Driveclub director clarifies his departure from Sony

Col Rodgers explains that he left Evolution Studio to be closer to his family, not because he “failed to deliver.”

Former director of Driveclub Col Rodgers has explained why he left Evolution Studios after NeoGAF user Pete Dodd suggested it was because he “failed to deliver” the PlayStation 4 exclusive racing game.

“Everything he has said with regard to myself and Driveclub is incorrect,” Rodgers said in his first post to NeoGAF. “It's also libellous.”

Rodgers explained that he left Evolution Studios in February to be with his son, who’s been diagnosed with a potentially life threatening condition. “I live 220 miles (4 hours drive) away from Evolution Studios, and was away from home 5.5 days a week,” he said. “Given the circumstances, I could not continue to work there.”

Rodgers said he informed Dodd that he needs to remove the statements and apologize for the damage they caused. He did.

As we reported when we first heard the news, Rodgers is now heading an indie startup called Big Red Switch Games.

Sony also recently said that Driveclub is making “spectacular progress” despite losing Rodgers and recent layoffs at Evolution Studios.

Emanuel Maiberg is a freelance writer. You can follow him on Twitter @emanuelmaiberg and Google+.
Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

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Emanuel Maiberg is a freelance writer in search of the Citizen Kane of burritos.

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Discussion

73 comments
leschakapongs
leschakapongs

He should have stayed! His successor screwed up millions time worse than anyone ever could.

tendoboy1984
tendoboy1984

Ok I have to make a troll comment here just to piss off all the Xbox fans.

"Have fun with your new Halo, Fable, Gears, and Forza! Project Spark will probably flop. Xbox is irrelevant outside the US (especially Japan)."

/rant over


I applaud this man for taking the time to be closer to his family and his ill son. Family and health are more important than work, but you still need a job to pay the bills (which explains why he started an indie studio).

noandno
noandno

Wow that's sad. I hope his son will be okay

Daian
Daian

Well this shows that there's always another side to the story, I hope his child gets well soon, I wouldn't wish this on my worst enemies.

daabulls23
daabulls23

That's a big whoops from Pete Dodd.

Karmazyn
Karmazyn

he lives 220 miles from work !?!?!? 5.5 days away from home is not that bad. Its like a normal working week, you can relax after work in the hotel lobby and spend quality weekends with your family. also high salary must be good incentive.

Well good luck for future. I am sure that he, as a high skilled worker will not find any problems with finding new job closer to hone.

nayce54
nayce54

Everything will be alright. His son will just slowly turn into a hollow.  What's the cure?  "Seek Larger More Powerful Souls... Seek The King!"

Ra-Maxima
Ra-Maxima

yeah, yeah heh not because of his fail

garysingh34
garysingh34

Good on him, respect to the guy for making such a decision.

warhawk-geeby
warhawk-geeby

So the guy comes out with genuine reasonings for having to leave and STILL people throw around their bullshit fanboy nonsense.

What the hell happened to the gaming community this gen, it's disgusting.

Best wishes for his son anyway, hope he recovers to full health.

GrenadeLauncher
GrenadeLauncher

So it wasn't because Evolution is a bad developer or because SCE is bleeding money?


An apology from the Xbots would be nice. A bit less concern trolling the next time turnover is discussed would be even better.

nine-eight-nine
nine-eight-nine

I know what it's like living away from home to fulfill work requirements. It's not good, not good at all. I wish Mr Rodgers and his family all the best. Here's hoping his son regains his health. 

souls454
souls454

More vaporware from sony. They're notorious for doing this, they do it every gen. rlease "trailers" for non-existant games in order to look like they have something in the pipeline. Looking at PS4's lineup now, its obvious they don't, just like the first severl years of PS3.


Sony is a liar

infinity7
infinity7

This is a man that has his priorities straight...on a side note, that's one long work commute!

hussam403
hussam403

I see another Last Guardian. But hope his son is going to be OK.

bunchanumbers
bunchanumbers

I gotta believe that Sony is cleaning house. Their layoffs of other teams and departments makes that clear. Truth is that Sony can't afford to have this system go without a hitch and if that means that people have to go then they have to go. Hopefully Col will find a balance of work and home with BRS. Family is important.

reesebey
reesebey

Hope his son is doing well! Shame on the person that told that lie. It's good that Sony is not forcing a unfinished product out just to make gamers happy. Take your time no matter how long gamers have to wait.

Dezuria
Dezuria

Stuff like this is why people need to stop looking for fuel for their fanboy wars.  There are real people behind these games, and when people leave or change jobs, you have NO idea why.  It doesn't mean they suck, or Sony/MS sucks.  It means they're people doing what they need/want to do.  

All those people who said he left because his game sucks, I hope you feel bad about that, and think twice next time there's another article about someone leaving a job.  I don't even know why these things get reported, it's not news.

rasterror
rasterror

I hope his son gets better. It would be nice if he was able to take a leave of absence but maybe the new studio is best for him and his family.

jimmy_russell
jimmy_russell

It's hard to tell who's the least relevant NeoGAF user, Pete Dodd or Col Rodgers?

rickphoenixxx
rickphoenixxx

Why is John Mayer in this game as a character model? Ugh.

jinzo9988
jinzo9988

hurr durr this is a pr stunt.  I think people sometimes forget that people in the game dev business... even people with considerable pull, are at the end of the day still people.

Daian
Daian

@Karmazyn  I don't think u realize what he meant through 5.5 days or what it means to have such a terrible diagnosis for your child. Spending just 1 and a half days at home is very little especially when having to take care of such an issue.

Talis12
Talis12

@warhawk-geeby The truth is not to be believed anymore because previous statements by companies and individuals have been pure lies. 9 out of 10 times someone is fired or 'stepped down' they give the reason "i left because of family issues". Companies should be honest if someone failed to deliver. Then next time someone actually leaves because of family issues, you can trust its true.

warhawk-geeby
warhawk-geeby

How's about Blask Tusk's new game which was shown off at E3 last year? That 'trailer' ended up not even being a game, it was all CGI for a title that didn't even exist. Then it turns out they've been pushed to make Gears of War.

And what about Project Natal?

People in glass houses shouldn't throw stones my friend..

mr_nee
mr_nee

@souls454  It's not Sony it's Japanese mentality. They are perfectionists, if game isn't perfect, it won't get released.


This demo oviously needed a lot more work - look at how unrealistically car is jittering at 04:03

GrenadeLauncher
GrenadeLauncher

@bunchanumbers You have to believe because it's the only leverage the Xbots have on the PS4. Disgusting behaviour tbh.

nine-eight-nine
nine-eight-nine

@jinzo9988  So his son being ill is a PR stunt? You wouldn't use that kind of story as a PR stunt mate. 

Karmazyn
Karmazyn

@Daian yeah sure, you need to make a villain out of me. I do feel sorry for his personal circumstances, my comment did not refer to his child diagnosis. No child should suffer, I hope that his child will get better.

warhawk-geeby
warhawk-geeby

I don't even see why they should need to explain themselves to be honest, unless people have genuine interests in the release of a game (aka kickstarter) then people being laid off or directors leaving is just the same as any other business right now.

It's only because they're in the public image and the media hounds them that so many people get worked up. It's all just fuel for click/troll bait.

console_war_vet
console_war_vet

@warhawk-geeby Project Natal was the codename for Kinect, so in that case Microsoft really did deliver. I assume that maybe you meant to refer to Milo, but nobody ever claimed that Milo was ever going to be anything more than a tech demo. It was all wishful thinking on the part of fans to see that become a reality.

xsonicchaos
xsonicchaos

@nine-eight-nine

The correct saying is "hear, hear", because the bloke had something to say to the crowd. I'm not arrogantly correcting you, this is a common mistake people make.

pspearman
pspearman

@GrenadeLauncher @bunchanumbers @rgreening  You do realise that his child's illness might not have been the only reason for leaving? You don't leave a job in order to spend more time with your child and then set up an indie studio which would arguably take up more of your time and attention than your previous job did.

jinzo9988
jinzo9988

@xsonicchaos @nine-eight-nine Correct.  I was making fun of some asshat who said that it was a PR stunt that the folks from Oculus came out and said they and their family members were getting death threats and harassing phone calls.