Never Say Never: Back to Making Games

In the ever-evolving world of game development, the journey of Jeff Tunnell, a seasoned game developer, embodies a tale of resilience, passion, and the undying allure of crafting virtual worlds. In 2017, after a series of successful exits from game companies that had not only marked his career with notable achievements but also secured his financial future, Jeff made a decision that seemed final at the time. Concerned by the increasing dominance of platforms like Steam and the restrictive nature of app stores, he saw game development as a risky venture, one too dangerous to continue considering. Jeff did not make his decision lightly; it was a calculated move to preserve the wealth he had accumulated for his family. With its high stakes and fierce competition, the game development landscape seemed too daunting to venture back into.

Despite his firm resolution, the world of game development continued to evolve, teeming with opportunities and innovations that Jeff, from the sidelines, couldn't ignore. Undeterred by the challenges that had pushed Jeff away, his former colleagues pressed on. They explored new horizons within the gaming industry, uncovering opportunities as intriguing as they were promising. Their persistence and discoveries in the face of the industry's uncertainties served as a beacon, illuminating the potential in the uncharted territories of game development. These opportunities, though undisclosed, hinted at new paradigms and markets, challenging the very concerns that had led Jeff to step away.

Motivated by his former colleagues' relentless spirit and the gaming industry's shifting dynamics, Jeff found himself at a crossroads. The same passion for game development that had driven his early career, seemingly extinguished by practical concerns, began to rekindle. It was a realization that, perhaps, the landscape of game development was not as prohibitive as it once seemed and that there remained spaces where creativity and innovation could flourish, unfettered by the dominance of established platforms.

With this renewed perspective, Jeff decided to step back into the arena he had once vowed to leave behind. He founded Monster Ideas, Inc., a testament to his reinvigorated belief in the potential of game development. This new venture represented more than just a return to form; it was a statement of resilience, a challenge to the status quo, and an exploration of the untapped opportunities that had convinced him to give game development another chance. Jeff's journey back to game development, against the backdrop of his initial departure, highlights a universal truth within the creative industries: that passion, coupled with the right opportunities, can overcome even the most daunting of obstacles. As Monster Ideas, Inc. embarks on its journey, it carries with it the spirit of innovation and the promise of new beginnings in the ever-changing world of game development.

First published June 13, 2020 and last updated at February 18, 2024