Alan Wake’s Like a Cult Classic

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“We’ve moved over two million copies, that’s including PC. So after a slow start it’s turning into something really positive. It’s definitely had legs. I think narrative experiences just have a tendency for that. Alan Wake’s like a cult classic if you like. People who have played and enjoyed the story feel the urge to tell their friends and other gamers out there that they need to try this experience, they need to play it.”

Alan Wake head of franchise development, Remedy’s Oskari Häkkinen. (CVG)

MMOs are Scary

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“MMOs are scary. They have the highest failure rate of any genre within our industry. We’ve had some successes, of course, and one unbelievable success, but if you look at it purely from a financial standpoint, well, they’re not great investments!”

Mark Jacobs is going to Kickstarter to help fund Realm vs Realm MMO Camelot Unchained. (RPS)

The Fight of Indie Developers

“Things are aligning in a way that, by the end of this generation, people started asking, ‘Hey you know what, why is Nathan Drake a mass murderer?’ And they didn’t ask that with the first Uncharted. They didn’t ask that previously. Something happened and it was probably indie games and the fight of indie developers to show a different side of gaming. Some people tasted a little bit of that indie gaming, started thinking about games and then they go back to the old ways and go, ‘OK there’s something wrong here.'”

Adrian Chmielarz, previously from Polish studio People Can Fly to fame (Bulletstorm), now making a game called The Vanishing of Ethan Carter. (Eurogamer)

 

 

Complete Polarization

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“You absolutely know that you will not please all of the people all of the time. It’s like politics in this country – it’s complete polarization. ‘This is the best game I’ve ever played… This is the worst game I’ve ever played.’ Before it used to be ‘Hey, there’s some good things about this…’ No. Now it’s just ‘This is terrible’.”

V for Vendetta movie director James McTeigue talks about games and how they are received. (GamesIndustry)

Trash-Talk, Backstab and Lie

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“This is part of the magic of games – you’re permitted to do things you’re not in everyday life. When you play spin-the-bottle you can kiss a stranger; when you put on boxing gloves you can punch someone in the face, which is normally illegal outside the boxing ring; when you’re playing Sissyfight, you can trash-talk, and backstab, and lie, and be deceitful, and that’s part of the pleasure of the game. That’s part of what is wonderful about games. The ability to be transgressive, and take actions that are not appropriate; that’s play.”

Eric Zimmerman is planning to bring back online playground aggression game Sissyfight, via Kickstarter. (Penny Arcade)

It’s Demoralizing

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I’ve seriously reconsidered my career choices over comments like these because, honestly, if I was getting comments like this in any other workplace, I’d leave. It’s demoralising, it’s discouraging, it takes the work you’re proud of and tells you it’s worth absolutely nothing more than the sexual value that is tied to your gender.”

Games journalist Alanah Pearce documenting the foul abuse directed at her by Internet scumbags. (Kotaku)

We Fixed Three Bugs

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“We fixed three bugs in the last day that were very, very rare and only happened like once in a hundred playthroughs, but we knew that three of those bugs were in there. So theoretically, there was like a three in a hundred chance of a crash. I was very nervous seeing Stephen playing on stage and a lot of coders here in the Amsterdam office watching live-stream were also really, really nervous. But we made it through.”

Guerrilla’s technical director Michiel Van Der Leeuw on demo-ing Killzone: Shadow Fall during February’s PlayStation 4 reveal. (Edge)

Preference of Violent Video Games

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“Although researchers have often noted the preference of violent video games by many school shooters, given that 97 percent of adolescents play video games such a preference is not overly surprising. It could similarly be argued that bread consumption predicts school shootings, because most school shooters likely consumed a bread product within 24 hours before their violent attacks.”

Dr. Patrick Markey, associate professor of psychology at Villanova University. (GamePolitics)

Hundreds of Replays

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“One of the most common issues reviewers and players have with FTL is repetition of events. Even with a writer working for six months prior to release, we couldn’t create the variety we wanted. While text is perhaps easier to create and integrate into a game than unique animations and art, it’s hard to pump out the sheer volume needed to keep it fresh for hundreds of replays. Perhaps our time would have been better spent finding ways to make common events more compelling rather than adding tons of unique events that lose their impact after the first encounter.”

FTL’s Justin Ma and Matthew Davis take a look back at one of the year’s best games in a Post-Mortem. (Gamasutra)

What is Realism?

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“What is realism? If you want to create a perfect football simulation, a professional footballer sprinting going from a full stop to full speed takes around five seconds. If you put five seconds into the game, that would completely break the game. Would that make the game harder? No, it would just make it unplayable, not harder.”

EA producer Sebastian Enrique on FIFA 14. (MCV)

Game Dev Tycoon

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“When we released our very first game, Game Dev Tycoon yesterday, we did something unusual and as far as I know unique. We released a cracked version of the game ourselves, minutes after opening our Store.”

A spokesperson for developer Greenheart. In the cracked version of Game Dev Tycoon, players lose funds to piracy, making the game unwinnable.  (CVG)

Many People Apply

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“In our first eight years everyone was self-taught, which is something we look for in a candidate. Now however, many people apply after getting some sort of degree or certificate. There seems to be such a glut that these people are going to have to make new studios because there just is not enough development going on to absorb all these people.”

John Baez, co-founder of Castle Crashers developer The Behemoth, on the hordes of incoming rookie developers. (GamesIndustry)

From Nightmares Confused

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“We’ve been scared of the dark and the unknown, and we’ve awoken from nightmares confused. We think this makes it easy for players to relate to the theme, as opposed to identifying themselves with a macho man fighting terrorists, aliens or zombies for example.”

Adrian Tingstad Husby of Norwegian studio Krillbite, on Among The Sleep, a horror game as seen through the eyes of a small child. (Polygon)

You Were Clubbing a Skeleton

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“We wanted to do an RPG how we’d played Dungeons & Dragons as kids: hit monsters and gain loot. Our mission was that we wanted the minimum amount of time between when you started the game up to when you were clubbing a skeleton.”

Max Schaefer recalls the making of the original Diablo. (Edge)

Reaction From Hardcore

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“It’s difficult sometimes to move ahead with new ideas because you can be afraid of a negative reaction from hardcore gamers who potentially want the same thing. Weighing that fear of change from hardcore gamers with our perceived need to continue to evolve — as game designers and a company and as part of the industry — is something that we constantly struggle with. It is a balancing act. But what usually wins for us is the need to evolve and change.”

Insomniac head Ted Price on moving forward. (Polygon)