There seems to be quite a bit of interest in the game developers cooperative, and I’ve been having a number of conversations about building such a thing. This being the case, it’s likely worthwhile to get into an overview both of what a cooperative is, and why it’s such a good solution for developer needs at this time.
Monthly Archives: June 2009
I was asked the other day by an interviewer about the past and future of manifesto games, with which I have been glad to have been involved. As I was telling him, though, that a portal dedicated to indie games is redundant by definition in the current environment, where a thousand flowers are definitely blooming, it occurred to me that what is needed now isn’t a distribution channel, but cooperative representation for marketing and business development.
Bijan Sabet followed up a tweet pondering the future of libraries with a post including the feedback he had received. Some of the responses were interesting visions, while some simply crowed the death of the printed word as the end of libraries. A fair amount of what I’ve been called upon to do since 2001 is evaluation of how physical retail can continue to have value in a world of digital distribution. -I dealt with this specifically as VP of Business at Electronics Boutique, and since then in a consulting role for various initiatives. Amusingly, the redundancy of libraries and of video game retail stores ends up being sort of the same issue at this point in history:
It’s been interesting to watch as Microsoft and Sony simply decided to copy Nintendo’s philosophy and execution of a ten-year console cycle, rather than come up with an entirely new strategy. Nintendo was slightly more sophisticated in execution, as they gave their technology an initial release as “GameCube,” then a secondary release of basically the same hardware with the addition of of a groundbreaking controller interface, as Wii, giving an effective 10-year life to the technology. In the current economic environment, it is probably best not to try to push another round of console hardware down user’s throats (especially at the price points they want to remain at), so, in this way MS and Sony are adapting the model, but it’s no great stretch. Microsoft’s Natal or Sony’s unnamed PS3 technology will probably form the Wii part of their respective cycles. Back in 2006, Sony was saying that PS3 would have a 10-year lifecycle, and at E3 this year Microsoft was saying the same thing of 360.