Scott Miller Promises No Uwe Boll

By John Walker on March 18th, 2008 at 3:55 pm.

Games Radar must be delighted.

It’s all go with Radar Group. After the site’s aborted launch and the reveal of Prey 2, followed by Scott Miller’s interview with IGN, Radar is now up and running, and already blogging.

While he repeats the word “storyverse”, although this time doubling the sinister nature with a “TM”, there’s some material in there that doesn’t repeat the recent interview. For instance, proudly declaring who won’t be directing any of their game-based movies.

“Depth [Entertainment - their "cross-media partner" responsible for the production of movies] will provide Radar with a deep talent pool for our projects, as well as be a good potential source for new concepts that can then be further developed into both game concepts and linear concepts. The Radar/Depth connection is likely the best yet conceived between the games industry and Hollywood, with both sides being equal partners with equal footing. Everyone knows Hollywood and the game industry have been oil and water in the past. Depth will prove – and is already proving – that the proper collaboration can be highly beneficial. We promise that Uwe Boll will never direct one of our movies!”

It’s a peculiar and interesting set-up at Radar. Clearly their plan to work with smaller developers, providing them with the ability to develop original game ideas and to maintain co-ownership of their game, is very exciting. The second half of the attack, developing these “cross-media” um, initiatives, seems a little at odds with Radar’s most oft repeated statement: “Radar creates only original properties – no licenses.”

Isn’t this just licensing in reverse? It’s clearly common sense to create a company that can re-use strong gaming worlds (or… “storyverses”, nrrgghh) in other media to increase profits from the significant investments they’ll be making, but it’s interesting that they’re so insistent that developers have been using licenses as a “crutch”, while merrily reversing the flow. Will we soon see a Hollywood company set up that’s designed to encourage unknown screenwriters who promise to never rely on the crutch of videogames for their ideas?

As for how gamers will react, Miller is aware that many won’t pay much attention to their efforts, but will hopefully enjoy the results.

“While many won’t care, those who do likely realise that the long-term pay-off is an industry more populated by independent developers who can call their own creative shots, like Epic, Id, Remedy, Valve and Gearbox. That can only be a good thing.”

__________________

« | »

, , .

10 Comments »

  1. Optimaximal says:

    Careful Scott… Them’s fighting words and Uwe Boll is a fighter!

    the long-term pay-off is an industry more populated by independent developers who can call their own creative shots, like Epic

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHahahahahahahahahahahahahahaaaaaa… Oh wait, he was serious?!

  2. Mo says:

    What’s so funny? I don’t like post-Jazz-Jackrabbit-Epic. At all. Q3A > UTx. Unreal 1/2 were terrible. Gears is the only exception.

    But can you argue that they aren’t calling their own shots? They make whatever the hell they want to. Just because you (and I for that matter) think that their games are crap is irrelevant.

    And for the ones really paying attention, you’ll note that Epic have been innovating. Give Gears a hard time for its shit universe and storyline, but the gameplay mechanics were wonderfully innovative for a straight-up shooter.

  3. Optimaximal says:

    Well they seem to have been eaten up into the Microsoft marketing machine with Gears of War. The fact that UT3 was sold with the tagline ‘from the developers of Gears of War’ means that it now seems to be seen as their primary franchise.

  4. Snarky says:

    Though it’s just a small byte of the post at large, I’m completely and utterly sick of gamers whining about Boll. Not because I’m defending the ass, mind you.

    Who says that it isn’t just the fact that Hollywood-style movies just suck in the first place, that games don’t translate well into movies and that it’s not just Uwe Boll’s fault for milking game licenses by making them into Hollywood-style movies? The bastard’s just using his controversial-to-gamers schtick as a PR boost and to get people to actually talk about him and get more sales. (I know that many gamers actually see the movies he produces. Whether or not in the cinema, he gets money from it unless if you watch a pirated copy from the interwebs. Oops!).

    Same with Jack Thompson: both want to profit from gamers’ misery, just that half of that half of Boll’s drive to do what he does consists of wanting to make rabid geeks cry tears of pain and suffering for ultimately stupid reasons instead of just trying to browbeat them with childish, badly-informed claims like Thompson. Just ignore both of the bastards.

    Though I mean Jebus on a pogo stick… gamers are a whiny bunch when it comes to their favorite pasttime being mildly mutilated by money-grubbing idiots. As if game devs don’t put out shitty, unoriginal games and are guaranteed sales because they fit into a popular genre and boast a list of badly-emulated features ripped straight out of more original and popular games. We should whine more about that, I’d think.

  5. Mo says:

    Well they seem to have been eaten up into the Microsoft marketing machine with Gears of War.

    The game was published by Microsoft, so clearly they were going to put alot of money behind that. Nothing wrong with that I don’t think.

    The fact that UT3 was sold with the tagline ‘from the developers of Gears of War’ means that it now seems to be seen as their primary franchise.

    And why wouldn’t it be? It was very well received, and it sold incredibly well. Why wouldn’t they want to be associated with Gears?

    Fact is, Gears is a fantastic game and as far as I can tell, they didn’t really compromise their game for anyone. I may not like Epics games, but they’re making the games they want to make, and I can totally respect that.

  6. John Walker says:

    Who says that it isn’t just the fact that Hollywood-style movies just suck in the first place, that games don’t translate well into movies and that it’s not just Uwe Boll’s fault for milking game licenses by making them into Hollywood-style movies?

    All the brilliant fun Hollywood-style movies?

  7. Andrew Wills says:

    Who says that it isn’t just the fact that Hollywood-style movies just suck in the first place, that games don’t translate well into movies and that it’s not just Uwe Boll’s fault for milking game licenses by making them into Hollywood-style movies?

    How can you possibly think that? As John says, firstly, there’s loads of great Hollywood movies. Secondly, give a good director and screenwriter some great source material, and a decent budget and you’ll get a great film.

    Neil Marshall + Charlie Kaufman + Portal = Genius.

    Uwe Boll is a terrible film maker, and it has nothing to do with the source material. He just plain can’t make films, but despite this, still makes a return on the invested cash, and therefore gets given more work.

  8. Optimaximal says:

    And why wouldn’t it be? It was very well received, and it sold incredibly well. Why wouldn’t they want to be associated with Gears?

    It’s an aside, but UT3 was published by Midway – not Microsoft.

    The fact they decided to sell the game on PC using the hype of the recent big-name-console-targeted-release rather than the million selling precursors in the series tells me that they have no respect for the series other than a cash cow – a fact represented by the total lack of advancement in the series.

    It would be like Ubisoft marketing the latest Brothers in Arms game on Gearbox’s port of Halo for PC. Yes, its a good comparison – both adequate FPSs that did sell well, but it’s totally inappropriate.

    Fact is, Gears is a fantastic game and as far as I can tell, they didn’t really compromise their game for anyone.

    Except Microsoft… They have practically killed the PC release.

    Gears was a great console game which, like Halo, translated into a mediocre also-ran PC shooter that had the further side effect of being largely broken thanks to a less than stellar Games for Windows LIVE integration.
    In addition, stylistically, their latest games can’t be called anything more than ‘dull’, ‘boring’ and ‘drab’ in my books – after Unreal’s early counter for the Quake ‘every shade of brown’ motif by having magnificent designs full of colour (relatively speaking), UT3 & Gears have the visual palette of a particularly normal turd. Even the gore emitted by the chainsaw is a dull deep-claret colour.

    Epics games have gone from industry leading multiplayer shooters and visual vistas to turgid cookie cutter tech demos to sell their engine to the highest bidder. Yes, they get the free reign to design said showcases how they wish, but they’re about as vapid as Paris Hilton – all glitz and glamour with very little substance that isn’t 5 years past its sell-by date.

  9. Mo says:

    It’s an aside, but UT3 was published by Midway – not Microsoft.

    Oh yeah, I know … UT3 appearing on PS3 was a dead-giveaway. :)

    Maybe I’m misunderstanding you, but that doesn’t really change my point. GoW was a great game that sold well. By associating UT3 with it, they are saying, “hey guys, we’re the guys who wrote the awesome GoW … if you liked that, you’ll like this too”. Nothing wrong with that I don’t think. Psychonauts said, “from the mind of Tim Schafer, creator of Day of the Tentacle” on the cover, and nobody really complained. It’s just association.

    Why not sell it on the good name of UT? Two reasons:
    (1) remember this was a PC/PS3 release. Some console gamers haven’t even heard of UT, but they’ve surely heard of GoW.
    (2) the last UT game to come out was UT2K4 in 2004. GoW made it out on the PC in 2007. The hardcore fans were going to buy it anyway, the blurb on the box was for the PC gamers who haven’t heard of UT. Again, any shooter fan would have heard of GoW.

    As for the quality of the game, well, like I’ve said, Q3A > UTx … bring on Quake Live. :)

    Except Microsoft… They have practically killed the PC release.

    Surely the single-player was fine though? The controls might have been a bit crap, but hey, they were designed for consoles. Multiplayer I can agree with you on.

    In addition, stylistically, their latest games can’t be called anything more than ‘dull’, ‘boring’ and ‘drab’ in my books

    Agree here too. Gears was terrible in the art department. Couldn’t tell the difference between weapons, my mate and enemies, etc. But again, they did what they wanted to, and I can’t fault them for that.

    all glitz and glamour with very little substance that isn’t 5 years past its sell-by date.

    But see, here’s where I disagree. I can’t comment on UT3, but Gears … well, like I said earlier:

    Give Gears a hard time for its shit universe and storyline, but the gameplay mechanics were wonderfully innovative for a straight-up shooter.

    Reload is ingenious. I’m amazed they turned something as dull as reload into a fun “mini-mini-game”. I got rather obsessed with it. :)

    Cover was very well done. Yes, Kill Switch and others did it first, but Gears did it near-perfectly. Diving, ducking, running for cover, was all done great.

    The finest, most satisfying melee attack … the chainsaw. Also, sticking a chainsaw on a gun was awesome, in that ridiculous type of way. :)

    And I could go on. They were a tonne of little things, you know? Epic didn’t go off and change the world Valve style, but they’ve made little innovations here and there. And I totally respect that.

Comment on this story

XHTML: Allowed code: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>