Epic's Mark Rein Apologizes to Insulted Indie Dev

Epic's Mark Rein Apologizes to Insulted Indie Dev

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Epic Vice President Mark Rein says that he had been a "jerk," but that he'd only been trying to help.

Last week Rein upset Positech Games' Cliff Harris by interrupting him during a panel at the Develop conference when the topic turned to communicating with fans. Harris said that Rein started to lecture him about what they were doing wrong, and was of the opinion that Rein had attended the panel just to sneer at the "humble indies." But Rein says that his comments were made with the best of intentions, but said that interrupting the panel was "completely rude."

In a letter to Harris, Rein said that his point had been misconstrued, and that he hadn't meant to imply that he thought that replying to fans' emails was a waste of time. His outburst had been motivated, he said, by the idea of sharing important details about games in emails and on message boards. He said that he believed that that could actually make things more difficult for an indie developer to get its work noticed.

Rein said that he wasn't speaking as an executive of a major studio, but was instead drawing on his experiences from Epic's early days. He said that when Epic was getting started in the early nineties, it made shareware titles with a distribution model similar to those of Harris and Positech, and by being careful with how it disseminated information, it was able to get its games featured in "top gaming magazines" alongside much bigger titles.

Epic was very keen to support independent developers, he said, and cited the "Make Something Epic" contests it ran for indie and aspiring developers, and the release of the UDK, which let people work with the Unreal Engine for free, and then pay a small licensing fee if they then made a commercial product. He thanked Harris for calling him out on his behavior, and said he realized that it was something that he had to curb in the future. He apologized again at the end of his letter, saying that his intentions didn't excuse his bad manners, and that he hoped that the experience had taught him his lesson.

There are a number of ways to interpret the letter, and they largely hinge on how genuine you think Rein is being. It certainly sounds like an honest, heartfelt apology, but it could just as easily be some PR spin. It will be interesting to see what Harris himself has to say about it.

Source: Develop

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Whatever happens, Cliffy B will still be hawt.

On a more serious note, I believe he's being genuine on this. I'd probably backpeddle faster than something fast backpeddling fast if I was in his situation.

I like it how he said he misconstrued which is kinda of like apologising to someone but then digging a tiny bit deeper again.

Meh. Doesn't sound like there was much of an issue to get flustured over. Good he's apologised.

Yeah hes right, Epic does support indi devs. alien swarm was a Ut 2004 mod for example and it was made for the "Make something unreal" (later epic) competition Mark mentioned.
Those devs then got hired by valve, worked on Left4dead 1 and l4d2, the As remake
(no wonder it wasn't called Alien Swarm Source like all othe sourceports)
and now portal 2.

Looks like a lesson to be learned there...don't make comments you might regret later!

GET DOWN ON YOUR KNEES AND BEG FOR FORGIVENESS!!

Nah, he seems genuine enough, although if what was written in last week's article was what he actually said, I'd think it would be pretty hard to misconstrue something like that. It'll be interesting to see if Harris forgives him.

He should've done the Shepard I think: "I've had enough of your disingenous assertions! *FALCON PUNCH*"

Nah...fair enough apology really. Could've been genuine, could've just been PR spin, but we'll see what effect it has.

Right, right, another drama, another sun rise.

Loonerinoes:
He should've done the Shepard I think: "I've had enough of your disingenous assertions! *FALCON PUNCH*"

I'm Commander Shepard, and this is my favourite post in the topic.

It was only fair he apologise. Interrupting a panel to be a bit of a twit generally doesn't make you look good.

I believe him. I accept his apology if I was the Indie Dev. Epic made my favourite games to date and seeing them apologize warms my heart.

But nevertheless, CliffyB remains one of my favourite people in the game industry, though he is the only one who totally make a chainsaw entrance a flop. Should have used Cole Train.

At least he tried to apologize. Most devs do not do this lately *cough^*Bobby*cough*cough*Kottick*COUGH*

If Harris has any sense he'll keep mum.

Any kind of response can be misconstrued by the total groveling of Rein's letter; if he smashes him he'll be thought of as an explosive asshole, and if he doesn't it could easily be made to appear that they've both kissed and made out, and everything is fine (which you cannot know as the letter could easily be taken as a PR saving face stunt) which in the End benefits mostly Rein.

In the end, silence seems like the best option in my oppinion.

Insulting another person like that is not just unprofessional, its a sign that maybe the dude has a serious disconnect going on between himself and other people.
Which does not bode well for his future as a content creator.

oranger:
Insulting another person like that is not just unprofessional, its a sign that maybe the dude has a serious disconnect going on between himself and other people.
Which does not bode well for his future as a content creator.

I somehow doubt that. I think someone working for Epic since it's launch "in the early nineties" would have a pretty comfortable position. No little gaff with some no name developer won't threaten that.

Well, at least he apologized.

I think he's being genuine. At least I hope so.

gilthanan:

oranger:
Insulting another person like that is not just unprofessional, its a sign that maybe the dude has a serious disconnect going on between himself and other people.
Which does not bode well for his future as a content creator.

I somehow doubt that. I think someone working for Epic since it's launch "in the early nineties" would have a pretty comfortable position. No little gaff with some no name developer won't threaten that.

"Threaten"? I meant the guy is showing signs of dysfunction.

Yeah right....is anyone else buying this BS?

I certainly am not.

Personally, I don't see where this 'incident' should've ever been in the media. The guy should've contacted Epic/Mark, who could've apologized in private. End of.

@ Crimsane

I agree wholeheartedly.

wot I think

oranger:

gilthanan:

oranger:
Insulting another person like that is not just unprofessional, its a sign that maybe the dude has a serious disconnect going on between himself and other people.
Which does not bode well for his future as a content creator.

I somehow doubt that. I think someone working for Epic since it's launch "in the early nineties" would have a pretty comfortable position. No little gaff with some no name developer won't threaten that.

"Threaten"? I meant the guy is showing signs of dysfunction.

You did say it "did not bode well for his future as a content creator." Suggesting that his job, which as a member of the video gaming development world, is creating content. Or did I misread? I was saying that his job position was pretty secure.

unabomberman:
If Harris has any sense he'll keep mum.

Any kind of response can be misconstrued by the total groveling of Rein's letter; if he smashes him he'll be thought of as an explosive asshole, and if he doesn't it could easily be made to appear that they've both kissed and made out, and everything is fine (which you cannot know as the letter could easily be taken as a PR saving face stunt) which in the End benefits mostly Rein.

In the end, silence seems like the best option in my oppinion.

Nah, it's been played out in public and the ball has now been publicly tossed into Harris' court. If there's no response at all, it'll look like Harris is a bit of a jerk. Whether it's PR or not (and from what I know of Rein, it's probably not) it is some sort of attempt. The gracious response at this point would simply be a twittered "Thanks Mark, apology accepted" type of response.

At least he's attempting to patch things up, even if through PR spins and such.

No, he is not being genuine. From what I understood happened originally, he was not saying what he said that he said in the letter. If that makes sense. He's spinning it to make himself sound like less of an ass.

That said, it's a professional apology, and he gets kudos for that.

Meh Mark Rien runs a successful business making good games and a really good engine it gives him a right to have an input if want to turn away good advice your an idiot. Now they way he went about it was all wrong and rude.

murphy7801:
Meh Mark Rien runs a successful business making good games and a really good engine it gives him a right to have an input if want to turn away good advice your an idiot. Now they way he went about it was all wrong and rude.

Good games? Yes, the Gears of War series is really REVOLUTIONIZING the games industry. The most important thing when considering whether to take advice is whether it's actually good advice, not who the person is who's giving it.

And anyway really, what's so good about Epic. They never made anything that was THAT good. The Unreal series was terribly average, the original UT was fairly good and then they just repackaged it 5 times with new graphics, Gears 1 is a really average game when you put it up against a real game like, say, Half-Life. And so on.

I can think of a hundred games developers I'd rather have in existence right now in Epic's place. It's not like we're talking about a LEGENDARY developer here.

Yosharian:

murphy7801:
Meh Mark Rien runs a successful business making good games and a really good engine it gives him a right to have an input if want to turn away good advice your an idiot. Now they way he went about it was all wrong and rude.

Good games? Yes, the Gears of War series is really REVOLUTIONIZING the games industry. The most important thing when considering whether to take advice is whether it's actually good advice, not who the person is who's giving it.

And anyway really, what's so good about Epic. They never made anything that was THAT good. The Unreal series was terribly average, the original UT was fairly good and then they just repackaged it 5 times with new graphics, Gears 1 is a really average game when you put it up against a real game like, say, Half-Life. And so on.

I can think of a hundred games developers I'd rather have in existence right now in Epic's place. It's not like we're talking about a LEGENDARY developer here.

You think half life is good its the pure embodiment of average

murphy7801:

Yosharian:

murphy7801:
Meh Mark Rien runs a successful business making good games and a really good engine it gives him a right to have an input if want to turn away good advice your an idiot. Now they way he went about it was all wrong and rude.

Good games? Yes, the Gears of War series is really REVOLUTIONIZING the games industry. The most important thing when considering whether to take advice is whether it's actually good advice, not who the person is who's giving it.

And anyway really, what's so good about Epic. They never made anything that was THAT good. The Unreal series was terribly average, the original UT was fairly good and then they just repackaged it 5 times with new graphics, Gears 1 is a really average game when you put it up against a real game like, say, Half-Life. And so on.

I can think of a hundred games developers I'd rather have in existence right now in Epic's place. It's not like we're talking about a LEGENDARY developer here.

You think half life is good its the pure embodiment of average

Half Life is EPIC compared to the train-wreck that is Gears of War. (See what I did there?) I don't know what to say if you think Half-Life is average. Hating HL seems to be fashionable around here for some reason.. I don't know why.

Yosharian:

murphy7801:

Yosharian:

murphy7801:
Meh Mark Rien runs a successful business making good games and a really good engine it gives him a right to have an input if want to turn away good advice your an idiot. Now they way he went about it was all wrong and rude.

Good games? Yes, the Gears of War series is really REVOLUTIONIZING the games industry. The most important thing when considering whether to take advice is whether it's actually good advice, not who the person is who's giving it.

And anyway really, what's so good about Epic. They never made anything that was THAT good. The Unreal series was terribly average, the original UT was fairly good and then they just repackaged it 5 times with new graphics, Gears 1 is a really average game when you put it up against a real game like, say, Half-Life. And so on.

I can think of a hundred games developers I'd rather have in existence right now in Epic's place. It's not like we're talking about a LEGENDARY developer here.

You think half life is good its the pure embodiment of average

Half Life is EPIC compared to the train-wreck that is Gears of War. (See what I did there?) I don't know what to say if you think Half-Life is average. Hating HL seems to be fashionable around here for some reason.. I don't know why.

I have played the first one its was good and i enjoyed it at the time the second just seemed weak and had physics gimmick. Also have you ever considered if alot people think something a dull or rubbish maybe because it is. Anyway aside from that if you enjoy half life more power to you enjoy the 3rd chapter when ever it comes out. Back to my original point I was talking business good because a game being enjoyable is subjective were as cold hard cash is an easy measure. Last as a foot note check out shadow complex you might like it ?

Can we go back to bashing Mark and Cliff please? All this gaming talks is just flat out boring.

Thanks for your understanding. Have a nice day.

ktnx bye

derek_smart:
Can we go back to bashing Mark and Cliff please? All this gaming talks is just flat out boring.

Thanks for your understanding. Have a nice day.

ktnx bye

Yer yer cliffy b likes dog cock

murphy7801:
Back to my original point I was talking business good because a game being enjoyable is subjective were as cold hard cash is an easy measure. Last as a foot note check out shadow complex you might like it ?

Well I thought HL2 was awesome.. and most of the serious gamers I know agree with me..

And yes I played Shadow Complex and liked it.. ok so that's ONE game. and an XBLA game at that.

Yosharian:

murphy7801:
Back to my original point I was talking business good because a game being enjoyable is subjective were as cold hard cash is an easy measure. Last as a foot note check out shadow complex you might like it ?

Well I thought HL2 was awesome.. and most of the serious gamers I know agree with me..

And yes I played Shadow Complex and liked it.. ok so that's ONE game. and an XBLA game at that.

The term serious gamers such vague statement what do you consider it to mean ?

Kwil:

unabomberman:
If Harris has any sense he'll keep mum.

Any kind of response can be misconstrued by the total groveling of Rein's letter; if he smashes him he'll be thought of as an explosive asshole, and if he doesn't it could easily be made to appear that they've both kissed and made out, and everything is fine (which you cannot know as the letter could easily be taken as a PR saving face stunt) which in the End benefits mostly Rein.

In the end, silence seems like the best option in my oppinion.

Nah, it's been played out in public and the ball has now been publicly tossed into Harris' court. If there's no response at all, it'll look like Harris is a bit of a jerk. Whether it's PR or not (and from what I know of Rein, it's probably not) it is some sort of attempt. The gracious response at this point would simply be a twittered "Thanks Mark, apology accepted" type of response.

But that's kind of the point; everytime someone grovels there's this tacit expectation that you have to take them up on their word and then everything is fine, especially when done in public. Maybe I'm wrong but if Harris is gonna say something it should be a "good luck in your future endeavors," or something, at best. Know what I mean?

 

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