“Mid-Tier developers will struggle in future,” says Ian Livingstone

Wednesday, 13th June 2012 15:07 GMT By Debabrata Nath

Eidos life president, Ian Livingstone, feels that mid-tier console studios could soon be a thing of the past as triple-A games grow larger, and consumers become more interested in mobile and broswer-based games.

Speaking during BAFTA’s question time, Livingstone said with big studios constantly investing more money in cutting edge technology, mid-tier studios could struggle to compete and likely disappear.

He also said the consumer will be spoilt for choice with so many platforms such as mobile and browser at his disposal, and the huge amount of cheap apps available on said platforms, resulting in the demise of small console developers’ producing titles unable to stand out from such a large crowd.

“It’s certainly a case of the rich getting richer,” said Livingstone. “The bar is being raised in every sequel that the mid-tier developers haven’t got a hope in hell of surviving. Everyone is buying the same games like Call of Duty and FIFA. The mid-tier is going to go away because people have so much more choice on mobile platforms and Facebook today.

“Mid-tier console games have got huge problems ahead.”

Peter Molyneux, who also participated in the panel, said a game must sell anywhere between five to seven million units to achieve triple-A status, and could cost £50 million £80 million to make.



  1. ManuOtaku

    “Peter Molyneux, who also participated in the panel, said a game must sell anywhere between five to seven million units to achieve triple-A status, and could cost £50 million £80 million to make”.

    That is a pretty alarming situation if you ask me, no wonder we get so many sequels, no way a new ip can handle those figures, and no way it can recolect that big amount of money, well i hope kickstater and other iniciatives really work and really delivers on all fronts, i mean good for the developers and good for consumers, and the industry, because we need something, otherwise newer IPS, will be hard to get too, now i know this is a part of the schilling saga and maybe not the most important factor, but no wonder why they flunked.

    I wonder at which point we will not go with the realistic graphics route, and the industry try to go other routes, like better artistic designs using old technologies, i mean using new programs on old ones to have better experiences, graphic and gameplay wise, like FEZ, minecraft, etc.

    #1 3 years ago
  2. AHA-Lambda

    we are already at that point though, the B tier of budgeted games has basically completely eroded at this point.

    #2 3 years ago
  3. ManuOtaku

    #2 thats sad, i hope somehow the developers and this industry will find other ways to improve the situation, it will be good for them and for us.

    #3 3 years ago
  4. AHA-Lambda

    Yeah, unfortunately as sad as it is this is seemingly natural for many entertainment industries as they become bigger. There really is a sense that you either go big or go indie, and there is no in between anymore.

    Only exceptions I can think of are some of the very specific niche games like Catherine and Demon’s Souls/Dark Souls.

    #4 3 years ago
  5. TMRNetShark

    How about this novel idea? FOCUS ON ONE IDEA for a game and spend a good amount of time making it! Have a unique idea about a video game instead of sticking to what’s already established.

    If I had to choose between MW3 and Homefront… I’m gonna choose MW3. They are basically the same game with the same mechanics… it’s just that the heavy hitter is MW3.

    #5 3 years ago
  6. OlderGamer

    Or, make PC games.

    #6 3 years ago

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