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Vapourware System Shock 3 by OtherSide Entertainment - taken over by Tencent!

Discussion in 'General RPG Discussion' started by LESS T_T, Dec 8, 2015.

  1. LESS T_T Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    LESS T_T
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    Codex 2014
    Austin studio, as listed by Linkedin:

    Warren Spector
    Chase Jones - Design Director
    Arturo Pulecio - Art Director - Probably (going to be) left, from what I've seen. I won't provide citation.
    Herbert Piland - Senior System Designer - Probably also left, from what I've seen.
    John Sizemore - UI Programmer
    Hannah Walker - Gameplay Engineer
    Chris Douglas - Senior Environment Artist
    John Ford - Animator - Likely left, he's one of the developers received Art Director's recommendation.

    Of course there could be more people who's not registered on Linkedin or who's already left but not updated their profile.
     
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  2. Nano Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron

    Nano
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    You guys are getting too stressed out over this. As we know, Warren developed Deus Ex 1 all on his own, he can do it here too easy-peasy.
     
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  3. MasterLobar Angry OtherSide Refugee

    MasterLobar
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    Assuming the Boston staff is now also working on SS3, there is also Tim Stellmach (per linkedin), Walter_OSE (head of marketing, still posting in the forum), Doug Church (haven't heard otherwise), Michael Dornbrook (board member according to linkedin), Geoffrey Hyatt (bord member according to SEC filing) and Paul Neurath.

    Also assuming the big guys don't take a salary, that's at least 10 people they have to pay, plus two offices in prime locations, plus likely some support staff and external services.

    What's their monthly bill for all of that that? I'd say $150k minimum.

    Revenues: Zero.
     
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  4. Kin Corn Karn Arcane Developer

    Kin Corn Karn
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    I haven't been there in awhile, but the Austin studio appears to have closed. Boston had no involvement in SS3, I'm skeptical they would take over.
     
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  5. Steamboat Willie Savant

    Steamboat Willie
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    Boston was working on an "unannounced project", which was probably bankruptcy.
     
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  6. Kin Corn Karn Arcane Developer

    Kin Corn Karn
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    Last year Boston had several people working on a new project.
     
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  7. MasterLobar Angry OtherSide Refugee

    MasterLobar
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    Welcome to the codex!

    That doesn't sound quite right. There seem to be several employees still based in Austin, and they probably need an office. But it might be possible that Boston has closed already and the few people who are still around (Tim Stellmach and who else actually?) are working from home.

    I still firmly believe maintaining Boston is unsustainable financially, and having people in Boston contribute to the SS3 team in Austin from their homes will be highly inefficient. At some point, those who are left in Boston will have to decide whether to move to Austin or leave OS.
     
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  8. Kin Corn Karn Arcane Developer

    Kin Corn Karn
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    As far as I can tell, there aren't any engineers currently employed, they just haven't updated their linkedin profiles.

    While I was there, there were no cross contributions from Boston. We were two completely different studios, joined only by a boring weekly teleconferenced meeting. Warren was the only one in Austin who would do any work for Boston. Given how badly UA went, I can't imagine they'd close Austin and give the project to them.
     
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  9. Infinitron I post news Patron

    Infinitron
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    Grab the Codex by the pussy Dead State Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2 Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2 A Beautifully Desolate Campaign Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire Pathfinder: Kingmaker Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    [​IMG] IP address checks out.

    Kin Corn Karn I don't suppose you'd be willing to tell us who you are?
     
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  10. Kin Corn Karn Arcane Developer

    Kin Corn Karn
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    I'd prefer not to. Bridges are better left unburned.
     
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  11. Infinitron I post news Patron

    Infinitron
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    Grab the Codex by the pussy Dead State Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2 Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2 A Beautifully Desolate Campaign Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire Pathfinder: Kingmaker Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    So what do you think they're going to do now? You get the impression that they would keep the game in zombie development mode without ever formally cancelling it because UA was in a similar state for so long.
     
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  12. Kin Corn Karn Arcane Developer

    Kin Corn Karn
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    I honestly have no idea. My best guess is they are still fundraising, holding out hopes to put a team back together. I'm not sure Boston is still staffed.
     
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  13. Steamboat Willie Savant

    Steamboat Willie
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    Well Boston's Office Manager left a couple of months ago, the CM left, and AFAIK they only had one UA dev because some small bugfix was held up because one guy was sick for a few weeks. Not sure what his name was but he's likely gone by now, too.
     
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  14. MasterLobar Angry OtherSide Refugee

    MasterLobar
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    But if your assumptions about

    and

    are both correct, doesn't it mean it is over for Otherside?
     
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  15. Efe Arbiter

    Efe
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    its not over while warren draws breath
     
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  16. Kin Corn Karn Arcane Developer

    Kin Corn Karn
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    It might be down to Paul and Warren fundraising, but it's safe to assume no meaningful development is happening. They're not staffed for it.
     
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  17. MasterLobar Angry OtherSide Refugee

    MasterLobar
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    Kin Corn Karn Chris Siegel said SS3 was "more than halfway completed" back in February. Was that assessment realistic?
     
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  18. Kin Corn Karn Arcane Developer

    Kin Corn Karn
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    Not realistic. SS3 was bogged down by problems with Unity. If the project had started today it would probably be fine, but at that time Unity was still exploring and experimenting with AAA fidelity and we paid a heavy price in productivity trying to achieve it.

    We were also way behind in content. Design was understaffed, and allocated little engineering support to develop a good content pipeline.
     
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  19. Nano Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron

    Nano
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    Kin Corn Karn were you still there when Underworld Ascendant was released? What was the general opinion at OS Austin about the Ascendant disaster?
     
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  20. Kin Corn Karn Arcane Developer

    Kin Corn Karn
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    Warren kept promising us a play test to give Boston feedback, but for whatever reason it never happened, so most of us didn't play it until it launched.

    We were horrified.

    Not only was it a financial loss for the company, the damage to our reputation was irreversible even if Austin had nothing to do with it. When the news about Starbreeze came it cast a big shadow over our hopes to find a new publisher.
     
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  21. Pink Eye Monk Patron

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  22. Infinitron I post news Patron

    Infinitron
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    Grab the Codex by the pussy Dead State Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2 Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2 A Beautifully Desolate Campaign Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire Pathfinder: Kingmaker Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    It would have made sense to spin off the Austin studio under a different name. I believe it was LESS T_T who joked that Warren might have been thinking of the old Ion Storm Dallas/Ion Storm Austin predicament.
     
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  23. Kin Corn Karn Arcane Developer

    Kin Corn Karn
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    I don't know what's going on there right now. Maybe they found a publisher who insisted the project be transferred to a new team. Maybe Warren and Paul will succeed at fundraising and give the game a budget to reach the finish line. I wouldn't bet money on it releasing, though.
     
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  24. Pink Eye Monk Patron

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    God dammit. I was looking forward to this. System Shock 2 is one of my favorite games of all time.
     
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  25. MasterLobar Angry OtherSide Refugee

    MasterLobar
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    I think their best hope at this point, paradoxically, is that Starbreeze comes back and picks the game up again. If SB successfully comes out of administration, it could make sense for them to invest another $3-4 million to help OS complete SS3. Otherwise, their $7 million investment they have made so far would be lost completely. If OS leadership can demonstrate a realistic path to launching the game successfully (big if, I know) and if they are willing to chip in another $2-3 million themselves (which they might), I could imagine Starbreeze doing this.

    I can't imagine any other publisher picking up the game, because even if they successfully launch the game, the first $7 million go to Starbreeze before the other publisher gets any money. No one is going to do this.
     
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