Original Author: Kevin Dent
I LOVE working in the studio, I really do. I love the freedom it affords me. I love trying to create games that I want to play!
I also really love having a cerabal cortex, so I left the studio life and learned biz magic.
I make a really good living in biz, I LOVE doing what I do now; I get to work with amazing people, I get to talk to amazing people. For the love of god, I spoke to the creator of Fruit Ninja tonight to have “chat”. How cool is that? Dude totally rocks btw.
My gig allows me to talk to my heroes. Seriously, I love playing video games that much.
The most common thing people say to me is “….wow, you are a business guy and you love playing video games?”
When I stepped out of the studio, I made myself the pledge that I would only work on titles that touched me deeply. I would only work on games that I personally wanted to play. I would be way richer if I just kissed ass and decided to suck it up for the lord, god, almighty dollar!
If I do say so myself, I was pretty decent on the creative side of things too, but to be brutally honest; I was running a studio that sucked at business.
So one day I stopped. One day I decided that I would step out of the studio. I put a 22 year old in charge of it and for 7 mobile games -feature phones- he was shit. Then he just flipped the page and was brilliant.
Recently, I met a guy called Jason Brice. He sent me @ messages constantly, he was really cool and then one day I seen the maps he made in an FPS.
They were great!
I looked at them -I hated the crane on the harbor map- BUT I loved the game itself.
Jason was creating the game that I wanted to play.
His view was that there were way too many layers between the player and AK47′ing another guy in the face.
He had me at “hello”.
So as I play this game, I talk about it, I reveal things about it and then I talk about it again.
Simply put, THIS IS GAMING!
I listen to an average of 14 game pitches a week, this was one of the first game pitches that I have seen that melted my resolve. Here I thought that I knew everything and these noobz are teaching me how to love video gaming again.
I want to be fair, I want to be honest and I do not want to be a prick.
BUT I am sick of the modern day FPS titles or as I like to call them “We just came up with another feature that allows us to get you to buy another sequel”………….. ok that is a long title.
I am sick that on NPD day that we all shiver with anticipation at how many people bought our game. Here is a novel fucking idea, I am sick with anticipation at the thought of how many people enjoyed our game.
The game is ReKoil BTW. BUY IT PLUX
I am my most vulnerable when I am sitting in front of a metrics screen looking at the numbers, asking, wanting, no begging video gamers to like my title.
That is weak sauce, I want them to like me. I want them, no I crave that they like me!
It is the vulnerable essence of every video game maker. It is that vulnerability that allows me to exist.
This very insecurity, allows me to make games that I want to play, this insecurity allows Jason and the team to jump off a cliff and trust the fact that someone on the team will catch him.
Guess what? When someone that you consider a blood friend jumps off a cliff; you always catch them.
I am proud of what we are making today, I love that we are participating in the conversation! Will we beat Black-Op’s 2? God no! Their budget is 60X what people say that we are worth, but we will be participating in the conversation.
We are basically fighting the good fight, we are throwing punches and getting the shit kicked out of us. BUT we are Marty McFly and we will knock Biff the fuck out.
Am I desperate? FUCK YEAH!
Just tonight I sent this email:
From: Kevin Dent [mailto:kevin@XXX.XXXX]
Sent: Thursday, May 10, 2012 8:50 PM
To: ‘Andy McNamara’
Subject: Front cover
Who do I have to screw to get the front cover for ReKoil?
As of today, we are not on Kickstarter, we are totally self-funded and we are totally throwing ourselves under the bus in an attempted to make a better game.
Let me be clear, Andy is an amazing person and I love him dearly. He is smart, contiencious and endearing. BUT Game Informer is owned by Game Stop and those dudes are hardcore publisher fuckers, there is zero chance of us getting the cover.
There is no way that, me, you or your freak parents will get us on the front cover of GI and nor should it. Brilliant games get on there 12 a year at least.
That said, it was worth a shot, we are living in the era of the indie.
There has been so many amazing titles in the last twelve months made by people with way more talent than me.
I rejoice at the next gen of game creators.
I am humbed by them.
But the truth is, that Jason Brice, asked me to jump off a cliff and I made the leap.
Who will catch me?