“Console guys are running scared”, says Will Wright

Tuesday, 10 July 2012 07:41 GMT By Brenna Hillier

SimCity, Sims and Spore creator Will Wright believes new publishing possibilities have traditional gaming platform holders in a quake.

“I think all the console guys are running scared. Not so much because of the hardware, but because of the business models, free-to-play and that kind of thing, have shifted underneath them,” Wright told GamesIndustry.

Wright said he expects cloud gaming will rise to prominence because people will want to be able to access a game regardless of which device they’re using, and that this will eventually reach a “much broader group of players” than dedicated gaming hardware.

“It adds more opportunities, too. You have a lot of people who are able to do a lot with small teams and low costs,” he added.

“It used to be big companies doing triple-A titles on consoles is where all the money is. It’s shaken things up quite a bit with all these platforms. In some sense all the little mammals – small developers, new companies – have an opportunity right now to fill new niches that are expanding rapidly. They might be small opportunities now, but they very well could be huge opportunities in the not-too-distant future.”

This has an added bonus of allowing developers to take on riskier projects.,

“On the plus side there’s very little risk in trying something new, as opposed to spending 40 bucks on a game and maybe you’ll like it and maybe you won’t,” Wright noted.

“I think people were a lot more risk-averse under the old model, the shrink-wrap model. It has its pluses and minuses; it is bringing in a much wider group of players than we had before. The demographics are expanding, which long-term I think has to help.”