Yesterday, it was revealed that the Kickstarter funded game Ant Simulator would be cancelled. The reason, according to developer Eric Tereshinski, was that his former friends and business partners embezzled funds and spent the money on things like strippers and parties. Really. Now the partners, Tyler Monce and Devon Staley, have spoken to Game Informer about their side of the story.
According to Monce, the claims are “completely false…the reality is that anything that was spent in a bar or restaurant was very reasonable in nature when you look at any business, including video game companies.” Serving as the director of finance for Ant Simulator, he says that the books were open and there weren’t any opportunities for clandestine embezzlement. Things supposedly changed last November after Thanksgiving, where Eric cut ties with the rest of the company:
“He took control of not only all the company’s physical property, our bank accounts, our social media accounts, our website (which he changed to just our faces for some unknown reason), that was all him. This all started to take place right after the game started to get really popular late in the summer.”
Monce personally believes Eric wanted to take everything for himself and cut them out of the deal, and that he and Staley made it clear they weren’t going to let that happen. Eric also allegedly transferred the company funds to a personal account, which was already being used to support the game’s development and included about 10 independent contractors. According to Staley, those contractors worked on models, rigging, environmental art, and human art, and all the contractors were paid upfront.
The two already plan to pursue legal action, but because of possible litigation, didn’t share any LLC documentation. Right now, they just want to get their side of the story out.