Everyone reading this has, at one point in their lives, probably made a mistake that they wish they could take back. But I doubt many of them ended up costing them millions of dollars. If it did end up costing you millions of dollars, then maybe you happen to be Mad Catz CEO Darren Richardson, who recently decided to tell the world about a particular decision in the company’s past.
Back in 2005 when Guitar Hero was some weird little game made by the guys who did Amplitude and was struggling to find a publisher, Mad Catz was hired to work on a guitar controller for the original Xbox so Harmonix could go multi-platform. At the time, Konami was attempting to sue Harmonix due to Guitar Hero‘s striking similarity to Konami’s GuitarFreaks. Mad Catz didn’t feel like being sued by Konami, so they paid $300,000 to get out of their contract and went back to making normal controllers. Oops.
To be fair, I’m sure Mad Catz has made a fair chunk of change making off brand guitar controllers, but that’s still quite the kick in the pants. Alas, Mr. Richardson tries to stay positive, “It was brilliant. I come up with these strokes of genius from time to time. That was my best.”