38 Studios Founder is "All Tapped Out"

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38 Studios Founder is "All Tapped Out"

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Former Red Sox ace Curt Schilling says the fortune he earned playing baseball is "probably all gone."

A lot of people have been hurt by the collapse of Kingdoms of Amalur developer 38 Studios, not least of whom is Curt Schilling, who founded the studio in 2006. Schilling had amassed considerable wealth over a long and very successful career in Major League Baseball, but told WEEI Radio that he had personally sunk more than $50 million into the company, and now he's "all tapped out."

"I put everything in my name in this company," Schilling said, "I believed in it. I believed in what we built. I never took a penny in salary. I never took a penny for anything."

He also acknowledged that 38 Studios employees were "blindsided," despite promises that they'd be kept informed and aware of any problems. "They have every right to be upset. I always told everybody if something were going to happen, you're going to have a month or two of lead time, and I bombed on that one in epic fashion," he said.

And he continued to insist that the studio's survival was sabotaged by Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee, who before being elected Governor was a vocal opponent of the $75 million loan guarantee that brought 38 Studios to the state in the first place. Schilling claimed that the studio was about to sign a $35 million deal with a major publisher for a sequel to its first and only game, Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, but the publisher backed out when Chafee made a public statement about the studio's precarious financial situation. Prior to that, there had been no indication of trouble.

Compounding Schilling's problems is a lawsuit filed by Citizens Bank claiming that he personally guaranteed $2.4 million in loans and credit, and the possibility of other lawsuits on the horizon. That sounds like a relatively paltry sum for a guy who made over $100 million in his career, but Schilling said he told his family last month that the money he made from baseball "was probably all gone," adding, "Life is going to be different."

Source: Boston.com

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And this is what happens when you try to compete with WoW...

In all seriousness I'm very sorry about the loss of a studio who seemed like they wanted to actually use new IPs.

That's what you get for leaving Boston.

DVS BSTrD:
That's what you get for leaving Boston.

Yep, shoulda stayed in Maynard. I love how, less than a year after 38 went south, the city of Boston launched a massive incentives campaign to grow the game industry in the area.

Sucks for everyone involved, including Curt. He was a true believer.

Sir Ryan Ward:

DVS BSTrD:
That's what you get for leaving Boston.

Yep, shoulda stayed in Maynard. I love how, less than a year after 38 went south, the city of Boston launched a massive incentives campaign to grow the game industry in the area.

Sucks for everyone involved, including Curt. He was a true believer.

Faith without Reason is madness. Like his business plan.

The Governor really does look like an ass in all this. Still, I just can't make myself feel sorry for 38 Studios; they green lit development of a MMO, 90% of the time that's a very bad move.

I haven't seen a new IP I wanted to succeed so bad since Fable.

DVS BSTrD:

Sir Ryan Ward:

DVS BSTrD:
That's what you get for leaving Boston.

Yep, shoulda stayed in Maynard. I love how, less than a year after 38 went south, the city of Boston launched a massive incentives campaign to grow the game industry in the area.

Sucks for everyone involved, including Curt. He was a true believer.

Faith without Reason is madness. Like his business plan.

Yes, this. Absolutely.

It was madness for a brand new company to develop a large-scale MMO for a brand-new IP without any outside assistance while simultaneously developing a large-scale RPG, especially given that they put the majority of their money into the MMO.

I wonder if he could sue the governor, if the guy made statements about the company's fiscal potential that weren't true.

It's a shame, I absolutely love Amalur. The little stories behind the quests and locations combined with an interesting combat system make the game extremely fun to play. It's a shame we won't be seeing that sequel. Stupid governor. : (

Governors, architects of broken dreams. Politics 101.

What more can really be said? It really sucks that 38 Studios went kaput, and I'm sorry to hear this guy gambled big and lost it all. If what he says about the governor are true then it's a real dick move the he seems to have actively worked to financially sabotage the studio when they were at their weakest. We just can't know for sure, were they really in talks with a big publisher (probably EA since they published the first) to make a sequel, or is he just saying that after the fact to shift blame from himself to the governor?

Regardless when I think of that governor it still chaps my ass when he says the game sold poorly, when it was clear he doesn't know the first thing about what poor sales for a game would be. My rage tells me to blame the easy politician target, but reason tells me an ignorant politician was probably just the killing blow in a series of others.

Wow, that must suck really bad for him. But that's what you get for taking out loans you can't pay. At least he isn't being a dick about it.

Did anyone else read that little black-bolded subtitle thing as "Sex Rod"? the fuck is wrong with me?

Poor guy, I would have liked to have seen more from him

I don't understand the flack directed towards the governor. I'd be getting antsy if I was flushing money down an MMO toilet, too. 38 Studios had no hope in Hell of making enough money back to ever recoup costs, let alone finance Curt's wild dreams. They spent way too much, made too little and aimed too high.

Quiet Stranger:
Did anyone else read that little black-bolded subtitle thing as "Sex Rod"? the fuck is wrong with me?

Dickslexia? It's like dyslexia, except Freudian.

OT: Ouch. Poor guy. I hope he ends up in the black.

The whole situation is a colossal clusterfuck. Its really sad to watch this go down. I have little doubt that the Governor had a big role in all of this, but at the same time Schilling really overreached by a good margin with the MMO thing - he really needed wait till 38 Studios was better established. Combine the two and you get this.

I can at least give the man some credit for admitting that he did wrong by his employees.

38 studios got in bed with EA with KoA. I have no sympathy for there collapse.

Schilling played for the Phillies and Red Sox. Me as a Braves and Yankees fan have no sympathy for him losing his fortune.

Well...they did put an Online pass in a game with no online content.....

I don't think he made wise decisions, but he tried to do something he was passionate about, and now he's lost a lot of what he's had. I do feel sorry for him

lacktheknack:

Quiet Stranger:
Did anyone else read that little black-bolded subtitle thing as "Sex Rod"? the fuck is wrong with me?

Dickslexia? It's like dyslexia, except Freudian.

OT: Ouch. Poor guy. I hope he ends up in the black.

Oh, you gais.. :3

But on topic, this is sad stuff. Epitome of 'believing in your dreams against logical odds, and having the shit hit the fan later on'.

*emo stance*

Clearing the Eye:
I don't understand the flack directed towards the governor. I'd be getting antsy if I was flushing money down an MMO toilet, too. 38 Studios had no hope in Hell of making enough money back to ever recoup costs, let alone finance Curt's wild dreams. They spent way too much, made too little and aimed too high.

From what I've seen, the Governor did a disservice to the taxpayers of RI, in an effort to score political points. You don't have to like the fact your predecessor put the budget at risk on an investment you disagree with...but it's your job to ensure a maximum return on that policy, flawed or not. What he did was actively undermine any chance 38 had to recover and in turn devalued the assets RI taxpayers were ultimately responsible for. 38 studios may have collapsed anyway, but you want to allow the I.P. and assets you've inherited to have as much resale value as possible.

Thuggych:

Clearing the Eye:
I don't understand the flack directed towards the governor. I'd be getting antsy if I was flushing money down an MMO toilet, too. 38 Studios had no hope in Hell of making enough money back to ever recoup costs, let alone finance Curt's wild dreams. They spent way too much, made too little and aimed too high.

From what I've seen, the Governor did a disservice to the taxpayers of RI, in an effort to score political points. You don't have to like the fact your predecessor put the budget at risk on an investment you disagree with...but it's your job to ensure a maximum return on that policy, flawed or not. What he did was actively undermine any chance 38 had to recover and in turn devalued the assets RI taxpayers were ultimately responsible for. 38 studios may have collapsed anyway, but you want to allow the I.P. and assets you've inherited to have as much resale value as possible.

There's a reason he won with only 30% of the vote.

Again, unfortunate, I'm sorry for those involved, but holy chimichanga, why did every 38 Studios game apparently cost in the mid-eight-figures to make?! It's great to have a dream, but there's a sharp edge where "dream" becomes "delusion", and that edge is pretty visible when a new company has to sell something like 3 million units to make a profit.

Thuggych:

Clearing the Eye:
I don't understand the flack directed towards the governor. I'd be getting antsy if I was flushing money down an MMO toilet, too. 38 Studios had no hope in Hell of making enough money back to ever recoup costs, let alone finance Curt's wild dreams. They spent way too much, made too little and aimed too high.

From what I've seen, the Governor did a disservice to the taxpayers of RI, in an effort to score political points. You don't have to like the fact your predecessor put the budget at risk on an investment you disagree with...but it's your job to ensure a maximum return on that policy, flawed or not. What he did was actively undermine any chance 38 had to recover and in turn devalued the assets RI taxpayers were ultimately responsible for. 38 studios may have collapsed anyway, but you want to allow the I.P. and assets you've inherited to have as much resale value as possible.

If he authorized the tax credits than that would have been throwing good money after bad. The company was insolvent at that point and required some weird financial tricks to stay afloat for a while more. They already were behind at least six months on some of their bills. It is questionable if a publisher would have forked over a major advance on a sequel that was yet to be developed when the company might not have survived beyond a few additional months.

lacktheknack:

Quiet Stranger:
Did anyone else read that little black-bolded subtitle thing as "Sex Rod"? the fuck is wrong with me?

Dickslexia? It's like dyslexia, except Freudian.

OT: Ouch. Poor guy. I hope he ends up in the black.

It's a very sexy disorder.

OT: This sucks. The entire situation just sucks. There isn't really much else to be said.

Thuggych:

Clearing the Eye:
I don't understand the flack directed towards the governor. I'd be getting antsy if I was flushing money down an MMO toilet, too. 38 Studios had no hope in Hell of making enough money back to ever recoup costs, let alone finance Curt's wild dreams. They spent way too much, made too little and aimed too high.

From what I've seen, the Governor did a disservice to the taxpayers of RI, in an effort to score political points. You don't have to like the fact your predecessor put the budget at risk on an investment you disagree with...but it's your job to ensure a maximum return on that policy, flawed or not. What he did was actively undermine any chance 38 had to recover and in turn devalued the assets RI taxpayers were ultimately responsible for. 38 studios may have collapsed anyway, but you want to allow the I.P. and assets you've inherited to have as much resale value as possible.

It seems to be more of a case of him wanting to bail out as soon as possible from a sinking, flaming ship.

Schilling needs to stop blaming Chafee and realize it was his own hubris that doomed 38.

no experience in game development?
start by making a huge MMO

saejox:
no experience in game development?
start by making a huge MMO

I think we often get so swept up in the beautiful notion of following our dreams, that we forget that while doing so is a beautiful endeavor, arguably the best way one can spend their given time on Earth, just being daring enough to go for it and defy the odds doesn't grant one the rights to success.

And it continues to sound worse and worse for all those involved. Interesting that he went from MLB to personally funding a gaming studio... but hardly important next to the reality of the situation. At the very least I hope this is the last of the bad news for 38 Studios and everyone involved.

Sheesh, just one more sad thing about this whole fiasco.

My sincere thoughts go out to Mr. Schilling and 38 Studios employees.

Soxafloppin:
Well...they did put an Online pass in a game with no online content.....

That was EA, not 38.

OT: Kinda makes ya hope that the governor bombs on the next election period now that people see he doesn't know how to keep his trap shut. I know I wouldn't elect a guy if I know that making any kind of deal with him means he's likely to shout every problem to the heavens for all to hear.

Wow, I feel sorry for his family. They got screwed because he was irresponsible with his own money.

rule of thumb: do not thrust the promises of a politician.
even if he is your brother or father or mother or whatever relation you may have with him, you do not thrust his words.

zombiesinc:
At the very least I hope this is the last of the bad news for 38 Studios and everyone involved.

no. at the end they will have to sell the ip to a publisher and watch them having success with the ip while they dont get a single penny out of it.
look at Realtime Worlds.

they made crackdown and APB.
and they had to sell everything.

we might never get to see this:


(unless google buys it up and hopes that the comunity contributes stuff to google earth)

I have apparently missed a large part of this story, because I see a lot of sympathy for Curt Schilling here. I understand people saying that he was "following his dreams", but he did so by showing he was a huge hypocrite; he was completely against unnecessary government spending (Such as the Stimulus package) then took money...from a state Stimulus package. But don't worry, he had to match part of the loan with his own money, which he then repaid with the state loan money.

From what I understand: His executives and him made huge financial mistakes, including buying a company working on an almost-finished RPG and making them rebuild it to suit their needs, leading to it becoming horribly bland. Hiring R.A. Salvatore for nothing more than putting his name on the box, and giving him a huge royalty bonus.

Then, when the company began to go down, took what money they could, and basically screwed over the employees? Screwed them over by not telling that: They would not be making payroll until after the employees were not paid, deciding to back out of their health insurance agreement without telling their employees (And this was found out by a pregnant woman being told by her doctor that her insurance is about to run out), along with other things?

Or, maybe it is because I'm reading up on this from another community, which means a different perspective on this whole situation.

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