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Unity CEO gets a taste of his own ‘fucking idiots’ meds

“Actually, you’re the fucking idiot!” Oh John (Riccitiello), if only you would have thought things through before calling some of your game-developing friends ‘fucking idiots’. Now, half the world is gunning for you. And you didn’t even mean it like that. So who’s the idiot now, huh?

You might have missed it, but Unity CEO John Riccitiello has made a bit of a mess of his constructive criticism toward game developers. John believes that some of ’em have got their head stuck up in their ass. Because really, why wouldn’t you already implement monetization when you’re still in the early stages of your creative process? That’s just a dumbass thing to do.

At least, that’s how things came across. Because John forgot to put things into context when speaking to PocketGamer.biz. Plus, it was kind of a dick move anyway to set him up like that. If people ask you for your opinion on devs pushing back when prompted to implement monetization, you give ’em a piece of your mind. Because why wouldn’t you? Even if it comes out like this:

“Some of these people are my favorite people in the world to fight with – they’re the most beautiful and pure, brilliant people. They’re also some of the biggest fucking idiots.”

But hey, if you say that kind of stuff, you also shouldn’t be surprised when the media picks up on it. You might find it ‘clickbait’ when people post your quotes and you can label it ‘misconstrued’ and ‘out of context’ all you want. But the fact remains that you called some hardworking devs ‘fucking idiots’.

Luckily, John soon realized that he’d made a boo-boo. Saying that kind of stuff just isn’t right, especially when things can get misinterpreted easily. So John did the right thing, extending his hand to those affected and saying sorry. And it was the long kind of sorry, too.

I want to talk about both what I said in the interview, and my follow-up tweet. I’m going to start with an apology. My word choice was crude. I am sorry. I am listening and I will do better.

What I can do, perhaps, is provide more on what I was thinking when I did the interview. What I would have said if I had taken greater care.

First — I have great respect for game developers. The work they do is amazing. The creativity can be incredible whether on a AAA console, mobile or indie game, designed to be played by millions. Or a creative project, a game made just for the sheer joy of it.

Second – one thing I have seen is that most game devs work incredibly hard and want people to play their game. To enjoy it. And, when appropriate for players to engage deeply. For the game devs I have worked most closely with there is often anxiety about whether players will love the game and appreciate all the work and love that went into making it.

Third – Sometimes all a game developer wants is to have a handful of friends enjoy the game. Art for art sake and art for friends. Others want player $ to buy the game or game items so they can make a living. Both of these motivations are noble.

Fourth — What I was trying to say, and clearly failed at saying, is that there are better ways for game developers to get an early read on what players think of their game. To learn from their feedback. And, if the developer wants, to adjust the game based on this feedback. It’s a choice to listen and act or just to listen. Again, both are very valid choices.

If I had been smarter in choosing my words I would have said just this… we are working to provide developers with tools so they can better understand what their players think, and it is up to them to act or not, based on this feedback.

Anyway, that’s it. Lots of words. And a sentence that I wish I had never said.”

There you go. Doesn’t that feel a lot better, John? Now, remember this moment, John. Learn from it. You wouldn’t want to get another taste of your own medicine. Now would you, John?

Idiot…