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More on Rogue-Valve Fallout

I'm not exactly sure how comfortable I am posting this, but I guess it's only fair. Bobby "Xcalibur" Pavlock of or formerly of Rogue sent an email to us detailing his views on Gabe Newell's comments regarding the news that Rogue lost a CS project to Valve. He also talks about with what happened with Alice on the PS2 (or a lack thereof). Here's his email in its entirety.
Dunno if anyone really cares, but I thought I'd atleast let you guys know what really happened with the whole Rogue/Valve CS:CZ deal...

And now for the REAL story... (nice spin though Gabe!)

We busted our asses developing Alice in 10 months for EA, amidst a slew of EA f**k-ups which constantly had us falling behind schedule. Throughout the entire development cycle, EA was whispering sweet nothings into our ears, calling us their "Golden Child" and constantly reiterating how they wanted to "develop a long-term relationship" with Rogue (sound familiar to any other developers?). So we endure 5 months of 7 days a week crunch time to make sure Alice hit shelves by X-mas, which it did. Contrary to what some people may think. Alice has sold in the neighborhood of 400k units worldwide. Not amazing numbers, but certainly respectable, and well more than enough to make EA a cool few million dollars.

After Alice, we start designing the PS2 port of Alice, for which the contract had been signed back in May 2000 (7 months before PC Alice even shipped). 3 days before January payroll, we receive a call from EA informing us that the Alice PS2 port has been cancelled and effective immediately Rogue would receive no more funding. Rogue tried to explain to them that the employees were expecting paychecks in 3 days, to which EA responded "Sorry, not our problem." Apparently EA lost their ass by sinking all their eggs in the PS2 basket, and when the PS2 debacle went down, EA scrambled to make up lost money to appease their stockholdlers. This was done by slashing projects across the board, and what easier target than a PS2 title that had just started development.

Needless to say, this unexpected turn of events put Rogue in a bad spot. After a couple months of talking with several publishers about prospective projects, VALVE CALLED US, wanting us to do a Single Player version of CS. We were all excited about this project as we are all big CS fans. The contract was signed, and we started busting our humps to try to have a playable demo version ready for E3. About a month after we started on the project, Jim Molinets informed us that he had decided to leave the company to take a Senior Producer role at Sony HQ in San Diego. It was an offer noone in their right minds would refuse. So we thought, no big deal really. Jim was the Producer on the title, but we knew full well the team could develop this title just fine without Jim being there. When we inform Valve of Jim's unexpected decision to leave, they panic. We try to assure them that Jim's leaving would not really affect the project at all, as most of his duties (sheduling milestones, design doc., etc) were already done prior to his leaving. But, Valve felt that we had "betrayed" them. They thought we knew the whole time that Jim was planning on leaving, which we didn't, and that we purposely didn't tell them until the contract was secured. So they yanked the project from us, once again leaving Rogue in an unexpected financial hole. Rogue has not officially closed down yet, although throughout this entire ordeal, several employees did decide to leave for greener pastures, and are in fact in negotiations for another deal right now. Whether or not it will pan out, only time will tell.

So there you have the REAL story. Dunno if anybody cares, but I sure as hell wasn't gonna let Valve sit back and put a spin on the truth to make them seem like the 'good guys'.

Peace...
-Xcalibur
P.S. - you can post any/all of this message if you feel like it. I don't really care.