Free Of ‘Corporate Overlords’, Wasteland 2 Progress ‘Kicking Ass’
So how is Wasteland 2 progressing? Speedily, as it turns out. As Inxile’s Brian Fargo during his keynote at this year’s Unite conference, in about 100 days of work the Wasteland 2 team has ‘hundreds of pages of design’, drafts of the music, and the basic UI already completed. What’s the secret to this rather impressive output? A workplace free of ‘corporate overlords’.
“We’ve been working on Wasteland 2 for about 100 days, with no distractions from any kind of corporate overlord,” he said. “The bottom line is that, without any interruption, we’re kicking ass.”
In light of the way a certain publisher who will remain nameless as ruthlessly neutered (and perhaps ruined) some of its greatest properties, it’s refreshing to see a real industry player smack-talk the way ginormous corporate managers can stifle creativity. “Corporations don’t have artistic integrity; people do,” Fargo correctly noted. “This sort of integrity impacts on production and how a property is exploited… There are employees of these organisations that have this integrity, but they don’t have the power to do anything about it.”
This isn’t to say that it’s necessarily a bad thing to have major corporate backing. Fargo specifically noted Rockstar as a notable success. “The best creative work we’re seeing is from creative people who have the power, or the financing, to control their destinies… These visionaries can be within an organisation: Rockstar would not achieve the level of quality it does if Sam Houser wasn’t running that place with an iron fist. He’s not a corporation; he’s a person.”
That’s the point: creative people need to have the authority to make decisions over their efforts. That means no bullsh*t multiplayer in games that don’t need it, no removal of core elements fans of a series expect, and no arbitrary revenue projections that all but set games up for failure. Frankly, every time the Inxile guys open their mouths, they make me want to buy 50 copies of Wasteland 2. I cannot wait to play.