Feb. 14, 1999
FMG FOUNDER LEAVES COMPANY
LOS ANGELES -- Mike Wasson, a partner in Fat Messiah Games, has left the company to pursue work in the computer industry. Wasson, who recently moved to Seattle, Wash., said he will also be managing a thrash/funk band called Ten Eyed Crawfish. The group will be releasing a 7" soon. He said his departure has not affected his friendship with his former partner, Neal Sofge, and that the duo will continue to collaborate on some projects together.
"I'm sorry to see Mike go," said Sofge, FMG's Super Genius and sole remaining founder. "His creativity and astonishing command of the English language will be sorely missed around here. I wish him the best of luck in his new career, and hope he'll come back to the gaming biz after he's made his millions."
Wasson was ready for a change and grew weary of the many hours one needs to devote to a small game company. "I miss game design and development, and sometimes I miss attending game conventions in an official capacity," Wasson said. "I don't miss the late nights of page layout or the endless administrative tasks involved in running a company." But he said it's possible he will be involved in the game industry again. Wasson described the industry as being in a period of rapid change with the rise of CCGs and the apparent decline of traditional wargames. "The market has been growing, but also moving in new and often unpredictable directions," he said. "The old formulae do not work any more. This is both scary and exciting to anyone working in the industry." He believes Fat Messiah Games still has an important role in the industry. "For awhile our unofficial motto was "family games for strange families," he said. "I think that sums it up." Wasson said 10 years ago it was much easier to describe the "typical gamer." But today, gamers are a diverse crowd, and they game for a wide variety of reasons. "Our hobby has always been a sub-niche of a much larger industry," he said. "Will we gradually merge with that industry, or keep our own unique identity? I think the challenge is to market games that are more intellectually rewarding than the mainstream, without clinging to old ways of doing things that will alienate a potential new audience."