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The stone that the builder refused...
May 25th 2000, 08:58 CEST by Seth

Looking Glass technologies has shut down.

Looking Glass, developers of a large portion of the most epic and atmospheric games the world has ever known, is gone.

Is Romero to blame? Should I have used some quippy title like "Romero makes Looking Glass his bitch"? If you were to read the following story, I know it would lead at least some of you to thinking that I should have. Click here for the article at the Avault.

The story made this curiouser and curiouser point.

A source at the studio indicated the company is in dire financial straights despite robust sales of Thief II. In a message received from the source moments following the conclusion of a company meeting, the Adrenaline Vault was told, “LGS no longer exists. We are done. Everyone is out of a job tomorrow.” Eidos was slated to be LGS’s senior partner, but it is speculated at this time that the deal fell through due to their own financial problems. Eidos had not commented on the situation prior to this news brief going to press.

I'd like to see a picture of what those words just did to ION Storm's reputation.

C O M M E N T S
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#1 by "Happy cow"
2000-05-25 09:02:30
happycow30@hotmail.com http://happycow.home.icq.com
first<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#2 by "Steve Bauman"
2000-05-25 09:03:58
sbauman@adelphia.net http://homepages.together.net/~sbauman/
Unfortunately, Looking Glass hasn't had a monster hit in many years, and that's what's needed to sustain a company. This is playing Monday Morning Quarterback, but they probably should have had a small-ish team working on money earners, then funneled that cash into their "real" games (maybe their golf game was an attempt to do this, I dunno).

Still, it's a shame to see such a terrific company go under, but the talents will land elsewhere (expect lots of announcements in the upcoming weeks).
#3 by "Andrew Stine"
2000-05-25 09:05:50
linguica@doomworld.com http://www.doomworld.com
This really couldn't have come at a worse time for ION Storm.  With the overwhelming mediocrity of Daikatana, and the idea that the money dumped into maintaining their glass-roofed penthouse and massive staff could have instead been funneled to Looking Glass... I don't even want to consider that possibility.  Given one or the other, the idea that Edios would keep ION while bailing on Looking Glass is ridiculous, which is why I choose to think that Eidos still has a shred of sanity and dumping Looking Glass was due to other issues.

Looking Glass was one of, if not the, most consistently excellent game development houses on the planet.  What was their last bad title?  I can't remember.  Thief 3 surely would have been excellent, and the fact that there'll be no System Shock III or whatever else the boys in Cambridge would have come up with... god damnit.
#4 by "RahvinTaka"
2000-05-25 09:37:18
donaldp@mad.scientist.com
Damn, one of the best developers goes under. Played and loved their games pity. Hopefully we will see them arise into new company (or at least the core of them) much like gearbox did. Here's fingers crossed<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#5 by "JeffD"
2000-05-25 09:39:19
jefdaley@microsoft.com http://www.microsoft.com
This is, quite possibly, the worst thing to happen to PC gaming in years.  LGS was by far and away the best developer out there both of yesterday (Ultima Underworld I/II, System Shock), and today (Thief I/II, System Shock II).  Games such as Half Life only aspire to the depth and complexity that Shock II and Thief achieved.  Hell, the only game I can think of that matches Shock II and the Thieves for innovativeness would be Metal Gear Solid.

What solid developers does this leave us with?  the EA empire really hasn't turned out a great game in a long time.  id software has cranked out beautiful engines, but not really any great games.  Raven's made some decent games, but nothing breakthrough.  Epic... Same as id, lovely engine but little in the way of innovation.  Blizzard?  They're still cranking out hits, at least they were as of Starcraft, but Diablo II looks to be little more than a Diablo explansion, and according to the latest skinny, the innovative elements of Warcraft III have been removed in favor of making it more like its predecessors.  3DR?  They haven't put out a PC game in years, and one wonders if Duke will really be all that.  

Here's to hoping that someone can fill Looking Glass's shoes.

There's still Black Isle, Bioware, and Irrational -- hopefully the rights to Shock II will be given to someone.  

The PC vs. Console wars have and always will be judged by the quality of the games, not the power of the hardware.  With the loss of LGS, I know that the PC side of this war has suffered a terrible blow.

=JD
#6 by "Steve Bauman"
2000-05-25 09:43:16
sbauman@adelphia.net http://homepages.together.net/~sbauman/
<quote>There's still Black Isle, Bioware, and Irrational -- hopefully the rights to Shock II will be given to someone. </quote>
Irrational is working on a LithTech 2 game... for the PlayStation 2, not the PC (though you'd think they could port it easily).
#7 by "CliffyB"
2000-05-25 09:46:21
cliffyb@cliffyb.com http://www.cliffyb.com
This sucks beyond all levels of suckiness.

As great as Doom was, its impact was lessened for me because I had played Ultima Underworld.

As great as Half-Life was, System Shock 2 felt like the real "thinking man's Quake."

Cliff
#8 by "Happy cow"
2000-05-25 09:50:53
happycow30@hotmail.com http://happycow.home.icq.com
The world is a sad place. I wonder what we must have done to get God so massively piss off at us to both visit Daikatana apon us then take away Looking glass. And now to add insult to injury, it seems the bloated corps  of Ion storm is part of what took Looking glass away. I really wonder if Deus ex can even save Ion form total collapse. I'm quite sure that Diakatana will never recoup it's development cost and frankly, I think it's going to leave a big fiduciary hole to be filled. And from what I'm told it cost to create Daikatana, I don't think even Deus ex can cover both it's development cost and that of Daikatana.  I'm looking forward to the day Ion goes belly up. The world won't miss them and I'm sure a real game company could better use the talents of Warren Spector.

Happy Cow (not very happy today, and what is up with the trolls?)<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#9 by "Jafd"
2000-05-25 10:09:59
jafd@whatthefuck.com
For every door that closes, another opens... doesn't improve my mood right now though. I'm really upset about LG shutting down. :(

Someone in some other said "captialism... it sucks but it works." Well I suppose this is some definition of 'works' that I wasn't previously aware of.

I think there is little doubt that we are in a bit of a famine time when it comes to decent games. I don't expect there to be a 'feast' until late 2001, at the earliest. Ah well... I should probably get back to work right now anyway. :)<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#10 by "Seth Krieg"
2000-05-25 10:15:07
seth@planetcrap.com http://www.planetcrap.com
Business decisions suck. Let's just hope the group resurfaces under a different publisher. There were some incredibly talented people there, one of them, Ikka Kerranen (sorry about the spelling) created the the most beautiful levels.
grrrrrrr

I just saw this in an open letter from Randy Smith of Looking Glass.
<quote>ps. Sadly, there is a low chance that Thief 3 will ever see the light of day, and its even less likely that if it did, a majority of LG folks would be involved. I hope I'm wrong, but I think that's the sad truth. But just so you know, we were going to do this whole cool open-ended, self-directed city thing, where you get to wander around the city and steal at your leisure, until, of course, Garrett gets mixed up in crazy affairs that draw him into a larger plot. You guys, in particular, would have loved it, I bet. And, yea, it was gonna be about the Keepers. Good guess.</quote>

No one is going to get over this any time soon, Eidos.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#11 by "Seth Krieg"
2000-05-25 10:16:31
seth@planetcrap.com http://www.planetcrap.com
saw that letter at <a href="http://www.bluesnews.com">Blue's</a> btw, forgot the link. (One of those things that I usually skip over and add at the very end, sometimes I forget to do that last check. :)<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#12 by "AnalFissure"
2000-05-25 10:25:09
I played through SS2 on a p200 with 32 megs of RAM, and I loved every minute of it.

I'm sure the talent will surface elsewhere in the industry, but it's sad nonetheless.
#13 by "RedLine"
2000-05-25 10:27:49
redline@omegaforge.com http://www.omegaforge.com/pod/
It's funny but I'd never put any recognition to the name Looking Glass Studios... I'd always thought Thief was just an RPG in the first person... I'd never really heard of them in the sense that if you were to ask Joe Average PC Gamer to name three FPS developers, he'd say... "id software, Epic, and uhhh... Those guys that made Half-Life... Valve... oh wait I can name another one... Uhhh... Sin... Ritual, that's it"... of course I knew they existed, but I guess I'd always thought of them like Monolith (Heh), as in, one to avoid right now, but watch 'em to see if they make something that looks interesting.

Anyways, there is no doubt that ION Storm have eaten up millions over the past five or so years... I am continually amazed that EIDOS did not just cut them loose after the first two years... at least <B>id</B> had the sense to cut Romero loose. ;-)

So yeah, of course the situation with ION is gonna have an effect on the company.
#14 by "Prodigy"
2000-05-25 10:32:18
prodigy@gamedata.com http://www.gamedata.com
<QUOTE>
This is, quite possibly, the worst thing to happen to PC gaming in years. LGS was by far and away the best developer out there both of yesterday (Ultima Underworld I/II, System Shock), and today (Thief I/II, System Shock II). Games such as Half Life only aspire to the depth and complexity that Shock II and Thief achieved.
</QUOTE>

Nothing else to say, except perhaps that it really kills me to see companies like Lucasarts sell tons of crappy/Star Wars games, while in the same time the people at Looking Glass, who have achieved so much in such a few games, are out of a job.

And not having a Thief III sucks big time also.
#15 by "RedLine"
2000-05-25 10:32:20
redline@omegaforge.com http://www.omegaforge.com/pod/
[13] RedLine

My point was that LGS just didn't have the same exposure as other developers... It's no good having the best game on the planet if no-one knows about it.
#16 by "Chango"
2000-05-25 11:19:24
papa_chango@hotmail.com http://www.btinternet.com/~jedi99/
Redline: "<i>My point was that LGS just didn't have the same exposure as other developers... It's no good having the best game on the planet if
                                                  no-one knows about it. </i>



-This is the fault of Eidos, though, LGS's publisher.  Once again, they've probably poured so much cash into Daikatana's false-starts over the past few years that they couldn't put half as much into promoting the Thief series and System Shock II.

Sad really, but I guess it was only a matter of time before something like this happened.  The same as any other wealthy industry - you'll see people getting what they don't deserve, to the detrement of the really good contributors and workers.  There's so much money in the industry now, and this GLS thing seems to be forging the pattern, it won't be long before money is the <b>only</b> factor in the industry - a lot like the music charts really: once the charts was something that everyone could listen to, such was its diversity.  Now, it's a cesspool of talentless moneymaking tits with one-hit wonders, forcing all the long-term achievers underground.  When the gaming industry gets like this, and I honestly do think we've seen the first steps here, I believe it will be the time for me to throw the towel in and take up sports or something.


/me respectfully doffs his cap to LGS


-Chango
#17 by "PiRaMidA"
2000-05-25 11:46:39
piramida@agsm.net http://www.agsm.net/
<b>#10</b> "Seth Krieg" wrote...
<QUOTE>Business decisions suck. Let's just hope the group resurfaces under a different publisher. There were some incredibly talented people there, one of them, Ikka Kerranen (sorry about the spelling) created the the most beautiful levels.
grrrrrrr </QUOTE>

Iikka was working for LG? Wouch, last I heard of him he was doing Anachronox levels. Yes, this guy is one of the most talented mod authors I have ever seen; AirQuake, which you might be familiar with, was done in about two months by him with almost no external help. His maps are nothing short of brilliant. Too bad money are not always following talented people :(<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#18 by "enyak"
2000-05-25 11:59:21
enyak@planetcrap.com
This is incredible bad. Ok, so everyone feels that way. It's just that all their games were such a damn fine example of how "modern" entertainment should look like. But in the the end dumb side always seems to win, huh?

And now to express my anger: Bodenlos blöde Scheisse!!!!

-enyak
#19 by "PiRaMidA"
2000-05-25 12:01:52
piramida@agsm.net http://www.agsm.net/
<b>#18</b> "enyak" wrote...
<QUOTE>But in the the end dumb side always seems to win, huh? </QUOTE>

That started me thinking... Could not they just sit down for two days, throw together something like "who wants to be a millionaire" or some other crap like that, which would fully pay off their debts and production costs of their awesome games?<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#20 by "Timdog"
2000-05-25 12:15:45
TheTimdog@hotmail.com
This just put me in a rotten mood, not just because LGS made the coolest games on earth, but the lesson it gives the rest of the industry is horrible: Make spectacular games, go bankrupt.

If only every other game developer would hold themselves to LGS standards...(sigh)

<quote>That started me thinking... Could not they just sit down for two days, throw together something like "who wants to be a millionaire" or some other crap like that, which would fully pay off their debts and production costs of their awesome games?</quote>

It sounds great, but I don't know if they could bring themselves to do it. LGS tended to hold perfection in the highest regard. Hell, look at the patch for Thief 2: it tweaked almost every level.

oh well, here's hoping that Irrational makes a SS3.

--The Timdog<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#21 by "Martin"
2000-05-25 12:29:17
martin@theplace.nu http://martin.theplace.nu
Although I'm as sad as the next gamer to see LGS go I don't think we should bash on ION Storm for eating up money that could have gone to LGS if things would have been different.

ION Storm has more than Romero / Daikatana going on and both Anachronox and Deus Ex seems to be really, really good games. If you want to put the blame on someone / something it should be Eidos for not keeping the Daikatana team and Romero on a tighter leash.

I just don't feel that it's right to generalize and blame all of ION when there seems to be a lot of good stuff coming from them as well. I hope. 8)

-- Martin
#22 by "MCorleone"
2000-05-25 12:36:40
john_st123@hotmail.com
Romero, do the honorable thing:  

Take the Daikatana mock-up that you had made (What was it, $125,000?) and commit Seppuku.  

Do it on the steps of LookingGlass' former headquarters.

It's the honorable thing to do.

(That or the "47 Level Designers" from LG secretly sneak over and massacre the remaining staff at Ion)
#23 by "MCorleone"
2000-05-25 12:48:51
john_st123@hotmail.com
Sorry, let me clarify:  Attack only the Daikatana team at Ion.  


Hair-care products and Stevie's Silicone alone could have permitted LG to ship another game...
#24 by "carljarvis"
2000-05-25 12:48:53
carljarvis@home.com
While it's certainly debatable whether LGS's closing down had anything to do with Ion sucking up money, hypothetically speaking it's pretty easy to see why Eidos would choose Ion between the two (although I doubt such a decision was made, at least consciously).  LGS had just finished Thief 2 in the last few months, and I'd guess that they were not deeply invested in a new project yet.  Their games, while critical successes, didn't fly off the shelves as much as anyone would have liked them to, And Eidos didn't have a critical investment tied up in the company.  Ion storm, on the other hand, represents a huge investment from Eidos, both Deus Ex and Anachronox have yet to be released, and Daikatana just hit the shelves and is probably going to need a month or two of at least part time company support.

Not that I don't mourn the loss of LGS.  I loved SS2, and thought Thief/2 we're some of the more innovative games in recent memory.
#25 by "Tom (cyberfart)"
2000-05-25 12:51:51
tom187@dingoblue.net.au http://www.rtsplayers.org
I'm suprised that ION is still alive. After the rubbish that was Dominion and Daikatana, who would have guessed they would still have a publisher, let alone still be functioning.

Lucky for them, Deus Ex and Anacrhnox (ok gotta learn how to spell it soon) look to be pretty amazing.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#26 by "Chango"
2000-05-25 12:57:17
papa_chango@hotmail.com http://www.btinternet.com/~jedi99/
Martin, I don't think we're being unfair to ION here.  Yes, before this LGS incident, we were already speechless at the phoney 'rick n roll' bollocks Romero had put his fans and the industry through.  Now with the closure of LGS, it just emphesises ION's shortcomings in a bolder typeface.  Yeah, I'm sure Anachronox and Deus Ex will be fine games, but all I've seen are demos.  Sure, they look great, but they aren't out yet either.  So far, all we've had from that money-sponge ION STORM is a <b>fucking awful</b> rts, and Daikatana - plagued with problems for 4 years, and now it's released, there's a patch already!!!!!!!

I'm sorry, but when you have a company as professional and 'gamer-oriented' as LGS getting ass-shafted by the same publisher that literally throws countless $millions at long-haired wannabe rock stars on a promise.... I'm sorry, but as a financial contributor to the industry (i.e. a consumer) I find it offensive and I'm going to view ION STORM, or at least Romero, with the contempt they / he deserves.

Like I said, LGS was a "gemer's company".  Ion Storm is a dreamed up "Producer's company", which is taking all of this too lightly.

Change your strategy, Romero.  Calling us bitches just gets us mad thesedays.  Especially when you release a bug-ridden peice of frog-infested crap after 4 sodding years of pissing money away that should, by all rights have gone to the company that would have put it to good use.

Yes I blame Eidos for being slack, but at least go to the source of of the time and money wasting: Romero.
#27 by "Chango"
2000-05-25 12:57:40
papa_chango@hotmail.com http://www.btinternet.com/~jedi99/
Martin, I don't think we're being unfair to ION here.  Yes, before this LGS incident, we were already speechless at the phoney 'rick n roll' bollocks Romero had put his fans and the industry through.  Now with the closure of LGS, it just emphesises ION's shortcomings in a bolder typeface.  Yeah, I'm sure Anachronox and Deus Ex will be fine games, but all I've seen are demos.  Sure, they look great, but they aren't out yet either.  So far, all we've had from that money-sponge ION STORM is a <b>fucking awful</b> rts, and Daikatana - plagued with problems for 4 years, and now it's released, there's a patch already!!!!!!!

I'm sorry, but when you have a company as professional and 'gamer-oriented' as LGS getting ass-shafted by the same publisher that literally throws countless $millions at long-haired wannabe rock stars on a promise.... I'm sorry, but as a financial contributor to the industry (i.e. a consumer) I find it offensive and I'm going to view ION STORM, or at least Romero, with the contempt they / he deserves.

Like I said, LGS was a "gemer's company".  Ion Storm is a dreamed up "Producer's company", which is taking all of this too lightly.

Change your strategy, Romero.  Calling us bitches just gets us mad thesedays.  Especially when you release a bug-ridden peice of frog-infested crap after 4 sodding years of pissing money away that should, by all rights have gone to the company that would have put it to good use.

Yes I blame Eidos for being slack, but at least go to the source of of the time and money wasting: Romero.
#28 by "ynohtnA"
2000-05-25 13:36:04
ynohtna@ynohtna.org http://www.ynohtna.org/
Adios Looking Glass...

Guess releasing games of the highest quality is just not good enough these days - maybe they should have forsaken gameplay in favour of coloured lights, large breasts, capture the flag, and a Star Wars endorsement.

Bah.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#29 by "Desiato"
2000-05-25 14:07:46
desiato_hotblack@hotmail.com http://www.spew2.com
I think I'll go shop my newest game idea to Eidos, it will be called -- "Touch The Titties" a sexy-action packed romp with a CTF twist!!

I have a full press release describing the number of polys in each nipple, etc.

Of course if they don't go for it right away -- I'll just add some centipedes or atomic fleas and I'm sure they'll be slobbering all over themselves to publish it.

Then of course I would burn through 2 mil just "thinking" about the programming strategy, while secretly wiring all the money to an LGS staff member swiss bank account.

Why the hell not, obviously precedent shows Eidos is an easy target.


Desiato...
#30 by "Martin"
2000-05-25 14:20:02
martin@theplace.nu http://martin.theplace.nu
<B>[26] Chango:</B>
I'm mostly trying to make this statement as early as possible after reading comments on this topic elsewhere. 8) So far almost all of the posts has been pretty accurate IMHO.

".. and I'm going to view ION STORM, <I>or at least Romero</I>, with the contempt they / he deserves."

[Emphasis added by me.]  Exactly! It's Romero who is to 'blame'. I just think it's unfair to include Warren Spector and Tom Hall (and their teams) as they so far has no reason to be called names. After they release something, which should be soon when it comes to Deus Ex AFAIK, we can pass judgement on wheter it was money well spent.

I have yet to play Daikatana so I don't know if it's a good game or not but no matter how good it is (against all odds 8), it's not worth the insane amount of money poured into it and if Daikatana / Romero is to blame for LGS shutting down it's a downright crying shame. No single game in the world could justify that. Ever.

-- Martin
"Damn you, space dog!"
#31 by "G-Man"
2000-05-25 14:22:23
jonmars@shiftlock.org http://www.shiftlock.org
<b>#29</b> "Desiato" wrote...
<QUOTE>Why the hell not, obviously precedent shows Eidos is an easy target.</QUOTE>
A few years ago maybe... but not any more.

Speculation is nice, but who isn't to say that LG just had very poor business management? Thief was in development for a LOOONG time, I think it's very possible that they had not yet recouped the development costs of the original Thief.

 - [g.man]<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#32 by "Martin"
2000-05-25 14:40:54
martin@theplace.nu http://martin.theplace.nu
<B>[31] G-Man</B>

"Speculation is nice, but who isn't to say that LG just had very poor business management?"

This is not at all impossible, just look at ION Storm Dallas. 8) No, seriously, they wasted so much money I still have a hard time believeing it. Makers of great games are seldom great business people and if LGS valued gameplay and perfection above everything else a lack of funds might have made them cut down on their business / management staff making it hard to get their money back when the game was done. Of course, this is all pure speculation from my part as well. 8)

-- Martin
"Damn you, Space Dog!"
(Hey Morn! When can we set a sig that stays as well?)
#33 by "Sgt Hulka"
2000-05-25 14:56:30
sgt_hulka@yahoo.com http://www.hulka.com
I don't know if you guys saw my leaked Daikatana screen shots or not, if not, take a look at
http://www.hulka.com/oneoffs/daikatanashots.cfm

Pretty much sums up my impression of the marketing of Daikatana.

I'm going to step out and make a Hulka prediction (historically rated at 97.3% accuracy, just ask my mom)
================================================
As far as ION goes, once they ship the current crop of games, ION is no more.  


In other topics, someone asked my opinion about evolution, forget who, but here goes...

I didn't come from a monkey, that's all I know.  I subscribe to a religious belief, and that can't be proved/disproved by science, it's a matter of blind faith, you either believe or you don't.  You could use the same belief with evolution, but I wasn't raised that way.  

Did you know the only bone in the human body that can regrow itself is the human rib.
#34 by "Sgt Hulka"
2000-05-25 14:58:08
sgt_hulka@yahoo.com http://www.hulka.com
Oops, oh yeah, back on topic, Looking Glass closing down sucks ass, but it's big business now controlling the show and that's going to happen more often with all the smaller companies being sucked up by the megacorps.
#35 by "Pete Closs"
2000-05-25 15:02:37
<b>#2</b> "Steve Bauman" wrote...
<QUOTE>Unfortunately, Looking Glass hasn't had a monster hit in many years, and that's what's needed to sustain a company. This is playing Monday Morning Quarterback, but they probably should have had a small-ish team working on money earners, then funneled that cash into their "real" games (maybe their golf game was an attempt to do this, I dunno).

Still, it's a shame to see such a terrific company go under, but the talents will land elsewhere (expect lots of announcements in the upcoming weeks). </QUOTE>


No, they've never had a "monster hit". The closest they've had is a moderate hit with Thief 2, which is the best they've yet had but unfortunately still not enough to solve their financial woes.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#36 by "Tom (cyberfart)"
2000-05-25 15:03:12
tom187@dingoblue.net.au http://www.rtsplayers.org
<b>#33</b> "Sgt Hulka" wrote...
<QUOTE>As far as ION goes, once they ship the current crop of games, ION is no more</QUOTE>

I was about to say a similar thing...

Who wants to place bets that Warren Spector and Tom Hall (& respective teams) are going to jump ship when they are done with their current games?
Unless of course they have to stay with ION to reap the benefits of profit (something Romero wouldnt know.) That would suck ass for them, imo.

And yes, i cant beleive LGS is closed. Its like a stab in the back. They didnt deserve it.
Heres hoping all the staff find a new and rewarding job asap.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#37 by "Pete Closs"
2000-05-25 15:06:05
<b>#8</b> "Happy cow" wrote...
<QUOTE>I'm quite sure that Diakatana will never recoup it's development cost and frankly, I think it's going to leave a big fiduciary hole to be filled. </QUOTE>

I heard it would have to sell around 2 million copies to break even. Quake and StarCraft are the only two titles (I'm talking REAL games here of course) I know of in recent years to have sold that much. It won't do it and I can't say I'm sorry.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#38 by "Sgt Hulka"
2000-05-25 15:09:03
sgt_hulka@yahoo.com http://www.hulka.com
Stay tuned to PC Gamer magazine for my Playgirl info, not sure which issue it's going to be in yet.  Once I do, I'll post it at hulka.com
#39 by "Pete Closs"
2000-05-25 15:09:05
I doubt they'll be reborn phoenix like as another company. From what I've heard they're all scrambling for jobs right now. Shame one of the bigger developers isn't after a second development group to buy out or something stupidly unlikely like that. I believe one of the developers put down the possibility of them joining Ion Storm like some other ex-LG guys (fair enough in the light of recent happenings) and I doubt anyone else would stump up the cash, great as LG were. :(<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#40 by "Trin"
2000-05-25 15:09:08
trin@developium.com, trin@planetcrap.com http://www.developium.com
<Quote>
I'm suprised that ION is still alive. After the rubbish that was Dominion and Daikatana, who would have guessed they would still have a publisher, let alone still be functioning.

Lucky for them, Deus Ex and Anacrhnox (ok gotta learn how to spell it soon) look to be pretty amazing.
</quote>

I think you answered your own question. While Eidos has faultered in its trust in Romero himself, they still stand firm in their beliefs that Tom Hall and the Great Warren Spector will bring the company to the fore-front. Just think of Romero as the paper anchor of the Ion Storm. :)
#41 by "Paperchase"
2000-05-25 15:09:29
fdsa http://fdsa
The end of quality games is upon us. Here we have Eidos, who pumps  millions into Romero's Daikasquatta, and all they end up with is a second-rate POS game with faulty sidekicks. Then, Looking Glass, whose games have always supplied their audience with elaborate quality and imagination, has to fold because Eidos itself is in financial straights for supporting ION!!  Yeah..it makes one want to PUKE.  Hope Romero's happy - I'll bet Eidos rues the day they took Ion under their wing.
#42 by "Jeremy"
2000-05-25 15:10:07
jnthornh@eos.ncsu.edu
I think the real blame lies in the fact that LGS made games which simply didn't sell very well... but why didn't they?

The industry is at a point where it's all about how flashy your engine is and how spiffy your multiplayer is; especially with FPS games.  Companies aren't looking for "a thinking man's Quake" as somebody earlier referred to SS2... they're looking for a pretty game with good multiplayer.  It's so much HARDER to find an interesting single player these days; because uncreative companies know their cookie-cutter multiplayer FPS will sell, they don't have to waste time working on single player.  Hell, Quake3 didn't even HAVE a single player game (no, I do not count those truly pathetic bots).

I bet if LGS's next product was "Thief3:Arena" somebody out there would have poured some cash into it.

In todays market, single player is meaningless.

Well, at least Black Isle is still out there... I guess I'll be holding my breath a while for FO3...

Jeremy<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#43 by "Chango"
2000-05-25 15:10:36
papa_chango@hotmail.com http://www.btinternet.com/~jedi99/
I concur.  In any article I have ever seen about ION Storm and Diakatana progress reports, the journalist always describes walking into the ION offices.  It's all stuff like, "An arcade room over here.... a million Coke machines over there..... the replica Dikatana sword, very expensive..........a deathmatch lounge on one room, with a viewing area in the other room, complete with massive wall-mounted monitors and a kick-ass P.A. system........oh, and a few workstations in the corner"

What the holy fuck were Eidos thinking giving a little boy all this money?!?!?  They may have well have opened up a cybercafe - at least they'd get a return on that.  Instead they've basically  agreed to give Johnnyboy a blank cheque for 'leisure purposes'.  I think everyone deserves to play just as hard as they work, but you need to do the work first!!

Damn these fools
#44 by "Jeremy"
2000-05-25 15:12:43
jnthornh@eos.ncsu.edu
"Ya know, I've been sitting here for around 10 minutes now hitting refresh over and over again." -- by: deadboat

God, I love the quote of the nanosecond.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#45 by "Pete Closs"
2000-05-25 15:15:03
It might also be worth pointing out that the last Tomb Raider sold 300,000 copies despite a massive marketing campaign. Just another of Eidos' recent cock ups that put them in financial trouble. And what was the given reason for Eidos not becoming a senior partner in LG?<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#46 by "Happy cow"
2000-05-25 15:41:08
happycow30@hotmail.com http://happycow.home.icq.com
Single player dead? God I hope not. Today has been bad enough. Why do I feel like someone has died? It's really just a game company. But in many ways it's symptomatic of the way things are now. The industry is run by total morons. They don't have a clue. I don't know how many times I have seen them  pimp the living snot out of a crappy game while letting a classic die on the vine. I still remember how Activison made a big push behind SiN while ignoring the brilliant Heretic II. I wonder if Garret was pictured on the side of buses if Looking glass would still be around. But maybe I'm wrong. Maybe games like Thief and System shock have no appeal to the average Jackanape game buyer. The world embraces crap like Q3 and passes by masterworks like System shock. I'm just about sick of slick shinny games that lack even the most cursory understanding of game craft.

The future of games is going to be all about acronyms. FPS, RTS, RPG, MMOLG, etc... Seems there is not longer room for games you can't sum up with a few letters. What the heck was Thief (take your pick 1 or 2) It did not fit the acronym rule. Nor did System shock 2. While some said it was and action/ RPG/ adventure game I was more then just a hybrid. Games like these will be no more. And while John ( I have really long hair like a rock star) Romero threw a hissy and said he was not going to talk about his next project. We already know it's going to be Diakatana 2. The sad fact is as things lay now I'm sure 8 years from now at a development cost rivaling the national debt, it will be on store shelves. And just because Irony is so Ironic it will be twice as bad. I know you might find all this hard to buy, but it will happen. The industry is run by dullards. They do all they can to make the worst games possible, and then bitch the computer game market is dying.

I'm sorry if my venting seems somewhat bitter today. But I just feel really bad about this. If John Romero had an ounce of decency he would swallow a bullet for us all.

Not so Happy Cow (see the tear stains on this post)<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#47 by "Jeremy"
2000-05-25 15:51:21
jnthornh@eos.ncsu.edu
From ttlg.com:
"On these pages, and in the hearts and minds of the thousands of people who are members of the community we have built - Looking Glass Studios shall never truly die."

Yanno, that almost makes me want to cry...

Jeremy<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#48 by "Tom (cyberfart)"
2000-05-25 16:04:03
tom187@dingoblue.net.au http://www.rtsplayers.org
<b>#46</b> "Happy cow" wrote...
<QUOTE>But maybe I'm wrong. Maybe games like Thief and System shock have no appeal to the average Jackanape game buyer. The world embraces crap like Q3 and passes by masterworks like System shock.</QUOTE>

I digress.
I have no facts or figures, but i would imagine that the 'average gamer' would go after quality single player games.
Not everyone can/will/wants to play online.

But alas, i must be wrong since the games did poorly?
I dunno. I know heaps of people that dont play online. Its a phenonemun (fark dont know how to spell.)

Well, either that or my headache from spending the last 5 hrs working on a Java app have clouded my judgement. ;)
(java = god damn case-senstive hunk 'o crap..doh)<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#49 by "Happy cow"
2000-05-25 16:21:09
happycow30@hotmail.com http://happycow.home.icq.com
If I had to guess why it did not do well , I would imagine it's because it's a literary game in a cinema culture. System shock 2 demanded you become involved with the story. It was choked full of detail. Just like a great book. I have played the game front to back about 10 times and I just keep finding more in more in it. But the current culture does not want detail. They want a cinematic experience. They want the game to sit there and shove pretty pictures in there eyes so their simple brain stems can get a jolt.

Maybe LGS was not main stream. But I loved the games they made. To me they were high art. Not because they looked pretty, but because no one even comes close to the level of game craft they displayed. Call me a fan boy (?) if you want. I really enjoyed those games. The sad and bitter truth is" Looking glass studios, they don't make games like that anymore".

Not so Happy cow<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#50 by "Steve K."
2000-05-25 16:32:07
illuminati@zombieworld.com
Looking glass made some quality games, they will be missed. I'm not a great fan of online myself really, because - how did a old quote of the day here at PC say " The net is full of wankers with about as much self control as a fart in a whirlwind" That was one hell of a good quote. Of course my blazing 56K dosen't help.
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