Games for everyone

This is Toady One, aka Tarn Adams, aka the one who stole my gamer’s heart with that absolute masterpiece: Dawarf Fortress.

Toady One: I dislike programming… but even worse for me is talking about technical this or that, and schedules, and coordinating, and needling code-jocks, and other irritations. Now, I don’t mind going over the forums or checking saves, and that kind of thing. It’s not quite fun, but it’s not miserable. However, I write games because the end result is interesting and fun, and for me, the current situation is working. We share games because it’s great to let other people have fun with them too.

Bay 12 Games will never sell a game — when there’s a Chapter III, that will be free too. If it were somehow possible to sell a Chapter III profitably, that would say, what, that “we are now able to live independently because we decided to start restricting access to our games to those that can afford them or steal them”? That’s not what we want to do. I understand other people make a living that way, and I’m not judging them, since you could come up with an equivalent formulation for my day job and judge me as well. However, our games are not a job for us.

This guy is a Legend. And he is expressing an idea that I feel as well. Making games for MORE people and having them pay less, instead of making games for LESS people and having them pay more. It looks like this industry is going in another direction. Finding all sort of tricks to make people pay more. To only spectacularly explode later on because they went too far, out of track (and we have a growing list of examples, as Mythic being “sacrificed” to EA, Sony and the PSX3, and all those attempts with RMT and in-game ad banners that will soon reveal to be just a holes in the water).

The point is that he isn’t anymore just making some random, wacky games. The point is that he created a masterpiece. As a player I was completely absorbed by his game, but more than that, I bit onto the “Vision”. I wish the development could continue without hesitations, making possible what right now is only there, written on a to-do list, waiting to be implemented, eventually.

You dislike programming? Hell, no. You aren’t allowed to say that. You’ve got a great talent there. You just CANNOT waste it like that. You just cannot stop making games and do something else, because you did something great and noone can replace you. That’s a point. A talent is a responsibility. And you did something unique. Like that little dwarf who got possessed by a fey spirit and became a legendary crafter. You are that little dwarf. You built a named item. Now you CANNOT stop. I condemn you to make games.

This guy is too great to develop games casually. And maybe get distracted doing something else. If I was leading a game company I wouldn’t have waited one minute to go and hire him. No matter what he wants to be convinced to work on games *full time*. Other people can teach math. Not him. He has to bring that dream of a game onward.

Have you seen “Misery”? That Stephen King’s book/movie. Well, you’ve got the idea: “Could you close yourself in a room and work on the game fourteen hours a day… Please?”

And I also write this because it’s what I wish I could do. Not work eight hours on something to return home and think about something else. But doing something that absorbs me completely, to which I can dedicate all my time. Where I can lose myself. Not working because I need money, but money so that I can continue doing what I want. The best I can, and not with as little effort as possible.

Money to make games. For as many people as possible. Not games to make money, for the small group who can afford them.

And I wish I could do something, anything to support that small game, beside just a donation (which I did).

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