Following reports of Gearbox Software CEO Randy Pitchford docking promised Borderlands 3 bonuses, game director Maxime Babin took to LinkedIn to share the other side of the story. Babin, an industry veteran who’s worked for both indie and AAA studios, said that the claims were incorrect and took issue with those who “try to spin or hide the truth.”
So, what happened, exactly? According to Babin, Gearbox has a royalty system that rewards all developers regardless of their position and projects. As part of the process, the company’s management shares earnings and sales projections in the interest of transparency. However, these are merely projections, not promises, and the management’s sales projections for Borderlands 3 were apparently “too high.”
This doesn’t mean the game didn’t do well. Babin revealed that Borderlands 3 is profitable and that developers have already started receiving royalties, but there was an “expectation gap” due to the initial projections. That said, more royalties are incoming so he’s disappointed by what’s been reported.
“It is particularly painful to have to discuss this at a time when millions of people outside the video game industry are struggling financially,” Babin added. “A few months ago, Randy decided to give away 30% of his company to the employees because he believes that those who participate should get a piece of the returns. I’m honestly surprised that this isn’t what’s making the news right now – this is huge!”
Babin suggested that Pitchford wasn’t the only one behind the initial projections but had to bear the brunt when he announced that the projections were too high. His LinkedIn note saw other Gearbox developers rally behind him against the reports.
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