God of War creator David Jaffe has weighed in on the Uncharted 3 debate, saying he has learned to put gameplay ahead of cinematic experience.
“A lot of people ask me if I’d ever make another God of War and I always say the same thing: if it were God of War meets something like Zelda (formula wise), then yes. But if it were God of War using the current formula, I would not,” Jaffe wrote on his blog, responding to the controversy surrounding Eurogamer’s Uncharted 3 review, which praised the game but criticised its adherence to a trend toward cinematic experiences.
“For me – and this is just me personally – directing God of War made me realize that as a game designer and certainly as game director I want our games to serve the gods of gameplay first and foremost.
“My and the team’s desire to tell a story/make a movie may or may not get to be fulfilled, but if we do tell a story, it will never come at the expense of the gameplay – the thing that makes our medium matter and special. Games can have story (and many should, such as God of War) and most games – even pure play games – should have strong world and IP.
“But working on God of War made it clear that if we have to cut a set piece or bit of spectacle because of our desire to put play first, then so be it.”
Jaffe commented that despite the hype for cinematic games, its the “gamey” ones that sell best.
“Look at Guitar Hero, Modern Warfare 3, Angry Birds, Farmville, Mario, Madden, Wii sports, and on and on and on. Hell, even GTA sells to most folks because they just like to fuck around in the world (the game part),” he said.
“Look at the top of the charts: the game stuff sells buckets when it’s themed right and executed well. The experience stuff sells well too but not near as much as the gamey stuff and the experience stuff costs a hell of a lot more to make in most cases.”
Throughout the post Jaffe made it clear he was speaking in general terms, expressed his admiration for what he’d seen of Uncharted 3 so far, and made no judgements of his own on the accuracy of Eurogamer’s criticisms.