“Entrepreneurship is like jumping out of a plane and building a parachute on the way down” Thomas Cashman founder and director of Viridian Software
After almost a year of trying to get a publisher, we arrived at the point where we were like “right, if we don’t get a publisher this month, we’re going to have to go back to our old jobs”, and that was the moment we finally got picked up and received the product funding. Leaving my job and working full time on Viridian Software was obviously a financial risk, but it was something I had always wanted to do with my life.
I have wanted to make video games since I was a kid. It all started when I was six and my dad came home with a PlayStation that had Crash Bandicoot on it – the 3D graphics blew my mind and I just couldn’t understand how it was possible! At ten years old, I got my first computer and since then I have taught myself along with going to university to do Computer Science.
I have worked for both startups and big companies, and I was ready to be my own boss. I now have two main goals. The first is to recapture the kind of joy I experienced as a kid. I think that nowadays there are too many violent video games and all of the colourful and fun games are gone. For example, Nintendo is still very much in tune with these types of games and I think that is why they are so successful – it brings a lot of joy and positivity to the world, and I want to make games that target different age groups and have a more positive impact.
My second goal is that, rather than having 200 people and paying them next to nothing to make games, I want to hire 10 people that I can pay very well, to do a very good job. I want to build a team that doesn’t feel like they are just a number – I know how hard people work and for me, showing appreciation for that work is so important. I hope to build a great company that makes great games, where everyone feels happy.
My main challenge in all of this is that I am not a business person – I am very much a programmer, a technical person and a creative person, so I have had to learn the business stuff as I go. Things like pitching, negotiating, cashflow and taxes are all new to me, but I am fortunate to be here in Talent Garden Dublin which allows me to find people that can help me, which is so valuable – just being surrounded by so many people with different skills is a huge benefit.
I always feel that I can chat with the Talent Garden team, and they often put me in touch with the right person, which is so helpful. Other coworking spaces don’t have the atmosphere that Talent Garden has, there’s an incredible community feel here that the team really put an effort into creating, and make sure that all of the members are involved and finding value in it.