Atari's Not the Only One Moving Away from Single-Player Games, Says Harrison
Alone in the Dark might be an epic single-player action-horror title, but you shouldn’t expect Atari to keep pumping out games of that nature, according to Phil Harrison. He recently talked about how Atari would be moving away from “huge-budget, single-player games in the future.” He clarified that comment on how Alone in the Dark could be the last of its kind from Atari. Speaking with Eurogamer, he explained that it’s reflective of an industry-wide movement towards games that take advantage of community features.
“[The quote] was not uniquely about Atari; it was more about the industry as a whole.,” Harrison said. “Alone in the Dark is a beautifully crafted single-player adventure game. I don’t think the industry is going to make many more of those. I just don’t think consumers want to be playing games that don’t have some kind of network connectivity to them, or some kind of community embedded in them, or some kind of extension available through downloadable content.
“Now, that’s not to criticize Alone in the Dark – it’s just to recognize the industry is changing, and the role we play as creators and publishers has to reflect those changes. I don’t think I’m alone in having those views, either.”
I don’t think there’s much denying that there’s a real movement towards multiplayer-oriented games, and many people expect that when they pay $60 for a game, that there be some sort of multiplayer component. But that doesn’t mean there’s no room left for games like The Witcher, Oblivion or Final Fantasy, although I agree that there is a need to integrate some sort of online connectivity with them — whether that’s a multiplayer mode or something entirely different.