Epic Games' Tim Sweeney says next-gen development costs will double and free-to-play is inevitable
Epic Games' CTO Tim Sweeney said today in an interview with GamesIndustry International that he expects his organization will be able to build next generation titles for "only about double the cost" of games from the current generation.
That's a pretty big budget hike, but Sweeney nevertheless maintained that it could have been a lot worse, using the example of a 2011 DirectX 11 tech demo known as "Samaritan" (featured video below), which took a team of thirty people four months to create, with a cost that was through the roof.
"If we extrapolate that into creating an entire game," said Sweeney, "we were worried that the cost would go up by a factor of three, four, or even five in the next generation. And of course, we felt that this was not acceptable." Rising development costs aren't the only trend noticed by Sweeney.
He mused about the "defragmentation" of the gaming industry, noting the global popularity of games such as League of Legends, and stated that he expects cross-platform titles to become more and more common as console, PC, and mobile-based browser markets begin to "converge on a common feature set."
FInally, Sweeney also addressed the free-to-play genre, classifying it as "inevitable," particularly where digital distribution is concerned.
"Free to play gaming is becoming more and more inevitable. If a user has world-class, AAA free-to-play games to choose from side by side with games that are available only on a disc in a retail store, free-to-play games are very likely to win. So we need to be really mindful of this trend and start building games that have monetization and are designed to be piracy-proof."
Source: GamesIndustry International
Video Permalink: http://youtu.be/F52f62LOWXg
A gamer at heart, Nick started writing when he was a child. He holds a BA in English, works as a freelancer, and loves every minute of it. One day, he hopes to net himself a career in game design - but that's something for the future.
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