I have no idea why Henry is in such a tizzy. I’m not even sure if he’s in a tizzy. Was it something I said?
Anyway, when I said the most recent decline, I meant late 90s early 2000s one. Not the mid 80s one.
In case it’s not clear, I don’t disagree with anything Henry said except on 2 points. One, he originally said that they’ve gotten better at making money now. I think that’s wrong. But as to his main point, it’s always been about profit, I obviously agree.
Two, he thinks (not even very strongly I think) that it’s less R&D money now that’s responsible for the lack of creativity today. I disagree with that. For two reasons. First, the bandwagon non-creative mentality was getting strong back before the current downturn, in the late 90s, back when game companies had way more money. That’s the whole point of the 3D thing. That even Capcom, who was successful with Street Fighter, felt they had to do a 3D thing (remember Street Fighter EX? You don’t? I do). The entire industry being uncreative predates the shrunken market, so it couldn’t have been a result of it.
The other thing is, if these uncreative new games are being driven by lack of R&D, you’d think they’d be cheaper. But they’re not. They’re these expensive, technically impressive, boring games like Jurassic Park and Star Trek Voyager. Spending that much on a rehashed concept seems more risky to me, not less.
Anyway yeah, less R&D $ now, sure. I’m just saying, that can’t be why everything is so uncreative now. It *might* be a sustaining factor. I personally think it’s caused by stupidity and laziness. That’s my point I guess. I just think, in my arcade experience, that the most successful games are the creative ones, and it’s independent of technical achievement. Even simple but original games like Puzzle Fighter do well in the arcades. So being uncreative in the pursuit of profitability is the wrong track to take. But what do I know.