The indie revolution is already over and done, according to Shahid Ahmad, best know as the man who gets excellent indie games onto PlayStation platforms – especially the Vita.
Ahmad delivered his verdict during a keynote at the London Games Conference 2013, as reported by MCV.
“People say the indie revolution is only just beginning. It’s not. It’s over,” he said.
“When the power structure shifts to the content creators, the old buildings might still be standing but there’s new people in there. New content creators, with new ways of doing things. That’s what’s happened to PlayStation.”
Ahmad said that the last few years have taught Sony that the PlayStation brand has to “be focused and passionate about embracing that new space”. During gamescom 2012, he realised many developers – old school and indie alike – didn’t care about the Vita, and didn’t realise that Sony was willing to back the handheld in new ways.
“What [they] didn’t know was I had been told to tear up the rule book. You don’t change the course of supertanker by saying you want to go another way. You have to take radical action,” he said.
“In an era of massive fragmentation, the old rulebook doesn’t work. Operating in an environment of trust was the only way to work. We’ve forged open and friendly relationships with developers – in fact our relationship with developers are better than they have ever been.”
Ahmad said Sony had three main ideas is stuck to in turning the Vita into the indie showcase it is today. First, it acknowledged that content creators need ownership over the whole digital publication process.
Second, it had to acknowledge the rise of competing devices like smartphones, smart TVs, PCs, tablets and laptops, which also play games.
Thirs, Sony needed to embrace “power tools” like Unity and Game Maker, so that developers would find it quick and easy to create games for PlayStation devices.