While former Epic designer Cliff Bleszinski was none-too-pleased about Microsoft’s rapid DRM policy shift – convinced as he is, despite the Lamborghini he drives, that used games are the devil – former Maxis designer Will Wright is rather pleased. Mostly because it shows that these corporations are actually capable of listening to consumers, who’re getting more involved with the how games are being made.
“It was interesting watching the Microsoft thing. I thought it was very impressive how responsive Microsoft was to that,” Wright said, speaking to CNN.
“That part I think is great because that’s something that I’ve always believed in – getting the players very involved not just after the game ships, but even before and try to listen to them.”
Wright, the creator of SimCity and The Sims, seems to actually think gamers matter, and aren’t just walking wallets.
“I tend to think of the fan base, especially the hardcore fan base, as co-developers. These people with a passion for your project are going to go out and sell your game to other people and pull other people in,” he said.
“The more they feel like they have some ownership over the process and they’re not just kind of customers, the better. To see a company like Microsoft actually sit back, listen, and understand the fans and respond to them is impressive. For a company that size to be that responsive is great. These companies are the ones that obviously keep us in business and allow us to make games.”
To be honest though, I really don’t think Microsoft listened to consumers as much as they listened to retailers telling them how bad pre-order numbers were in relation to PlayStation 4 pre-sales. In the end though, it doesn’t really matter. We’ve got what we wanted, and I think that gaming will be in a better state overall as a result.