Johnny Depp, Kabam, and What We Leave Behind

In response to The Trouble With Johnny Depp (Rolling Stone):

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The World Behind the Curtains

I have not Googled my books in years, but after watching Oprah's speech at the Golden Globes, I decided to see if anyone still cared about the work I did. I chanced upon an interview with The Minds Behind the Games author Patrick Hickey Jr. who mentioned my first book Gamers at Work: Stories Behind the Games People Play. He was asked to compare his book with mine.

RetroGaming Books: Compared to Gamers at Work by Morgan Ramsay, what makes Minds Behind the Games different?

Hickey: I love Ramsay's book. But it's all pioneers in the industry. There are no "bad" games featured. Or cult games. And zero indie titles. My book takes pieces of every single genre, has developers from all over the world and several female developers. I don't think there is one featured in GAW. All lend their voice to the discussion.

If you're like me and in your 30s, this book touches on nearly every stage of your life, your childhood with the Atari 2600 and Nintendo Entertainment System, to today with the PlayStation 4. Several of the games featured in my book have large communities of gamers that love and hate them but don't know why. Some of the games featured in my book you may not know, but you’ll run to after reading.

So, ultimately, my book is different from Gamers at Work because it doesn't just give you interviews with people you already know and respect; it introduces you to developers you should know and tells you why you should respect what they did for this industry.

I disagree with his assessment of the differences; he has some facts wrong. There are women represented. There are indie developers. There are cult games. There are "bad" games. There is genre and platform diversity. There are unknown and controversial figures.

But I think this question was a trap. Hickey was asked to compare apples and oranges.

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The Three Types of Cofounder

There are three types of cofounder:

  1. Legitimate cofounders, who have invested blood, sweat, and tears, and time, treasure, and talent, toward building their companies from day one;
  2. Honorary cofounders, who are granted the title by the legitimate founder or cofounders as part of a strategy to leverage the reputation of a prominent individual to raise capital, secure coverage, or otherwise add strategic value; and
  3. Shameless liars, who are usually early employees but sometimes employees who are quite far from being among the first. They independently lay claim to being cofounders to elevate their status and advance their own interests.

Over the years, I have asked and interviewed some entrepreneurs about the latter.

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