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The last few months I have been lucky enough to spend
more time than an editor-in-chief like myself normally gets to spend listening
to and hanging around a number of independent game developers. It was glorious.
In particular, I sat and played Spy Party with creator
Chris Hecker, who walked away from EA after working on Spore for six years to
create a game by himself (and a contracted artist). At its core, Spy Party is a
game of spy vs. sniper where one player takes on the role of a spy and tries to
complete objectives in a group of partying artificial intelligences, while the
other player is a sniper who must pick the spy out of the crowd and assassinate
him. You only get one shot, so you need to make it count.
Hecker is committed to making it both easy to pick up
and play by someone with little game experience and as deep and complex as
Counter-Strike so that experienced players can compete at another level for
years to come. Players can use lots of small details and tricks on both sides
of the scenario to subtly trick the other player into tripping up.
That goal, as you have already guessed, is not easy,
and he may never reach the gaming nirvana he chases. But the important lesson
here is the fact that he chases. Many accuse today's established publishers of
not chasing the rabbit down the hole to find and foster true innovation.
That statement is both true and false. Game innovation
does happen, but in a world where business rules, oftentimes the quick and easy
path to success is the preferred choice for the average publisher. One man in
his apartment can take significantly more chances, as he is seeking nothing
more than his own approval (and if he is lucky, gaining his investment back so
he can do it again).
Hecker is not the first independent developer, nor will
he be the last. But I sense a similar unwavering passion from one indie
developer after another. It's not always what they say, it is how they say it.
Their voices drip with a want - a need - to adventure down the path they
believe is right. This passion from both established players in the indie
market and young students gives me hope for gaming's future. I have no doubt
these "small" games will create giant reverberations that will shake and change
gaming now and in the future.
Email the author Andy McNamara, or follow on Twitter, Google+, Facebook, and Game Informer.
Interesting read. I still have hope for innovation, but I also understand that the big money behind it all only sees with greed.
If the company sees this please write back or email me because im a fan of halo but I dont have an x-box so I think that if u wont u can make it for the ps3 and will get a lot more money. please email me or write back 2 me.
oops for got email: copdog email@example.com
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