RI governor lashes out, calls 38 Studios' Project Copernicus 'a lot of junk'

Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee called Project Copernicus, the massively multiplayer RPG that was in development by Curt Schilling's company when it went under, "a lot of junk," the Daily Journal reports.

Speaking as a guest on a public affairs show on WJAR-TV, Chafee referred to Rhode Island's investment into the development company as "insane" and a "historically bad" decision possibly due to panic caused by the state's economy collapsing.

"People just panicked and gave a retired baseball player a huge amount of taxpayer money with no experience in this industry or any other businesses," Chafee said. "There was this whole groupthink across the business communities."

Following the governor's outburst, Schilling tweeted that Chafee "has no clue what he's talking about, never did" and "Any decision that loses is 'bad' in hindsight, bet RI would like a 'redo' on Gov election too."

According to court-appointed Receiver Richard J. Land, the 38 Studios auction earlier this month at Heritage Global Partners raised more than $320,000 in gross proceeds. Land did not receive "acceptable offers" for Project Copernicus and social media/gaming platform Helios.

The auction included 38 Studios and Big Huge Games properties, such as assets for Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, along with IP rights to Big Huge Games franchises. In June of last year, Rhode Island officials valued 38 Studios' assets in the "tens of millions" of dollars.

Former director of the Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation (EDC) Keith Stokes, alleged in October that Chafee blocked 38 Studios efforts to restructure debt and raise funds in the period from late 2011 and early 2012. According to court documents, Stokes alleges that Chafee forced the studio's bankruptcy by refusing attempts to fix its financial situation.

For more information about Schilling's studio, check out our StoryStream covering the Kingdoms of Amalur developer's bankruptcy.

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