Klei Entertainment founder Jamie Cheng feels that triple-A staff cuts produce more talent available for indie studios, as new employees come into the fold already trained.
Speaking with GI International, Cheng feels there’s a caveat though: it will eventually cause issues for smaller developers looking for artists and engineers. Cheng said it is less of an issue for designers, as operations at independent studios is drastically different than at a larger firm.
“With all the changes and layoffs, we’re seeing so many new studios come up that are doing these games without the crutch of hundreds of millions of dollars of marketing…I think for sure that the layoffs are fueling way more development in the small, independent space,” Cheng said. “I enjoy having the large AAA around because they were hiring and training tons of people, and I can’t do that.
“We have 30 people and that seems like a lot in the independent space. I can’t go out and train a lot of people in development, and that’s what they were doing. I feel like last year was when we kinda figured out how to make a game We’ve been bumbling along and every year we’ve done something and we get better…We finally have a process that I think works.”
Cheng said every game released by the studio so far has been profitable, with each continuing to bring in money, and he expects independent games to continue to benefit thanks to digital distribution methods.