Veteran game designer Cliff Bleszinski has said he’s lost all interest in making disc-based games.
In a fascinating new interview with Gamasutra, the former Gears of War designer spoke passionately of how he’d want his next title to take advantage of vibrant PC communities that allow a more direct, ongoing relationship with players.
The more recognisable method of publishing games, Bleszinski says, is no more. “The whole ‘old guard,’ where you get a Game Informer cover and an E3 reveal, is dead,” he said. “I’ll never make another disc-based game for the rest of my career, and [at E3] they’re trying to woo buyers from Target and Walmart?”
Bleszinski revealed that he’s currently addicted to PC hit Rust, and mentions how it eschews conventional understanding that developers need to excessively tutor their players.
“In these games the new user experience is utter shit, and it’s okay,” he said. “There are two lessons people have not learned from Minecraft: Get the game out there and build it. Some kid will put out a video. Players will teach each other. You don’t need the ‘press A to jump’.”
Bleszinski reiterated earlier statements that he’d like to form his own studio and create an arena-based shooter. “I don’t want Gears to be my defining legacy,” he added.
“At the end of the day, [Gears of War is] known for being a fun, fantastic franchise. But I’d like to think there’s more to my creativity than that,” Bleszinski mused. “At the end of the day, you’re shooting fucking lizard-men in the fucking face with a fucking chainsaw gun.”
“It didn’t wind up what I’d hoped; I’d pitched it as ‘Band of Brothers with monsters’–you know Band of Brothers is well-done and emotional, telling the story of the Greatest Generation and what they did in the war. Yet somehow we landed on ‘Predator’… the characters being all ‘buff and manly’, I’d never planned on that.”
“You can’t plan for that,” he says. “With game development, it’s like doing a Ouija board. With [dialog barks] it gets easy to slip into Schwarzenegger territory.”
Whether Gears of War remains in Schwarzenegger territory is no longer Bleszinski’s problem: Microsoft has now acquired the franchise, and given development duties to Rod Fergusson’s Black Tusk Studios.