Eidos Exec Criticizes Industry Direction

Ian Livingstone, Product Director at Eidos, believes that the video game business is crowded with similar game titles and that the only way out of the problem is to develop new game technology and better gameplay. His remarks were made on a Games Central podcast.

Livingstone outlined the situation and said, "The problem is that on consoles the major genres are jam-packed full, and you have a few genre-owning games. First-person shooters, war games, they’re all dominated by big franchises, so it’s hard to be original in those genres."

Livingstone continued, "Publishers don’t want to take extraordinary risks, they want a balanced portfolio of products. They may take a risk on a few things, but they still want to bank the big titles in the big genres that do well." He also added that the game industry may be bottoming out because of the overlap and said, "We’ve chased the same market for far too long and now the economics are not working out. Games are costing too much in the frontline market for hardcore gamers."

Livingstone pointed to Nintendo’s DS and Wii as examples of the successful relationship between good game software and new technology supporting it. "Where innovation can come from is in new technology. Nintendo has demonstrated that you can carve out a new market through innovation. The DS and the Wii will demonstrate that gameplay, gameplay and gameplay are the three most important aspects of a game, and that technology and graphics support that experience."

The solutions proposed by Livingstone are sound, but the driving force for producing video games in the industry is profits. Until the cycle of repeat purchases of copy-cat titles slows dramatically, the development money from most of the industry will continue to support existing game franchises instead of fresh content.


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Author: GamerNode Staff View all posts by

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