In July of 2016, Playdead co-founder Dino Patti announced that he was leaving the company he helped start. He tweeted out that he was “leaving to seek new challenges” in what seemed like a personal decision to pursue other endeavors. But it seems that wasn’t the case, as Danish financial newspaper Børsen reported that Patti’s leave was less than amicable and felt more like a messy divorce between Patti and other Playdead co-founder Arnt Jensen.
According to Børsen, Jensen paid Patti 50 million Danish Krone (approximately 7.2 million US dollars) for 49 percent of the company. In addition to that, the paper also states that these two have had a conflict brewing since 2015.
Patti says the situation feels like a breakup from a girlfriend.
According to a translation by Reddit user livevil999, Patti felt that the last few years have been too “silent at the office” for his tastes and that they don’t have much going on because they only make a new game every four or six years. They attempted to resolve their issues between each other, but the attempted resolutions fell apart when the two got into an argument on who owned the rights to the games.
As it turns out, the two co-founders have not been on speaking terms ever since then and they’ve only communicated through their lawyers as each tried to gain control of the company.
After some time and various other disagreements and incidents between the two parties, the Danish Business Authority stepped in and forced Patti out of the company. As previously stated, he was paid for his share of the company but he believes that he wasn’t compensated for how much the company is actually worth. He also comments that he’d trade the money for a solution that made him co-director of the company.
Jensen has made no public comment on the incident but Patti compares it to a breakup from a girlfriend and says that it is something very personal.
As many are aware, Playdead is the studio behind the critically acclaimed surreal puzzle-platformers Limbo and Inside. There’s no statement on what this incident means for development of any future games, but given the success and popularity of their previous titles, we can only hope that they stick around.