If you had to single out only one game developer who’s still currently active, I’m pretty sure Eat Sleep Play’s David Jaffe would be it for many of us following the industry. But why is that? Jaffe’s track record is short but strong (God of War –series being the most known accomplishment) but not that strong. Still Jaffe sits in every other panel discussion and gets interviewed a lot more often than his peers, at least it seems like it.
My view on Jaffe is based on a very limited knowledge that I have of him, but either way, there is this one thing that comes across which elevates him in my mind above many other so-called celebrity game developers. The thing is, he hates bullshit and rebels actively against it. He really does, and sure, it can have its short-term disadvantages, but in the long run, I think it has been a major reason why he is so loved and respected among the peers, press and audience. Jaffe receives so much love and good will – which he deserves – from the industry that it’s almost silly, and I believe Sony acknowledged that and gave Jaffe for that very reason a special treatment at their E3 2010 press conference. Sweet Tooth delivered, but how about the new Twisted Metal? We’ll see.
Ok, Jaffe do have other qualities too that I for instance would love to possess, such as determination, playfulness, down-to-earthness and most of all, genuine gratefulness for silly things like the God of War –branded Slurpee. It would be hard to see Jade Raymond to go nuts over an Altair Slurpee on her video diary, wouldn’t it?
I truly believe bullshit can take you only so far, even if it can have some short-term benefits. However, I’m afraid that Jaffe is in peril to go overboard with his straightforwardness. To label and brand oneself so aggressively as an avid bullshit-denier can become self-delusional (and thus, bullshit) in itself in the long run, if not careful.
Maybe some bullshit is necessary after all.