Silicon Knights head Denis Dyack is known for making bold predictions – one of them is that in future, the games industry will have one single games platform. His latest, isn’t as bold, but should serve as a warning to those thinking that the Activision-Blizzard merger is the biggest element of consolidation to hit the games industry.
In an interview with Develop, he says that "mergers and acquisitions are going to continue and there’s nothing that can stop it", likening these big changes to the changes that hit 1930s Hollywood to create the ‘studio system’ of big companies.
When asked about the recent spate of studio closures in the US, Dyack commented: "I think the industry is going through a paradigm change. And it’s not just North American companies, it’s all companies. The economy worldwide is kind of in crisis; demographics are changing and birth rates are declining. So is it easy out there? No it isn’t. Is it getting harder? Yes it is. But, if a lot of groups are not going to survive the paradigm shift, hopefully we’ll be one of those that do."
He added: "I think if you draw parallels with the movie industry, you’ll see a lot of mergers and acquisitions that took place as it was forming in the ‘20s and ‘30s, which resulted in the six major studios that are still around today. That seems to be happening in our industry, so mergers and acquisitions are going to continue and there’s nothing that can stop it. It’s all about making the economics work.
"As creators, be it in a studio or an independent, you need to think about how to protect your people and how to make the best games possible. And that doesn’t necessarily mean staying independent. Where there’s a will there’s a way and, in the end, whatever it takes to create great games you should move towards."