David Cage Wants Us to Grow Up
Heavy Rain Director David Cage wants gamers and the video game industry to grow up, evolve, and embrace “digital entertainment.”
Speaking at the DICE Summit in Las Vegas, Cage said, “I think we need to accept this idea of growing up and finally become adults.” In a manifesto titled “The Peter Pan Syndrome: The Industry That Refused to Grow Up,” he lectured to a room of video game industry executives about the need to evolve.
“If you look at Wolfenstein in 1992, and Call of Duty in 2012,” Cage said, “the graphics are incredibly realistic, but when you think about the concepts behind these games, they are really close. You still have to beat the computer or beat your friends, but the patterns or mechanics are always the same. Video games also live in what I call Wonderland, a dimension that’s so not connected to the real world. They talk about things that are totally unrelated to what we all know. The conclusion: We have the same audience after 40 years.”
Cage wants games to be able to reach all audiences. “How do we make content that will talk to your mother or grandmother?” he asked. “How do we make them play? Can we make content, interactive experiences, for an adult?”
A paradigm shift is what’s called for, according to Cage. “We cannot hope to keep doing the same things the same way and expand our market overnight,” he said. “We need to decide that violence and platforms are not the only way. Now, if the character doesn’t hold a gun, designers don’t even know what to do.”
Cage described a pitch meeting he had for Indigo Prophecy in which he had to explain to the publisher that the protagonist didn’t use weapons. “Oh, he drives cars?” the publisher asked. Once Cage explained that he didn’t shoot, drive, or jump from platform to platform, the publisher said, “Then it’s not a game!”
Cage concluded by implying that we should stop calling games games. “In the coming years, my hope is that we see the rise of ‘digital entertainment,’” he said. “It should be accessible to all, open to all themes and all genres, and talk about society in a meaningful way. It should be based on the journey and not the challenge, and be cross-platform [...] and finally become mass market. I think it’s an amazing medium unlike anything else, and what we have here is absolutely different and unique, but I think we need to accept this idea of growing up and finally become adults.”
What do you think?
via The Verge