Molyneux on indie golden age, “enjoy this time, because it won’t last”

Tuesday, 25th March 2014 12:35 GMT By Dave Cook

Godus creator Peter Molyneux has warned that these days of indie prosperity won’t last, citing another cycle that will see independents quashed under the brass heel of bigger entities once more. History, he feels, will repeat itself.

Speaking with CVG, Molyneux said, “These things go in cycles. “What I’d say is, enjoy this time, because it won’t last.

“Don’t think we’re going to be all indies for the next five years – these things go in cycles, just like in the music business. You have a time where punk is big, and then you have times like now where everything is manufactured. Enjoy this time, because inevitably it will only last a short period.”

Molyenux’s fear is that today’s indie darling will get big and leave their founding principles behind in the face of tantalising dollar-sacks. “Here’s the thing,” he went on, “walk through any hotel lobby at GDC and look at people’s name badges. This morning at breakfast I saw three angel investors talking to indies. They’re saying, ‘take my money! I want to invest in your company!’

“But what those indie companies don’t realise is that they’ll then have to have board meetings, and in those meetings they’ll be told, ‘no, you shouldn’t do that – look at this game that’s making money’.”

That said, Molyneux added that he’s pleased to see indies given their fair shot thanks to open routes to market and easier and in some cases free access to development technology. It’s like the 1980s all over again, he said, and added that right now is a great time to be an indie. He still feels these days are fleeting however.

What do you think?



  1. Michael Ireland

    And then those guys who become big will be replaced by more new indies.

    The only thing that’s on the way out is triple A gaming.

    The current upcoming generation doesn’t care one iota about it. They’re far more invested in mobile entertainment and barely give it a chance. Only the biggest publishers can eke out any sort of reasonable profit anymore, a problem that only gets worse the more powerful the hardware games.

    30 years down the line, we’ll all be the old codgers talking about how much better things were back in our days, when we used to sit in front of our TVs and play games that way. Those kids and their new fangled mobile devices don’t know what they’re missing out. etc. etc. *shakes cane*

    Stick with consoles and PCs if you want to be part of the old process, because they’re becoming more and more obsolete every day. Mobile is the future.

    #1 9 months ago
  2. Templar0929

    I think Molyneux should shut up but I suppose he must continue ranting to stay in the media’s attention, which is what he strives for most.

    #2 9 months ago
  3. Luciferous

    The problem with Moly’s opinion here is that nowhere in the past has game development been so accessible, when you have Epic making the Unreal engine affordable to pretty much anyone and Crytek following suit – anyone with determination can make a go of it.

    If the big companies try to bring indies down this time what will happen is that indies will band together to make more cohesive teams and with affordable engines grow in to full blown studios.

    I’m a pretty decent artist and animator, but my programming sucks – but because of the way these big engines work I have ways around that hurdle to make a game, to get the wheels rolling and maybe pick up more people along the way.

    #3 9 months ago
  4. darkshale

    While I respect Mr. Molyneux, and I agree for the most part, these things are cyclical however he is missing the bigger cycle. The mobile boom and the independent studio surge is more akin to the introduction of the printing press or the cassette recorder.

    It is more likely that we will see the decline of the AAA title as we know it. The quality of independently funded games will rise as the tools become more and more available putting more pressure on publishers to lower sales expectations and as a result development costs.

    As more options become available for consumers publishers and self publishers will have to learn to make money with stiffer competition and lower sales forecasts.

    There will be games that sell their 500k units and make 3 people very happy and there will be the games that sell 500k and send 50 people to the help wanted section.

    Individual independent studios will fail just as publishers will however both will remain they will just have to make a different type of game.a

    #4 9 months ago
  5. Dark

    Huh i never played indie games and never found them interesting to say at least but i still think they’re here to stay.

    #5 9 months ago

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