John Riccitiello claims his statement was misconstrued.
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The current CEO of Unity and a previous boss at EA, John Riccitiello, has remarked that companies are “f***ing idiots” for not considering monetization in their games throughout the creative process, but he has subsequently apologised for his remark.
In a recent interview with PocketGamer.biz, the CEO addressed the criticism both Unity and IronSource have gotten for including commercialization early in the development process, as well as the announcement of their impending merger.
In order to create their vehicles, “Ferrari and some of the other high-end automobile manufacturers still utilise clay and carving knives,” Riccitiello remarked. Some of the most lovely, pure, and smart people I’ve ever met are found in the game business, yet they make up only a tiny fraction of the industry as a whole. They’re also among the largest d*ckheads in the world.
The CEO said, “It used to be the case that creators would toss their game over the wall to the publicist and sales team with practically no engagement prior,” to clarify on his earlier remark about how the games business has evolved over time. That paradigm is ingrained in the ethos of many types of art and media, and it is one that I admire greatly since I am familiar with the level of care and attention that goes into it.
However, in this field, there is a significant chasm between those who adhere to the old way of thinking and those who have embraced the new science of determining what makes a product sell well. And I don’t know a single successful musician in the world that doesn’t value the opinions of their audience. This feedback loop has returned, and they can choose to disregard it at this point. But it’s not a wise decision to make no effort to learn about it.
The developer community has spoken out in response to Riccitiello’s words, with several individuals vehemently disagreeing with the CEO’s viewpoint.
Apple’s iPhone Game of the Year 2018 winner Ben Esposito said, “I built Apple’s iPhone Game of the Year 2018 (Donut County) using Unity, but according to their CEO I’m a ‘huge f***ing moron’ for not developing Hole io, the f2p game that stole it off.”
If Found creator Breogán Hackett tweeted in response, “John Riccitiello thinks I’m a fool.” The only thing he cares about is making money, thus in my opinion he’s a little capitalist pig. So many good things have been ruined by him.
Riccitiello has since tweeted his regrets, saying, “truly sorry if what I said upset any game dev.” He also claimed his comments had been taken “out of complete context.”
Riccitiello has already spoken out on the topic of video game monetization. He supported microtransactions in 2011 by claiming they promise “a much brighter future for the business” and are “a terrific concept.”
Unity recently came under fire when it was reported that 200 employees were let go just before the company acquired IronSource in an all-stock deal valued at $4.4 billion. At an all-hands meeting two weeks before to the announcement, Riccitello allegedly told workers that there would be no layoffs.
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