Just What IS “Campo Santo” And Why Is Olly Moss So Jovial About It?

-Campo-Santo-logoFans of artist Olly Moss saw a tweet from the gifted lad stating that he couldn’t wait till Wednesday.  Of course, everyone started scouring Mondo and other sites to see if there was an announcement about an all new, secret poster drop from the man whose TWITTER feed reads “JUST AWFUL.”  Well Wednesday came and went and not a poster from Olly to be found.  HOWEVER, it was the birth of Campo Santo, something very near and dear to his heart.

As many of his fans know, Olly is a massive video game fan.  He doesn’t hide it, he basks in it and Campo Santo is a way for him to immerse himself in that world.  Campo Santo is an all new video game studio based in San Francisco, CA.  It was started by some of the biggest names in indie gaming including …wait for it….

reply_card [Converted]Jake Rodkin –  a designer and creative director whose credits include The Walking Dead, Poker Night at the Inventory, Puzzle Agent, Tales of Monkey Island and Sam & Max.

Screen Shot 2013-09-20 at 10.28.22 AMSean Vanamana designer and writer whose credits include the The Walking Dead, Poker Night at the Inventory, Puzzle Agent, Tales of Monkey Island.

tales_of_monkey_island_1Nels Andersona designer and programmer who was most recently the lead designer on Mark of the Ninja. He is probably the only game developer in Canada who was born and raised in Wyoming.

Mark of the ninja cover….and…..Olly Mossthe artist and graphic designer known for his work with Lucasfilm, Mondo, Sony, Studio Ghibli among many many others.  (I’m sure the suspense was KILLING you!)

olly-moss-resistance-3Here is part of what co-founder Sean Vanaman says over on the Campo Santo BLOG:

Deciding to found and then actually CREATE a video game studio has felt like a mix of buying a winning lottery ticket and taking a brash detour that results in a near miss with a pedestrian. Impulse followed by action followed by sitting in your car hyperventilating. The outcome is thrilling at best and disastrous at worst.

There are so many reasons to NOT make games; but in the interest of focus, here are two.

Firstly, games hate to be made. They really would rather not be made and once they catch wind that they might be in the process of being made they break, stall, and use all of their static inertia to produce something that’s really not fun to work on, let alone play.

Screen Shot 2013-09-20 at 10.54.16 AM(could this image from Campo Santo’s TWITTER page be a hint at things to come?  only time will tell…)

Secondly, the video game business — the thing that ostensibly allows a band of quixotic programmers, artists and designers to try to wrangle the stubborn monster mentioned in my previous point — is insane. It doesn’t have a very clear understanding of its (readily apparent) nature of risk-taking the way most risk-taking lines of business do. Beyond the risk, and the way it shapes the industry ecosystem, there are very few business oriented end-games that appeal to the types of people who like making interactive experiences. Sell the company? But we’re just now successful enough to make what we want! Create a hit franchise with multi-million-dollar sequels? Come on, can’t we make something new? The Venn diagram of why businesspeople start businesses and why developers choose to make games has a strange middle, indeed.

So why are we doing this? To be honest, it’s because we think we’ve found the right group of people to make the first reason not just worth enduring but actually thrilling. As we talk to our friends and industry colleagues about “doing something indie” with us, there’s a shared pragmatism informed by years in the industry that melds with the lingering youthful enthusiasm that got us into games to begin with. Some of us want to tell stories, some of us want to build systems, and some of us want to create beautiful looking worlds, but we all want to make something. The stultifying difficulty of making a good game is instantly tempered and then squashed.

You can read the rest of his comments by clicking HERE.

Camp Santo’s first project will be backed and made in collaboration with Mac design studio Panic Inc, who is based in Portland, Oregon.  Campo Santo has not divulged what their first project will be but you can follow them on TWITTER and check out their just-launched WEBSITE to stay in touch.  It appears the enormity of what he just embarked upon has finally caught up with Olly as he recently tweeted this….

Screen Shot 2013-09-20 at 10.43.00 AMCongrats to Campo Santo for taking a bold step.  We can’t wait to see what you come up with…..-campo-santo-banner


About blurppy

Blurppy is a constantly changing, always evolving web entity that features articles, reviews, interviews and such from my perspective. Who am I you ask? I'm DT and if you see it on here, I like it, have it, want it, need it, lust it or simply can't afford it. How about you take a gander at my lil part of the massive web universe and if you see something that appeals to you, share it with your friends.
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