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Look everybody! Activision is doing a good thing that is not evil or greedy

As one of gaming's biggest money bags publishers, killer of studios and rampant peddler of endless sequels, Activision is regarded as being the industry villain, with CEO Bobby Kotick currently ranking somewhere between Emperor Palpatine and Rupert Murdoch in the popularity stakes. Gamers love to rag on Activision. And normally with some justification. But look here - Activision is doing something good. It is giving money to independent game developers. Not for drowning kittens or other despicable schemes, but to help them make good independent games.

Activision's Independent Games Competition was announced last year and gave US based indie devs the opportunity to submit games (either completed, in development, or still at concept stage) for consideration. And the incredibly benevolent Activision has just picked the first two winners. First prize winner Peter Angstadt gets $175,000 for his game Dstroyd. This is what Dstryd looks like:


Developer Engient claims the $75,000 second prize with its game Rigonauts: Broadside. Which is this:


But that's not all. There's a second phase of the competition still to go and the giant-hearted Activision will be giving away yet another $250,000 to indie devs for that. Unbelievable. Well done Activision for giving something back and bless Mr Bobby Kotick for giving the competition the green light.


Above: He's practically an angel

Reports that Activision will aggressively acquire all the independent developers involved, then task them with co-developing the next Bond game before closing each of them down is nothing more than a predictable cheap shot perpetrated by ourselves.

Now please feel free to commence with the cynical 'Blatant PR stunt Activision can suck my balls' comments below.

July 28, 2011

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36 comments

  • nemesisuprising - July 31, 2011 5:58 p.m.

    @db1331 exactly what I was thinking, then again ive had mine craft on the mind recently, but just looking at it, it will NEVER reach that. still its really cool they did that, I just hope at this point it ends up a good game, and DOESNT get 500 sequels...infact if there has to be a sequel only make one
  • ObliqueZombie - July 29, 2011 5:35 a.m.

    Hmm. The games looks nice, at least. I wonder how long they'll take to close down.
  • samirbvr - July 29, 2011 1:31 a.m.

    Rigonauts does seem better than Dstroyd, lot more is upto a person's imagination than just strategy, Dstroyd is quite similar to pocket tanks with some extra things.
  • ZigzMagoo - July 28, 2011 8:33 p.m.

    Lolz at raging nerds who get mad at Activision on the internet, then get off their computer to go play COD. Send a message with your wallets dumbasses. I defenitely think the second game actually looks pretty sweet. I hope it gets on Steam
  • RebornKusabi - July 28, 2011 7:35 p.m.

    I'm with mothbanquet here... half a million just for an indie game is a hell of a lot of money to give away. My theory though? They've killed off or gotten rid of 90% of their studios by now so they're hoping some fresh blood or "outside of the box" thinking will close that gap. Its smart and clearly "Business 101". After all, multi-million dollar studios tend to play it safe, whether with movie-making or game-making. New blood brings well... something NEW to the table and Activision sees this.
  • QWERTYCommander - July 28, 2011 6:56 p.m.

    The first thing I thought of when I saw the facebook post? PR stunt.
  • Mexiflan - July 28, 2011 6:47 p.m.

    The second game looks good. The first one is another worms,so meh. I wonder how will they look 38 sequels after. Those developers are literally making a deal with the devil.
  • CH3BURASHKA - July 28, 2011 6:14 p.m.

    From what I remember, the rules of the competition explicitly said that any and all material turned in would become Activision property, so it's not as nice as you'd expect - they gave the devs a lump sum in hopes of making the money back in their own franchise based on the dev's idea.
  • D0CCON - July 28, 2011 5:56 p.m.

    PR stunt or not, I'm glad they know what it takes to be seen as good. If they can keep doing similar things, they could be like EA (evil until Dead Space and Mirror's Edge come out and they start offering indie support, upon which they are considered OK). Acti even has its own Dead Space in the form of Prototype (a solid game that ISN'T being annualized to death). I still don't like them, but this could be the start of something new and better.
  • pollenski - July 28, 2011 5:47 p.m.

    I see no reason for Activision to give away 1/2 a million unless something is in it for them - either PR (in which case it's an excessive amount) or some rights to distribution of or indeed the whole IP. Also I find it suspicious that the terms and conditions of entry have been removed from their site... I feel sorry for those devs' souls after they've been weaned on satan's teat.
  • BluegrassSmoker - July 28, 2011 5:26 p.m.

    I wouldn't piss on him If he was on fire.
  • mikeyline - July 28, 2011 5:25 p.m.

    Tell that sh#t to UFG and True Crime Hong Kong!
  • wrayday - July 28, 2011 5:18 p.m.

    "Activision is doing something good. It is giving money to independent game developers. Not for drowning kittens or other despicable schemes,but to help them make good independent games." - So they can take over later on down the road releasing copy after copy until they drive the series into the ground. I would really like to see the fine print on this one. I bet it has something like "we are giving you this money so you can develop this game and if it sells, we own it and have the right to reproduce it or the ip all over the place and leave you with nothing but a bitter taste of a small upfront profit over the vast amounts of money we stand to make and I know this is a long sentence but at this point you are along for the Activision ride and there is no stopping this train until its left the tracks burned up and the resulting fire has destroyed everything around it and fizzled out and we leave you with nothing but ashes of a once glorious memory. -P.S. Ha Ha"
  • Larinah - July 28, 2011 5:12 p.m.

    'Blatant PR stunt Activision can suck my balls' That is all.
  • BackwaterRifle - July 28, 2011 5:07 p.m.

    Blatant PR stunt Activision can suck my balls
  • jackthemenace - July 28, 2011 4:37 p.m.

    Man, those actually look really fun. Ay idea what Platform they'll be on yet?
  • shadowreaper72 - July 28, 2011 4:27 p.m.

    A PR stunt. Nothing more. Fuck you Activision.
  • jmcgrotty - July 28, 2011 4:03 p.m.

    My first thought at the headline? Guess we know who recently signed up to advertise on gamesradar.com And yes, I'm kidding. I've seen very little ever, if anything, to point to gamesradar being biased twoards anything but Okami. And I actually don't even hate Activision. Nothing wrong with their practices, at least to me.
  • Sniped50 - July 28, 2011 3:22 p.m.

    I have NO idea where my moral compass is pointing on this. Like mothbanquet and several other users have pointed out, the motives behind this may go either way. I'd much prefer the benign option, but, even IF I were going to base my opinion solely on the fact that Angel Kotick up there looks a bit creepy to me, I advise you all to not hold your breath.
  • Kieran712 - July 28, 2011 3:18 p.m.

    If I kill 12 people then give a hoba a twenty will I get off the hook? Seriously I need to know NOW! In all seriousness I'm glad Satan *achem* Activision are doing something for gaming rather than just buying then shutting down studios that dont make make CoD esc games. Umad bro? Yes I am. Rant over

Showing 1-20 of 36 comments

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