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Chris Avellone: The Final Frontier

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If that actually happened he should be talking to a lawyer, not to RPG codex. So either it didn't happen, or Feargus is evil and Avellone is a drooling moron.

”Ownership” = paper trail. There’s some stuff that you can get away with when you aren’t publicly traded, but there’s no way the State of California issued them a business license without knowing who the owners were.
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"Art and song are creations but so are weapons and lies"

"Our worst enemies are inventions of the mind. Pleasure. Fear. When we see them for what they are, we become unstoppable."

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If that actually happened he should be talking to a lawyer, not to RPG codex. So either it didn't happen, or Feargus is evil and Avellone is a drooling moron.

 

Law suits are expensive and can worsen all sides.

 

Whereas this has fixed everything right up? If it was this black and white I'd think Avellone could really take them to the cleaners.

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If that actually happened he should be talking to a lawyer, not to RPG codex. So either it didn't happen, or Feargus is evil and Avellone is a drooling moron.

 

Law suits are expensive and can worsen all sides.

 

Also at the beginning of all of this he said that at the time of his departure he had a lot of family issues, the most serious his mother battling with cancer. I think the last thing he wanted is a lengthy legal battle. Chris said that instead he worked like a madman to save enough money to be fully free from debts and Obsidian's grasp.


J_C from Codexia

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What is an owner in this scenario? I usually hear about people being made partner.

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If that actually happened he should be talking to a lawyer, not to RPG codex. So either it didn't happen, or Feargus is evil and Avellone is a drooling moron.

”Ownership” = paper trail. There’s some stuff that you can get away with when you aren’t publicly traded, but there’s no way the State of California issued them a business license without knowing who the owners were.

 

Yeah see I want to hear him explain exactly what he means when he says he was "deownered" against his will.

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What is an owner in this scenario? I usually hear about people being made partner.

”Partner” is a term usually used in the legal profession, specifically law firms. “Jones & Smith, Attorneys At Law”. If Henderson “‘makes Partner” then it becomes “Jones, Smith, & Henderson”. Edited by Achilles
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"Art and song are creations but so are weapons and lies"

"Our worst enemies are inventions of the mind. Pleasure. Fear. When we see them for what they are, we become unstoppable."

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If that actually happened he should be talking to a lawyer, not to RPG codex. So either it didn't happen, or Feargus is evil and Avellone is a drooling moron.

”Ownership” = paper trail. There’s some stuff that you can get away with when you aren’t publicly traded, but there’s no way the State of California issued them a business license without knowing who the owners were.

 

Yeah see I want to hear him explain exactly what he means when he says he was "deownered" against his will.
And without the knowledge/consent/approval of the other owners. Chris repeatedly rails against “the owners”. One potential read on that is that they were all tired of his crap and decided to vote him off the island. Edited by Achilles
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"Art and song are creations but so are weapons and lies"

"Our worst enemies are inventions of the mind. Pleasure. Fear. When we see them for what they are, we become unstoppable."

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If that actually happened he should be talking to a lawyer, not to RPG codex. So either it didn't happen, or Feargus is evil and Avellone is a drooling moron.

 

Law suits are expensive and can worsen all sides.

 

Also at the beginning of all of this he said that at the time of his departure he had a lot of family issues, the most serious his mother battling with cancer. I think the last thing he wanted is a lengthy legal battle. Chris said that instead he worked like a madman to save enough money to be fully free from debts and Obsidian's grasp.

 

That would explain why he wouldn't pursue legal action then. It doesn't explain why he wouldn't now. Although all the posting he's done in RPG codex would probably not serve him well in a legal battle.

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So, umm. What kinda ****ed up laws do you have in USA if you can just take away someone's owner stake from a company and not pay a dime for it. To me that just sounds ridicilous. Unless they faked his signature on some documents I'm pretty sure it couldn't be done here.


Hate the living, love the dead.

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So, umm. What kinda ****ed up laws do you have in USA if you can just take away someone's owner stake from a company and not pay a dime for it. To me that just sounds ridicilous. Unless they faked his signature on some documents I'm pretty sure it couldn't be done here.

If all the owners were against him, then he might not have had much of a choice. The offer to stick around to work around on Tyranny might have been a “we can’t fire you, but we sure would like you to quit” move.

"Art and song are creations but so are weapons and lies"

"Our worst enemies are inventions of the mind. Pleasure. Fear. When we see them for what they are, we become unstoppable."

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So, umm. What kinda ****ed up laws do you have in USA if you can just take away someone's owner stake from a company and not pay a dime for it. To me that just sounds ridicilous. Unless they faked his signature on some documents I'm pretty sure it couldn't be done here.

 

They can't take away an ownership stake necessarily, but they can remove him from his position. Ownership is separate from management. Look at what happened to Steve Jobs.

 

All of my information on this comes from the HBO series Silicon Valley.  :thumbsup:

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So, umm. What kinda ****ed up laws do you have in USA if you can just take away someone's owner stake from a company and not pay a dime for it. To me that just sounds ridicilous. Unless they faked his signature on some documents I'm pretty sure it couldn't be done here.

That's exactly why this story doesn't add up.

EDIT: Unless as some say above pretty much everyone hated him and voted him out with their combined controlling interest in the company. But in his story somehow Feargus (AKA Moloch the Devourer) can just magically make this happen on his own.

Edited by The Sharmat

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From the codex thread a fresh answer to a question to Chris

 

 

Chris, were you fired from Obsidian?

 

 

 

No – after raising some questions about company finances and other issues, Feargus de-ownered me (which I didn’t have a choice in) and then told, “but don’t worry, we’ll still allow you to work on Tyranny for us,” and my response was, “that’s okay, you can work on it by yourself.”

 

Before this seems unusual, de-ownering was actually a common threat tossed around, so it wasn’t specific to me – if any owner raised objections to events going on, the response was often, “you don’t sound like you want to be an owner anymore” and never addressed the actual issues being brought up.

 

Not surprisingly, this shift in being de-ownered coincided with taking place shortly before the first royalty payments from Eternity came in, which meant that the surviving owners got a much larger share with me de-ownered (I don’t mind that, as I didn’t want royalty payments from Eternity, but I don’t think the other owners deserved royalties, either, except maybe a set amount for Darren for the Backer portal work he put in – the team deserved all of it). It was a good business decision, but not good ethics.

Here, Chris seems to be much clearer in thought and wording.

Actually, I reckon this pretty much sums up where the thorn in his side is lodged.

Edited by IndiraLightfoot
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*** "The words of someone who feels ever more the ent among saplings when playing CRPGs" ***

 

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To deal with the 'new' stuff...

 

People will leave Obsidian soon, there's no doubt, it's inevitable. PoE2 is shipping, and people always leave after a product ships as contracts run out and it's a natural inflection point. There would be nothing unusual about that at all and it won't prove anything since people leave companies all the time. The person he's referring to as already left is presumably PoE2's producer, but for a 100+ person company I'd suspect you'd lose at least 1 person per month no matter how good you were, and that still gives an expectation of 8 years employment on average.

 

If Chris wants to sue, talking publicly is utterly moronic and any lawyer he's retained with his huge war chest would tell him so in no uncertain terms. Trying to get others to sue for him is unlikely to work and him ranting would be used against them if they relied on anything he said. Kudos to him though, he apparently went from in debt and struggling to having a massive war chest in... 2 years? 3?

 

The accusation that Obsidz used Tyranny money to work on other projects is likely true, just From A Certain Point Of View true. PoE2 and Tyranny use the same engine, improvements done to/ for one will almost inevitably be used in the other- that's the nature of using the same engine and indeed, much of the point in using the same engine. Tyranny would have benefited from work done on PoE1's engine as well.

 

The ownership thing is fishy, and another situation where there's obviously some sort of submerged rock we cannot see- it happening as Chris suggests seems utterly implausible, unless he wasn't a literal owner (~shareholder) and that was just a management label. I do feel compelled to point out: "I didn’t want royalty payments from Eternity" is again not consistent with him being desperately in debt and wanting out (I'd go so far as to say it's, and my god do I hate using this phrase unironically, virtue signalling given his comments about ethics). His work for FTL/ WL2 etc while still at Obsidian is also not consistent with claims of them not wanting him to ever work in RPGs again nor with trying to 'force' him to work on Tyranny as was suggested.

 

 

And regardless of his declarations with regards to "fighting evil",

 

Oh my god, Chris Avellone actually is my dad. I never knew.

 

(my dad wanted to reject a forced- on the employer, and very generous- severance package to keep 'fighting evil' even when he wanted to literally retire, and practically had to have a pen superglued to his fingers to get him to sign it)

 

MCA might be a good coworker, and a great writer. But he's coming out as a hypocrite now. If I recall correctly he did a seminar on the gaming industry for young designers last year. He made a very big deal out of never being negative about a former employer. And now he is being a giant ass. Not just against the upper management of Obsidian, but atleast indirectly against employees of Obsidian. Having a former coworker and for some people a friend, acting out like this is terrible.

 

Oh god yes. And dragging other people into it as well. Mostly though, the attitude that he's big enough to ignore his own rules and suggestions further indicates that it's extremely unlikely that Obsidian management was the sole problem.

 

 

I don't appreciate the way the Codexians treat my good friend Volo, so I've always stayed pretty far away from it.  :geek:

 

"Whaaat? We love him, and tell your friend that we miss him very much! :("

 

No.

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The accusation that Obsidz used Tyranny money to work on other projects is likely true, just From A Certain Point Of View true. PoE2 and Tyranny use the same engine, improvements done to/ for one will almost inevitably be used in the other- that's the nature of using the same engine and indeed, much of the point in using the same engine. Tyranny would have benefited from work done on PoE1's engine as well.

 

The ownership thing is fishy, and another situation where there's obviously some sort of submerged rock we cannot see- it happening as Chris suggests seems utterly implausible, unless he wasn't a literal owner (~shareholder) and that was just a management label. I do feel compelled to point out: "I didn’t want royalty payments from Eternity" is again not consistent with him being desperately in debt and wanting out (I'd go so far as to say it's, and my god do I hate using this phrase unironically, virtue signalling given his comments about ethics). His work for FTL/ WL2 etc while still at Obsidian is also not consistent with claims of them not wanting him to ever work in RPGs again nor with trying to 'force' him to work on Tyranny as was suggested.

 

 

MCA might be a good coworker, and a great writer. But he's coming out as a hypocrite now. If I recall correctly he did a seminar on the gaming industry for young designers last year. He made a very big deal out of never being negative about a former employer. And now he is being a giant ass. Not just against the upper management of Obsidian, but atleast indirectly against employees of Obsidian. Having a former coworker and for some people a friend, acting out like this is terrible.

 

Oh god yes. And dragging other people into it as well. Mostly though, the attitude that he's big enough to ignore his own rules and suggestions further indicates that it's extremely unlikely that Obsidian management was the sole problem.

 

 

Indeed. Behind all his smoke and mirrors, in a nut shell - Chris was forced off after making himself impossible.

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*** "The words of someone who feels ever more the ent among saplings when playing CRPGs" ***

 

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So, umm. What kinda ****ed up laws do you have in USA if you can just take away someone's owner stake from a company and not pay a dime for it. To me that just sounds ridicilous. Unless they faked his signature on some documents I'm pretty sure it couldn't be done here.

 

They can't take away an ownership stake necessarily, but they can remove him from his position. Ownership is separate from management. Look at what happened to Steve Jobs.

 

All of my information on this comes from the HBO series Silicon Valley.  :thumbsup:

 

 

I get all my information about criminal law from Law & Order.  We should open up a law firm based on our knowledge of television shows.  Sounds like Mr. Avellone needs some representation.

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"Console exclusive is such a harsh word." - Darque

"Console exclusive is two words Darque." - Nartwak (in response to Darque's observation)

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So it works right that? A company has the right to be unhetical and do terrible things about you and you must stay silent otherwise you are the bad guy?

 

Again slave mentality.

 

 

 

 You keep writing about "slave mentality". Avellone was in upper management at Obsidian and, apparently, had a falling out with others in upper management for reasons that we will never know.

 

 Obsidian, as an entity, said nothing bad about him when he left. If you think Obsidian started this, you are imagining things. If you think Obsidian is retaliating against Avellone, you are also imagining things.  The class struggle you seem to think is happening here is happening only in your head. In the real world, Avellone is venting his feelings of resentment in public. He is mostly hurting his own reputation and he is attempting to hurt his former co-workers. 

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Jesus Christ. Seeing people air their dirty laundry like this really makes me appreciate my boring life.

 

Can't he just moan about his previous employer to his mates over a couple of vodkas, like the rest of us?

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So, umm. What kinda ****ed up laws do you have in USA if you can just take away someone's owner stake from a company and not pay a dime for it. 

 

 Our laws don't allow that either. Conclusions about Avellone's 'de-ownering' at Obsidian are left as an exercise for the reader.

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So if he was an owner (and why the **** would everyone keep calling him one if he wasn't?) he had stock in the company. And if they shafted him out of stock... Well, it's just about as clear cut black-on-white as you can get in American corporate law. And he hasn't sued. It still isn't too late to sue. He allegedly has a huge chest of cash to sue with. 

 

Until he sues, this issue isn't as black-on-white as Avellone is claiming and I'm not buying his version of events on that front. 

 

Him being forced out of a management position? Sure, no problem believing that. But that isn't what he's claiming. 

 

Also, he quit. Unless I misremember completely, there are zero obligations to pay out severance packages to employees who choose to quit. I seem to remember it even being the norm not to. And I can't really say I'd consider it unethical for a company to choose not to pay a person who straight up says "I don't want to work with you guys anymore." 

 

MCA has made some verifiable claims too. He claimed someone quit from Obsidian "yesterday" which presumably means sometime in May. This person and others will come with added **** on Obsidian, unless I misread his comments. The only one I can think of who left recently is Katrina Garsten, but she left a month back or so and has had nothing but wonderful things to say about the company since. So... what's up with that? 

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Not all incorporated businesses issue stock. Since Obsidian is privately held, there’s no reason to assume that Chris (or anyone) has any.


"Art and song are creations but so are weapons and lies"

"Our worst enemies are inventions of the mind. Pleasure. Fear. When we see them for what they are, we become unstoppable."

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So no stake or shares and getting 'de-ownered' at the snap of a finger? Who the hell negotiated his contract?

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The sky had never seemed so sky, the world had never seemed so world.

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So no stake or shares and getting 'de-ownered' at the snap of a finger? Who the hell negotiated his contract?

A manifestation of Ravel.

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Not all incorporated businesses issue stock. Since Obsidian is privately held, there’s no reason to assume that Chris (or anyone) has any.

 

True, but it'd be weird for a company the size of Obsidian, which was co-founded by five different people who put their own money down as capital, to not issue internal shares to its owners. Like, really weird. 

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So it works right that? A company has the right to be unhetical and do terrible things about you and you must stay silent otherwise you are the bad guy?

 

Again slave mentality.

 

 

 

 You keep writing about "slave mentality". Avellone was in upper management at Obsidian and, apparently, had a falling out with others in upper management for reasons that we will never know.

 

 Obsidian, as an entity, said nothing bad about him when he left. If you think Obsidian started this, you are imagining things. If you think Obsidian is retaliating against Avellone, you are also imagining things.  The class struggle you seem to think is happening here is happening only in your head. In the real world, Avellone is venting his feelings of resentment in public. He is mostly hurting his own reputation and he is attempting to hurt his former co-workers. 

 

 

There is the part they forced an nda on his neck that everyone keep forgetting may be true or not :yes:

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