Warren Spector Hesitant About Consoles Not Focused on Games

Warren Spector has a lot to say about the gaming industry, upcoming consoles should listen.

Warren Spector is not a new name to the gaming industry.  His work includes both Deus Ex and Epic Mickey, giving him credibility not only based on success but also on variety of experience, something few modern developers can claim.  Currently unemployed after Disney closed down Junction Point Studios, Gamespot interviewed him to talk about the gaming industry and what he is and isn’t excited about in its future.

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His perspective seems to be favoring smaller games more than larger, at least in terms of what he wants to work on, and on the challenges of leading a team of game designers.  One of his most topical quotes came when he was asked specifically about the upcoming Xbox One.

I think next gen consoles as entertainment devices rather than game machines is a perilous idea. I mean, I already have more ways than I can deal with to access the programming I want and the Internet and all its pleasures. And if I want to multitask while watching television, I already have to decide which of my devices to do it on.

Spector’s words mirror some of the concerns expressed in response to the console’s reveal.  The focus of his concern is clearly on the Xbox One, but other upcoming consoles should also take note, given the potential for losing focus if too much reliance is placed on non-game functions or on the connectivity of cloud gaming instead of the gaming itself.

On the other hand, Spector is not just a naysayer in regards to the future of the industry.  Aside from consoles too focused on multitasking, his main expressed concern about the industry as a whole was the amount of open territory for development.  While it is a criticism of the focus, again, of developers such sentiment also shows a belief the wide range of possible games could be given the justice he thinks it deserves in the coming years.

Only time will tell if Mr. Spector’s analysis of the gaming industry is correct or not.  He himself refused to try and give his prediction of how the efforts of the industry as a whole would pan out.  As he put it,

Once you try to predict the outcome of a chaotic situation you’re either going to get lucky or look like an idiot. Count me out!


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Wokendreamer
Writer, gamer, and generally hopeful beneath a veneer of cynicism.