“Right now, we are narrowing ourselves down into genres and sequels and certain types of games,” Shawn Layden, former CEO of SIE Worldwide Studios, told GamesIndustry.biz in July. “Favourites like my own, like Parappa and Vib-Ribbon, those things don’t seem to get a chance to come out on stage. That’s bad for the industry and for fans. Over time, that leads to a crumbling of the games industry if we just keep talking to the same people and telling the same stories in the same way.”
I would add that I really wish big game companies would make more small experiences. I love Naughty Dog, but I’d love to see what they could do with a much smaller budget. Could they do something more creative? What if the stakes were lower and they didn’t feel they needed to make a masterpiece customers would pay $60-70 for every 3 years? By all means, keep making those games too, but I’d love to see more of this AAA talent working on smaller games.
A couple smaller games I’ve really enjoyed this year are 12 Minutes and Overboard, coincidentally both time loop games. Neither is my game of the year, but I had really nice weekends with both of them that I really enjoyed. 12 Minutes is on Xbox Game Pass for PC and (duh) Xbox, and Overboard is on serval platforms, including iOS where it’s only a couple bucks.