Non-gamers would think it is strange that each day when I watch the news about the corona virus I think about a game. I do. I am betting anyone who has played Pandemic has thought about that game recently and I would also think that anyone who has played that game understands a lot about how these things can get out of control.
I already tend to lean towards being a germaphobe. I am not quite Howard Hughes, but I have hard rules at AEG about staying home and getting well when you have the flu, a cold, or any other illness. I do not reward the idea of toughing it out and coming to work. Stay home, it’s 2020, you can work from your bed if you must.
It sounds like China is already doing quite a bit to lock this down but it is very likely to get worse before it gets better. Many Chinese factory workers live in one place and work in another. They migrate between home and work during holidays. China already extended the new year holiday to the 10th of this month to have workers stay home for a longer period of time. We have verified with our partners in China that there is a lot of fear surrounding the virus and many people are not leaving their homes. There is a good chance that the holiday will again be extended, and even if it is not, there is a good chance that many workers will choose not to return to work until they think it is safe.
So what do we do about products, delays, and release dates?
Nothing. We do nothing. We don’t complain, we don’t push, we avoid being that moron in the Jaws movie who tells everyone it’s safe to go back in the water. It’s safe when it’s safe. Our first and only priority is to support those that have to consider the health and safety of the people we work with in China.
I don’t have any real clue how bad it is other than reports from friends in China and reports on our news. We hope that it will be contained and over soon for our friends and basically for everyone. I do know that gamers should be smart enough to know you do not screw with a cooperative game when the cost is being counted in real lives. Need a reminder? Break out a copy of Pandemic, or Virus, or Viral, or just about any Zombie game and hope that we have some gamers that know how to beat these games in charge of beating this thing in real life.
2/4/2020 – As of now no-one is reporting to us that we will miss print and ship deadlines, but if it happens our plan is to roll with it and support our partners. We will keep you updated.