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Old 11-08-2019   #1
RomioTheBadass
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Default Sonic Mania Dev Headcannon Says He's Broke, Recent Kickstarter a Spectacular Failure

Link to video

Huh, you'd think SEGA would at least give him steady income or job after how well the game sold.
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Old 11-08-2019   #2
Hazard88263
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thread title
"Headcannon Says He's Broke"
Headcannon is not one person. Headcannon is "an Inland Empire-based software development business" made up of several people.
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Old 11-08-2019   #3
RomioTheBadass
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Ok, should have said "Headcannon founder" then :p

Anyways judging by what he said about how he "wasn't given a share of the sales and that he was paid on just developer milestones" it sounds like SEGA played him for a fool and took advantage of his naiveness.
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Old 11-10-2019   #4
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I'm not the most well-versed on the business aspect of gamedev, but to my understanding that's a normal practice. Teams are given seasonal / contract work and they're paid based on the work they complete, not on the profits drawn from the final product.

The gritty reality is that most videogame companies are virtual sweatshops where you work overtime for several months, finish the project and then hopefully find more work to do or get hired back on a few months into the future. Stories like this highlight the lack of job security that comes with game development as a profession, and it makes me feel guilty for buying anything AAA anymore, knowing that all I'm supporting is a broken system that doesn't value its workers.
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Old 11-10-2019   #5
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Honestly, it's the fact that the game industry doesn't guarantee you job security or sometimes even stable income why I decided to retreat from studies & focus on using next 1-2 years to working on mental health, getting the hardware I need & trying to think of a way to make indie stuff work out to begin with.



Also, incompetence & greed of the higher-ups has led to disasters like:

-Anthem's development causing stress casualties.

-Konami's 1984 "Big brother is watching"-way of treating their employees, making them go after EX-Kons who are looking for work.

-EA

-Lack of co-ordination between teams causing Sonic Xtreme to be cancelled along with Saturn's chances of winning that console generation.


-Drivergate, Driver 3 was released unfinished & Atari made a deal with a popular gaming magazine for positive reviews in an effort to influence the public to buy it.


And that's just the tip of the iceberg.
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Old 11-11-2019   #6
Mystic
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Just because a company doesn't continue to hire someone to do new work doesn't necessarily mean that that company is evil and exploiting people, either. There are a ton of reasons why that could be the case, and it's only exploitative if they intentionally misled people into believing that they would be rehired when they weren't planning to.

There are a lot of problems in the gaming industry, but it's important to remember the difference between malicious, exploitative behavior and behavior that isn't taking advantage of people even if the results may be bad. Exploiting people with mandatory permanent crunch overtime is terrible business practice and is something that we should be objecting to. Hiring people to do a job and then letting them go when the contract is completed is not inherently a bad thing, but it does mean that both the employers and the employees need to understand what that means, and have backup plans when their plan A fails.


Quote:
Originally Posted by The Sin Heartless View Post
-Lack of co-ordination between teams causing Sonic Xtreme to be cancelled along with Saturn's chances of winning that console generation.
I'd like to point out that this has nothing to do with hiring/work policies. SEGA was an organizational disaster during the 90s, and it's really a wonder they put out good games at all. If there's anything that the stuff dug up about Xtreme has shown, it's that the game was cancelled for good reason because it sucked. The way the company was being run didn't help matters, but they put out Sonic 2 with exactly the same kind of incompetence, so it wasn't like it was specific to that project.
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Old 11-16-2019   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RomioTheBadass View Post
Anyways judging by what he said about how he "wasn't given a share of the sales and that he was paid on just developer milestones" it sounds like SEGA played him for a fool and took advantage of his naiveness.
Dingdingdingdingding!

Watch my 'SRB2 20th Anniversary' interview on TSSZ when they asked us, "Would you work for SEGA if they asked you?". I suspected that the Mania devs were working for peanuts just for the 'omgomg I'm working for SEGA!' factor.

Stealth and I go quite a ways back, and have had bad times and good times. Perhaps my piece of unsolicited advice for him is to bark up a different tree for software development work. Gamedev isn't where it's at.
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Old 11-25-2019   #8
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Quote:
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Perhaps my piece of unsolicited advice for him is to bark up a different tree for software development work. Gamedev isn't where it's at.
Good advice, programming is a game in and of itself, regardless of how boring the end product actually will be. I really enjoy my work, and it's just programming for databases and web apps. And even if using the applications I work on is not very fun, it's still helping people.

Then I can come home and still get to play games in my spare time.
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Old 11-30-2019   #9
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That's pretty sad, especially considering how good Mania was. Sega's honestly insane for wanting to put out more mediocre sequels than bringing back the devs for another go at something like Mania. I just can't find the logical reasoning in it since last I heard it did well.
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