Two years after I visited Valve at GDC, Jeremy returned to San Francisco with a prototype of INS 2.
Following my visit, I started a campaign against the leadership who brought stagnation to Insurgency. I can safely declare victory for our cause. However, it was the continual efforts of Jeremy and his team at New World who have set up shop in Denver that brought this victory. I simply acted as a catalyst to initiate the campaign so they could reclaim their rightful intellectual property. They deserve full credit for waging a successful strategy to pursue their passion for Insurgency and game development. Victory stems from their work.
This proves how the former leadership was an absolute failure. If they had a game and competence, as they claimed, it would have been continued to be developed and subsequently released by now.
The community and past developers have demonstrated their frustration. It incited a wake-up call amongst the current team.
However, we all face the same situation we were in before this uprising. What have we accomplished other than being vocal?
There remains a peaceful resolution – and that is where we must now concentrate our efforts. I extended an olive branch prior to the recent events, and seeking to resume these talks. This is occurring behind the scenes and behind the revolutionary rhetoric – a place where we are humans, rather than avatars.
A new dawn for Insurgency is cresting on the horizon.
The seeds of revolution were planted more than two years ago – incited by the leadership’s neglect, lack of passion, naive vision, or respect for the project and its community. Their actions finally caught up to them.
I have watered these seeds. What choice did I have? I am likely the biggest fan of this game, and will fight to ensure of its survival and growth. The movement has clearly grown.
The initiative by the community of Insurgency with their No Confidence group is a testament to the state of affairs. It doesn’t matter what I think or say, or what the current developers think or say. The community clearly stated that it’s time to harvest the revolutionary crop.
Jeremy arrived for the harvest. Spiel resigned. Endless is in charge. I heard a rumour that Jaboo has also resigned.
Spiel’s parting advice to the team:
The truth is that the current dev team should do something to prevent a catastrophe, which would be Argyll and Jeremy gaining ownership of this mod’s assets for their own purposes. Doing nothing will not fix it.
I would support the idea of closing down the website, the forums, the mod, taking it off Steam and keeping a backup exclusively for portfolio reasons managed by someone we all can trust.
And say goodbye 2.x. Forever.
Then, whoever is left and want to work on something completely different, like Beta 3 or rather INS 2 could create a new community and team from scratch (I suggest no public forums for a long time) and start working in peace. It’s impossible to work with the amount of noise that these forums and 2.X generate, and the ridicculous propaganda of Mr. Argyll, President of INS and his new sidekick.
This would allow people to benefit from the mod, as everyone that has contributed would have it on its CV and the assets would be backed up in case someone needs something for portfolio reasons. But this would also prevent anyone from profiting from the work of all the contributors.
If then someone wants to register the name, and go commercial with something totally new, well, I’ll enjoy the fireworks, and I won’t give a damn because I would know that they’re not making money with our work. Face it, if those two get their hands on this they would never pay or compensate or even credit anyone. They would simply milk the INS cow until exhaustion. I don’t think you guys should let them have their way.
Rather than create a situation where everyone benefits from (what I have been fighting for all along), he believes the best course of action is a situation where everyone loses. But what does he care? It’s not his responsibility anymore. He obviously doesn’t care about any damage done because he already reaped the benefits of his time with the mod.
One of his above points I actually agree with: “Doing nothing will not fix it.”
Finally, Spiel, you realize the premise of the entire revolution.
Jeremy and myself did not create this catastrophe. You did. That is our point. The fate of this project was in your hands. It is now in the hands of Endless. Therefore, the responsibility of success or failure comes to that individual.
I held that responsibility for years, and passed it to Jeremy. That is how we recognize the dire situation you have brought the project into. That is why we still feel partially responsible for its fate in the end. We do not want to see it slip away, when it can be great, once again, under the guidance of experience and talent that was responsible for leading down the path of success.
We are willing to accept, once again, the responsibility of the success or failure of this project. We are in a better position than we were in while developing the mod before, and that is why we are so passionate about this.
If Insurgency is going to go anywhere beyond its current form, these issues arise and must be dealt with, and closing down the communication channels is no method of doing so. That is how the regime incited the entire revolution, and continue to fuel it.
While the recent events unfolded, I was on a road trip driving across Canada with a photographer friend of mine who has been to Afghanistan three times. I am catching up to speed with everything, and will definitely have more to say as things unfold further.
Posted by Seth, former INS artist who now works for a AAA studio, on the forums:
Just an FYI, Jeremy has been banned from the forums. Thought you folks might be interested
Also FYI: Talks are initiating between the original developers and current developers. We have proof of our IP ownership (and yes, my name is on it too) that is the cornerstone of functionality for the game and is still being used and distributed over Steam without our permission.
My red-eye flight to New York’s JFK was cancelled, so I spent the night at SFO waiting for a flight to Dallas-Fort Worth, then connect to Toronto… somewhere in between playing Insurgency on the airport Wifi, sleeping on the plane, and reading Schell’s Art of Game Design, I thought of this analogy to describe the situation with Insurgency:
If you followed the Winter Olympics, then you might have watched Canada reinstate itself as the best hockey nation in the world. There is good reason why we won the Gold, and it comes down to who was on the ice, at what time, their individual talent, and especially their collective talent in putting it all together. If you have not seen the goal, watch or read about it here.
Fleury, Canada’s goaltender, made a save from a shot on net. Neidermeyer picked up the puck and cleared it from their zone, passing up to Crosby.
At the point that the puck went from Canada’s zone, passed the defenders, and up to Crosby is like the point where Jeremy and I controlled the puck, back and forth through all obstacles up to the other team’s zone. As Jeremy had the most experience, having initiated and going through a first release of Red Orchestra, I passed it up to him; as he went on a break-away from his momentum, I skated off the ice exhausted. Jeremy seized his momentum to get a solid shot on goal.
Then he and Pongles (and the rest of the developers) quickly picked up the rebound. They shot on net some more. As Jeremy skated off the ice, and many of the other players left the game, new players came on the ice. Steppenwolf picked up a rebound and passed to Spielmann, who has continually put shots on net and picked up his rebounds.
I have skated once again on the ice, and positioned myself behind the net from the goaltender’s perspective. I have studied how the goaltender has been making his saves (the fans’ perspective), and have skated back around to a position that views an open net. I am shouting “Pass!” but the puck is still being directed on the goaltender.
There is a rebound for me to pick up on. But Spielmann still has control of the puck. I have watched several rebound opportunities and shots taken on net. I have seen what it takes to score the goal, and have positioned myself to make a solid attempt.
All of this has taken a matter of years, when in a game of hockey a sequence like this is seconds. It was the final seconds of the Gold Medal game when Crosby had control, fought through defenders to the net and again along the boards, before passing it down to Jarome Iginla. But Iginla didn’t try to take a shot, he viewed the opportunity to pass, seizing Crosby’s momentum for a shot on net. That shot, and subsequent goal, made millions roar and united a nation.
Every play to get a shot on net is different, and in order for Insurgency to reach scoring opportunities, we continually passed the mod amongst each other to reach the net to score several goals. We all get shots on net, and I haven’t yet taken a shot. I helped to position the play to get the opportunity to take a shot. It was the Defenceman who set the play up, and typically hangs by the blue line to hammer a shot on goal. I have studied, from each perspective, on how to score a goal. Now I feel I should take a shot, after I set up the play.
I have taken the posts about the current INS issues down from public view for the time being until this gets sorted.
trinith, a long-time forum member has this to say that I think is one of the most fair assessment statements I have seen in a long time. I share his feelings:
I would have paid $50 for a completed insurgency 2-3 years ago. I’d pay $50 for a completed and updated insurgency now. I wouldn’t pay more than $10 for what we currently have. I’m afraid Insurgency has missed the boat.
Don’t get me wrong, what’s there is pretty damn good, but you can tell it’s half-finished and buggy. The game is dated and it shows. I realize there’s a difference between a professionally funded game and a mod people do in their spare time, but there’s also a difference between what we have in INS and pre-retail CS and DoD on the original half-life engine. As far as completeness and polish goes, INS is far, far behind.
I’ve been following this mod for quite a while and I liked it a lot, but after so many years you just start to lose interest. The mod has been in Beta 2 for a loooooong time, and there really hasn’t been a lot in the way of updates. There’s been new maps and some new models, but those really fit into any state of the game and were never really the “problem” with INS anyway. It’s the gameplay bugs really. Sure some have been fixed, but many more have been generated. The mod just feels… stagnant. The first talks of Beta 3.0 were what, a year ago? Beta 3.0 which promises a solution to all the mod’s problems… that’d be nice, if we ever saw it.
Also, before folks get up on their pedestals and talk about how the devs do this in their free time and I can’t complain because they do it for free (as they’re wont to do), I would have happily donated that $10 I mentioned above to the cause in hopes of a better game. It should be an indicator of how much potential this game has that it’s so popular in it’s current state. And you’re right, you don’t have to listen to me and you can slam me and treat me like garbage for expressing my opinion, but such conduct only serves to alienate people from the community and further push INS towards vaporware. Still, I hope that as a “customer” these thoughts don’t fall on deaf ears.
So would I pay $50 for INS 3.0? Absolutely not, but I would happily pay that for INS 1.0 Release. This mod is great, it just needs to be worked on and completed.
This post written from San Francisco, where I am attending the 10th Game Developers Conference.
I will say hello to Gabe for you all.