Ian Bell Leaves Slightly Mad Studios

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NLxAROSA

Dual wielding Uzis FTW!
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The Black Lodge
End of an era. Many of us here stepped on the (not so slightly :lol:) mad rollercoaster of Project CARS all the way back in 2011. One of the few CEOs who would actually interact and engage with the community directly, regardless of whether they loved or hated him. The community part of PC1 and PC2 was absolutely an amazing experience. I don't particularly like his later work, e.g. PC3 and that F&F game, or the way he engaged the community later on (which was completely insane). Still, thanks for all the great memories and thanks for taking us on the mad ride that was PC1 and PC2. 👍
 
222
United Kingdom
United Kingdom
So is he taking PC with him? I'm confused, I thought it was going to be the greatest sim of all time...

I never think we should be too tough on characters like this, they give us entertainment alongside their products, and I got a lot out of Pc2, limited as it was.

Running Indycars under the lights at the old Monza oval, I mean come on, where else can you find that kind of madness.
 

NLxAROSA

Dual wielding Uzis FTW!
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It's EA's IP now, after they bought Codemasters who bought SMS. He's left SMS; he doesn't get to take bits of it with him.
I don't think anyone has to feel sorry for Ian; pretty sure he was compensated extremely well for the acquisition. :D I was surprised he stayed on as long as he did after that (might have been part of the deal).
 
1,766
Spain
valencia
Donnced
Was something that could be expected once Codemasters was buyed by EA.
Ian Bell doesn't like EA at all as he explained once with a bottle of wine in an Australian citizen streaming at Project cars 2 launch.:D

R.I.P Project C.A.R.S ..SMS should not have joined Codemasters in first instance.

Still have to say thanks to him and his slightly mad team for the two first project cars that brought more kind of "hardcore" racing sim aspects to consoles like V.o.F, button mapping , ability to personalise player camera,HUD options , UDP compatibility wich weren't seen in consoles before.
 
1,766
Spain
valencia
Donnced
He left the team. The team that made the games is still there. That doesn't mean they're not gonna keep working on racing games like project cars.
SMS is now from Codemasters which is now from EA, Ian Bell already ranted about EA when SMS was part of EA doing the NFS shift's that they couldn't do what they wanted and planned for the game...
They will keep working on racing games for sure.. but that pcars4 will be follow the path off the first two pcars and going really sim way I really doubt that.

EA is maybe the reason why he left SMS, but that is something we never will know
 
514
Croatia
Croatia
NekoPuffer_PPP
SMS is now from Codemasters which is now from EA, Ian Bell already ranted about EA when SMS was part of EA doing the NFS shift's that they couldn't do what they wanted and planned for the game...
They will keep working on racing games for sure.. but that pcars4 will be follow the path off the first two pcars and going really sim way I really doubt that.

EA is maybe the reason why he left SMS, but that is something we never will know
...he already said PC4 aims to be "the most realistic sim ever", with that set, I don't see it suddenly changing and becoming arcade. If it's still in development, it should end up being what it was intended to be.

The fact that Ian left doesn't change that. It's still the same team working on it.
 

AudiMan2011

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...he already said PC4 aims to be "the most realistic sim ever", with that set, I don't see it suddenly changing and becoming arcade. If it's still in development, it should end up being what it was intended to be.
The bean counter stakeholders at EA will be like
aight-bet-886e207a5d.jpg
 
2,147
United States
Michigan
FuriousDemon
Definitely an end of an era. Lots of fond memories, starting a decade ago for me. Following along (and helping) with the development of pCARS was exciting and even addictive. Even a bit of cash was made by all involved.
 

amar212

GTSurgeons.com
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I am sorry that I never actually had a chance to get to know him in person. He is, without any doubt, the uncrowned shadow king of the genre.

He is the most controversial head of any racing studios to date. I have written an article about him in Croatian Reboot magazine last year, and I was following his career through last 2 decades, with great focus during the initial WMD era.

Guy waa the dancer on the rope, but he always executed the final step flawlessly. Since the foreclosure of the original Simbin, his legal pinata to close and then obtain Blimey, his UNPHANTOMABLE succes where his company actually had Ferrari licence when nobody could ..

What he did with WMD, fight against British IRS, move to Singapore and Hong Kong ("move" is a nice word...), that CRAZY episode with Russian investors, his success with convincing NamcoBandai to publish PS2, than Codemasters aqusision and in the crazy turn of events, EA buyout.

If anyone could make a biopic of him it would be crazy, especially if some guys that knows the story in full would provide juicy bits. Man..

I could write 5000 words essay thriller from facts and bits I have gathered in past decades, and it would still miss the juiciest bits.

Goodspeed Ian. You will be missed. Thank you for the Ferrari Racing Legends, my favorite racing game after Gran Turismo, thank you for the WMD and opportunity to be a part of original PC story.
 
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21,321
United Kingdom
United Kingdom
SMS is now from Codemasters which is now from EA, Ian Bell already ranted about EA when SMS was part of EA doing the NFS shift's that they couldn't do what they wanted and planned for the game...
They will keep working on racing games for sure.. but that pcars4 will be follow the path off the first two pcars and going really sim way I really doubt that.

EA is maybe the reason why he left SMS, but that is something we never will know
We have no idea how much influence EA bigwigs are going to be having on SMS though. They're not directly under them like they were in the old days, they're still under Codemasters. Yes, obviously CM are in turn a subsidiary of EA now but that level of abstraction may make a difference in how things are managed. The bean counters will be going to CM, not SMS. It's up to CM to keep SMS profitable and under control, and if they think that will happen by continuing to make sims, then that's what they'll do.
 
39,236
Australia
The Bronx
Playing PC2 and saw this article. Still one of the all time greatest racing games. Really cool Ian set aside time to answer many of our question on GTPlanrt. Whatever hate and love he got from this community, was cool to actually communicate with the face of a developer and their team. Thanks to Jordan/gtp staff and Ian, The American and all.
 
7,669
Denmark
Denmark
According to his updated social media profiles, Bell will make a quite a left-field move, into the area of mental health. Stating that he is a British Psychological Society-registered psychologist, his new venture is aimed at providing therapy for those who cannot afford it.

The awkward moment when you call a shrink to discuss how big business has nearly destroyed your passion for sim-racing, and at the other end it’s Dr. Bell answering. 😐
 

Wolfe

Physics Critic
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Wolfe2x7
Count me in with those who expected this the moment SMS was acquired. Predicting the exact reasoning, timing, or sequence of events was not necessary.
 
129
Ireland
Ireland
Hamisxa
It's sad because he saved the company from death back in Shift 2 times. Brought it back to life. Trusted Codemasters, and Codemasters basically said cya mate.
If anyone doesn't know the story, basically EA tried to destroy SMS after Shift 2 and steal their engine technology but Ian put this technology under a different company name before EA tried to kill them so they wouldn't get it. And basically said he will never trust EA and urged others not to either. And it's almost like he came back to square one. Not surprised he gave up. Rip his mortgaged house.
 
162
Germany
Halle
soltonatural
He got me with PC3, but thanks to Amazon's refund policy I didn't lost a penny. No harm, no foul I guess...
 
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78
Spain
Gijon
Coquico
An controversial guy, indeed. I was one of the ones who fell in love with the promises behind PC 1 and 2. Both were amazing sim games, with maybe too much ambitions, at least in ps4. I was amazed by having Ian here, in the forums. But he promises too much, and the wonderful produts he sell, were full of bugs, and with the feeling if unfinished products. And that kills you when yiu want to sell videogames. Thanks anyways to him