Former Pandemic lead Greg Richardson believes the games industry is going through the greatest revolution of its decades-long existence.
Speaking to GamesIndustry, Richardson said his new developer-slash-publisher Rumble Entertainment is a new company built specifically for this new world.
“Fundamentally the game business is going through the single biggest inflection point since its birth,” he said.
“It’s a switch driven in large part by the fact that we are now surrounded by great connected gameplaying devices all day long, on phones, on laptop computers, and ecosystems that make gameplaying easier on Facebook, tablets.
“Consumers now want to live in a consumption-of-games-world that looks very different than ‘I need two hours in front of my big-screen TV in my living room and I’ve got to master a controller and basically have the dexterity of a fighter pilot in order to play the game.’”
Richardson said consumers now want to play games in shorter sessions; be more intimately connected; and not have to worry about platform divides.
“Finally, with free-to-play you don’t have to spend $60 to figure out if you want the experience. You can try the game, and if you fall in love with it end up spending a lot of time and hopefully some money on it,” he added.
Rumble is equipped for this new future because it doesn’t subscribe to the traditional model of a games “publisher”, Richardson explained.
“I think people think of publishers as kind of a business word that’s distinct from creating products. We’re primarily creators. The people here are developers; we’re inspired to create games that millions of people fall in love with. That’s why we’re doing this,” he said.
But because there’s no retail connection in the digital world, Rumble does publish its own products. It also hopes to publish the works of others, helping out with capital and back-end technology.
“It’s our re-invention of what a publisher is,” Richardson said.
Rumble’s current projects are a browser-based action RPG called KingsRoad, currently in beta, and Nightmare Guardians, which boasts cross-platform play between mobile and web.