Chris Sawyer sues Atari. My hero.

posted by Jeff | Thursday, November 10, 2005, 1:12 PM | comments: 0

Ever since the first RollerCoaster Tycoon demo came out back in 1998 I think it was, I was floored that there could be such a fun game developed by just one guy. That guy, Chris Sawyer, is now suing Atari for screwing him out of his due royalties. Good for him.

A UK paper reports that Sawyer should have scored around $30 million for the games, the first two of which were developed solely by him, with a few others creating sounds and graphics for him. The third game, a complete piece of shit, was developed by Frontier and essentially licensed.

The software development industry, and especially the gaming industry, is filled with gigantic budgets and teams that involve often hundreds of people. The fact that this guy made an irresistible game more or less on his own is remarkable. The fact that he got rich doing it is also amazing. This is the kind of success story that never happens. Stuff is just too complex these days.

I interviewed Sawyer ages ago, and I thought it was remarkable how intense he was about making a game that doesn't suck, and is just outright fun. Those simple goals are often totally lost these days.


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