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GDC: Meier's "golden age" of gaming

Firaxis supremo Sid Meier admitted at the Game Developers Conference on Wednesday that he believes the industry is in the midst of a "golden age" of gaming - but that his workload doesn't allow him to play other strategy games.

Firaxis supremo and game design legend Sid Meier admitted at the Game Developers Conference on Wednesday that he believes the industry is in the midst of a "golden age" of gaming - but that his workload doesn't allow him to play other strategy games.

In a Q&A session in front of a packed room, Meier also revealed that he hadn't played Portal yet, and when asked about his favourite rival strategy games, Meier said that he didn't play them - because strategy games were something he did "all day", and he didn't really feel like playing more of them when he got home.

Partly it's also down to ongoing work on finishing Civilization Revolution for consoles before he can get stuck into his "pile of games," he said apologetically.

However, he also suggested that storytelling in games is a bit self-indulgent and that this explains why he tends to create sandboxes for people instead.

"There's the temptation for the designer to have too much fun and not leave enough for the player," he said. He likes to "keep the designer in the background".

Meier also made the recommendation to aspiring game designers to learn to program, because it "gives you a lot of power and creativity" while he admitted that he's not planning on developing any casual titles.

"I'm not that interested in doing simple games. I like complicated games!" he said, to much amusement.

Sid Meier, responsible for some of the industry's iconic games over time such as Pirates and Railroad Tycoon, is currently working on Civilization Revolution, which will bring his massively popular strategy franchise to consoles.

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