1. Yerba_Sutra


    I think a new AA market is on the rise. It's inevitable, honestly. The old players left but there's always demand for solid games in that price/budget range, and new companies are filling the void from both the AAA side (Hellblade) and the indie side (lots of companies are putting out AA-value projects now that the tools are available to them at an affordable price).
  2. Aters


    Amy is a dev no?
  3. Reyes


    It's still a failure with great word of mouth and press at launch.
  4. DynamiteCop!

    Banned Member

    People were expecting Resident Evil, instead they got a new IP billed as a horror game with very little relation to Resident Evil.

    Capcom has huge problems listening to their community.
  5. scitek


    And that's precisely the type of games she works on. I think she just lives in a bubble where, to her, AAA games are all that really exist. It's hard to keep up with the changing landscape when you're stuck in a building for 80-100 hours a week for years at a time.
  6. Yerba_Sutra


    Yes but I also mentioned large companies doing greedy shit, and a few other factors. Where did I make it seem like I was putting all the blame on the consumer?


    I guess I'm part of the problem. I buy games when they a sub £20. The occasional odd multiplayer game I buy day 1 to not fall behind competition, though most of the time I don't buy multiplayer games.
  8. litebrite

    Banned Member

    I think Indie developers are evolving to get those spots and making bigger games. I mean what would you categorize a game like Divinity Original Sin? Lab Zero has a JRPG influenced 2d 40 dollar game on the horizon.
  9. Equanimity


    Even Uncharted Drakes Fortune wasn't as linear, so that would be a no to your question.
  10. raitosaito


    Firewatch is basically Uncharted 2 Tibet, minus all the combat. Maybe Amy is right, and she admits she only has so many games left in her now. Might as well be creatively fulfilled and make the kind narrative driven games she wants to make by going indie.

    My favorite games lately aren’t the bombastic AAA titles. The kind of games she cares about can be made on a smaller budget, not beholden by publishers. Little Nightmare/Inside/Hell Blade. I don’t think she needs to subject herself to the shit fest that is EA.
  11. Dipro


    i'm fine with this development.
  12. Halabane


    Maybe story titles go away from AAA. By nature of them being a story based game they should be focused on characters and plot lines not graphics and tech. Bring them back to turn based games. Bring it back to the switch, 3ds, vita and even cell phone. Nintendo may have it right about having 'enough' power. All those dialog scenes for less than a hundred line of dialog probably cost millions to make. Leave more to the player to fill in the visual gaps. I have played SE FF games 1-10 on handhelds based on older limited graphics and had great experiences. Strange Journeys is coming back from the DS to the 3ds and it was a great title back then....as was the Fire Emblem Series. If there is no voice acting that is okay on the handheld because usually its easier to read there than on the console, its more like a book. I would hate to see this genre of games go away. But I do understand cost. So just focus on story and less on tech and see what happens.
  13. Dreamboum


    Does she receive the full profit of her labour at EA ? Is she in charge of the budget she receives ? You can't just hide behind Amy for problems that are because of publishers. Amy Hennig wasn't going to have a better living because games are suddenly priced 120$ with a lootbox inside another lootbox.

    And again, this is Star Wars, not Elmo. No one can say with a straight face that a linear game about one of the most popular and profitable IP of our time wasn't going to sell and make a profit for EA.

    We're framing the issue in a way where consumers are the problem ( they can be), but publishers aren't (they are definitely more of a problem).
  14. litebrite

    Banned Member

  15. ZhugeEX

    诸葛亮 - 卧龙 Administrator

    I made a thread on this a while back about why we're seeing less AAA linear single player story driven games at the $60 price point.


    Amy isn't exactly wrong here. Those games don't sell as much or have as much long term engagement / spend as live service games. Just look at the top 10 best selling games of the year in the US.

    1. Call of Duty: WWII
    2. NBA 2K18
    3. Destiny 2
    4. Madden NFL 18
    5. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild*
    6. Grand Theft Auto V
    7. Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Wildlands
    8. Star Wars: Battlefront II
    9. Super Mario Odyssey*
    10. Mario Kart 8*
    Odyssey is the only one I would consider a traditional $60 linear single player game.
    All the others are live service titles, open world games, multiplayer / co-op focused etc...
  16. Most companies don’t treat most of their employees horribly, dude. There are tens of thousands of people in the industry happily working for major publishers.

    I think you’re projecting a little bit here. Yes, the game is a different take on Resident Evil, but critically it did great, and tons of people think the game is excellent. Certainly there are fans who feel unserved (just like with 4,5 and 6), but it still sold over 4.1m units in just a single year, compared to RE5 and RE6 which have both sold over 8.2m across their entire lifetimes including rereleases. The notion that it’s done badly is a weird one, and it should be noted that just because it’s not nailing projected sales expectations does not mean it’s not profitable. A similar situation happened with Tomb Raider when it first came out and didn’t hit it’s 5m goal that Square had set out for, but it had been profitable nonetheless. I think it’s clear Capcom just had very high hopes considering we know the budget was under RE6’s and they had just come off of RE5 and RE6 which are literally their two best selling titles (single SKU) of all time.
  17. Kuro


    All my younger cousins do this.
  18. Protome


    I’d be interested in seeing more break downs as to why AAA budgets have increased by such an astronomical amount over the last generation or so. It feels like there must be better ways to cut back on the budget rather than trying to push that increased cost onto consumers through predatory methods like loot boxes.
  19. Cap G

    Cap G

    What's the downside of AAAA moving to nothing but open world/multiplayer, honestly? It's not like linear story based games will die out. They'll just be made for cheaper by smaller devs that see a hole in the market to fill, and unless you're playing them only for the production values (god help you) you'll still have plenty of games to play.

    Hennig is talking about hundreds of millions of dollars. That's a stupid amount of money. Of course everything that expensive is going to fit into one of like, three archetypes and be the death of any creative elements that dont appeal to absolutely everybody. Movies also have this problem, and there's no reason to think gaming is any different.
  20. legend166


    I mean, profits are at a record high for all the major publishers.

    The "we can't raise prices from $60!" argument she uses is disingenuous. There's literally no proof of that because no one has even attempted it. Why? Because they'll make revenue leaving the prices at $60 but shifting to revenue-based game design instead of say, increasing prices to $80 but not including loot boxes and progression based microtransactions.
  21. supernormal


    People won't pay 80-90 dollars for one and done single player games. Most of the time they don't pay the 60 dollars for them either.

    I love story based SP games but I can see why they're not really the smartest business move. Gamers now more than ever look at the value proposition and how many hours they can get out of the game vs what they paid, which is why multiplayer has dwarfed Single player, and the single player games that remain have shifted to adding open world filler to increase perceived value.

    I've often thought the best solution going forward for big budget story based SP, is to go episodic. Split the game in a way that each smaller part can help fun the development of the next. Either way it's a tough position to be in.
  22. zoodoo


    True but not enough. Big companies like EA, Activision and co need to diversify their port folio. That's one thing I like about Ubisoft, give them shit for their tower design but they have a range of games that vary both in terms of budget and genre. Capcom used to be like that during the ps2 era. Look at Rainbow Six Seige, For Honor, Rayman Legend, Mario vs Rabbids etc, those games did not cost 100 millions to make and are yet still profitable. In the meantime, they still have AC that take hundreds or thousands of employees to make. Companies need to adapt also. Yes the consumer has to suck it up and pay part of the bill but not all of it. With micro transactions and loot boxes, companies are expecting to hit the jackpot but it does not always work.

    A mix of different strategies can be applied. Have your mobile gatcha, your AAA blockbuster and your AA spring release. Trying to make one game being everything does not work most of the time. Square Enix is doing just that, milking their franchises on mobile with gatcha games, developing AAA like mainline Final Fantasy, Tomb Raider and financing AA games like Nier and it seems to be working.
  23. DocSeuss


    The problem with Mankind Divided was:

    1) it was bad
    2) no, really, so bad it actually ruined a bunch of people's saves, including my own, and I had to start over after 19 hours in the game
    3) man, that ending, it was so bad
    4) this is a game that takes like an hour to get going, with lengthy, dull cutscenes and frequently-interrupted linear levels
    5) the game's focus on being in just one (incredibly small) location really hurt it
    6) remember when the writers tried to make it about apartheid, but that didn't really work because people with cool robot bits whining that their bodies are cool robot bits comes across as disingenuous? (DEHR had way smarter plotlines, like the lady who felt she had to upgrade to compete, but couldn't afford expensive implants)
    7) remember when the "augment your preorder" campaign backfired and upset a lot of people?
    8) Remember when they added in a really un-fun side mode that wasn't exciting and nobody liked it?

    It didn't really have much of a narrative hook, it didn't keep itself exciting, and all the technical issues early on led to a ton of complaints which killed its chances at success. It didn't help that hyperbolic YouTubers like Jim Sterling were out there making up shit or repeating bad rumors about how the game had been split in half (it wasn't) and the second half would release like a year later or something (which didn't happen, as you all know).

    Mankind Divided didn't fail because it was single-player, it failed because it sucked. It sucked because it didn't have a solid, clear vision about what it wanted to be, and a lot of the ideas it did have were genuinely bad ideas (like the apartheid and augment your preorder stuff, as well as a bunch of huge, ultra-linear missions like Golem City).
  24. Personally I'm entirely comfortable with single-player titles shifting towards a lower budget AA or indie spaces. Blockbuster linear story-driven AAA titles rarely hold my interest unless anyways with only a few exceptions nowadays.
  25. Aters


    How the hell do you know that? Don't you think people who work on more lucrative projects usually make more money?
  26. Vishmarx


    Much as i agree with her, it doesnt apply to EA. Theyve done fuck all for single player this gen and lootboxes and streams are largely only prominent for multiplayer games. Nobody minds paying more for games that arent outright designed to scam you. Compare the backlash of Bf2's 'free' dlc to paid dlc like old hunters, zelda, frozen wilds or witcher 3 or hell even far back as skyrim. I would understand if ND tomorrow said theyre not gonna improve graphics anymore to keep dev costs down, i would understand if theyre selling a season pass day 1 but EA can fuck right off for sitting on the star wars ip for so long and not making a single good game out of it and outright cancelling the two that actually looked good.
    EA can talk this talk the day they make another kotor, i couldnt give a rat's ass how many A's it has, look like the first two games for all i care.
    So yeah while her message makes sense, lets not ignore there plenty of greedy asshats simply using this as an excuse to continue with this trend.
  27. DynamiteCop!

    Banned Member

    I think a lot of people are unwilling to accept this reality even as it stares them in the face. A lot of gamers talk big about the importance of this, and the importance of that yet in the face of statistical breakdown most of it is rendered null.
  28. Hermii


    Yea I think a big part of the problem is games falling to quickly in value, combined with the fact that theres often signficant improvements in patches months after launch. So if Your willing to wait Your often getting a better Product MUCH cheaper.
  29. TheEnd


    She’s not wrong at all.
  30. Patapuf


    The fact that people point to Nier, Yakuza, Hellblade or Persona as "huge sucesses" says everything a big publisher needs to know about just how many people are buying SP games.

    Unless you are a GOTY caliber SP game or a huge brand you don't pass the 5+ Million mark.

    Whereas if you do a reasonably good job with an MP focused game, you do. If one wants to bring up breakout hits for MP we are looking at Rocket league, PUBG, ARK, Rainbow Six Siege ect. Those players are also still putting money into the games.
  31. Dreamboum


    I think we need to reframe the argument. I just think that saying that youtube is (one of) the issue is short-sighted because it doesn't explain why things are the way they are. But I think it goes beyond publishers simply being greedy, and I understand that you call them out on it.

    The thing is that they just don't care. It's the quest for a bigger profit that drives them. Framing a linear game as a GaaS is hard to work it out, so they make it something else where they can make it a live service. It's not "linear games can't make a profit", they definitely can. It's more "I can make a live service that can profit off the consumers instead". This is the basic argument.

    But from that point, do you think that a game being priced 90$ is going to put a leash on their live service ? Is it going to give more options to devs to make what they want ? Remember that Amy's studio was already in an incredibly low morale because the studio had to be splintered for the Battlefield Hardline live service, which put several devs into distress. EA was already starving and draining the studio of their capability to create a great product.

    I don't know, it just seems clear there's one target here. And it's not us. At least not in this specific case.
  32. hichanbis


    I'm pretty sure many SP games in the recent years (like TW3 or Uncharted 4 for example) sold more than decently.
    The problem is not with people who will buy anything as long as there's a proper marketing behind it (all the more if the game is critically acclaimed). The problem is that publishers don't really publish a lot of big AAA SP games.
  33. Dark1x

    Digital Foundry Verafied

    Well, I exclusively buy single player games these days but I know I'm in the minority. I don't really play or spend money on multiplayer games at all.
  34. Joeyro


    Trophie/achievement stats already tell you enough about completion rates, i'm surprised that games like COD don't drop the single player portion considering that it's probably the most expensive part of their development.
    Single player games will thrive on AA experiences and AAA productions by console manufacturers like Sony and Nintendo because they don't need to compete with service based games that are on their platform.
  35. MrHeisenbird

    Banned Member

    100% agreed.

    I have my suspicions with publishers sales expectations. Corporations should consider looking at themselves in the mirror if they need their games to sell +10 million to be a success.
  36. litebrite

    Banned Member

    Picking exceptions to the rule doesn't negate the rule.
  37. Mondy

    Banned Member

    It's not that people aren't buying single player games, it's just EA's idea of a "successful" game has become a 10 million+ PUBG like behemoth that has high profit turnover post launch.

    So basically Amy, the fact we were looking forward to a Star Wars game made by you notwithstanding, you get into bed with the devil, you should always expect the worst.
  38. Calibro


    Why did Ninja Theory make Hellblade then?
  39. litebrite

    Banned Member

    Because it was within their budget range without any funding by a publisher?
  40. Many have also not, like Dishonored 2 and Mankind Divided. It really goes both ways and tbh the majority of the ones that have been sales successes have also been pretty much universally GOTY material. I think it’s tougher than ever right now to be a good-but-not-GOTY-caliber AAA single player game.
  41. Calibro


    Exactly, so they can't just *make Overwatch*, that's the point.
  42. hichanbis


    No but it proves it is possible.
    Publishers are just not trying anymore because there's simply more money to make in MP games (player retention and micro-transactions go along with each other)
  43. Dreamboum


    And there are tens of thousands that are being canned and/or reshuffled around for the publishers needs with no concern for their well-being. What do you think happened at Visceral ? They all left on good terms and it just was a difference in philosophy ? What do you think a crunch is ? A passion drive ?

    It's putting a band-aid on the issue that regardless of the product and the sales they put out, the money they receive doesn't equal the real price of their labour. Considering that EA also plays the game of delivering bonuses from the metacritic score, that's actually not even a given in the first place.
  44. Make a good, single player, linear game, which is 5-8 hours long, and I'll buy it.

    If you make it open world just because, shove it full of shit side content, make it last 20-30 hours just to say it's long, I won't buy it.
  45. litebrite

    Banned Member

    I think his point was why would a big publisher fund Hellblade when they can make Overwatch?
  46. Chaos2Frozen


    Because they don't have the resources or the know-how to make a Overwatch. Ninja Theory as never struck me as a studio with strong talent in mechanics particularly combat.

    Problems that your Activision, EA and Ubisoft of the world would not have.
  47. sfortunato


    Do you have a source on this?
  48. MrHeisenbird

    Banned Member

    I'm sure he knows the answer.

    Edit: Nevermind.
  49. TheKidObi


    For people saying they need to increase price, your free to go buy the 99$ gold edition or limited edition what ever it is, you can even support them by buying their micro transaction if they have it in their game. As for me I'll keep buying for 60$ if it's worth it and if they have a DLC that's reasonable I'll buy that too. Dont feel sorry for non of this publisher most are making profit with their MP games If they can't make anymore SP games that's fine with me I'll just move on to the next game that do.
  50. texhnolyze


    Sure you will, but how about the majority of gamers out there that isn't you?

    That's the point Amy Hennig is making.