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Games must achieve photorealism in order to open up new genres says 2K

2K Games boss Christoph Hartmann believes real-life graphics is a very necessary goal

With Halo, Medal of Honor, Battlefield, Crysis, Call of Duty, and countless other shooters coming, the market is a bit inundated. Unique and genre-bending games like Journey, for example, aren't easy to come by, but in order for this industry to truly reach the next level and expand into new genres, pure photorealism is needed, argues 2K Games boss Christoph Hartmann.

Speaking in a soon-to-be-published interview with GamesIndustry International, Hartmann noted that the film industry still has an advantage over video games in the sense that movie directors can easily portray strong emotions, like sadness or love. Because that's difficult to do in games, many developers go back to the action and shooter games, which are safer bets.

"Recreating a Mission Impossible experience in gaming is easy; recreating emotions in Brokeback Mountain is going to be tough, or at least very sensitive in this country... it will be very hard to create very deep emotions like sadness or love, things that drive the movies," he said. "Until games are photorealistic, it'll be very hard to open up to new genres. We can really only focus on action and shooter titles; those are suitable for consoles now."

He continued, "To dramatically change the industry to where we can insert a whole range of emotions, I feel it will only happen when we reach the point that games are photorealistic; then we will have reached an endpoint and that might be the final console."

Stay tuned for the complete interview in which we discuss next-gen gaming, 2K's portfolio, Wii U, and building up talent in the organization.

UPDATE: The full interview is now live. Please read it here.

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James Brightman avatar
James Brightman: James Brightman has been covering the games industry since 2003 and has been an avid gamer since the days of Atari and Intellivision. He was previously EIC and co-founder of IndustryGamers and spent several years leading GameDaily Biz at AOL prior to that.
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