Bill Roper reflects on Hellgate

Jef Reahard
J. Reahard|02.07.11

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Bill Roper reflects on Hellgate

How exactly does a well-funded studio composed of Blizzard veterans end up creating one of the more spectacular failures in recent gaming history? That's a question that Gamasutra attempts to answer in a new interview with former Flagship (and Cryptic) CEO Bill Roper.

The debacle that was Hellgate: London stemmed mainly from over-ambition, Roper says, coupled with the lack of capital necessary to support the don't-release-til-it's-ready mentality that much of the staff experienced at Blizzard. "There was always the support there [at Blizzard] to say, 'You know what? If that's what you need to make this game great, then that's what we'll get for you. We'll figure it out.' It's obviously very different when you are an independent company, right, and not owned by somebody."

The interview also touches on Flagship's involvement with Mythos as well as Roper's experiences dealing with the Hellgate fallout and extensive (and often personal) fan backlash. "It went from 'I didn't like your game' or 'I don't think your company makes good games' to the personal assault level," he says.
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