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David Cage At D.I.C.E.: Games Need To Grow Up

by Matt Helgeson on Feb 06, 2013 at 11:39 AM

[story by Andy Reiner, who is covering the D.I.C.E. convention for Game Informer]

David Cage, the writer and director of Quantic Dreams' upcoming PlayStation 3 game Beyond: Two Souls, spoke at D.I.C.E. today about the video game industry refusing to grow up. His speech, titled "The Peter Pan Syndrome," passionately pointed out the mistakes he feels the industry is making.

"We make the same games over and over," Cage said. "The lack of innovation is an issue for any industry. We need to find ways to reach a wider audience. We need to move beyond our tradition market which is usually kids and teens. Think about your friends and parents who don't play games."

He pointed out that people can talk to their parents and grandparents about movies, but there's rarely a common understanding between the groups for games. Cage believes the industry is ready for change. He wants to see developers make games without guns and focus on the journey the game offers more than its challenge.

Cage said the first steps to getting to this future are to make games for everyone, and change game paradigms. He stressed the need to move away from violence and making the same game over and over again. "Can we create games that have something to say? Can we create games with meaning?" He outlined a number of topics that games could potentially tackle, such as politics and human emotion.

"All real world themes should be used," he said, pointing out how many games are set in separate dimensions and are not mirror reflections of who the gamer is. He wants games to deliver an experience that "by the time you turn off the console, it leaves an impression."

Cage also said developers should embrace talent outside of the video game industry, whether it's authors helping with stories or actors bringing characters to life. He wants developers to establish new relationships with Hollywood. "It's time for meaningful and constructive and balanced relationships. We can work together to create a new form of entertainment."

Cage ended his speech by saying press can help improve games by giving meaningful analysis and opinions, not just scores about game components. Gamers play a large role, too. "Buying or not buying a game is almost like a political vote," he said. "You decide what direction the industry goes in with your vote. Buying a game is also a matter of responsibility. You vote where you want the industry to go."