In my second round of thanks, I want to give a giant shout-out to the guys and gals who were part of VUIP during the salad days of Dark Age of Camelot. Prior to the launch of DAoC we (myself, Eugene Evans) made the rounds of a whole lot of publishers/distributors trying to get them to distribute our game (we also tried to get people to publish/fund our game as well) and basically our success at doing that could be best be summed up with the phrase, “No, no, a thousand times no!”  Okay, maybe not a thousand times but close enough and it really felt like a thousand.  Every one we went to turned us down (at least they didn’t laugh in our face which they did when we tried to get them to publish the game) cold.  Now, I can be a fairly persuasive guy and Eugene, well, nobody could ever accuse him of not being able to take a good meeting, but we had no success whatsoever.  Well, things were looking pretty grim until we went to a meeting with the wonderful people at VUIP.  We gave them our pitch, they then thought about it for about 30 seconds and then said (paraphrasing a little, it’s been a long time) “So, let me get this straight.  You are not looking for any development funding, the game is running now and all you want is 1/2 of a tiny SKU (40K units I believe) guarantee upfront?  Have I got that right?”  We said yes, they said “Well, we don’t have too much to lose do we?” And we smiled and said exactly.  We shook hands and made the deal.  The rest, as they say is history.  DAoC went on to be a big success for VU (its ROI for them was rather substantial as it was for us) and we enjoyed a wonderful working and personal relationship with them.  They were tremendous partners and friends and just a great group of people to work with over the years.  After EA bought us I wanted to take out a full page ad thanking VU but was discouraged from doing so (FYI, not by EA).  I wish I had listened to my heart that time, they deserved that much from me and from us but as always, I was the CEO/GM and so the failure is mine.

So, to the guys and gals at VU, to Phil, Feza, Koren, Bruce, Leslie and others who helped make our success and with whom I shared many good years and memories, you have my most sincere thanks and deepest gratitude, we couldn’t have done it without you.

Mark

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