It seemed at the time – and still is – a fairly simple question. Who are the 25 people making modern games development what it is? Or – who has produced the games, built the companies, chosen the strategies or introduced the innovations that everyone has watched, praised and will undoubtedly envy and copy?
This are questions we've attempted to answer with a special feature now available to read here.
Before the list in full, however, a few pointers on our methodology. One rule early on was that conspicuousness didn’t guarantee entry. Sales figures, achievements and review scores count over column inches. And for further evidence we were looking both forwards and backwards – pinpointing the key events from the last year, from the release of a game through to the sale or merger of a company, that should or could have the biggest impact in the years to come.
Back and forth emails (some of them heated) amongst the Develop staff argued for those we thought should – and shouldn’t – make the grade. We scrutinised each sector of the games industry, from casual games to mobile, publishers and format holders, plus those pioneering in online.
‘Continued dynamicism’ was one phrase used at one point during our heated discussions and however pretentious it very much sums up the people on this list up perfectly – these are the people whose ideas, plans and business skills are keeping the global games development business in shape and spurring it on.
Yes, there are some wildcards in here – some surprises or a few people who are perhaps sometimes overlooked in favour of their more outspoken bosses. But there’s also some people you would expect, as well. We’ve even – gasp – widened the list to include a few from ‘the other side’; publishing. Specifically those publisher bosses who, like it or not, are dictating (or at least have been ready to greenlight) direction for their development troops or are implementing strategy to envy.
Ultimately we think we’ve got the right list of names here which, although always subjective, has pinpointed those who are helping to positively shape the industry – and have made a big impression in the past 12 months.
But as we say, it's subjective - so who have we missed out? Let us know via the comments section below, or drop the editor a line at Michael.French@intentmedia.co.uk