Anyone who has been playing games for a while will have no doubt heard the term â€œAAAâ€ thrown around. Its the idea of a blockbuster game, one with hollywood voice actors, Baysplosions and graphics so vibrant and clear, your eyeballs will bleed.
But here’s the rub, AAA is an idea, a clever piece of marketing spin designed to hook players into buying said game. Make no mistake, it is an intelligent idea that has worked wonders for video game sales, but is it actually causing harm to our industry.
Enslaved developer Ninja Theory, who are currently busy with the latest Devil May Cry game, certainly think so, citing that the current model is â€œCrushing Innovationâ€.
â€œIt’s such an opportunity for fun creative games to reach a target audience, there’s this stranglehold that the AAA retail model has which I think is just crushing innovation and access to creative contentâ€, Ninja Theory creative boss Tameem Antoniades said in an interview with GI.Biz.
â€œIf you’re paying that much for a game, you don’t want to take chances. You want everything to be there, all the feature sets. You want it to be a known experience, guaranteed fun. That’s not healthy.â€
â€œThe high budget, high stakes retail model, the barriers to entry for that are so high, so difficult, that we seem to be getting, being offered, decent work in that area,â€ Antoniades said. â€œIt’s hard to say no when you’ve got a team of 100 and you have to keep the payroll going. Another big project comes along, you tend to go for it.â€
Antoniades then went on to explain that the industry needs a â€œdigital revolutionâ€ claiming that the current retail model as it currently remains â€œis creaking.â€
Whether a move to a digital distribution platform will really shake the industry up remaisn to be seen, but it is happening, slowly but surely, and this seems to be the way to go towards producing innovative games again.
Last Updated: September 7, 2011