Boy, that’s two chronic deadbeat game companies going down in one week. West End Games, which has been under painful mismanagement by a guy named Eric Gibson for a loooong time now, is finally coming apart and he’s selling off the properties – Septimus goes back to the originator, d6 goes fully open, and Torg is being sold and then he plans to close the doors.
The one good thing he’s doing is making d6 open and community-owned. This guy isn’t a criminal embezzler like the Catalyst Games guys, but he’s a sad sack mis-manager who’s been squeezing WEG through one trauma after another – took pre-orders for Septimus then cancelled it and couldn’t repay customers, freaked out on forums, generally always had a long list of whiny “too much information” personal life excuses about everything going wrong… In over his head, which wasn’t his fault, but refusing to make the situation better by getting out, which was. He finally paid everyone off after a long time but hasn’t really done much since. So he’s not as bad as these other guys, but he’s on the “never do business with” list the RPG industry has generated, along with the Catalyst guys and many others.
This may or may not be the last word, though – he gave up and announced WEG was done before, but then reneged (see the WEG wikipedia entry for more). But, westendgames.com is down and has been for months now and he’s been MIA for as long. So whether he really sells bits or not – it’s dead.
So who will complete the trifecta? I’m hoping Outlaw Games. That guy’s (James Shipman) an honest-to-God criminal.
Maybe we should actually compile the list of “people in the RPG industry you’d be smart not to do business with.” And keep it around formal-like so no one every forgets. Now soliciting a list of the older ones! Like Ken Whitman (Highlander/RapidPOD) and Jose Garcia (Daedalus). Submit more names here!
I will go with Ken Whitman for the win! Ken’s level of foolishness is legendary in the world of RPGs.
Hey so you have a kid now or what? I’ve been dying to congratulate you!
It’s not even worth a full article, but West End Games is finally all-the-way dead and all the bits have been sold off to one person or another. Check out Zachary’s article on it – http://www.rpgblog2.com/2010/07/breaking-precis-intermedia-acquires.html