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Ranting from the top

March 7th, 2007 by Troy Goodfellow · 1 Comment · GDC

GDC seems bigger than it was when I was last here in 2004. And my mailbox continues to fill with news from middleware developers with whom I have little in common. The two are probably connected somehow.

This morning I went to the so-called “rant session”. This time it was the publishers holding forth about things they want to change in the industry, and there was a lot of diversity in what they want to see. Richard Hilleman wants more leadership in development. Lee Jacobsen wants simple honesty. Nichol Bradford channeled some of that old time religion to call for an industry more active in schools and the wider society to inspire children into math and engineering; it has the added benefit of being a grassroots way to remind people of the place of games in the contemporary media scene. And, in a developer intermission, Chris Hecker countered conventional wisdom by saying that the Wii is bad for innovation in the game industry since it is underpowered and Nintendo has no real vision of games as anything other than playthings.

In what almost a eulogy to PC gamers, Manifesto Games founder Greg Costikyan warned that the closed production/distribution console gaming industry would eventually make both developers and publishers into serfs of the console makers. Only the fading PC has the open architecture that really allows developers and publishers to make and distribute the games they want to make.

I’ll post opinions on what I’ve seen and heard when I have both more time and fewer hungry journalists waiting for one of the too few public terminals.


One Comment so far ↓

  • hmm

    “Nintendo has no real vision of games as anything other than playthings.”

    Well, I won’t argue with that.