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Firewatch dev talks creative freedom after Valve buyout

Campo Santo, the developer behind Firewatch, has spoken about creative freedom after being bought out by Valve.

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Campo Santo

Campo Santo, the developer behind Firewatch, has spoken about creative freedom after being bought out by Valve.

In an interview with Rock Paper Shotgun, Campo Santo’s Sean Vanaman stated that he and his team have retained creative freedom after the takeover.

Vanaman said:

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“It’s not like, ‘We do things this way.’ At the same time I’m able to sit around and go, ‘Oh, there are all these really good reasons why people make games in Source too. You learn that just by talking to folks and learning. You’re not dictated why it’s done a certain way, it’s up to you to have the wherewithal to learn how things are done and why they’re being done that way and also to challenge it if you want to. We’re not trying to be rebels staying in Unity. We’re just trying to do what we know how to do.”

He also spoke about Valve’s approach to the buyout, saying that they were after ‘super talented people.’

“It’s just about if you put enough super talented people in one place for long enough and treat them well they’ll make really cool shit and that shit will generally be better than the stuff that your competitors are making.”

For the full interview, head over to Rock Paper Shotgun.

Campo Santo’s next game is In the Valley of Gods, which you can see the trailer for here. It looks exciting.


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Josh is a freelance writer. You’ll find him banging on about the vertices between games and film and music and poetry and books, but don’t let that put you off. He likes games. He likes writing. He also gets the biscuits in.