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From God To Cock: Mike Wilson On GameCock's Publishing Party
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From God To Cock: Mike Wilson On GameCock's Publishing Party

August 29, 2007 Article Start Previous Page 4 of 7 Next

I was wondering what if you decide, if you find a family-oriented title that’s really good... will you still put it out under Gamecock?

MW: The point of it is, because we’re going to put the artist’s name on the front of the box, and everyone’s gonna see it’s “so and so game by this artist”, just like a film or a book. I think it’s absurd that publishers put themselves out front. Like, nobody has a relationship with a publishing label. No one goes “Goddamn, I love Universal Studios”, you know? “They make the best shit.”

People say that now, like with Activision and stuff...

MW: But how can that be true? How can...

I think the thing is... I don’t think it is true. I think that people just don’t know that Infinity Ward made that game.

MW: And that’s why I was lucky to start off at id, they were one of the early pioneers at fighting to put their name out there, and to own the IP, and control it, and I don’t think it costs us anything to do that, I think it makes sense. For a gamer to be able to form a relationship, to know whose games they like. The deal anyway, just to finish the thread, the point of our name is that our name doesn’t matter. We’re gonna be in the fine print on the back. It’s a constant reminder...

Are you going to have your logo on the box?

MW: Yeah in the little row of logos on the back, but on the front of the box it’s going to say “By Wideload” or whomever. And so that... a name like Gamecock is a constant reminder never to take ourselves too seriously, and to just push the artist.

There have been some interesting attempts to do stuff like that in Japan, actually. Like there’s a company called ESP, and they’re basically developers pooling their resources, too. So there have been a few that art like that, but this is a different angle on it.

MW: Yeah, a lot of people thought... I mean, with Gathering of Developers, we actually were owned partly by the six developers that founded it, so it was sort of like that, but we didn’t own any part of them.

They stayed independent, and we just gave them a piece of the company to start it. So that they all had a vested interest in the publisher succeeding and they all, to be honest, that’s how we greenlit so many great games, is we let the developers greenlight them. That’s our “secret sauce”, is to let the pros who make the games greenlight stuff. It’s not that Harry and I are geniuses.


Renegade Kid's Dementium for the DS is one of Gamecock's more interesting titles

So in this case, how do you do it?

MW: We have sort of an expert witness system...

You just run it by your friends? Or, not friends, but you know…

MW: No, it’s a lockdown under strict NDA, professional opinion from a successful game developer, on a pitch or on a team, technology, whatever. And you know, we’ve done a lot of games, so our crew knows some stuff, but I still think the magic is deferring to the guys who actually make the games for a living.

It’s not too hard to see what game is going to be good or interesting, as long as it gets in front of you.

MW: Yeah, so that’s my main job: to be noisy and obnoxious and make sure that... because all these games are original, we have to scream from the rooftops throughout development, so that by the time it’s on the shelf, people have heard of it as much as the sequels and the licenses.

Article Start Previous Page 4 of 7 Next

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