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Anonymous SEGA insider accuses Gearbox of theft

The accusation originated on a blog called SEGA Awakens and is supposedly authored by a Sega employee calling himself Bryan Danielson. Given the nature of the internet, its difficult to determine how much of what 'Danielson' writes is truth, but an independent investigation by Destructoid's Jim Sterling corroborates that the 'basic information' contained in the blog post is correct.

According to Danielson, reports on the game's troubled development are largely true. Developer Timegate was responsible for most of the actual work, Gearbox deferred their responsibility to the game to focus on other projects (namely the Borderlands games and Duke Nukem Forever) and that the Wii U version is even worse than the others. Danielson asserts that the blame for the game's shoddy state is spread between the three companies, but that Gearbox was ultimately most at faulty, possibly criminally so.

“Gearbox stole from SEGA, they robbed us, lied to us about the game, and tried to get another company to make the game instead,” Danielson said.

“Pitchford and Gearbox wanted to focus heavily on Duke Nukem Forever, but how would they get the money to hire some of the 3D Realms team and even buy the intellectual property? Sure, they made a lot from Borderlands, but guess where they got the money to fund Borderlands in the first place? Yup, SEGA.

He then elaborated on the accusation, “So Gearbox essentially lied to SEGA, mishandled funds, broke agreements and contractual obligations to work on other projects, didn’t want to work on a game they were contractually obligated to work on and gave it to another team, poor organization and direction on ACM, took on too many projects from different companies at once, and other things that we may not even know about. Hell, part of me believes that Gearbox wanted this thing delayed as much as possible so they can get more funding money to embezzle from SEGA.”

While Gearbox shoulders most of the blame for Aliens: Colonial Marines poor state, Danielson believes that Sega's decision to the release the game was a bad one, made in an attempt to recoup the money he alleges Gearbox stole from them and that it was done at the expense of the buying public.

“I strongly believe that SEGA should not have released the game and made the fans pay for it, they should have taken Gearbox straight to court, because they stole money from us to fund Borderlands and Duke Nukem Forever.This game should have been cancelled permanently, and the final product is undeniable proof of it. Despite that, I believe SEGA wanted to try to get some of the money back, at the fans’ expense. SEGA should have also watched the project and development a lot better, because there was a lot of warning signs that said this was a disaster in the making”, he said.

Whether what Danielson says is true or not, what is clear is that there was more going on behind the scenes during the game's gestation that simple game development. And ultimately that skulduggery has lead to poorly made game and a host of disappointed gamers.


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