Hawkins blames software licensing for creativity decline

Long-term industry face and EA founder Trip Hawkins has revisited the two-decade old debate about platform holder software licensing, blaming it for the death of creativity in the modern market.

I think we actually had our golden age when game development was using floppy disks and it was an open free platform when we could all make games like we wanted to make,” Hawkins told VentureBeat.

”Nintendo came along and software licensing came in and we’ve been in a dark age since then.”

The licensing model was one of the most significant changes to the games market when it arrived hand in hand with the console boom.

Until that point coders were free to publish whatever they want on whatever they want, as is still the case in the creativity-rich PC software sector. However, the likes of Nintendo and Sony changed this by requiring titles pass their certification process before being released on their machines.

How many great companies have been built on the world-wide web, which is an open platform,” he added. The list just goes on and on, and Nintendo’s been doing things this way for 25 years and there are no great companies that have been built on the back of Nintendo.”

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