[Update: Gearbox has reached out for more clarity on the specifics of the Randy Pitchford award, as well as the Gearbox award. The company cites “Pitchford leading Gearbox through the merger,” as well as spearheading the creation of Borderlands Science, which funnels into research for the American Gut Project, as partial reasons for the win. The company also partnered with Direct Relief, and cites “fighting numerous bills that have been brought to Texas legislature that could remove [artistic] freedoms.]
A Randy Pitchford award? Well we’re fresh out of Destructoid-head USB stick trophies to give away, so maybe this Tech Titans one will do.
Gearbox has confirmed to Destructoid that the company was presented with the “Tech Titans 2021 Corporate Innovation Award,” while Pitchford himself won for best “Corporate CEO.” Tech Titans is a North Texas technology outfit, who “celebrate companies and individuals in North Texas who are transforming the global technology industry.” Yes it’s so easy to forget that Gearbox is one of the few developers in Texas (Frisco, to be exact); especially after they opened up studios in Quebec City and (more recently) Montreal.
While that microcosm of an event was underway, Pitchford’s legacy continues to grow in strange ways. Some within the industry love him, others say he courts controversy. This award ceremony comes just a few months after Pitchford named new presidents of Gearbox publishing (Steve Gibson) and software (Steve Jones).
While the Embracer group may have acquired Gearbox Software in mid-2021 (which the two companies refer to as a merger), the name and its reputation, for better or worse, are unequivocally tied to Pitchford. As long as the money is flowing, I don’t think anyone on a corporate level (but potentially Gearbox employees) cares.