Epic’s Cliff Bleszinski feels multiplayer should be embraced by Japanese development studios in order to appeal to western audiences.
Speaking with Gamasutra, Bleszinski said this doesn’t mean tacking on multiplayer for the sake of it, but instead creating interesting experiences – like what From Software developed for Dark Souls. Bleszinski said the multiplayer was “innovative” due to its “connected elements.” He feels it will continue to inspire western developed so to its “blended experience.”
“My advice to Japan is that in a disc-based market right now, you cannot [ignore multiplayer],” he said.
“And if you’re going to make a third-person shooter… the fact that [Platinum's] Vanquish didn’t have a multiplayer suite was a crime. That IP, it was pretty good as far as being western, but the gameplay was great, the vibe… and I’ve often said on record that if Gears is the kind of Wild, Wild West coal train chugging along, that Vanquish is the Japanese bullet train, with style and everything.
“There is absolutely no reason I shouldn’t have been zipping around, doing the mega slides, diving up in the air in an arena with other players.”
Bleszinski said another title which missed an opportunity with multiplayer was Grasshopper Manufacture’s Shadows of the Damned, a game he called a “wonderfully crazy adventure.”
“The dialogue had me laughing out loud, just even the key-door systems in there; it was a beautifully crazy game with really fun gameplay, but no multiplayer co-op experience in there,” he said.
“I’m not saying tack on versus; there’s a billion different ways you can do some sort of ‘players interacting with other players.”