Osea, traduciendo que es Gerónimo: JUEGOPOLLA. (o pelea de gallos, como queráis)
Ya por eso merece mis respetos esta compañía…pero… ¿Quienes son? Pues gente muy importante de la que todavía e incomprensiblemente no habíamos hablado por aquí. Nada más y nada menos que los antiguos GOD («Gathering of Developers«, gente que financió y nos trajo entre otras cosas titulillos mediocres y casi desconocidos como F.A.K.K. 2, Max Payne, Oni, Mafia, Hidden & Dangerous I yII, Nocturne, Rune, Serious Sam, Stronghold)
Además, crearon el increíble «The Guy Game» el único juego de la historia en el que nadie creería jamás que no fue programado junto a OGUEJ por los miembros de Gamesajare.
La historia es más o menos la de siempre. Tuvieron problemas financieros (es lo que tiene eso de no hacer un fifa o un colin tras otro), tuvieron que vender algunas licencias, sus títulos estrella se retrasaron demasiado… y al final se fueron al pedo. Pero gracias a Dios se reformaron en Gamecock, ficharon a un pulado de desarrolladores independientes y al parecer aún tienen muchas cosas que ofrecer.
The Gamecock brand is symbolic of Wilson and Miller’s «keep it fun» attitude, explained a rep from the ‘cock pen,’ adding that «Gamecock will just be a little name on the back [of the box].» This is an effort to spotlight independent developers and offer these studios the necessary freedom and financial incentives to contribute original content to the industry. «[Things] are getting stale. We aim to change that,» vowed Wilson. Gamecock has announced the following five titles, which it plans to publish during the next few years, spanning PC, consoles, and handhelds:
Fury (Auran) – PvP MMO game for PC; scheduled for release during 2007 holiday season
Insecticide (Crackpot Entertainment) – film noir action-adventure game set in a decaying world run by bugs; available for the 2007 holiday season on handheld (TBA) and PC
Mushroom Men (Red Fly Studios) – set in an incredibly detailed, stylized world where mushrooms have taken on human-like features and are now embroiled in a civil war; slated for a spring 2008 release on a «next-gen» console and handheld (both TBA)
Hail to the Chimp (Wideload Games) – impossible-to-classify party game based on politics in the animal kingdom; scheduled for release in spring 2008 for «next-gen» consoles (TBA)
Hero (Firefly Studios) – a brutal, but comical romp through the «real» world of medieval dungeons; coming to a «next-gen» console (TBA) and PC in spring 2009
Les recuerdo que antes de Mafia, Serious Sam y MaxPayne, ninguno de ustedes había oído hablar de Remedy, de Croteam o de Illusion.
El que mejor lo cuenta (a esto le llamo yo escribir) es Mike Wilson.
It played out like a page from a film noir script- you get the type- cheap D grade actors playing big shots in raincoats, the occasional hot blonde stirring up the testosterone.
And yet what did unfold is the unbelievably true story of how a simple cockfight (and a few crushers) revitalized the Indie games industry. Hot blonde included, some assembly required.
A stanky dank warehouse just outside the 9th ward in New Orleans. You could still smell Katrina all around (she was an overweight prostitute who recommended this spot). Blues and jazz in the air, buzzed smiles all around fires spitting from oil barrels lining the street. A rowdy crowd gathered for a Saturday night cockfight.
Not your typical wine and dine scene for potential investors, I know – but these guys were different, and we were getting desperate. Harry “El Gringo” Miller and I had knocked on every money door we could find from Wall Street to Hollywood to Silicon Valley to a gay massage parlor run by the Korean Mafia. After a great massage, we hit the stones again and these guys crawled out, bank rolls in hand and fire in their eyes.
We were just about to give up on the idea that gaming could be saved from the doldrums the consolidating Fat Cats had driven it into since we left. In their litter boxes, the wreckage left behind- nothing but ridiculous headcounts, and sequel after license upon bloody sequel. No one but us seems to notice or care that this had become just like big Hollywood and that the business is dying for a true Indie film production model.
Independent developers have always brought the goods to this business, creating the franchises that inevitably get stripped from them and driven into the ground by quarterly promises and the endless crunch imposed by producers who have never created a thing in their lives.
If only Max Payne had shipped a year sooner, we wouldn’t be in this mess… GodGames would still be rockin’ as the biggest and brashest Indie publisher in the business.
But maybe it was for the best, since our deal with the dark masters in NYC had our hands tied to PC games, having to hand over every franchise to the likes of Rockstar Games for console.
Where’s Max Payne now? Now that this industry is tied to the proverbial tracks. Dead. Dead like Serious Sam and Mafia and even Railroad Tycoon. Like every franchise brought in by a great Indie team and then bought, coddled, and quietly smothered to death by a bloated public company.
We had all become the hollowed out pawns of the rotten, crooked puppeteers supplying the grease to the wheels that make this crummy gaming business turn.
I guess we shouldn’t complain though, these public companies have financed our business plan development and operations thus far, keeping us in good shoes and better cars. So, no offense.
The Gringo and I had been slowly building up our offers through shorting the stocks of all these monstrosities, predictably choking and laying off thousands like they do every time there’s a console transition. In the spring of 06 we had doubled our money. For a while it seemed like we couldn’t afford to go back to work. But we knew we had to. A skirt with a baby on the way makes a man do crazy things. Plus, we figured somebody’s gotta take advantage of the gaping hole in the market left by the bloated big boys and the under-funded little guys. Far be it from us to leaving a hole unplugged. The few mil we could cobble together shorting the industry all year was still a drop in the bucket.
Which brought us to these guys. a couple of bad boy gazillionaires from outside the business who had been watching and waiting and supposedly seeing exactly what we were seeing. Where’d they come from? Let’s just say an investigative canine was in their midst. I couldn’t get my head around the fact that these guys were even talking to us… two guys with enough money to do everything we wanted to do. Nevermind the fact that one of them was a personal hero of mine… but that’s another story.
So here we were… in one of the scariest neighborhoods in one of the most dangerous cities in America, with a couple of OG’s who talked a big game at the Tricou House drinkin’ amaretto topped ‘crushers’ for the last 3 hours.
Inside the warehouse, the crowd was nuts. We were waiting for Tina Turner and Mel Gibson to show, but nothing. The energy was infectious (as was the air- what with the settling toxic mold) and we all warmed up real quick. The DC boys took off their jackets and rolled up their sleeves as if they were gonna enter the ring themselves… a little gesture to let us know that they were in no way intimidated by our little southern warehouse party.
In marched the birds, and on came the betting. Feathers flying, I was dizzy watching Harry place his bets and keep raising the stakes for the first fight- which was over in about 10 seconds by my count. They were using razors strapped to the birds’ feet. Harry had made nearly a thousand dollars in less than 5 minutes. He has an eye for cocks.
One of the money guys joked about how we might do better here than on the stock market. I joked with them about how they seemed timid with their bets for two guys that flew down on a private jet five hours ago.
The fights went on, quickly and fatally. We were running out of time (and me out of money) to try to make this little fieldtrip into something meaningful- to close the deal with these guys unlike so many others before. It was no time to be shy, and fact that they were standing in bloody feathers and chickenshit in $500 shoes gave me a bit of confidence about them. So I went for it.
«You fellas ready for some real action… the next fight is the big one,” I belched arrogantly, my crushers set on puree in my belly.
«Whatchoo got, Lou-see-ana» one of them said to me, joking in his voice but dead serious.
«I got 2.2 million dollars. That’s my share of what Harry and I have raised this year courtesy of Nasdaq gaming. And I’m ready to lay every penny of it down right now on this next fight, against you guys fully funding business plan. You win, you keep the money. I win, you throw down what we’re asking for and we double your money in 30 months. We brought the cocks, now have you got the balls? Well? what YOU got, Rockerfeller?”
About the time I was ready to laugh my way out of this outburst, The Gringo chimed in. “I’m in for the same. And if 4.4 isn’t rich enough for you boys, we have a little ranch in West Texas called the Circle Dug we bought with GodGames money. That’s in, too.”
I couldn’t believe my ears.
We were betting the ranch, literally. They picked the chicken. This time, no razors. These two mad ass roosters went on for what seemed like the longest heavyweight bout I’ve ever endured. How our cock kept getting up, I cannot imagine. I was beginning to have thoughts of voodoo… not like it was that farfetched given the circumstances.
Finally, our chicken choked. It dropped to the dirt and did not get up. The little guy laid in a pool of blood and feathers. The sky had fallen. The bastards had won. My stomach tied itself in a knot and crawled into my throat. I couldn’t speak. Harry somehow walked out without ripping off my head like our defeated chicken. We did not speak for a week.
Two weeks later, I made the biggest and most painful wire transfer of my life. Doubled by the fact that I’d gotten Harry into this too… and never mind the money. I’d lost our f***ing ranch. The one named after our former partner and best friend, Doug Myres. This was the end. Off went the money, into some nameless corporate bank account I was sure was one of a thousand these guys owned.
48 hours later, another wire went into that same account- for nearly double what we were trying to raise. A letter mailed to us wrapped in chicken wire let us know that this was our new business account… the account for «God2»- which now, of course, had a brand new name. And we had new partners… bad ass partners we’d follow into combat. And we still have the ranch. This is only the beginning.
Be ready to fight. And we don’t need no razors. Gamecock is coming for you. We’re just sayin.
— Mike Wilson
Yeah. ¿Y qué podemos esperar de el primer título llamado «Insecticide»? Pues que tiene una pinta COJONUDA y que Crackpot Entertainment que es la compañía que lo desarrolla está formada por miembros antiguos de Lucasarts (que entre otros títulos habían trabajado en Sam and Max, Day of Tentacle, Curse of Monkey island, Dark Forces) y Nihilistic (Vampire The Masquerade). Casi ná.
Lo sé, lo sé… la sombra de Grim Fandango y Psychonauts planea por encima de éste título. Y eso sólo puede ser bueno.