Cage: Industry is too focused on violence

Quantic Dream's founder on why we should look beyond kids and teenagers

David Cage, the founder of Heavy Rain studio Quantic Dream, has shared his thoughts on the narrow focus of the industry.

"The industry is too far balanced towards kids and teenagers. It's too focused on violence," he told Develop.

"All I want to do is offer some diversity to the medium. I want to give people the chance to buy something other than ten different first person shooters and RPGs. There should be games for all ages, all tastes. Whatever is possible with interactive entertainment should be explored, and I don't think we're seeing that right now."

He recognised that those genres were traditionally profitable, but also questioned the idea that they were a sure thing for developers.

"Is it really a safer bet? I'm not sure. Releasing yet another war-based shooter; there are already so many on the market, some of which are so incredibly popular. You probably run the risk of being crowded out in that genre,"

"If I wanted to make just profit I'd have made Heavy Rain 2 and 3 and 4 and 5 for our publisher"

"But it must be profitable for most people, because it's what the whole industry does. If I wanted to make just profit I'd have made Heavy Rain 2 and 3 and 4 and 5 for our publisher."

Cage also seemed to apply those same principles, art before profit, to the studio's impressive tech. While Quantic Dream offers the use of its mo-cap studio to other developers, it has yet to license out its impressive tech.

"It would be money but also troubles," explained Cage.

"It would be getting a whole team together to work on it. It would be changing our whole business model. I'm not saying we'd never do it - it's just that we're really busy making games right now."

Quantic Dream's latest project is yet to be announced, although Cage recently impressed at GDC with a tech demo titled Kara.

More stories

Quantic Dream and union at odds over "grotesque" trial

But sources who were present at the trial were able to confirm some of the content from Solidaires Informatique's report

By Marie Dealessandri

Court overturns ruling against Quantic Dream over unfair dismissal

Quantic Dream also shared a statement to "set the record straight," dismissing all allegations of toxic culture

By Marie Dealessandri

Latest comments (2)

Tony Johns9 years ago
To me, the people who have the most disposable income are the gamers in their 20s where some of them they have just got their inheritance from their 21st Birthdays, and some maybe they start to have a job, some often stay at home or even go to universities and they can find it easier to save than someone in their 30s who is married and may have their own house and needing to pay more of the bills.

the kids and teenagers still need to rely on their parents to buy the games for them, so while it may be easier to market games to younger gamers, the scope of how much they can buy compared to an older gamer is much more limited.
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Chuan L Game Designer / Indie Developer 9 years ago
Nope ., developers are just too focused on 'hit detection' -based gameplay. It's nothing to do w/ genre but rather that there really is a paucity of other kinds of interactions that can be evaluated programmatically. Until we invent them that is -- and this is what's needed to expand the vocabulary or range of experiences ., sensations or 'game feel' in a meaningful way.

Nice attempt w/ "Heavy Rain" to find analogs for real -world actions through it's QTEs however the disjunct between watching the action on screen and watching the indicators is too distracting as well. I've not played the PS MOVE edition and maybe this does a better job ., however I did try "Datura" with the peripheral and I think it still suffers a bit from having to highlight interactions as distinct from the rest of the environment.

Same goes for "Journey" which encapsulates its main concerns of intimacy and companionship but through the same old tropes of platform and gated progression. Game designers are eminently good at replicating what's gone in terms of design ., but very few are looking at a more holistic picture of player interactions and perhaps games as a subset of UX in general. That it includes what's going on in the players mind ., the wider community and finding new shapes to accommodate those experiences over time.

It's the lesson that should've been learned with "Minecraft" and so on. That the role of the designer can be to facilitate rather than to dictate how a game plays out. I think in the end a million monkeys *are* going to produce something more creative ., something more beautiful and appreciable than a single ape w/ a nice job title.! One can only hope too that the democratisation of creativity finds an outlet in games. I do believe people desire creativity / community over achievement / individuation any day.

-- Chuan
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply

Sign in to contribute

Need an account? Register now.