While others eyed the 5-foot Amalurian battle hammer prop ($200), Jamie Gotch, co-founder of Subatomic Studios in Cambridge, Mass., was looking for office supplies.
Gotch’s 4-year-old video game company, which he started after leaving 38 Studios LLC two years before it was lured to Rhode Island, had just moved to a new space and he turned to his former employer’s Providence bankruptcy auction Oct. 23 to help fill it.
“It’s not weird – they’re just power cords,” Gotch said when asked if it felt odd to pick through the remains of his old company for deals, in this case the crate of computer power strips he got for $150. “I think it would be different if I had worked in this building, or if I were buying a signed poster.”
Former Red Sox pitcher and 38 Studios founder Curt Schilling had signed plenty of items for employees around the company’s first office in Maynard, Mass., so Gotch and Subatomic colleague Christian Baekkelund, outfitted in an original 38 Studios “World Domination Through Gaming” T-shirt, didn’t need souvenirs.
Like other video game developers, graphic designers, filmmakers and animators among the 400 at the auction (plus 600 registered online bidders), the Subatomic contingent was looking toward the future. They represented possibly the only silver lining of the 38 Studios debacle, the spinoffs and startups hoping to succeed where Schilling failed.
Among them was John Groh of Warwick, a game designer in his last year at the video game development program at the New England Institute of Technology, hoping to land a high-end computer to help him create a winning video game.
Like several auction attendees, Groh had met Schilling and admired 38 Studios during its brief time in Rhode Island.