Meet the team: Stephan, Managing Director
Today I played being the little "sneaker" again. This is what I am called, since I've opened up my ears in order to hear when meeting doors open. And this is when I hope that meetings are over and that I can use that opportunity to catch the person I need to talk to.
Same today! But this time, I had to disturb the meeting, in order to get some insights from Stephan Winter (LE-Stephan). He is our "big boss" at Limbic Entertainment and although always busy, most of the times in a good mood.
(However I've learned, that if you meet him "read headed", you should keep your questions for the next day. I am so glad, this is not very often. ;)).
So to keep things short, I hope you guys will enjoy the answers from Stephan. Although so busy, it's great to see how much he was willing to share with us.
What is your role at Limbic Entertainment?
I am the Managing Director at Limbic Entertainment and I am one of the founders of the company. My role is quite mixed. I have to deal a lot with the business aspects of our projects and the company in general.
At the beginning of a development everyone wants to know “how long does it take?” and “how much does it cost?”. That´s when I have to invest a good amount of time coming up with the best possible estimations. It´s sometimes tedious to squeeze creative work – that´s what we do after all – into Excel sheets. But I am always trying my best!
During development I try to balance all requests, issues and risks against quality, time and budget. Furthermore I attempt to keep myself updated about advice, constraints and concerns of other stakeholders and our publishing partners.
What does your average day at work look like?
I don´t think I have something like “the average day”. The only routine which stays the same is starting the day with a cup of coffee and reading emails. From there on each day can take different directions.
Right now I am evaluating job applications, I am working on our annual balancing sheet and I am doing presentations for MMX.
What is the best part about your job?
I develop games.
Related to this - what I enjoy a lot is working on game pitches and thinking about new projects and game ideas. Runner-up is when people ask me about my opinion and/or ideas. If I get the feeling it´s not just babble and someone asks me for honest advice or feedback I am very happy.
What do you like most about MMX in general?
Right now as I write this I like the feeling that the bits and pieces in MMX are coming together. Dialogues are coming in. Sorpigal starts to feel like a real starting city. I can visit the dungeons of Act One. When I played the last internal build I went exploring outside Sorpigal, found a recently added cave, entered it … and my low level party got smashed by a Cyclops. But I noticed that the level designer placed two treasure chests in the cave. So I will be back.
In general I am a huge fan of game experiences which are not trivial. I wholeheartedly believe that only the risk of losing leads to emotions and a feeling of achievement.
Which M&M games did you play, which one do you like best, and why?
Heroes III to VI. Might & Magic Might III to VIII. Xeen and MOH stand out. Personally I spend a lot more time in MOH.
I still have great memories not only about the games but about that timeframe in my life. I remember that at the time when I played MOH I was in love (rumors say addicted) with Ultima Online. The problem back in the days was that the internet access was insanely expensive in Germany. Before 6pm late afternoon it was either six or eight Deutsche Mark (3 – 4 Euros). Per hour. As a student I had all the time in the world but an endless lack of money. So I had to show at least a little discipline not to log into UO to early. I “forced” myself to focus on offline games (M&M VI) during the afternoon to “save” money. Ultimately this did not really help and one day I had to decide to pay either my university fee or my phone bill. As this was an easy choice, I out of a sudden had even more time. It was actually enough spare time to get my first job as a game tester at a game dev company, there I met Eike and Alex (my co-founders here at Limbic Entertainment)… and here we are now.
So yes, thinking about MOH (and a lot of other games) remind of the great times I had.
What are you currently playing, reading, or listening to?
Right now I am playing DayZ (again), FTL, Darkfall Unholy Wars and I am on the verge to buy “The Last Of Us”.
I just finished the trilogy from Abercrombie. I bought “Thinking, fast and slow” and a thriller named “Black Out” last week.
The top artists - according to my playlist - are Kyuss, Soen, Rage against the machine, Tool and Pearl Jam. For the sake of real music I want to mention that I am a huge Metallica and AC/DC fan and music without real guitars ain´t music! ;)
Motto? Of course!
“If you like to gamble, I tell you I'm your man
You win some, lose some, it's all the same to me
The pleasure is to play, it makes no difference what you say
I don't share your greed, the only card I need is
The ace of spades”
If you have any questions – go ahead and just ask.