Marc Ecko recently made some harsh comments about gamers and their relationship with his new game Getting Up. The comments drew some harsh words from the community, and in this Blogcritics interview, Marc has a chance to reply to some of the issues the interview created.
The media always finds that one comment and latches onto it. So, what were you going for with "Gamers are pissy?" Isn't that insulting the very audience that should be buying the game?
Marc Ecko replies: Pissy is too strong? Then let's say hyper-critical. But it's true. Much, much more than anything I face in my other businesses. And why shouldn't they be hyper-critical? They spend 30-50 dollars on a game to be entertained, and the game industry force-feeds them endless sequels and "me too" concepts. Consumers are our greatest critics, whether in apparel, publishing, gaming, film, whatever… their feedback is how I grow creatively.
I just want to play — and help create — some compelling games. Getting Up was eight years in the making, the last two and a half years being real development at the Collective. I had a lot of time to be critical during every step of the process…even got "pissy" from time to time. The fact is, I set out to be a part of making a game that went against the status quo, that encouraged independent thought and creative expression, and I felt that was worth fighting for. Still is.
Many of the message board postings I've seen from people responding to the game reject it based on your name being on the box. Do you feel that makes it seem like it's trying to cover up some lackluster game play? We've seen some real atrocities over the years with celebrity names on them. In the end, do you think your name on the box helps or hurts sales/attitudes from gamers?
Marc Ecko replies: It is hard to blame gamers for being skeptical of "outsiders" throwing their name on a game. If someone says, "What the hell does Marc Ecko know about making a game?" I would just say I play games like they do, but I just happen to be lucky enough to have found someone to help bring my vision for a game to life. I'm not saying I have any special technical skills that add to nuts and bolts development of a videogame, but I definitely can tell a good game from a lame one. I feel like I played a lot of roles in Getting Up — in the last few months I've been like an overpaid beta tester!