Denis Dyack video discusses past mistakes, debunks various allegations

Monday, 20th May 2013 08:24 GMT By Dave Cook

Silicon Knights founder Denis Dyack has published a video addressing complaints and allegations levied at the developer, discussing such areas as the poor quality of X-Men Destiny, and treatment of staff at the studio.

Now chief creative officer of Precursor Games, Dyack’s video is in response to a Kotaku article penned by Andrew McMillen that explored what was going on at Silicon Knights as the company faced collapse.

In the clip Dyack debates the sourcing of anonymous sources in articles, and breaks down the Kotaku article step-by-step.

Currently Dyack and Precursor Games have launched a Kickstarter campaign for Shadow of the Eternals, a spiritual successor to Eternal Darkness.

Check out the clip above and let us know what you think about Dyack’s reply below.

Thanks Game Informer.



  1. tupelo

    fsck it, I loved eternal darkness. I have made a drunken fool of myself many a time.. and friends/girlfriends always gave me another chance.

    I think I am going to give him one… ONE.

    Make a good game guys, wish you the best of luck.
    You have done it before.

    yeah, I will donate.

    and yes, I watched the whole video

    I spend more on camel wides and beer in a day.

    #1 2 years ago
  2. tezzer1985

    He should have done this video, ages ago. Not because he and Precursor games are finding it hard to get gamers to back their game.

    I respect his honesty, but it feels like damage control to me.

    #2 2 years ago
  3. tupelo

    It is damage control, you are right.
    Honestly, Eternal is the only game I have ever bought from them.
    I am mostly a pc gamer, even though I own almost every console ever made.
    started gaming in 78.

    If they can make a game like eternal.. fuck it.
    I love the rolling stones, but think mick is a bastard…
    but I still own the music (we will not bring up the newer stuff .. ok ;)

    I know that seemed like I was going off on a tangent there.. but just trying to make a drunken point that I could care less if the artist whoever is making something is a jackass.. well, if they are really huge pricks I will not deal with them. But, its not like I have to hang out with them.

    you know

    And for the drunken comment.. its only 3 in the morning here, not nine as it says. . . not that is any better!

    #3 2 years ago
  4. tezzer1985

    I agree, if the game is good, nothing else will matter.

    #4 2 years ago
  5. tupelo

    fucking right brother, if they deliver.. who gives a rats fuck what has went down in the past.
    sometimes, fucking up.. makes you a better person.
    they made a great game before. lets see if they can do it again.

    the sun will still rise tomorrow, a bit too early for me.

    #5 2 years ago
  6. Jerykk

    Not sure what this is supposed to accomplish. Dyack was president of SK. He was no doubt involved in the retarded decision to sue Epic, which was one of the reasons why the studio eventually folded. He’s the one that agreed to make a licensed game for Activision, which means he agreed to the absurdly low budget and short dev cycle too. He was the one who claimed Too Human would be great, then blamed the Unreal Engine and Epic when the game flopped due to lousy design choices that were completely unrelated to the engine.

    Also, how is it at all responsible to start a new company and promise people a new game when your previous company was shut down, still owes millions of dollars and has yet to file for bankruptcy? You can’t run a company into the ground and then expect people to trust you.

    Really, if Precursor Games wants Shadow of the Eternals to succeed, they need to get rid of Dyack. He’s essentially been blacklisted by both industry and players alike. Anything he’s involved in, regardless of what role he fills, will carry the stigma of SK’s downfall. He’s finished.

    #6 2 years ago
  7. The_Red

    If he had defended himself in time or at least responded to interview inquiries, yes, I could have believed him.

    When the SK was hemorrhaging devs left & right, X-Men Destiny came out and ED2 failed, he needed to defend himself, NOT when:
    - They have a new shell company comprised of nothing BUT ex-SK devs
    - Their new game showing the EXACT same two level church described in that article.
    - Their first semi-shady funding method on their site failed
    - Even their Kickstarter is suffering
    - (BONUS) Him claiming that they spend EXTRA from their own pocket on Activision’s project… WOW. Just… wow.

    Plus it was not JUST Kotaku’s writer. Many other sources inside the industry have hinted at similar problems at SK. Plus, there is Dyack’s own PUBLIC behavior in NeoGAF.

    #7 2 years ago
  8. SplatteredHouse

    Cites particular random source at the outset to negatively represent detractors (potentially cherry-picked from selection to be most dislikable to video viewership)
    SK: Do we need now to put a human face on the “monster” that is putting people off funding.
    Meeting with Acti: +2m dollars suggested to be added to XMD budget from SK…But then what does that say to the studio work quality/management, if they put extra monetary investment in, and the game still took an absolute critical pasting, and sank into obscurity shortly after release? What had occurred up to that point, that the publisher felt inclined to advise the team not to take that step?

    WITH TWO MILLION considered put in over the publisher set budget. Too Human, their least well-reviewed game prior, they managed to undershoot THAT (metacritic) with a project intended, to top that reaction, according Dyack’s comment in this clip. Is he incompetent? Over-promoted? What’s the deal.

    WAIT…Sometimes it doesn’t work out? WTF’s YOUR evidence, Denis? Where are your supporting statements. You cite MARVEL, Acti, and…Are you just hiding behind ambiguous, in this case, UNSOURCED platitudes, too? While trying to dispute press reports on a similar basis.

    A source. After only 20 minutes.
    21:20 response: “this is the most ridiculous…” Okay, let’s see your disputing of it then.

    Eh. There are parts of this rebuttal/explanation that sound credible, that seem to me authentic, but there are other parts that ring false, and I feel as if there’s in effect been attempt of defense by Jedi Mind Trick here. Again, he’s citing Nintendo to disprove claims about the relationship between Silicon Knights and what – they don’t have their buddies’ back even as much as to punch out an email?

    I believe, because in the main, Nintendo’s own track record has shown them to be supportive as a publisher (co-incidence that SK and Rare’s golden age was seen whilst they were developing for them?) that the N reverence is legit, but Nintendo – that nostalgia – no, away you, from my gaming heartstrings! :o

    Shawn Jackson gets wind of discord in the studio, of some insidious scheme by a select few to discredit the head of SK and paint the same in a (supposedly poor) certain kind of light – to what end – and reinforce those describing words, Shawn. Because you CARE. (like Dyack) I…Don’t know about this bit, it’s laid thick, but then again a camera’s on, there may be other production related considerations to explain why it seems unnatural.

    Any chance of reaching out to any of the independent (non-precursor) sources that are mentioned here, in support of Denis, to give them a voice, VG247?

    #8 2 years ago
  9. The_Red

    A quick question: If Kotaku is lying about the behind the scenes drama, THEN the true talents of Silicon Knights made X-Men D using… Which was horrible.

    He is basically saying the SK team (Who are now in Precursor games) are the people that can only make Too Human and X-Men Destiny. It was not the outside and fraudulent problems that ruined those games! It was team’s “talent”.

    #9 2 years ago
  10. SplatteredHouse

    That implication could surely be drawn from what’s been said.

    #10 2 years ago
  11. salarta

    I think it’s pretty obvious that the main reason Shadow of the Eternals isn’t doing as well as it could is because many people think they’re “punishing” Dyack by not chipping in for the game, nevermind everyone else on the team. It’s perfectly fine for people to not want to fund the game because they’re simply not interested, don’t trust in the Kickstarter model or any other number of reasons, especially if they found something that’s a problem that others haven’t noticed.

    But it seems like most people that talk about the game and aren’t funding it, are spending they’re time attacking the project solely because Dyack is involved in it. And that’s a shame, because it seems a lot of those people put up and even praise much worse material and behavior coming out of video game companies these days.

    #11 2 years ago
  12. karma

    #6 Jerkk – Dude thats cold.

    Even though I don’t play their games and likely won’t fund this KS, I can empathise with their predicament, because who knows what the future holds for any of us, tomorrow that could be me, or you… Nice to know that at least some folks are willing to give another chance.

    Besides Kotaku are notorious for putting up dubius, controversial articles for clicks.

    #12 2 years ago
  13. tupelo

    He may be a dick, I do not know the man.
    Hell, I love bob dylan, well his music.
    does not mean I have to like the guy.

    But then again, they are asking for OUR money.

    I would love to see them do well, a prick or not.

    The unreal engine jazz, seemed like total bullshit.
    but.. I am just a guy behind a fucking keyboard.
    what do I know.

    #13 2 years ago
  14. Joe_Gamer

    Much ado bout nuthin….

    First of all, Kotaku? I mean, I suppose there is a less credible website out there somewhere but I can’t think of one and I spend 12 hours a day mainlining teh-interwebs. Hell If it was Kotaku vs the “Hip Hop Gamer”…well, it’s a close call.

    Not that I care even if some of it were true, ripped off Activision? Fuck yeah. Told employees they were replaceable? Well guess what buttercup, you ain’t no special snowflake.

    The Business portion of video games is completely fucked up, people get treated like shit, cheated, abused, the people who do the work get almost none of the profit and even when everything goes right people still get fucked over.

    I wish weren’t so, I think it’s abhorrent that the leaders of our industry are not people who are passionate about games, making the games that they want, no. We have fucking suits, men like Pachter and Kotick in charge, Homogenizing and monetizing because to them games are just a product to be churned out.

    I’m pretty sure Denis Dyack isn’t solely responsible gaming’s ills. Oh and something about glass houses? Rocks? You know the spiel by now right?

    #14 2 years ago

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