Jason Kingsley, CEO for Rebellion who have Sniper Elite and Alien vs. Predator among the titles they’ve developed, is in the mind that having another platform like Windows 8 is a positive thing, encouraging diversity in both hardware and games.
In a interview with GamesIndustry courtesy of StumbledUpon, Kingsley puts the backlash seen towards Windows 8 down to Microsoft’s size and reputation and general view that they need grounding, saying, “I think possibly it’s Microsoft’s reputation in that everyone thinks they’re big and successful and they have to be taken down a notch or two every time they try something. You do kind of wonder whether it’s part of human psychology for tall poppies to get their heads cut off, it’s kind of a normalising influence of society.”
“I always start from the position that generally speaking, more competition is good in whatever sphere it is, obviously within certain limits. But it’s always good to have another platform because it makes each of the hardware providers work a little bit harder, it means we have to modify the games we do to optimise them a little bit for each of the platforms and that’s not necessarily a bad thing either.”
When discussing the complaints that Windows 8 is perhaps too guarded, as well as the fact that consoles and iOS have been like this for a long time, Kingsley comments on this view towards operating systems as well as the internet in general. “So I was kind of surprised when people said ‘we should be allowed to publish whatever we like.’ It’s the same polarisation that people have about the internet being free or some people say ‘all games should be free, piracy is a good thing’. The thing is, somebody has to get paid, somebody has to be able to make money out of making these games and therefore you chipping in a little bit of money doesn’t hurt.”
In the wake of Eurocom shutting down he goes into the future of Rebellion and what it’s like now to get into the games industry. “So what we’ve always wanted to do is look at our own IP, create games for ourselves as well, and basically have fewer people in the decision loop so that we can live and die by our own creative decisions. We’ve made games where we haven’t had the kind of creative control we would have ideally liked and for a combination of reasons that has meant that game hasn’t been as good as it could have been. Whereas other games, where we’ve had a lot more say in what goes in and what we do, have generally speaking performed a lot better.”
“I think it’s more daunting because in some ways there are more opportunities, but arguably you also need less specialist technical skills to get something on screen. It’s just as hard to get a really great game made, or just as hard to get something people will like, because that’s the secret sauce, the magic ingredient that is hard to write down. I actually think it’s easier to get something up on screen now than it ever has been before.”
Kingsley goes on in the interview to touch on where games are currently and where they are heading as a perceived art form, not just for children.
Rebellion has Dredd vs. Zombies out now for iOS and Android.