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Web is the future of creative games - Lau-Kee

Web will be the outlet for innovation as old development models become hampered by scale, argues industry vet

Former Criterion exec David Lau-Kee has said that future innovation and creativity in games will be found on the web, rather than home consoles.

The traditional blockbuster game takes too long to develop he argues, while the democratisation of games making - via cheap tools and services - means that a handful of truly creative people can make games with more innovation, experimentation and creativity than a hundred-strong team.

"I've seen hundreds of projects where companies have got a two year time scale with hundreds of people working on it, and you have to approach that type of development with a very rigid sense of what you're going to produce," said Lau-Kee in an exclusive interview published today.

"The problem there is that two year's down the line, what was interesting then is not so interesting now. The other thing is that when you're producing a game that has 200 people working on it, how many of those are truly creative?"

Lau-Kee was this week appointed non-exec chairman of middleware outfit Unity, whose tools have been adopted by developers to build everything from the well-received browser game Off-Road Velociraptor Safari to the Cartoon Network's MMO Fusion Fall.

"What we're doing by looking at the web, for example, is really focusing on just the creativity. The whole aspect of how you produce that content is exactly where it should be – entirely secondary," added Lau-Kee.

"We'll get tools into the hands of the people who can focus on the creativity and new types of content. We also want to see it so that non-traditional engineering people can produce the games themselves.

"It's always been an issue for me, that we advocate the responsibility for the creativity of games to people who's main skills are in engineering. I'd like those who's main skills are in creativity to be responsible for creating games. The web allows that to an extent."

Connected media can not only be an outlet, but developers can integrate some of its better features to advance the gaming experience, said Lau-Kee.

"When we talk about middleware and tools, Unity understand that. They absolutely understood, historic games – fine – but it's much more interesting to look forward at Games 3.0, looking at how to deliver games on the web.

"I think more interesting is delivering games as one component in a wide set of media that are coming to the user. Integrating the games with text messaging or with Skype for example."

He added: "And we're talking high quality content here, not low quality. How you can take those experiences you would typically get in the console world, in terms of production value and gloss, depth and richness of content."

The full interview with David Lau-Kee can be read here.

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Matt Martin

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Matt Martin joined GamesIndustry in 2006 and was made editor of the site in 2008. With over ten years experience in journalism, he has written for multiple trade, consumer, contract and business-to-business publications in the games, retail and technology sectors.

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