?

Log in

No account? Create an account
Will the games boom birth a new art form? - click opera — LiveJournal
February 2010
 
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sat, Dec. 27th, 2008 02:49 am
Will the games boom birth a new art form?

50CommentReply

krskrft
krskrft
Sat, Dec. 27th, 2008 02:28 am (UTC)

I think the biggest hurdles thus far are, as you mentioned, the cost of making games, and as you didn't mention, the absolute top-down nature of the publishing/distribution process. For PC games, the latter isn't as big a problem, but when it comes to development of console games, the console manufacturers basically control, at all levels, what can or cannot be played on their systems. In that way, the video game world very much like TV right now, in that while you may manage to create the content (despite its great expense, depending on the scope of the project), you can't just come along and broadcast it wherever you like.

The latest generation of consoles, however, have also brought with them downloadable content capabilities, and the three major systems have introduced markets at which users can purchase more independent, homebrew style games. But even these DLC systems are beholden to the gatekeepers at the manufacturers for final say in whether something gets published/distributed via this tributary.

I would say that, right now, the path of least resistance is in independent PC game development. But for bottom-up "artistic" games to really flourish as a medium, enthusiasts are going to have to crack the consoles by demanding that manufacturers take a few steps back and open up the floodgates.

I think what we're looking at here is less a matter of making games more innovative, and more a matter of opening up means of production/publication/distribution. Innovation will certainly follow if the latter is achieved.


ReplyThread

(no subject) - (Anonymous)
krskrft
krskrft
Sat, Dec. 27th, 2008 03:52 am (UTC)

True, but as I understand it, there's still a top-down gatekeeper process as far as what gets published/distributed via the XBox Live system. And of course, this is to say nothing at all about the closed system console manufacturers currently operate regarding the retail discs they allow to be played on their systems. The bottom line is that they control their proprietary software development kits, so however you look at it, the process is top-down. And while it's becoming easier for independent developers to break through, certainly, via XBox Live and whatnot, they still have a lot of work to do as far as developing opportunities for autonomous production/publishing/distribution.

Again, the PC doesn't really have this problem. One could argue that PC development is equally difficult, all said, but at least I can distribute a PC game myself over the internet if nobody wants to publish or distribute it for me. Consoles, however, are still rather closed in that regard. They're opening up on the downloadable content end of things, but at the same time, the cost of game development for normal distribution is increasing dramatically, so I think while we're seeing an opening up of new avenues, the main avenue is becoming less and less possible for small developers.


ReplyThread Parent