Schilling: Project Copernicus Would Have Been F2P. Sure.
The collapse of 38 Studios is a tantalizing woulda/coulda/shoulda. The company released only one game, Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, before collapsing. That game wasn’t even developed by 38 Studios but instead was made by 38 subsidiary Big Huge Games (Now reconstituted as Impossible Games). But 38 Studios did actually have a game of its own, the MMO code-named Project Copernicus, a game that was never finished and probably died along with 38 Studios.
Maybe Project Copernicus was awesome. I suspect not, since they had so little to show after 6 years, but what do I know? According to 38 Studios’ founder Curt Schilling, it was going to defy the laws of economics and potentially change gaming in the process. That is, if you buy what he is selling in an interview with Boston Magazine, in which Schilling talked about what Project Copernicus would have been like had they finished it. According to him, it would have been filled with gumdrops and lasers and unicorns and… no, wait, it would have been the BEST F2P MMO EVARZ:
We were going to be the first triple-A, hundred-million-dollar-plus, free-to-play, micro-transaction-based MMO. That was one of our big secrets. I think when we eventually showed off the game for the first time, the atom bomb was going to be free-to-play. When we announced that at the end, that was gonna be the thing that, I think, shocked the world.”
Wow. Just. Wow. Just. I’ll give you a moment to stop sniggering.
OK, if this sounds ridiculous, it’s because it’s part of Schilling’s ongoing campaign to paint the decline and fall of 38 Studios as the fault of everyone else but 38 Studios. Boston Magazine reports that in a follow up email, Schilling claimed that making Project Copernicus F2P was yet another reason the company was totes close to securing additional funding. And yes, he once again claimed that the company would have survived had Rhode Island’s governor not said rude things about how they weren’t paying their debts. Schilling claimed that F2P blew potential investors’ minds, saying “NO ONE was expecting it, and it was another thing that changed the tenor of conversations with investors late in the game.” Supposedly, these investors were about to
throw more money down the pit invest heavily in 38 Studios, that is until Lincoln Chafee’s comments went public.
Sure. I believe this.
I’m going to come out and say it: Curt Schilling needs to stop talking about all the cool stuff 38 Studios was totally going to do before it went tits up. I’m sure they had some plans, but as we now know, it wasn’t going to happen. Ever. They weren’t even half as close to securing additional funding as Schilling constantly insists, making his equally constant attempts to blame Lincoln Chaffee for his mistakes look inceedibly petty. At this point it’s starting to sound like your drunk friend who keeps claiming he once dropped a lottery ticket worth millions, and missed out on what would have been a tremendous fortune. Or the guy who totally wrote a song that sounds like Common People years before Pulp, but never got his band off the ground.