Monday, March 15, 2010

Septimus News and WEG Update

The news continues to be poor for West End Games fans.

I saw yesterday that Bill Coffin, ex-Palladium author and writer of the long-delayed Septimus RPG, stated that WEG's Eric Gibson had simply stopped returning his emails. It sounds like if there's a future for Septimus, it might be in fiction, not RPGs.

"I had been warned that I might get burned doing business with Eric. He's a very nice guy and his heart is really in the right place. But it doesn't look like this project was ever on very steady ground. I just feel bad for anybody who ever wanted the game. You guys have been jerked around so badly on this.

I need to check my Septimus contract once more and see what I can still do with it. I think I might have just signed over the RPG rights, in which case, I'll get on developing this as a novel series, which had been my original intent".

--Bill Coffin

Eric Gibson's rebuttal to all this?

"I'm must admit that at times a stress reaction for me is to disconnect, but this is not the case right now. I don't have the TIME to communicate as much as people would like me to. Moreover, it is a simple matter of priorities. As much as people might be angered, hurt or suprised in me saying so, virtually every other activity in my life has priority over WEG at this point in time. It's not a stress reaction. At least not directly. I'm not angry, stressed (with regards to WEG), or any such negative emotional state. I am -- nothing. I'm wholly apathetic to the publishing field in general. It simply a matter or identifying what things in my life can contribute to some kind of positive future for myself and my family, and it is high time I realized that WEG is not able to do that for me".

--Eric Gibson

Ya think? Look, you gotta put family first, but don't jerk everyone else along because of it. Take a deuce or get off the pot.

I think it's time that we few remaining d6 fans give up on seeing anything substantial from West End Games (if indeed we have not already), either in terms of support for an open system initiative or any sort of new gaming material. Given the track record of Mr. Gibson, I'm not sure why anyone would believe anything will ever come of any of this, no matter how good his intentions. As of now, it sounds like his intentions are to engage in pure publishing apathy, so perhaps that's one plan that will be seen through.

How frustrating.


Stargazer said...

I really wish Eric Gibson would sell WEG for a reasonable amount and be done with it. It's obvious that he's priorities have shifted away from WEG (he even wrote he wasted 7 years of his life on the company). I can't understand why he clings to the company when he really doesn't want to do anything with it?

Sniderman said...

If you long for the days of the d6 system, just go here:

I gave up on Eric (and WEG by extension) years ago and I continue to be amazed by folks who continue to give him the benefit of the doubt.

Zachary The First said...

@Stargazer: Pride, maybe?

@Sniderman: Very true. WEG’s silliness should not detract from the fine work we’ve seen from other folks on products like MiniSix and Six-Sided Fantasy.

WalkerP said...

Somebody said he still gets revenue from one of the WEG board games, Junta maybe? I don't know, either way, I'm pretty much done giving Gibson the benefit of the doubt. I think he actually still thinks he can get some money out of it and that's why he did things like his opend6 project, instead of just opening the system up.

P. S. Mangus said...

I was truly excited about Open D6, and felt it might actually bring WEG back out of the abyss. I think seeing Eric give up when he seemed to be in the home stretch with the project disappoints me more than anything.

Having said that, Mini Six and Six-Sided Fantasy are projects that I can and will support. I think it is great that the D6 community is still around, even if its numbers are small.

I hope Mr. Coffin can somehow recoup his losses on the Septimus project, and I wish Eric all the best in his quest for peace outside the gaming industry.

Zachary The First said...

And you know, that’s the thing. I understand about putting family first. Putting your family first is honorable, and what a man should do, in my estimation. That said, if you’re going to do that, you need to communicate that fact so you aren’t stringing people along, and that hasn’t happened.

Jason Richards said...

Eric has had opportunities to sell D6, but has passed. I didn't understand that decision at the time, and it makes even less sense now. If he's concerned about supporting his family and such, and he's not going to do anything with D6, why not sell it? Then again, much of WEG's maneuvering doesn't make sense to me.

Rognar said...

I bought the pdf of Septimus from DriveThruRPG and it's a pretty solid setting. It would be a shame if there is nothing more forthcoming, although it makes an excellent sandbox for a d6 space game right now

rologutwein said...

As big of a D6 fan as I am, WEG certainly does hold a place in my heart. But the company has been circling the drain ever since they lost Star Wars (in my opinion). This isn't to say they haven't produced some great and interesting stuff since then, but I doubt if any of it was profitable (obviously not enough to keep the company running). While I agree that Eric should either sh*t or get off the pot, I wonder if there is any real value left in the name 'West End Games' from a branding point of view. As much as I'd like for there to be a rebirth of D6, I don't really see it happening in a gaming industry that seems to be returning to its 'underground' roots—Not unless someone was able to acquire the Star Wars franchise again, but that just aint gonna happen.

jonbrazer said...

It really is sad. I knew it was going to end badly when he took forever to give back the preorder money. I really hadn't guess that it would go this badly. He should have sold the company off (or atleast parts of it to payback atleast part of the debt he sank into the company) when he had the chance years ago.

I love WEG, but it is well past time for the company to move beyond Gibson. Sorry man.

mxyzplk said...

That guy's clearly been on the douchenozzle train for a long, long time. I really don't understand why anyone would continue to think he'd do... anything. Anytime someone who is allegedly a businessman is informing you about their "stress reactions" - hint, they're an incurable flake.

Dr-Rotwang said...

To me, West End Games was a company that existed up until 1998 and was the publisher of three of my favorite RPGs, including my absolute favorite.

The D6 rulebooks that were published under Eric Gibson's stewardship are good stuff which added a few final touches to a terrific system.

That's it.

Jonathan Hicks said...

I gave up on WEG and the OpenD6 project a long time ago. Eric simply needs to let WEG go and realise that people just won't give him the benefit of the doubt anymore. WEG used to be a big name but now it's just going to be seen as the company that messed up Septimus and all people will remember is the Great Eric Gibson Flameout on Now this? The damage is done. WEG's name has been stained by all this and if it is to survive with the D6 system as it's flagship game it'll need to change it's brand, it's public relations approach and it's ownership.