Firewatch developer Campo Santo recently announced that the Valve Corporation has acquired the indie studio. It was a shocking move for many, who believes that the company was doing well thanks to the huge success of its debut title Firewatch. The company was initially founded in 2013 and currently consists of 12 people on its team of developers.
Firewatch Campo Santo: Why Join Valve?
Speaking to IGN, Campo Santo co-founder Sean Vanaman gave an explanation of why the indie studio joined the likes of Valve when it seemed like it was doing pretty well for themselves. He said: “We made the dream game. We made the game that wasn’t supposed to make all the money. We made a sad guy in the woods, psychological-slash-dramatic personal quest. Now we’re just trying to build a business and entertain folks who have been there since the beginning, like our fans and new fans.”
It looks like Vanaman and fellow co-founder Jake Rodkin were already looking to the future beyond the release of its upcoming game In The Valley Of Gods, which is still currently in development. They were thinking about what they wanted the studio to achieve, as well as their own personal aspirations as game developers.
That kickstarted the cycle of internal and external discussions with outside parties which finally led to them deciding to join gaming giant Valve. Vanaman said: “Then the long slow journey of thinking about what that meant and doing mutual due diligence,” he said. “Is this really a good fit for us? Is this a good fit for me? Is this a good fit for Jake? Is this a good fit for all the individuals who work at Campo Santo? One thing led to another and now we all work here.”
Firewatch Campo Santo: Why Joining Valve Brings Benefits
Vanaman reassures fans that being part of Valve doesn’t change the way Campo Santo develops its games since the gaming giant will not interfere with the studio’s development process. He said: “The thing that was going kill our game wasn’t an overlord. It’s never going to be that. That’s just not what exists here. It’s all [still] in Unity, and we use all the same tools, and we do everything the same.”
Campo Santo will still be operating the same way it did before, with the added advantage of being able to pull from Valve’s “mindshare” when it needs to do so. More resources will probably mean faster and more efficient development at the indie studio. That would be very much welcome since the company is also currently developing a Nintendo Switch version of Firewatch, which is slated to release sometime in 2018.