These days we find ourselves in a position I honestly never thought we would be in. The position of looking out over a beautiful sea of Independent game developers and feeling deep down, they will be the crew that steers us to the gaming promise land. Don’t get me wrong I don’t believe we will ever live in a world where E3 is nothing more than Shovel Knight sequels and No Man’s Sky planetary updates. However, there is still no denying the way we look at independent games has shifted greatly.
With games like Shovel Knight taking game of the year awards from all forms of games media. Before that games like Journey showing us how beauty, narrative and a well-placed scarf are what gamers really crave. It shows where we are as consumers in this day & age. Obviously one person could never speak for every console and PC gamer out there but we all know the days of the middle tier developer are long gone.
One would find it quite easy and fitting to insert a David and Goliath reference at this point. Painting a picture of the big scary AAA developer trying to Smite the small independent developer (No pun intended) but both are essential to Gaming as a whole. They are essential to the eco systems of these consoles. If they weren’t we wouldn’t see the great push we’ve seen from both Sony and Microsoft to convey the idea that these two powerhouse console makers want to play nice with all developers. The size of the studio does not equate to the talent within and large developers are not incapable of making smaller gaming experiences.
What gives gamers great hope for the future of the gaming industry is the idea that an independent game being a lower quality game is being eradicated with each release of amazing independently developed titles. The likes of Hot Line Miami and Resogun can easily provide the same or more enjoyment than Destiny or Call of Duty. Nothing against any of the games mentioned but it’s just the nature gaming world we live in and one of the reasons this generation is so damn exciting. As this year pushes forward and more and more irrational people will be terrified at the fact that “the last first party exclusive game coming out on Playstation is Bloodborne”. You may hear “there are only a few exclusives coming out on Xbox One”. In the midst of hearing comments like this from all directions remember that with every AAA release scheduled this year there are at least 5 independent games that will release to keep your consoles powering into an awesome future for this industry.