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Molyneux defends Xbox One strategy

Molyneux defends Xbox One strategy

Mon 12 Aug 2013 2:22pm GMT / 10:22am EDT / 7:22am PDT
HardwareDevelopment

Suggests Microsoft's policies have been unfairly judged

Games designer Peter Molyneux has defended his former employer Microsoft's recent Xbox One strategy, and suggested that its always online policies were not about controlling consumers' gaming.

"I know Microsoft, I know they were only doing things because they thought they were long-reaching and long-thinking," he said in an interview with TechRadar.

"But the world we live in now is that we have to realise, especially if you're a big corporation, if you make one step wrong, the world will leap on you, and unfairly, very unfairly, they will judge you."

Molyneux is now the creative director at his indie start-up, 22Cans, but between 1997 and March 2012 was the founder and boss of Lionhead Studios. Lionhead was acquired by Microsoft in April 2006. During the interview he also suggested that online was going to play a larger and larger part in the gaming experience.

"Whether as consumers we like it or not, just like every form of technology interaction, there's an inevitability of online. We know that online is so much a part of our existence now that we're going to be in a world very soon where we have to be online all the time," he said.

"A mobile device is more and more non functional without a connection to the internet, and why should that be any different for consoles?"

22Cans is currently working on Godus, a spiritual successor to Populous.

13 Comments

Hakki Sahinkaya

43 32 0.7
Popular Comment
"A mobile device is more and more non functional without a connection to the internet, and why should that be any different for consoles?"

Because a home console is not a mobile phone.

Posted:A year ago

#1
"...the world will leap on you, and unfairly, very unfairly, they will judge you."
There speaks a person with experience of being jumped on!

Posted:A year ago

#2

Jeff Kleist Writer, Marketing, Licensing

355 214 0.6
@Hakki
While I agree with Molyneux that Internet is more and more essential, and to MS long term strategy, understanding for instance, that a desktop is not a tablet has been a major issue for Microsoft as of late.

Posted:A year ago

#3

Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.

2,270 2,439 1.1
Popular Comment
No, Peter, it was very fair.

In fact, the very notion that MS has reversed course on practically every single aspect just goes to show that they were very much indeed wrong from the onset.

Posted:A year ago

#4

Andrew Goodchild Studying development, Train2Game

1,254 421 0.3
I'm sure there was an article on GI.biz post E3 where Mr Molyneux criticised how MS handled the reveal.

Also, pre the initial reveal he said MS would do well to remember to focus on games first and foremost, not TV etc.

So if the audience were wrong to burn MS, maybe Peter should not have handed us the matches?

Posted:A year ago

#5

Paul Johnson Managing Director / Lead code monkey, Rubicon Development

886 1,304 1.5
Popular Comment
I think he has to say something new to get another mention of his latest game on a news site. Flip-flopping opinions gets you double the impressions.

Posted:A year ago

#6

Eyal Teler Programmer

87 84 1.0
In fact, the very notion that MS has reversed course on practically every single aspect just goes to show that they were very much indeed wrong from the onset.
No it doesn't. It just means that Microsoft cares more about selling the console than about advancing the industry in the way it feels it should go. Microsoft in general tries to appease people. It goes back on decisions quite a bit, preferring to give people what they want. It doesn't necessarily means that Microsoft agrees that what people want is the best.

Posted:A year ago

#7

Matthew Bennett 3D Engine developer, Sitedesk

21 15 0.7
@Jeff
I'm in agreement with you, for the most part Microsoft has made quite a few errors that have probably cost/will cost them share in the Console, Tablet, Phone and Desktop markets -- This isn't me ragging on at Windows 8 -- as an OS it is great, It's Interface and User experience however is appalling, Nothing a bit of software and a few patches couldn't fix though.

Back to the topic of the article however, I really hope that Microsoft come out from it okay and manage to release a solidly selling console -- A single company controlled console cycle will not really be good for anyone. Doesn't take a business genius to work out competition is a good thing.

Posted:A year ago

#8

Keldon Alleyne Handheld Developer, Avasopht Ltd

449 423 0.9
Microsoft's problem was being anti-consumer. Look at what Green Man Gaming allows with trading "used" downloaded games.

As I've previously said, you have to make your service reflect how people perceive it.

Remember when mobile gaming was all about credits and pay per play? It didn't go down well because although the arcade metaphor works in arcade shops people did not perceive a game on your phone in the same light. Yet on the other hand f2p iAP works in a very similar way to pay-per-play, just in a way that better matches the user's perceptions.

Now on the iPhone people are happy paying for 49-99p apps, even if just to try them out.

Microsoft's problem was trying to decide how people will think about the financial model of how they pay for their gaming. The people did not agree, and no, I don't think it would have been successful. Buyer's remorse would undoubtedly increase so much that people will be more reluctant to buy new titles and become even more judgemental and critical of titles. People might have started taking more notice of the finer details in reviews, and games journalism may have seen a massive revival in the grand preview and review.

But don try to label this as "forward thinking", or "innovative", it was anti-consumer through and through and poorly thought out. There was no benefit for the user for a start and secondly, they crossed the line!

Posted:A year ago

#9

Rick Lopez Illustrator, Graphic Designer

1,269 942 0.7
Ya know I was starting to respect the guy a little, but he makes these outlandish statements. I really hate statements like these:
"Whether as consumers we like it or not, just like every form of technology interaction, there's an inevitability of online. We know that online is so much a part of our existence now that we're going to be in a world very soon where we have to be online all the time,"
Seriously, if he wants to live life in a little room, viewing reality and interacting with people through a fucking smart phone thats fine. But alot of people enjoy lots of things that are not on the internet, such as bar hopping with friends, sports, table top bored games of checkers, chess and hungry hungry hoppo's. I for one enjoyed pinball machines, wish they kept making em, cause they would swallow my quarters.

And console gaming is a way to play that i personally enjoy very very much.

Ultimatly, microsoft as a big corporation, thought it had the power to tell people what they want, Instead of catering to there needs. That I found was an act of arrogance and microsoft paid the price, just like SONY with PS3 and Nintendo with the 3DS at one point.

Hopefully microsoft will learn to look at there consumers, and be a bit more considerate of there needs, instead of looking for the next big cash cow to make more money.

Its ok to introduce new things, but its the people who make them succesful, just like the smart phones and tablets.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Rick Lopez on 13th August 2013 4:29am

Posted:A year ago

#10

Robin Clarke Producer, AppyNation Ltd

321 748 2.3
"A mobile device is more and more non functional without a connection to the internet"

Really? I can access all the videos, books and music and the vast majority of the games (other than ones intrinsically linked to a server) on my mobile devices offline.

The problem that consumers (and developers, and retailers, and press) objected to was not functionality being added for all games, but a one-size-fits-all solution being needlessly applied to all games, at the consumer's detriment.

Posted:A year ago

#11

David Serrano Freelancer

300 272 0.9
There is no such thing as unfairly judging a large corporation. They are sociopathic entities that will always act in their own interests regardless of the impact their actions have on others. And the larger they grow, the less concerned they become with the ethics, morality or legality of their business practices. So all of the fear and suspicions consumers have about them are completely valid on some level.

Posted:A year ago

#12

Roland Austinat roland austinat media productions|consulting, IDG, Computec, Spiegel Online

134 74 0.6
@Eyal:
No it doesn't. It just means that Microsoft cares more about selling the console than about advancing the industry in the way it feels it should go.
Well, even Microsoft felt like advancing the industry, right now it's really in dire straits to make a (bigger) profit. Especially after Surface and Windows 8.

Posted:A year ago

#13

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