Jul 10

Going Out On Top

There are a lot of things about startup life that I’ve loved being around again.

Plastic tables from office depot in a spare bedroom for half of a year.  A house strewn in network cables across two floors.  Moving across a state to work with new friends.  Building a new home for all of us from scratch and spare parts.  Integrating even more new friends into a team, watching them develop into far more than the sum of their parts.

Observing brilliant people develop products amazingly well. Seeing (and occasionally helping) people deliver beyond what they thought was their best.  Being able to identify a problem in the morning and have it dealt with by the afternoon.  Figuring out creative ways to push forward that don’t break the bank.  Finding yet more people, from across the globe, to help us do what we need to do.  Conceiving of ways to balance the old and the new to create something truly special.

Meeting a new community of enthusiastic and friendly players.  Witnessing them interact with a new kind of truly engaging, social entertainment for the first time.

Best of all, being there to observe the first “lightbulb” moments as they exclaim: “This is FUN!

Seems like a natural time to grab on and hold tight forever.

As counterintuitive as it might sound, once you get it running, sometimes the best thing you can do is step down and make way for a vision for where it goes next.

I don’t make decisions like this lightly.  When a company’s doing well, I stay in one place for years.  When it doesn’t work out, I’ve been the last one to turn out the lights.  This is an entirely new kind of decision for me.  It’s of course painful and difficult, but it’s the right one.

Never in my career have I seen such a small group of people accomplish so much, so quickly in this space.  Products, pipelines, systems, processes, relationships — you name it.  I remain entirely in awe in many different ways.  I’m extremely proud to have played my role in building it up from nothing, and value the new friendships that have been made in the process more than I can say.

I have nothing but the utmost respect for the people who’ve consistently overdelivered and continue to go beyond giving their all, day in and day out, revolutionizing what online games are and how they’re made.

There’s a huge success story ready to burst out there, and I look forward to seeing it happen.  Give ‘em hell, ohai!

What’s next?

This is a great time for online entertainment.  Every day there are more people online looking to have fun with their friends and make new ones in the process.

There’s an ever-widening spectrum of exciting things waiting to be built.   Some of them are games in the classic sense, others are purely social devices, and a massive range of opportunities lie between them.

At the end of the day, they all have the same goal in mind - Bringing people together.

Time to figure out which one sounds like the most fun to build next. :)

19 Comments so far »

  1.  

    Calthine said

    July 10 2009 @ 12:39 pm

    Wow, yeah, that’s a change for you! But how exciting to always exploring new avenues!

  2.  

    SpyderBite said

    July 10 2009 @ 1:34 pm

    Best wishes in everything you do, Scott! Keep us updated. :)

  3.  

    Hartsman’s leaving Ohai | Virtual Gunmen said

    July 10 2009 @ 1:41 pm

    […] Wish him the best of luck - folks can read more about it on his blog. […]

  4.  

    Chile said

    July 10 2009 @ 1:49 pm

    You will be successful where ever you go, Scott. Good luck and best wishes.

  5.  

    Scott Hartsman Leaves Scott Hartsman « Broken Toys said

    July 10 2009 @ 2:02 pm

    […] Well, more specifically the company he founded. Blog entry on the move. […]

  6.  

    Fricka said

    July 10 2009 @ 2:03 pm

    Wow that is a change! Well “boldly go” man, boldly go!

  7.  

    Kendricke said

    July 10 2009 @ 3:18 pm

    Good luck, Scott. I know it couldn’t have been an easy decision to make.

  8.  

    Bunion said

    July 10 2009 @ 5:25 pm

    Yikes another move, I hope his next job is at the US Mint so I can ask for some Beta versions of the new $100 bill to test out.

    Good luck Scott :)

  9.  

    Moorgard said

    July 10 2009 @ 6:56 pm

    Like George Costanza,the man knows when to leave a room.

  10.  

    Green Monster Games (Curt Schilling) - Page 464 - Fires of Heaven Guild Message Board said

    July 10 2009 @ 8:37 pm

    […] Curt, Hartsman is available. Scott Hartsman - Off the Record

  11.  

    Daily Bog Roll 7/11 – Two Ply Edition « The Ancient Gaming Noob said

    July 11 2009 @ 9:40 am

    […] Scott Hartsman was deported from Ohio or something.  Anyway, he is out of a job. […]

  12.  

    Babs said

    July 11 2009 @ 3:04 pm

    Now here comes the exciting part. Looking forward to more awesome from ya, boss!

  13.  

    Tanker said

    July 11 2009 @ 7:09 pm

    What the… You coming back down south? At least for a visit? Let Bonnie know and we’ll set something up.

  14.  

    Sanya Weathers said

    July 14 2009 @ 3:55 am

    Why not move to Maryland and start a company here? ;)

    Looking forward to your next big thing.

  15.  

    Ferrel said

    July 14 2009 @ 10:05 am

    I wish you the best of luck with whatever you do next Scott! You seem to have a knack for making good decisions so I’m sure it will be great! Maybe even blog a little about it?

    At any rate enjoy the change.

  16.  

    Georgia said

    July 14 2009 @ 1:10 pm

    Wild and crazy Scott! Hope everything turns out alright. I mirror Sanya’s sentiments. The west coast is overrated. The east coast is where it’s at :P

  17.  

    Braen said

    July 15 2009 @ 11:03 am

    More likely Smed offered him a HUGE contract to get EQ3 done right!

  18.  

    Steve Kramer said

    July 16 2009 @ 10:12 am

    Best of luck to you Scott! Somehow I have a feeling whatever you end up doing is going to be great!

  19.  

    Kruunch said

    January 23 2013 @ 10:57 am

    Scott … you’re one of the guys I actually found myself nodding along with in the MMO-verse. I look forward to checking out your next project.

    If you ever need a guy to tell you what your MMO is doing wrong let me know :)

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