Sean 'Day9' Plott launches his own game studio to make a 'multiplayer PC strategy game'

Sean Plott at the PC Gaming Show
(Image credit: Future)

As a former StarCraft pro and current PC Gaming Show host, Sean "Day9" Plott is well known for playing games and talking about games. And now he's getting into the business of making games: Plott announced on Twitter that he's founded a new game studio called—and, honestly, I'm not sure if this is permanent or what, but it's what it says on the website—Day9's Game Studio.

"I founded a game studio, we’re funded, and we’re hiring!" Plott tweeted. "If you have interest in working with me on a multiplayer PC strategy game, we have job openings for a Technical Director & Art Director."

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This actually won't be Plott's first foray into the world of making games: He spent several years at Artillery Games as a designer on the MOBA-RTS hybrid Guardians of Atlas, before departing the studio in 2017.

Neither job listing says anything about the nature of Plott's game, but they do reveal that it will be built using Unreal Engine and, more interestingly, that Plott and a number of presumably hand-picked associates have been "quietly prototyping a multiplayer PC strategy game for a few years." Despite our contractually-enforceable closeness, Plott also declined to tell us anything about it, but he did answer a few questions when we spoke to him yesterday:

PC Gamer: Can you give us a hint on the kind of genre you're going to be tackling? Obviously most people's expectation is going to be RTS.

Sean "Day9" Plott: As someone who's been a close follower of game and game company announcements (including as the host of the greatest press conference in gaming, the PC Gaming Show), we're taking the approach of "say absolutely nothing." Frankly, games change a ton during development. In my opinion, it's beneficial for both the game developers and their audience to reveal less information early on in development. On our side, we don't have to constantly "re-explain" ourselves when changes occur. On your side, there's nothing to track or be confused about because we haven't said anything!  My dream is to wait until we can simply open a video of gameplay and say, "this is the game."

Why does now feel like the right time to be forming your own studio?

We've actually spent the last few years prototyping our design until we felt like enough questions were answered. Only when we felt comfortable did we begin the process of reaching out to investors.

A common (absolutely brutal) pain point in game development is change. Every good developer knows that your first, tenth, or even hundredth idea might not be good enough for the final product. Iteration is essential, but iteration has a cost. If you have a large team, inflexible tech, or assets that no longer apply, change & iteration can feel like steering an oil tanker. Designers can wind up spending more time answering production questions than enriching their design. Artists & engineers can lose track of the overall vision. Producers can hopelessly invent tasks that they hope won't be thrown out for future iterations.

We've been there, and so we wanted to have enough clarity with the game before securing funding and scaling the team.

Any major learnings from your time at Artillery that you're bringing to the new company?

Hah! Refer to my previous answer! Artillery had an absolutely amazing team, but there were too many open design questions. That's why our new company spent so long verifying our design with a concrete, playable prototype.

I also feel that all the work I've done in the last 15 years has prepared us for this company.  As a streamer, I've gotten the chance to share my game design thoughts on hundreds of games while receiving live feedback & critique from our audience. As a host of the PC Gaming Show, I've gotten the chance to speak to hundreds of devs about their experiences developing and launching new games and companies. I've even gotten to spin up game dev projects such as Straits of Danger with the brilliant folks at dotbigbang. I'm hoping these lessons can tell us both what to do and what not to do.

Do you have an inspirational message for devs considering applying for the positions?

I don't know if this is a benefit or a risk, but I'm exactly the same on & off camera! Thank you so much for considering us!  We've spent ages vetting our design to ensure we know what we're building.  If you'd like to help us realize our vision, we'd be delighted to hear from you.

Plott will be returning to host the 2023 PC Gaming Show, which will be broadcast on Twitch and other platforms on Sunday, June 11, following the Xbox Games Showcase and Starfield Direct. In the meantime, if you didn't catch it live, you can set the mood with our PC Gaming Show: 2023 Preview.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.