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February 20, 2007

Well, I said I was going to have a new website...

Of course, I really was referring to this one...but we've been a little more focused on Heatwave Interactive instead!

So, this is only the first stage in a multi-stage rollout of our corporate website. For gamers, there's really not a lot there. Sorry about that, but we'll get to the fun part soon, I promise.

One of the big things I'm curious about is what people think of the logo. I think it will serve for now, but I'm not totally sold. That's okay, we're a new company, plenty of growing to do.

Many thanks to Mr. Anonymous who designed the website and logo for us under significant time pressure. As it should be obvious, the primary purpose of the launch website is to serve up the press release and let people know that some of us will be at GDC in a few weeks. That would be a great time to meet up with us if you're interested in talking about the future of Heatwave.

I'll surmise that the most interesting thing to talk about regarding the new site is "the quote." In case ya haven't read it (or it was that forgettable!) here it is again:

Content is King. I don't care how good your 'relationship with the customer' is, if people don't like what you do, the only thing you'll have to talk about is why they aren't buying your games."

Let's get the easy part out of the way. I'm not saying I don't care about customers. I'm not saying I don't want to have a "relationship" with them. There, easy part.

On to the point. I'm reacting to all of the companies out there who are so focused on establishing a relationship with the customer (or even better, "owning the customer") that they lose focus on the really important part... the reason they have customers in the first place: good games. Lots of people are making this mistake. Start-ups. Big publishers. Media companies. Do you think Blizzard worries much about their relationship with their customer? Well sure they do, all 10 BAZZILLION of them. Why do they have 10 BAZZILLION customers to relate with? Great products. As a player, I don't want to be monetized. I don't want to be leveraged. I don't want to be profiled, dynamically served up, or commoditized. I just want to play great games. If I'm having a blast, I won't even notice you've sic'd HAL9000 on my camping patterns.

That's all I'm saying. At Heatwave, we're focused on one thing and one thing only, making great games that YOU want to play. If you like our games, hopefully we'll also have a wonderful relationship. Who knows, maybe we'll ride off in into the sunset together. And stay up all night playing that badass Heatwave game...

I suppose for some, it's an understandable position to take. Making hit games is hard. I'm aware that there's a good chance I may not succeed (okay, I don't believe that, but I have to say it). But I'm willing to take that risk. For you. For me. It's been something I've been working towards since childhood. And it's been hard. I am consistently amazed that game companies have such a hard time finding the fun.

Soooo... "what's the deal with Heatwave right now," you ask? Are we hiring? What are these kickass games you are hinting about?

Well, as I've mentioned in previous posts, we already have one client, and I'm pretty much 100% focused on making sure they deliver that great content I've been ranting about. At the same time, Heatwave is gearing up for some of its own projects. My partner and I have a very specific model for the company that will enable us to weed out the blah from the YEAH early in the project's lifecycle. I suppose it's a combination of three compatible models: 1 for business, 1 for production, and 1 for development. Ideally, this crazy concoction will allow us to bring great games to market.

Are we hiring? Right now on a limited basis, yes. Are you passionate about games? Are you a collaborator? Are you a self starter? Are you willing to take some risks to do something incredible? If so, Art Directors, Concept Artists, and experienced Game Programmers please make your way to jobs@heatwaveinteractive.com. We're always looking for talented people of any background, but those are the jobs we're immediately looking for.

Okay, it's late. I haven't had a good rant in a while. Looking forward to hearing your feedback. This website is next. I've gotten another request to bring back the forums. Now that I can actually talk about what I'm doing...maybe I shall....maybe I shall...

Posted by SunSword at February 20, 2007 01:06 AM

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