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“You have no right to petition artists to change their art,” says Colonial Marines’ Newman

Thursday, 5 April 2012 15:29 GMT By Stephany Nunneley

Gearbox’s Mikey Newman is of the opinion petitions for artists to change their work shouldn’t be formed by gamers, but at the same time, he jokingly stated developers shouldn’t “do the thing that makes people write petitions” in the first place.

Speaking with OPM, Newman didn’t mention Mass Effect 3 or BioWare by name, but it was obvious he was asked for his opinion on the situation.

“You have no right to petition people in art,” he said. “You don’t, I don’t give a shit. That’s on me, that’s not Gearbox, that’s totally me. You have no right to petition artists to change their art.

“You can not like it, you can not buy it, you can not enjoy it, that’s fine. Bitch all you want, [but] you can not petition them.”

Newman is currently the head writer on Aliens: Colonial Marines, and today, BioWare announced it would release DLC for Mass Effect 3 this summer which would “clarify” the ending of the game.

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61 Comments

  1. LOLshock94

    the fact that this guy is making colonial marines i agree 100% with him FUCK DA POLICE

    #1 3 years ago
  2. The_Deleted

    What if that art has been engineered and manipulated by a huge publisher to extract more money from die hard fans.

    #2 3 years ago
  3. LOLshock94

    @2 lol whats that got to do with art?

    #3 3 years ago
  4. OrbitMonkey

    Of course you have the right to petition…. Just don’t be surprised if the artist says “go fuck yourself”.

    Unless their the pussy’s at Bioware of course ;-)

    #4 3 years ago
  5. Froseidon

    @4 – The “pussy’s at Bioware” didn’t follow the petition. The petition made for them was to change the ending. Bioware are not changing it.

    #5 3 years ago
  6. Deacon

    @4 +1 pussaaaaays

    I can see ME3 type situations occurring more and more as gamers expect more and more from their products.

    Newman has it right. Petitions are a bit of a dick move imo. For things that actually mean something out in the open world, fair enough. But not for fucking videogames.

    Petitioning to stop dev ‘x’ from changing the hairstyle of your favourite videogame character. I suspect such cases have already occurred.

    We’re in a period with more games than ever before. More choice, more variety, and more quality (ok that last one is debatable). Quite how people still manage to bitch and whine all the time I have no idea.

    #6 3 years ago
  7. TerraZet

    Well consider that pre-order cancelled, I knew Gearbox was full of hacks and people waiting to rip you off.

    #7 3 years ago
  8. freedoms_stain

    What if the “artist” tells you he’s going to draw a dog when you commission the piece and when he delivers the piece reveals a picture of a man pissing in an alley way?

    You can’t sell one thing and deliver something else entirely.

    #8 3 years ago
  9. OrbitMonkey

    @freedom_stains, So what your saying is, although Bioware promised the end to their Mass Effect trilogy… You actually got Angry Birds in Space?

    No wonder their was a petition!!

    #9 3 years ago
  10. YoungZer0

    Impressive that so many people decide to share their opinion with us about it. But when the SuckerPunch decide to make Cole bald again because of the crying fans, nobody shared their opinion about that.

    #10 3 years ago
  11. viralshag

    @8, “Gamers don’t commission games” will be the come back you get to that one…

    I’m just amazed there are people out there happy to tell others they’re wrong for complaining because bending over and taking it up the arse is a much better approach.

    Like people said, they’re not changing the ending, just expanding it. So people who liked the ending can completely ignore this and others that didn’t like it get something new. What’s there to complain about in that?

    #11 3 years ago
  12. Deacon

    ‘taking it up the arse’? that’s a bit much wot?

    Since when has life ever turned out exactly as expected/promised?

    And what for those that LOVED the ending, and don’t something tacked on? If I loved the franchise then I would feel that I MUST have this new DLC, despite perhaps not wanting it. Then I might prefer the way it was left originally – but aarrgghh I can’t undo seeing the additional content! Time to start up another petition. Thanks Bioware for ruining the ‘extra’ ending which has now in turn ruined a game that otherwise I enjoyed very much.

    Where does it all end? Ridiculous.

    #12 3 years ago
  13. albo88

    this have been planed by EA long time ago
    the petition is just to clean your ass
    its a payed DLC god dam it open your eyes
    ill not pay extra just to see some behind the screen of ending fuck off

    #13 3 years ago
  14. YoungZer0

    @12: No, you don’t. Just don’t download it. What’s the problem? Nobody is forcing you.

    Is it really too much to ask to use your own brain? Are you such a lemming?

    #14 3 years ago
  15. back_up

    wat else do we expect from PC gamers
    petition all the day at every developers official forums LMAO

    #15 3 years ago
  16. Electric Leo

    @Deacon

    “Petitioning to stop dev ‘x’ from changing the hairstyle of your favourite videogame character. I suspect such cases have already occurred.”

    It has. The furor around DMC, the Devil May Cry game, was exactly that.

    #16 3 years ago
  17. Joe Musashi

    Taking it up the arse?

    Good grief. Gamers really turn the melodrama up to eleven on things don’t they?

    Gamers are not victims. Nobody forced you to buy the game. Nobody is obliged to change it to make you feel better about your purchasing decision.

    JM

    #17 3 years ago
  18. The_Red

    Actually fans do have a right to do that… BUT… And it’s a BIG BUUUTTT. The artists also have the right to stand by their creations and decisions and not submit to the popular demand / petition.

    #18 3 years ago
  19. YoungZer0

    @17: How were we supposed to know that the game would end this badly? Nothing even hinted at it.

    #19 3 years ago
  20. Deacon

    @14 – but realistically, even those happy with the ending are likely to grab the new FREE DLC.

    My point was that in the views of the rabid fanboys/girls this may cause the same problem again, and again and again until the devs have the courage to just say no.

    @16 – I wasn’t sure if that ever made it to a petition, but should’ve guessed that it would.

    Things like that make me want to not be associated with gaming at all.

    #20 3 years ago
  21. albo88

    @ #15 back_up LMAO how do you even have face to talk lol you nerds did a big cry petition to SQUARE ENIX to not release final fantasy on xbox 360 who will even forget that shit hahahahahaha

    #21 3 years ago
  22. Joe Musashi

    @19 Read a proper review, perhaps?

    JM

    #22 3 years ago
  23. Deacon

    @22 – BOOM. There it is.

    #23 3 years ago
  24. YoungZer0

    @20: No. Just don’t download it. It’s called having principals.

    Please don’t act like Bioware delivered an actual ending here. The ending was confusing and didn’t make any sense. The Indoctrination Theory people want to believe is also bullshit. Why would a developer do such a thing?

    Nobody wanted a twist ending. Not a single soul. We wanted the series to end. With or without Shepard dying. Pulling a Deus Ex Machina at the end of such a series is just fucking stupid. If Bioware had any brains they’d know that this backlash was coming. You just don’t end the series like that, especially when you planned a trilogy all along.

    @22: Are you fucking serious? Have you ever read a review in your life? Because reviews don’t include the ending.

    #24 3 years ago
  25. Deacon

    many many series, trilogies and whatnot have ended on ambiguous endings.

    Why is it that gamers MUST HAVE ALL TEH ANSWERS or WE’VE BEEN MUGGED OFF all of a sudden?

    I’d rather everything wasn’t laid out in front of my like a fucking diagram to be honest. that’s just me though…

    And as JM said, most of the people here are surely the type of people to read a few reviews on games they are likely to buy. And I would’ve thought that most have their own trusted or at least respected sites where they read such reviews?

    With that being the case, how on earth have so many people been completely blind-sided by this?

    Buying a game based solely on the strength of its predecessors is not a good reason at all.

    #25 3 years ago
  26. YoungZer0

    @25: Because in the last 5 min. the game throws everything we know out of the window and gives us 3 solutions. Everything we knew, everything we did, didn’t matter anymore. The peace treaty between the Quarians and the Geth? Doesn’t matter, you don’t even see their fleet in the last cutscene. What did your love-interest do before it all ended? Doesn’t matter. What about Garrus, what’s he going to do after all this is over? Doesn’t matter.

    Why were the relays destroyed? Should the system die with it? The explosion did nothing to the people, so why was Joker flying away from it? Why was Garrus or Liara on the ship? Weren’t they still on earth? You can’t show me all those scenes and then expect me to eat it all up. They leave more questions than answers. If you leave only questions, then what’s the point of the series? Mass Effect was never one of those series where certain plots were left to the imagination.

    And as i said before, reviews usually never talk about the ending of a game. Matter of fact, not a single game mentioned it. How could they? So to say that you should read reviews is just a stupid comment.

    Most game sites get a list of things they can’t mention in their reviews, you can guess what was on the list for Mass Effect 3.

    #26 3 years ago
  27. Deacon

    You’re right on the decision aspect. That’s fucked. Bioware should’ve taken the time to construct properly varied endings.

    I still don’t think they have to explain everything in the final scene though.

    #27 3 years ago
  28. viralshag

    @12 & 17, Haha, getting all in a tizzy over the line “taking it up the arse”? But it’s totally not melodramatic to call people “whiny bitches” and such, or claim how all these people are “self entitled” gamers. Say what?

    Who says they are victims? And who says we were forced to buy the game? I fail to see what that has to do with anything?

    I paid for something and so I am more than entitled to an opinion on what I thought of it. It just so happens that my opinion seems to be the same as many other people.

    Some of you are going on like people will lose their jobs over trying to make their fans happy. It doesn’t have any effect whatsoever on those that were happy with the ending. So I really have no idea what your problem is.

    @27, People are not asking for everything to be explained. Like #26 has said, it should at a minimum make sense. It shouldn’t just be a set of random clips thrown together with no explanation or point at all.

    #28 3 years ago
  29. YoungZer0

    @27: Then why don’t you explain it to me? I’m so terribly confused. The biggest fuck-up is still the destruction of the relays. There was no purpose for that.

    #29 3 years ago
  30. Phoenixblight

    @28

    This is not going to make people that wanted a new ending happy. Bioware has stated the endings are staying the same. They are just giving closure with the ending by expanding upon them.

    #30 3 years ago
  31. Joe Musashi

    @24 No. A good reviewer will have played the game in full and conveyed good or bad points about the game in their review. That doesn’t mean explicitly giving away the details of the ending. But if the ending is likely to disappoint then that element should be part of a review. Particularly of a review of a plot-heavy game. Particularly a review of an entry believed to give closure to key plot points in a game.

    A good reviewer will do all of that.

    JM

    #31 3 years ago
  32. viralshag

    @31, So it would have been better for people to not buy a generally superb game based on a review that says something along the lines of “my only problem with this game is that the final 10 minutes do not offer much in the way of closure to the story and in general, is not a very good ending.”

    #32 3 years ago
  33. DSB

    Making a petition is just a more organized form of heckling. I don’t see how anyone can expect to be excluded from that.

    When you work with expression, you can expect people to have an opinion about it, and some of those opinions are going to be negative.

    I think Bioware just dug a deeper hole by trying to seem like they actually gave a shit to begin with. Their hearts obviously weren’t in it, but since they tried to pass themselves off as that kind of company, they’ll have to give people what they want.

    Simply ignoring the audience they claim to care for, would just ensure that the ending would be the real story every time they released DLC that failed to aknowledge it.

    #33 3 years ago
  34. Phoenixblight

    @33

    They are still “the real story” Bioware is not changing them they are only expanding upon like an epilogue of a book. The petition did nothing other than Have Bioware create DLC that adds more salt to the wound for them.

    #34 3 years ago
  35. DSB

    @34 Uhuh, making Bioware change the focus of their DLC must be a real defeat for a bunch of guys who took 5 minutes to set up a petition like that.

    They sure showed them!

    #35 3 years ago
  36. Phoenixblight

    @35

    THe petition wanted Bioware to create a new ending Bioware is not doing that they are accepting the original endings as part of the game but giving closure for those endings. It does actually show them, “No new ending for you!”

    #36 3 years ago
  37. DSB

    @36 If you really want to believe that, I guess you can.

    Personally I’d say redefining your content based on pressure from your audience is more like biting a pillow, than digging your heels in.

    #37 3 years ago
  38. TheWulf

    Sigh.

    I don’t agree with the commission notion because there are a lot of people involved in this ‘commission’ and not everyone wants the same thing. In some ways, I actually agree that no-talent hacks commissioning artists to change their style is really detrimental to art direction.

    Let’s look at the evidence.

    Diablo III is currently a dog’s dinner due to a lack of solid leadership in art direction. The guy responsible resigned, and they had to look for a new art director, not to mention a bunch of senior 3D artists who followed his lead. This is because Blizzard put pressure upon them to roll with populist appeal instead of doing what they’re good at.

    Because of this, every Diablo III trailer I see seems to have a degree of artistic dissociative personality disorder – it’s like they can’t decide whether they want the game to be quaint and colourful, or grim and gritty. And you have screenshots that look like they’re from another game entirely, and critters that don’t fit the atmosphere of the backdrop.

    I’m personally attuned to this, I can’t help but see it. I’m a very artistic person, too, so I can tell when something has been ruined due to the artist not knowing what they wanted to do.

    Another instance of this is The Witcher II. Originally Geralt had a brilliant look to him – he was gruff, a little ugly, and perfectly within how the books describe him. Their artists were pleased, and I was pleased, it was a happy time for all. That is until the fucking public decided to air their idiocy for all to see, and then it went to shit.

    People demanded that they make him look less gruff, less ugly, less old, and like the kind of DASHING UBERMENSCH THAT THEY ALWAYS WISHED THEY COULD BE IN THEIR WET DREAMS BUT ACTUALLY AREN’T. Because characters can’t be ugly or odd-looking, no, they all have to subscribe to what the straight, white male believes to be ‘handsome.’ Which, in my opinion, is absolutely fucking grotesque in its desire to chase perfection.

    People who don’t know anything about another field, who speak up about that field, are idiots. They’re idiots due to their lack of knowing. And it ruins shit. It invariably ruins shit. But more importantly… it ruins it for everyone else. There’s no empathy about that, either.

    What really irritated me about the CD Projekt RED decision though is not only did it alienate the fans of their correct Geralt, but it pissed off their own artists too. If one of them had asked “SHALL WE THROW THE TITANIC IN HERE TOO JUST BECAUSE THAT’S POPULAR?!” then I would honestly not have blamed them at all.

    I sympathise. I empathise. To have someone fuck up your art like that… it’s an abomination.

    So they had this great depiction of Geralt that they binned in favour of HANDSOME GERALT, THE REAL MAN’S MAN. And when I think of this, I honestly just want to find and punch every person responsible, because they deserve it. Again, stupid people are stupid, because they’re talking outside of their fields of knowledge, and they don’t realise how much their bitching and whining ruins things.

    And when it does, I feel for the artists.

    It doesn’t matter how I feel about the development house or the publisher, because these are real people involved. And when I can see the art suffering just to please the fans, it just makes my skin crawl. And you can just tell that the game would have been so, so much better if they’d ignored their fans and just created the game that they wanted to, rather than–again–doing the populist thing.

    I think this is why we have things like KickStarter now, because that way they don’t NEED to take your advice on board. If it’s good advice that they agree with, sure. If it makes sense, yes. But if you’re bitching just because something doesn’t fit your subjective view of beauty, perfection, or whatever else, then they can tell you to, quite frankly, STFU. And it would be well deserved. Rightly so, honestly.

    Some people do need to just STFU.

    You frequently have those who step above their station, and demand that things be changed just to suit them. I mean, I’ve given constructive criticism before, but I have never and WILL NEVER demand that a game be changed to suit me. I’ll just dislike that game and move on with my life, but I won’t say that they OWE IT TO ME to change the game, because that would just be self-entitlement of gross degrees.

    There are undoubtedly some home truths here which are going to give people knee jerk reactions. But if you are going to have a super-defensive knee jerk reaction, then think about WHY that is. Consider WHY you’re feeling so defensive. There’s definitely a strong sense of truth to what I’m saying here.

    You know it. I know it. They know it.

    Yes, constructive criticism is helpful. But in regards to art… sometimes I think that the less artists listen to us gamers, the better off they’ll be.

    #38 3 years ago
  39. DSB

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lithium_(medication)

    #39 3 years ago
  40. Edo

    Newman!! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k9_8YxDQYCo .

    #40 3 years ago
  41. OrbitMonkey

    Man I can’t wait to play Mass Effect 3, just to see what all the fuss is about ;-)

    #41 3 years ago
  42. LOLshock94

    @41 games shite buy it pre owned

    #42 3 years ago
  43. LOLshock92

    Bioware is a business, it should respond to its consumers.

    #43 3 years ago
  44. LOLshock94

    a business that was once known for “caring about its fans” lul

    #44 3 years ago
  45. YoungZer0

    @31: Tough talk. Now show me a reviewer who mentioned that. Doesn’t exist.

    @38: No you got something confused there.

    Before the Fans outcry he looked pretty handsome. If anything they made him uglier.

    #45 3 years ago
  46. Ireland Michael

    James Cameron says hi, Newman.

    The irony. Oh, the irony.

    #46 3 years ago
  47. absolutezero

    Fuck I was just about to mention Aliens different endings.

    I love it when developers change gameplay all the time with various patches and fixes and balancing and what not. None of that is art apparently so its alright to change all of it.

    Story however is set in stone to moment it was created and must not be touched once it has been released.

    For that would be messing with ART.

    #47 3 years ago
  48. Gekidami

    Yeah, movies get changed quite often due to focus group reaction. I Am Legend comes to mind, the whole film builds up to the original ending, yet it was judged too negative (or something) by test audiences so they changed it which as a result made other parts of the movie lose their meaning. Luckily the ending that doesnt suck came on the bluray/DVD.

    #48 3 years ago
  49. DSB

    Blade Runner is the best example of it in my opinion.

    Watching the “original” version makes me cringe. It’s really bad. The director’s cut made it a classic.

    #49 3 years ago
  50. Phoenixblight

    @48,49

    THose are two prime examples of what happens when you want to pander to the audience too much you ruin a great movie because you listened to closely to what the audience want. THats the trick of being a great director and writer is giving to the audience what they want before they know it.

    #50 3 years ago
  51. DSB

    @50 I don’t see how you can say that it’s “what the audience wanted”. The audience was never given the choice.

    It was focus groups that lead the studio to override Ridley Scott in the first place, and it was yet another focus group that lead them to go back on that in 1990.

    They weren’t even thorough focus groups. According to Wikipedia they were done in Texas and Colorado. They also like Larry the Cable Guy.

    If anything, it’s an example of what happens when executives get to call the shots on content instead of the artists themselves.

    Other than that I agree that creative works aren’t a democracy. But a creative that doesn’t consider his audience is likely to go hungry.

    #51 3 years ago
  52. Phoenixblight

    @51

    Uh you talking about ALiens? THats not Ridley Scott but James Cameron.

    #52 3 years ago
  53. DSB

    @52 Nah, Blade Runner.

    What happened with Aliens? I liked those movies.

    #53 3 years ago
  54. Phoenixblight

    Same thing. Yes in that case it is the exec pandering to the audience but when you are borrowing money from movie production companies you can’t say no that is unles you don’t want to work.

    #54 3 years ago
  55. LOLshock92

    Oh, Aliens. Nevermind.

    #55 3 years ago
  56. LOLshock94

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    #56 3 years ago
  57. Henry

    Bioware created HUGE plotholes in ME’s story by ME3′s ending.

    If in this “Colonial Marines” game alien blood is harmless to human body (without explanation), a normal punch can kill an alien (without explanation), you might also see your petition, Newman.

    #57 3 years ago
  58. unacomn

    I agree, it’s working as intended. Screw patches and updates!

    #58 3 years ago
  59. sh4dow

    what a giant douchebag. i hate people who want to restrict other’s freedom of speech.

    i may not agree with people complaining but it IS their damn right and it should always be!

    #59 3 years ago
  60. Hybridpsycho

    @59

    Just as it is his right to complain that people think they can decide what the artist make. You have to understand that when it comes to creativity you want to make it YOUR way and release it like that. If you want to be a crowd pleaser you can be just that.
    But I can still understand why he’s upset that people petition them to change stuff they created, a petition could actually force him to do it ’cause of his higher-ups.

    On the Internet, Everyone’s a Critic

    #60 3 years ago
  61. DSB

    @60 Well, if we’re pushing blame, then rightfully it would belong to that publisher who fails to stand by the game he produced.

    If you look at something like reporting, there’s nothing lower than an editor who fails to back a writer. It doesn’t matter if people make a million petitions, you simply don’t back down because of a difference of opinion. An editor like that would be frozen out as the scum he really is (maybe not in games journalism, but that stuff is dirty).

    A petition only means as much as those people let it. It’s not like they’re running for office, and in EAs case, it’s not like they have any good faith to lose.

    If you choose to take it word for word, the guy is obviously wrong. People do have every right to start any kind of petition they want. Just like developers have every right to tell them to go shove it if that’s their inclination. Free world and what not.

    #61 3 years ago

Comments are now closed on this article.

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