&o=&fpart=1


46.
 
Re: welp
Jun 15, 2003, 11:22
46.
Re: welp Jun 15, 2003, 11:22
Jun 15, 2003, 11:22
 
Ironpoint, stop trying to make yourself sound important as a level designer.

Is level design important? Yes. Is modelling important? Yes. But they are much more replacable than the actual design. More cooperative decisions go into the design than the animation. Same with music, which is why a lot of the musicians work as freelance.

And I consider a lot of the code to be part of the design. Design requires much, much more hands on work with people. It's much more sensitive work, with people shooting ideas down like crazy. If there isn't trust, or one main decision maker, that falls apart as feelings get hurt. And you can't just lump that trust together.

Designers, producers, and main coders are like upper management. You want them to stay the same. You need them to stay the same.

Also, your claiming that AAA movie projects never blow up and fire everyone is way off topic. Of course they don't, triple A movie projects cost over a hundred million dollars. Directors know that, if the movie falls apart, they never work again. Studios know that, if the movie falls apart, they get nothing back. You often hear about major actors storming off. You often hear about major movies being pushed back 6 months to recut it. But the studios are willing to invest another 20 million, if need be, because the movie has to be released to get that $130 back. They can explain an unsuccessful movie and recoup losses overseas better than one never released.

45.
 
Re: Ritual Departures
Jun 15, 2003, 09:35
45.
Re: Ritual Departures Jun 15, 2003, 09:35
Jun 15, 2003, 09:35
 
Well, this is amateuristic. I mean, if "Hey, we can't come up with anything good." is the real problem (and not money trouble).

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44.
 
No subject
Jun 15, 2003, 06:43
44.
No subject Jun 15, 2003, 06:43
Jun 15, 2003, 06:43
 
Long live Babylon 5: Into The Fire ! We will never forget, Sierra...never...

jebus, I remember that incident, it really pissed off many people.

----------------------------------------------------------------------
PAH!
----------------------------------------------------------------------
"Both the “left” and the “right” pretend they have the answer, but they are mere flippers on the same thalidomide baby, and the truth is that neither side has a clue."

- Jim Goad
Avatar 10137
43.
 
Who Knows
Jun 15, 2003, 04:44
43.
Who Knows Jun 15, 2003, 04:44
Jun 15, 2003, 04:44
 
It is really hard to tell if these guys lacked skill or their drive was not up to the in-humane levels required in the gaming industry. I wish them the best as I know they will not get a game job in dallas.. almost every company there seems to be shifting / shuffling / failing to produce a good product. Blame it on the designers / corperate / publishers / programmers / artists ... who knows... Their mix did not work... The game industry is full of carcases of driven and extremely talented people with bad fortune.... I feel as though I am one of those corpses and I have only been programming in it for 4 and a half years. Let this be a message to you kids... the game industry is TUFF... love it or hate it be sure you know what you are getting into... I am thinking of mowing lawns for a living.. =)

42.
 
Re: NWN and SecureROM
Jun 15, 2003, 03:30
42.
Re: NWN and SecureROM Jun 15, 2003, 03:30
Jun 15, 2003, 03:30
 
Let me correct some errors in #29's post.

When we asked Sony if they made any changes to SecureROM when we built the ~1.21 Update, they said no. We said, look at all these problems. They said no, no changes. We asked for 3 weeks if anything had changed, and they said no. Finally, we were informed in the fourth week that in fact there had been a change to SecureROM. We were simply restating what Sony had told us.

Armed with this new evidence, we found resolution to this issue and in the next possible patch, our game owners were able to play.

Derek French
Producer, Live Team
BioWare Corp.
This comment was edited on Jun 15, 03:31.
Derek French
Technical Producer
BioWare
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