Campo Santo, developers of the Indie hit, Firewatch, surprised fans several days ago when they announced a merger with Valve.
In case you’re unfamiliar with Valve, they’re the creators of the on-line gaming platform, Steam, developer of the Source gaming engine, and makers of hugely popular games such as Portal, Left 4 Dead, and Half-Life.
So, why the merger? Well, the reasons Campo Santo gave were a bit cryptic. Here’s what they had to say.
If you’re the type of person who gives two flips about this news, we can elaborate a little bit on this big decision. First, we really like making video games. Furthermore, and perhaps more accurately, we really like making and producing entertainment.
From the day-to-day production of our last game, Firewatch, to the way we run the company, make merchandise, meet players at expos and shows, send out a quarterly literary journal, throw open-to-the-public game demos in the middle of an artificial forest—all of it is geared towards surprising, delighting, and entertaining the customers who have shared in our success.
In Valve we found a group of folks who, to their core, feel the same way about the work that they do (this, you may be surprised to learn, doesn’t happen every day). In us, they found a group with unique experience and valuable, diverse perspectives. It quickly became an obvious match.
Second, while visiting IGN’s headquarters in early 2015 to talk about Firewatch, we came across an undelivered 2011 Game of the Year Award for Portal 2. It happened to be engraved on an unopened bottle of champagne. Never ones to pass up free alcohol, we stole it and drank it to celebrate the launch of Firewatch a year later. So in some sense, this is a return home for us. Well, for that bottle of champagne.
Third, and last, we had a series of long conversations with the people at Valve and everyone shared the satisfaction we take in working with people whose talents dwarf our own to make things we never thought possible. Both sides spoke about our values and how, when you get right down to it, we, as human beings, are hard-limited by the time we have left when it comes to making the things we care about and believe in.
They asked us if we’d all be interested in coming up to Bellevue and doing that there and we said yes.
Our interpretation is that the small sized independent Campo Santo decided they could use an influx of resources to continue doing what they love to do, and Valve, a company on the verge of leaping back into the game making business after a 5-year hiatus, was looking for new talent to add to their team.
Whatever the reasons may be, Campo Santo has reassured nervous fans that they will continue working on their current project, Valley of the Gods, as well as a release of Firewatch on the Switch, as planned.
Source: Campo Santo