“You’ve got to take responsibility for the words you say”, explains the Double Fine founder.
Speaking to us at a publicity event for his studio’s upcoming XBLA release, Costume Quest, the industry veteran alluded obliquely to his recent public war of words with Activision CEO Bobby Kotick.
“I think you’ve got to take responsibility for the words you say and I think it’s something which you just become more aware of over time,” explained Schafer, one of the old-guard of Lucasarts’ golden age, having worked on cult classics Monkey Island and Grim Fandango before setting up Psychonauts and Brutal Legend developer Double Fine.
“You can make really casual conversation … you can just chit-chat with somebody, but if you took a certain sentence – and you see this in politics and everywhere – you know, something can be an innocuous statement between two people but if an outlet chooses to they can grab it and turn it into, you know, a headline.”
Schafer expressed more general concern about the industry, too: “Something I care about a lot is that people realise developers are people… That’s why in the press I always try and say what I feel because I think that people should know that games aren’t made by companies, they’re made by people who are just like them, and publishers are the same way – they’re just people who are looking to protect their investments.”
Costume Quest, one of several upcoming Double Fine games, is the result of a change in strategy by the studio to work on several smaller scale and faster turnaround projects at once, rather than one large, more risky one. Riffing on JRPGs with trick-or-treating miniature heroes, it will be released by THQ to coincide with Halloween at the end of the month.
We’ll be publishing more from our interview in our next issue, out October 26.