The game industry is very sick here. Is it in your country too?
I wish I could link to that article I read on my PAPER newspaper about 2 weeks ago but apparently making it easy to find offline articles online is similar to witchcraft or something. I’ll come back to this later.
By now I guess you all heard about 38 studios. Well that’s just a tiny bit of the story here. Did you know that as a Quebecer I’m “happily” giving my money to big game development studios? Maybe it is the same some place else or maybe you prefer to complain about some oil companies getting taxpayers’ money but since I’m in the game business just let me get 2 minutes to complain about how stupid we are to finance the game industry as taxpayers.
Every big company in Quebec (meaning those who can pay to fill some reports for the government) receives tax credits. We’re stupid like that. We like to call that “creating jobs”. We charm some big studio like Bioware, Ubisoft, Eidos or even Warner Brothers and we give them all money just so they can tell us “oh people in Montreal are so gifted we are so happy to expand our studio here”. Yeah right.
I find it funny when I hear people from the US complaining about taxes. Do you know that here 45% of my salary is gone before I receive anything in my bank account? And what do they do with this money? Finance the next Assassin’s Creed! You are welcomed Ubisoft to create these games with my money. Oh but don’t worry. I don’t blame you first. You’re just using the system “we” created. It’s not your fault. We’re just too dumb to focus our energy on creating new game studios, we have to give our money to companies from another country. We’re stupid like that.
What do we get from this? Apparently some nice 1 year contracts with absolutely no guarantee of keeping our job for the next year. Yeah I heard that’s how the “game industry” works. I just would have thought that’s the kind of industry we wouldn’t support as a smart society.
I still get emails from people asking me “why I don’t try to get a job a big studio”. I’m really not far from Montreal and with the experience I have I guess it wouldn’t be much of a problem (specially since they keep complaining they have big problems hiring new people). Well guess what. This government financed industry can kiss my ass. I have given them so much money that they should be knocking on my door begging me to go work for them. That’s not how you develop talent. That’s how you create people dependent from others. I don’t want such job. I’d rather remain a starving indie than become some mindless pawn hired from a big studios living from government’s money. Yes I’d rather keep making stupid websites to finance my own projects than to have to rely on some alien studio that might fire me as soon as some project is released.
If you read this blog you might remember that last summer I lost my job. I tried to get my own thing started. I thought for a minute that the government might help me to create my own job. Not to have me as the next government beggar but just to help me to get started. Well it was a big failure as game development as an unemployed nobody doesn’t exists for the government. So after working for 11 years and paying my taxes like a nice little boy all I had for an answers was “well go fuck yourself it’s not serious for the government to help game development even if you have proven experience”.
Oh I understand from where they are coming. It’s a much safer bet to go with Ubisoft. You get the immediate result of “creating jobs” because you actually begged that company to come here and when such company fire all their employee well then you can say “oh they are so terrible” and then let it die there. All of that with the money from someone who wanted to create its own job …
I’m probably what you could call a “right-wing person”. But maybe not in the stereotypical way. I just want the government to help people who really need help. You know the poor, those in needs. Other than that I don’t want government in my life. Government has no business helping business that’s doesn’t need help. You want to create jobs? Help people to start their own business. Don’t help some big studios to create jobs you’ll have no control over once you gave them money.
A nice start? Well what about 0% interest loans. You don’t give the money away, I have to pay it back but you give me a damn chance. That’s how you help people. Not by giving my money to EA or Ubisoft. If we are so creative like they say we can start our own game studio right here. We don’t need to import our employers …