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Report: Col Rodgers Explains Why he Left Evolution Studios

March 28, 2014 Written by Jason Dunning

Driveclub

After it was revealed that DriveClub Game Director Col Rodgers left Evolution Studios, a post from famousmortimer (who is now banned) on NeoGAF made a whole bunch of false claims that you can read here.

To clear up everything said in the post, Col Rodgers created a NeoGAF account (as far as we can tell – NeoGAF hasn’t banned him and no one from Evolution has said it isn’t him), where he explained the personal reasons that led him to leave Evolution Studios:

Hello, all.

This is my first post on NeoGAF, and whilst I’m not generally one to deal in internet speculation, I have to put the record straight with regard to Pete Dodd’s [famousmortimer's] comments above.

Everything he has said with regard to myself and DriveClub is incorrect. It’s also libelous.

As Putty (who is a personal friend of mine, and has been for about 25 years) suggests, I left [Evolution Studios] in February for personal reasons. The personal reasons being that my son, who is 4 years old, has been diagnosed with Nephrotic Syndrome, which is a potentially life threatening condition. I live 220 miles (4 hours drive) away from Evolution Studios, and was away from home 5.5 days a week. Given the circumstances, I could not continue to work there.

DriveClub is a great game, and the direction hasn’t changed since my departure. This has been confirmed by Sony in various press releases over recent days.

I have no problem in dealing with very large projects, as I’ve been working in the games industry for the last 19 years, and have worked on some very prestigious titles, so there is genuinely no truth to anything posted by Mr Dodd at all. My departure (and indeed the setup of my ‘indie’ operation, BigRedSwitch) is 100% driven by family necessity, not some professional failing on my part.

I left Sony on very good terms. There is no animosity there, and I was absolutely nothing to do with the recent redundancies – in fact, the news of those redundancies was probably linked on here before I knew about them.

The games industry is a tough place at the moment. My circumstances with my son mean that I’ve had to leave secure work in order to try to make my own way in the world. This may entail getting another job. With people who obviously know nothing about the situation blackening my reputation for the sake of internet ‘fame’, this could be made much more difficult. It’s nothing less than trolling.

I’ve contacted Mr. Dodd on his email address on his site. Due to the factual inaccuracy of his statements, I’ve informed him that he needs to remove the statements and apologize for the damage they have caused, as posting incorrect information and claiming it’s true is quite simply libel.

I’m sure you can all appreciate just how difficult things are for myself and my family at the moment. I’d genuinely appreciate it if you can take my statements as word from the origin, and realize that there has been no big cover-up when it comes to my departure from Sony/Evo.

Thanks, all.

Col.

Rodgers also said:

Pete has replied to my email, and he’s going to try to put things right. That being the case, it’s all good.

As for helping me out with my boy – thanks very much for the offer, but it’s basically a case of time will tell. He’s on some pretty obnoxious drugs (steroids and this stuff which is used in chemotherapy), which we’re hoping will sort him out. He’s being looked after. :)

I appreciate the support, though – genuinely. You guys have restored my faith in humanity and the internet.

And:

I’m not calling for a witch hunt for Pete Dodd. Whatever issues we have are between he and I. What I am doing is protecting my professional integrity by correcting comments which ended up being posted as news on games industry websites. Websites that are read by my potential employers. Really, I’m not too worried about people talking about me on forums – my work has been praised and criticized over the years by loads of people – what I’m concerned about is when posts on forums become personally damaging.

We wish Col Rodgers and his son all the best.