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WildStar: Jeremy Gaffney Stepping Down as Carbine President

SBFordSBFord Associate Editor - News ManagerThe Land of AZPosts: 16,632MMORPG.COM Staff Uncommon

In a new and lengthy post on the Wildstar forums, Carbine Studios' Jeremy Gaffney has announced that he is stepping down as the company's president and will be taking on more of an advisory position within the studio and, as he says, perhaps elsewhere in the industry at a later point.

I have a personal “no bullshit” policy (which I think I’ve infused Carbine with as well), so let me give some context here without getting too personal. 

“Focusing on family” is most often, in my opinion, a horseshit excuse you hear from executive types (usually departing with a forcible shove). 

In my case, it is part of my reason for stepping down - through 2013, my wife and I lost six members of our families to various reasons – mostly cancer. I myself was diagnosed at the end of last year with a fatal-if-untreated form of skin cancer.  I had let it go untreated/undiagnosed for over 9 months while focusing on work instead. I dodged a bullet; surgery was successful and I’m cancer-free - but (if you ever go through anything similar you’ll know) that’s a hell of a wake-up call.

Read the full post on the WildStar forum.

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Follow me on Twitter: @MMORPGMom

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Comments

  • waxmaskwaxmask HelmondPosts: 52Member Uncommon
    You can give any reason. Even excusing beforehand for the comming cliche. Still sounds alot like "Take tha moneh and run!" 
  • serreniteiserrenitei Pittsburgh, PAPosts: 17Member
    Really?  The guy had cancer, ignored it for 9 months to get Wildstar out the door, lost 6 family member over the course of 9 months, and you are calling him greedy?  Really, what kind of heartless person does that? 
  • SBFordSBFord Associate Editor - News Manager The Land of AZPosts: 16,632MMORPG.COM Staff Uncommon
    Originally posted by waxmask
    You can give any reason. Even excusing beforehand for the comming cliche. Still sounds alot like "Take tha moneh and run!" 

    It's astonishing someone would even think, let alone say, such a thing. After your first close call health-wise (and it'll happen sooner or later), you'll rethink that callousness.

    As a cancer survivor myself, all I can say is, "Godspeed, Mr. Gaffney. Congrats on taking time for what truly matters in this life."

     

    Associate Editor: MMORPG.com
    Follow me on Twitter: @MMORPGMom

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  • BarCrowBarCrow Tampa, FLPosts: 2,212Member
    Originally posted by serrenitei
    Really?  The guy had cancer, ignored it for 9 months to get Wildstar out the door, lost 6 family member over the course of 9 months, and you are calling him greedy?  Really, what kind of heartless person does that? 

    You have to have had a heart at one time to have less of one at any point later.

     

    The man did a job under such duress that would have likely driven many a person to put a bullet to the brain.

    I commend him and wish him and his family the best of times ahead.

  • AmbrosiaAmorAmbrosiaAmor Miami, FLPosts: 915Member
    Godspeed Mr. Gaffney.

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  • jircrisjircris bakersfield, CAPosts: 411Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by SBFord
    Originally posted by waxmask
    You can give any reason. Even excusing beforehand for the comming cliche. Still sounds alot like "Take tha moneh and run!" 

    It's astonishing someone would even think, let alone say, such a thing. After your first close call health-wise (and it'll happen sooner or later), you'll rethink that callousness.

    As a cancer survivor myself, all I can say is, "Godspeed, Mr. Gaffney. Congrats on taking time for what truly matters in this life."

     

    You of all people should know how many heartless members there are on this web sight, i for one give the guy props. he not only stuck to his job but managed to get rid of the cancer before it got bad. Though treating it first would have been smart in his line of work that close to a deadline there is no time off.

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  • SiphaedSiphaed Everywhere!Posts: 877Member Uncommon

    I'm completely shocked that he stuck it out 9 months through the launch of the game while completely ignoring the issue.  It's rather shameful that he didn't put any consideration towards his own health or his family's concerns about him; the stress on his wife must have be overwhelming to her. 

    This isn't just a good decision, it's a necessary one that is long past due.  I only applaud him on not working himself to death in the most literal term possible. 


  • Br3akingDawnBr3akingDawn a City, CAPosts: 1,357Member Uncommon
    Now that carbine is gonna have a new president, does that mean Wildstar is gonna have a new sense of direction? Maybe F2P or even maybe some sort of cash shop?

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  • PioneerStewPioneerStew londonPosts: 874Member
    Originally posted by Br3akingDawn
    Now that carbine is gonna have a new president, does that mean Wildstar is gonna have a new sense of direction? Maybe F2P or even maybe some sort of cash shop?

    I said this in another thread on the subject having not noticed there was an official one:- 

    Sounds like a terrible year and I wish him well. 

    However, the telling parts of the posts are these: -

    "having one less strong opinion in the mix can be a good thing too"

    "it’s important that the folks here coordinate together around a single vision to move forward"

    "working with NCSOFT and Carbine" (note the order). 

    In response to your post I think there could well be a change in direction and it is most likely coming from NCSoft. 

  • BukkerzBukkerz ShropshirePosts: 139Member

    I think that it must be very difficult indeed to have to cope with emotional issues at home and give your full concentration to any project. 

    Wildstar was a behemoth of an idea and in my opinion 'should' be more popular than what is being perceived at the minute. I am still subscribed to the game and think that it's combat mechanics are intuitively brilliant and the story, wit and scope for the game going forward could be huge...

    But ... I live in Europe and from my perspective if you were not a forum junky you would not know about this game. No advertising or anything. I think the opposite of many and think that in real terms there was no hype at all which means that there must have been very little funds available to promote this game on a large scale and that word of mouth is not good enough.

    I can certainly imagine that Jeremy's stress levels would and could become catastrophic ... and he must be extremely frustrated. I would be.

    ...Heck I am frustrated that the marketing for what is a gem of a game has been such a damp squib. Completely crap.

    I watched many of Jeremy's videos and you could feel the passion for the game. I don't for one minute think that the stress would come from the talented development studio but almost certainly from some unimaginative suit somewhere.

    The game may well of cost $100.000 dollars but probably 'should' of cost more to get 'everyone' knowing about it and playing. I also think that the June launch window was flawed .... right before the Summer Holidays ....genius

    Can't imagine this being Jeremy's idea.

    If I was Ncsoft / Carbine I would not let this chap go....at least not for a while, though certainly give him a huge break. So for me by his departure demonstrates a less than happy camper who with the mountain of health dilemma's to cope with along with having to deal with some retarded marketing policy has just had to say NO !!!

    Also nobody leaves a life project if is blossoming ... the best remedy for well being and health is success.

    This will cost the game in my opinion. 

  • CandyCaneNJCandyCaneNJ Kendall Park, NJPosts: 184Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by waxmask
    You can give any reason. Even excusing beforehand for the comming cliche. Still sounds alot like "Take tha moneh and run!" 

     

    You must be out of your mind. My twin sister died from Breast cancer that returned and spread in her body. That girl suffered and so did we. Cancer is the worst thing possible.

    Mr. Gaffney is blessed he did indeed dodge that bullet. I wish him and his family the best of health

    HP ENVY TouchSmart Sleekbook
    4th Gen i7-4700MQ processor 2.4 GHZ-3.4 GHZ
    8GB Ram

  • WightyWighty Westbury, NYPosts: 665Member Uncommon
    I can swear I saw Stephen Frost as a barista in Starbucks.

    What are your other Hobbies?

    Gaming is Dirt Cheap compared to this...

  • DMKanoDMKano Gamercentral, AKPosts: 8,548Member Uncommon

    IMO there's a lot more to this than medical reasons.

    My opinion below:

    If WS was doing great financially and grown the playerbase - he wouldn't be stepping down, as I don't think that this is his decision.

    The real story is that the game underperformed, NCSoft execs didn't give him much choice but let him "step down" , which as a president means - getting canned.

    Again just my opinion.

     

  • PioneerStewPioneerStew londonPosts: 874Member
    Originally posted by DMKano

    IMO there's a lot more to this than medical reasons.

    My opinion below:

    If WS was doing great financially and grown the playerbase - he wouldn't be stepping down, as I don't think that this is his decision.

    The real story is that the game underperformed, NCSoft execs didn't give him much choice but let him "step down" , which as a president means - getting canned.

    Again just my opinion.

     

    For me the wording in the second half of his note confirms this.  It seems quite clear that NCSoft has stepped in.  

  • rodingorodingo Posts: 2,346Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by DMKano

    IMO there's a lot more to this than medical reasons.

    My opinion below:

    If WS was doing great financially and grown the playerbase - he wouldn't be stepping down, as I don't think that this is his decision.

    The real story is that the game underperformed, NCSoft execs didn't give him much choice but let him "step down" , which as a president means - getting canned.

    Again just my opinion.

     

    I understand that's your opinion, but why not just accept what he said at face value?  Just stop and think that it is indeed possible that his physical health and life decisions have nothing to do with the health of WS.  There is a time to constantly state negative theories  about a game, and there is a time to just STFU and wish someone well.

    "If I offended you, you needed it" -Corey Taylor

  • DMKanoDMKano Gamercentral, AKPosts: 8,548Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by rodingo
    Originally posted by DMKano

    IMO there's a lot more to this than medical reasons.

    My opinion below:

    If WS was doing great financially and grown the playerbase - he wouldn't be stepping down, as I don't think that this is his decision.

    The real story is that the game underperformed, NCSoft execs didn't give him much choice but let him "step down" , which as a president means - getting canned.

    Again just my opinion.

     

    I understand that's your opinion, but why not just accept what he said at face value? 

    Because I am not buying it - my spidey sense is tingling and it's just not adding up. Am I not allowed to have a different opinion?

    Also read this "In my case, it is part of my reason for stepping down"

    So - he admits that family/health is a part of the reason - it's not THE reason, which again is exactly what he hints in the sentence previous to it - he was given a nudge by the execs.

     

    Just stop and think that it is indeed possible that his physical health and life decisions have nothing to do with the health of WS.

    It's entirely possible - which is why I said it's my opinion.

      There is a time to constantly state negative theories  about a game, and there is a time to just STFU and wish someone well.

    Where did I say that I don't wish him well? You're putting words in my mouth.

    I wish him all the best and I hope that nobody has to suffer the misfortune that he and his family is going through.

    My theory is not negative - if you see it that way - that is YOUR judgement and your label.

    Execs firing presidents due to poor performance happens all the time - it's not negative - it's reality. Big business is ruthless, especially when there's millions of dollars involved.

     

     

     

     

  • Solar_ProphetSolar_Prophet Columbus, OHPosts: 878Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by PioneerStew
    Originally posted by DMKano

    IMO there's a lot more to this than medical reasons.

    My opinion below:

    If WS was doing great financially and grown the playerbase - he wouldn't be stepping down, as I don't think that this is his decision.

    The real story is that the game underperformed, NCSoft execs didn't give him much choice but let him "step down" , which as a president means - getting canned.

    Again just my opinion.

     

    For me the wording in the second half of his note confirms this.  It seems quite clear that NCSoft has stepped in.  

    Unfortunately, this seems to be the case, at least in part.

    I've always maintained that, given their track record in regard to the treatment of western developers, you'd have to be completely out of your f**king mind to willingly work with NCSoft on anything. Carbine made a deal with the devil, and now the payment has come due... plus a sh*tload of stuff in the fine print they probably missed.

    For the sake of the people who enjoy the game, and those who worked hard on it, I hope things turn out well. I must admit that I don't see much in the way of lollipops and sunshine headed Wildstar's way however, but I tend to be fairly pessimistic and cynical about such things.

    Godspeed and good luck, Jeremy. I hope things work out.

    AN' DERE AIN'T NO SUCH FING AS ENUFF DAKKA, YA GROT! Enuff'z more than ya got an' less than too much an' there ain't no such fing as too much dakka. Say dere is, and me Squiggoff'z eatin' tonight!

  • LobotomistLobotomist ZagrebPosts: 5,055Member Uncommon

    The price those people pay for going trough publishing MMO is insane.

    Its so life wrecking that the Bioware doctors, after publishing numerous games, selling their company for huge amount, becoming top people at EA - decided to leave the business alltogether after launching SWTOR.

    And I think this is pretty much reflecting in industry and less and less people and companies want to have anything to do with MMOs

     

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  • DestaiDestai Detroit, MIPosts: 574Member
    He will be missed. He definitely brought a fresh perspective to the genre as well as humor. I hope he finds what he's looking for.
  • MyownGodMyownGod SydneyPosts: 205Member
    All I can say is this guy is very down to earth it seems.
  • HokieHokie Vancouver Wa.Posts: 1,063Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by SBFord
    Originally posted by waxmask
    You can give any reason. Even excusing beforehand for the comming cliche. Still sounds alot like "Take tha moneh and run!" 

    It's astonishing someone would even think, let alone say, such a thing. After your first close call health-wise (and it'll happen sooner or later), you'll rethink that callousness.

    As a cancer survivor myself, all I can say is, "Godspeed, Mr. Gaffney. Congrats on taking time for what truly matters in this life."

     

    I dont know Suzie I dont think waxmask is being callous.

    Jeremys statements actually came off as very dickish to me. He even says hes going to make it personal (well just a little personal) to others in the industry, or for that matter to anyone in any high-stress job, who've stepped down because of health reasons, or personal and or family issues, and then more or less calls them "pussys" for stepping down for those reasons.

    And then he goes and does what I feel like is scoreboarding his tragedies. I truly am happy he is a cancer survivor and Im sorry for his losses. Im one of these people who doesnt have any real animosity or ill will towards others.

    But he comes off as very condescending and unsympathetic to others who have had to step down for whatever reasons. Which Im sure more than some are legitimate "Ive forgot I had a family because my life became about nothing but work." I know because Ive seen it happen to someone close.

    So in retrospect I suggest you reread what you quote-boxed and see if maybe what waxmask said isnt meant to be callous, but maybe more inline with the image that Jeremy presented himself as. As some who has to justify and validate his leaving.

     

    Maybe Im being overly sensitive I dont know. But Ive seen firsthand that sometimes people realize too late that family is the most important thing. And I think some people here are smart enough to know what that means, and I dont need to scoreboard. So really in retro-spec, fuck that guy.

    "I understand that if I hear any more words come pouring out of your **** mouth, Ill have to eat every fucking chicken in this room."

  • redcoreredcore dublinPosts: 40Member

    i am not buying this...cancer is not the reason for stepping down.

    cancer WOULD be the reason if he would NOT ignore it for 9 months - (facepalm).

    the reason is something else. i still wish him all the best.

  • ShodanasShodanas PatrasPosts: 896Member Uncommon

    I hope that everything goes well for him. Cancer is nothing to fool around with. 

     

    As for people claiming that he was forced to step down, we have no means to know this and personally i do not believe so. However, i do believe that NCsoft will step in and take charge of everything Wildstar related. They pushed a lot of money into this project and they won't let it crash and burn.

     
  • XarkoXarko Hradec KralovePosts: 394Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by DMKano
    Originally posted by rodingo
    Originally posted by DMKano

    IMO there's a lot more to this than medical reasons.

    My opinion below:

    If WS was doing great financially and grown the playerbase - he wouldn't be stepping down, as I don't think that this is his decision.

    The real story is that the game underperformed, NCSoft execs didn't give him much choice but let him "step down" , which as a president means - getting canned.

    Again just my opinion.

     

    I understand that's your opinion, but why not just accept what he said at face value? 

    Because I am not buying it - my spidey sense is tingling and it's just not adding up. Am I not allowed to have a different opinion?

    Also read this "In my case, it is part of my reason for stepping down"

    So - he admits that family/health is a part of the reason - it's not THE reason, which again is exactly what he hints in the sentence previous to it - he was given a nudge by the execs.

     

    Just stop and think that it is indeed possible that his physical health and life decisions have nothing to do with the health of WS.

    It's entirely possible - which is why I said it's my opinion.

      There is a time to constantly state negative theories  about a game, and there is a time to just STFU and wish someone well.

    Where did I say that I don't wish him well? You're putting words in my mouth.

    I wish him all the best and I hope that nobody has to suffer the misfortune that he and his family is going through.

    My theory is not negative - if you see it that way - that is YOUR judgement and your label.

    Execs firing presidents due to poor performance happens all the time - it's not negative - it's reality. Big business is ruthless, especially when there's millions of dollars involved.

     

     

     

     

    Word.

     

  • PioneerStewPioneerStew londonPosts: 874Member
    Originally posted by Shodanas

    I hope that everything goes well for him. Cancer is nothing to fool around with. 

     

    As for people claiming that he was forced to step down, we have no means to know this and personally i do not believe so. However, i do believe that NCsoft will step in and take charge of everything Wildstar related. They pushed a lot of money into this project and they won't let it crash and burn.

     

    I don't believe he was forced to step down.  I believe that NCSoft or elements within Carbine probably made it clear that a change in direction is necessary, and given that he has been the driving force behind the development to date, his position might prove untenable, or at least unpleasant to stomach.  Or maybe he realised this himself.  

    All of his note (apart from the health/ family issues) alludes to this.   

     

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