NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Sports

December 20, 2013

RI governor: Curt Schilling's video game 'junk'

CRANSTON, R.I. — The flagship video game that had been under development by Curt Schilling’s company when it went under is now just “a lot of junk,” Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee said Thursday, and he wasn’t surprised that it failed to sell at auction.

The former Red Sox pitcher’s company, 38 Studios, was developing the game code-named “Copernicus” with the help of a $75 million state loan guarantee when it went bankrupt last year, leaving taxpayers on the hook to pay back tens of millions of dollars. A court-appointed receiver has been trying to sell the company’s assets to help pay off its debts, but an auction last week produced no acceptable offers for the game.

Chafee, speaking on a public affairs show on WJAR-TV, said he wished the auction had been successful. Rhode Island is 38 Studios’ biggest creditor, and the auction was an attempt to get back some of that money.

Chafee was a vocal critic of the deal when it was struck in 2010 as a way to lure Schilling’s company to Rhode Island. Then-Gov. Don Carcieri, lawmakers and the state’s quasi-public Economic Development Corp. all played a role in making it happen.

The governor on Thursday described the state’s investment as “insane,” calling it a “historically bad” decision that he blamed on panic over the state’s economy collapsing.

“People just panicked and gave a retired baseball player a huge amount of taxpayer money with no experience in this industry or any other businesses,” Chafee said. “There was this whole groupthink across the business communities.”

“Copernicus” was being developed as a “massively multiplayer” online game but was never completed. Industry analysts had expressed doubts before the auction that the unfinished game would sell for much, saying it could take as much as $100 million to complete it.

Text Only | Photo Reprints

NDN Video
Steelers feeling a sense of urgency in camp 5 things I think I think about the Atlanta Falcons Paul Breitner: We're sure Julian Green will be a great player for Bayern Reaction to Ray Rice's comments How the MLB Trade Deadline Will Affect the Postseason Recapping a Blockbuster MLB Trade Deadline Marshawn Lynch Ends Holdout - @TheBuzzeronFOX Dombrowski on bringing David Price to Detroit Pitch Invading Morons Cause Chaos - @TheBuzzeronFOX Tiger Woods: 1 on 1 3 Questions with Gary Payton: Kevin Love, Andrew Wiggins and Derrick Rose Players Only: Marcus Mariota's Course Load at Oregon How We Almost Got Johnny Cowboy Donald Sterling Loses The Clippers For Good - @TheBuzzeronFox Franklin talks leaving Vandy Staten Island Man's Emotional Dunk Over NYPD Car - @TheBuzzeronFOX Michael Jordan OK With LeBron James Wearing No. 23? - @TheBuzzeronFox The Cornhuskers have gone...Loco? McNabb: Two games is not acceptable for me Ortiz, Price Feud Is Upsetting To Children - @TheBuzzeronFOX
Special Features