Remedy CTO Markus Maki has said that the firm’s decision to sign an exclusivity deal with Xbox 360 was a “business risk,” that took the “big technological effort, the PS3, out of the equation.”
Speaking with CVG, Maki said the game was originally planned for PC, Xbox 360 and PS3, but Microsoft’s offer was a bit too good to pass up, despite the worry of a reduced market.
“Our strategy was one of focus,” said Maki. “That’s actually a really core Remedy element, well if you forget the ambitious goals we had. We needed to be top notch in some areas, but we knew we couldn’t do everything better than some developers out there. For example, this meant there was no multiplayer. That wasn’t in our core set of skills and it would have been a huge effort.
“We also took the approach to license middleware that made sense, even when we didn’t end up using it all for one reason or another. And then, the big deal – to go with Microsoft and take one big technological effort, the PS3, out of the equation. That then changed the technology risk to a business risk – but that’s a subject for a different talk altogether…”
Maki also said Remedy thought of ditching the Alan Wake engine at one time and switching to Unreal.
“We looked at Unreal and other technologies out there, but this was actually before the PS3 and Xbox 360 were ever even released,” he said. “We also had all three platforms planned in the beginning – PC, 360 and PS3. I think it’s safe to say now overly optimistic view of the schedule. At that point, we didn’t dare commit to shipping a game on third-party tech until the developers of that tech had shipped a game on each of those platforms.
“Five years later, [I'll admit] that the reasoning wasn’t solid because these guys beat us to the punch easily.”
Still, Maki said Remedy is pleased with the engine it created and what it can do.