This Week In The Business: Casual Casualties

Illustration for article titled This Week In The Business: Casual Casualties

QUOTE | “[O]ur games for core audiences did extremely well, but the casual audience has not yet emerged on next gen consoles.” - An Activision Blizzard representative explaining why the company laid off developers after disappointing debuts for Skylanders SuperChargers and Guitar Hero Live.


Elsewhere in the business of gaming this week...

QUOTE | “Up to this point, we have done everything that is both within our power and within the law to help them. But now the U.S. government has asked us for something we simply do not have, and something we consider too dangerous to create.” - Apple CEO Tim Cook, saying he won’t comply with the FBI’s request for a “backdoor” that will let the organization bypass security on iOS devices.

STAT | $23.5 billion - The total digital and physical revenues of the US video game industry in 2015, up 5 percent year-over-year, according to the NPD and ESA. Retail accounted for $13.13 billion of that figure, the same amount it brought in during 2014.

QUOTE | “[W]e are indebted to Justice Scalia for so eloquently defending the rights of creators and consumer everywhere.” - The Entertainment Software Association, in a statement mourning the death of Justice Antonin Scalia, who penned the Supreme Court decision striking down California’s violent game legislation in 2011.

QUOTE | “If you look at what our industry currently represents, we have 22 percent of the jobs in our industry held by women. Now in other parts of tech sector, it’s dramatically lower. It’s in the mid-teens. Now that’s not good enough and we know it’s not good enough.” - ESA president and CEO Michael Gallagher, highlighting the need for more women in the games industry.

QUOTE | “The most important thing a developer can do now is build their reputation. And that reputation is now as important, if not more important, as the games they make.” - Shahid Ahmad, indie developer and former director of strategic content for PlayStation, sharing one of the key lessons he learned at Sony.


QUOTE | “[W]hen Brian introduced the idea of modding, the game just took off. People want that ownership. They want to design their own game and have the game work the way they want to play.” - Sid Meier, attributing a chunk of the Civilization franchise’s enduring appeal to Civilization II lead designer Brian Reynolds.

QUOTE | “They were never willing to invest enough into development of the next sequel for it to make a difference, so we were always working on a shoestring budget just to build something that would be different enough from last year... From my point of view, we were actually lucky to be neglected.” - SCS Software CEO Pavel Sebor, explaining how eight years cranking out 18 Wheels of Steel for budget publisher ValuSoft prepared the American Truck Simulator studio for its current work.


QUOTE | “Once you have Steam keys, you don’t want to just give them away to anyone who has 50 subscribers, but you want that to spread, because it’s worth it. If just one person buys it out of the entire lot who saw that YouTube video, it’s worth it.” - Slime Rancher developer Nick Popovich, arguing that streaming and YouTube is “the new advertising.”

QUOTE | “In India, people don’t like to create their own path. They like to follow a path… Here, if something works with western audiences it’s just easier to convey to someone - like an investor - that you’re making Clash of Clans, but an Indian version.” - Chirag Chopra, founder of New Delhi-based Lucid Labs, detailing an obstacle to the Indian dev scene’s growth.


QUOTE | “The goal is not to automatically come back to an annual cycle, but to come back on a regular basis. We can’t say every year.” - Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot, saying Assassin’s Creed will no longer be a strictly annualized franchise when it returns.

QUOTE | “Working on System Shock was one of the most fulfilling things I’ve done in my career and it’s hard to describe how much I’m looking forward to sharing with players what SHODAN has been up to since the last game was released.” - Warren Spector, announcing that he’s joined OtherSide Entertainment to work on System Shock 3.


Top image via Shutterstock



the indian dev thing has been the most confusing to me, they are a massive country with a population that is pretty much 1/6 of the world, and have a vibrant cultural mythos to draw from, yet you hear next to nothing from them. i get that large swaths are poor, but in their larger population cneters they have the tech capacity, i would love to see india become a major player in the gaming world. and not the garbage cell phone games, i mean console/pc and dedicated handheld.