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What Happens When Gaming Auteurs Try To Go It Alone? 86

An anonymous reader writes: As news that Cliff Bleszkinski, Epic Games' legendary former creative, sets off to found his own studio, a new article takes a look at how six other gaming auteurs have fared after leaving a major developer or publisher to go it alone. The results, surprisingly, are mixed: while some, such as Double Fine's Tim Schafer, have gone on to far greater success, it doesn't always work out that way: just look at John Romero's Daikatana. The article also makes a good point that Peter Molyneux is striking out with a start-up for the third in his career now, but it may not be third time the charm: Godus has been far less well received than Black & White or Fable. Can Cliffy B avoid making the same mistakes?
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What Happens When Gaming Auteurs Try To Go It Alone?

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  • by kuzb ( 724081 ) on Friday July 11, 2014 @06:15PM (#47434817)

    That's probably because we don't see the aloof emo hero who in between fighting off a plethora of barely legal teen girl love interests, has hour long mid-combat philosophical debates with his enemies as being particularly appealing. Most of us find this just plain stupid.

  • by Tablizer ( 95088 ) on Friday July 11, 2014 @06:23PM (#47434921) Journal

    The results, surprisingly, are mixed

    Why is that surprising?

  • by doctor woot ( 2779597 ) on Friday July 11, 2014 @06:24PM (#47434929) enough attention to game design to consistently produce quality games. Not that they can't, mind you, but it seems pretty clear to me that game devs tend to have their attention split between designing a game's mechanics and appealing to a broad audience. You end up with a game that isn't too far afield of what you tend to see these days, but that tries to compensate by having gameplay features designed to be marketed as 'innovative' and conducive to creative and emergent gameplay. A good example is Watch Dogs, marketed as a game centered around hacking but designed as a GTA clone with a hacking gimmick.

    Games are an awkward state of limbo these days, publishers know they have to start pushing out the impression of creativity and devs try to figure out how to do that without alienating the average player. The mentality sticks, and developers everywhere end up glossing over technical details, focusing instead on the impression a game will make.

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