Development legend Archer Maclean has told MCV publishers have become reluctant to invest in new and innovative ideas.
Maclean’s new futuristic racing title for Wii, Wheelspin, will be released through Bethesda in November.
Discussing his future projects, he told MCV: “I’ve got one or two ideas I’m playing around with, but they’re not going to fit into any one genre. The problem with this is it’s very hard to get publishers to buy into new ideas.”
Maclean said that his earlier works such as Jimmy White’s Whirlwind Snooker were ‘new ideas’ at the time and yet went on to define entire genres.
He also said that so many genres have been created since the 1980s, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to devise IP that seems fresh. It also becomes harder for developers to avoid being ‘pigeonholed’.
“Over the years, I’ve done shoot-‘em-ups, sporting simulations, puzzle games, fighters, racing games – so what’s left?”
Maclean also observed that the larger publishers carry too much weight in the games industry, preventing anyone new and innovative from establishing themselves.
“The market has become dominated by these massive brands at the moment and the trouble is it has become all about marketing and huge investments,” he said.
“I honestly believe games that cost a lot of money still have to go a fair way to justify that investment.
“Even when companies pour £15 to £20 million into their projects, there’s massive risk but not necessarily a massive reward.”