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Make It Again, Man
Posted by newsbot on March 11th 2008

It all comes down to that age old nightmare – game design. AsI've said before, design is hard– it’s certainly the hardest thing about making good games. As an indiedeveloper, I get to do all the jobs, and the design bit is the one Ifind hardest of all, although ironically it's the bit I get praised forin reviews. I'd like to put forward the theory that the difficulty ofdesign is a reason we should love sequels. Let me explain...I worked for three years on Lionhead’s The Movies and Iended up being known as the AI coder even though I actually worked onlots of different parts of the game. Because I was involved more orless from the start of the project I saw the game design evolve overtime, which it did rather dramatically.If you haven't seen The Movies, let me describe it briefly. TheMoviesis a management game where you run a movie studio, with a 3D view ofyour studio lot. You pick the actors, sets, costumes, and (and this wasthe cool bit), you actually got to see the finished movie that youmade, with the option to add subtitles, sound effects and so on.Commercially, The Movies did alright, but notbreathtakingly. I left Lionhead just as it was released so I don't knowthe exact figures, but I know there won't be a sequel. There was anexpansion, but the first add-on pack for a game is always indevelopment before it ships – that's just the logistics of things. Thegame got some good reviews, but it didn't set the world on fire.Now if you’re an investor, a publisher or a money man then yourimmediate thoughts are these: The game did notprovide as good a return on investment as expected. The game did notsell enough. The last thing wewould do is another game like this.Which makes absolutesense. Why throw good money after bad? Would you fund The Movies 2?

View article at bit-tech.net

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