Sunday, December 21, 2008
Bad news for the Spanish videogame industry. I've been told Arvirago has closed their doors, and Pyro has just cancelled Cops (one of the projects in which I worked) and laid off many people. Up to 21 have been fired.
This is no good at all for Spanish developers. I have huge concerns about the capability of the managers of those companies (particularly Pyro, since I know it best) but any way it's a lot of unemployed guys, and considering the current economic situation it's even worst.
Somehow I think this is the end of the 'old school companies', which rely on the inspiration of a guru-like creative director and their projects often pay little attention to the market needs but the intuition/vision of their managers. Design changes are constant and budgets skyrocket easily. Organization is reduced, and crunch is common. The disappearance of this company type is probably for the best, but in the meantime many people lost their jobs.
Monday, December 1, 2008
As you may know I play World of Warcraft. The vast majority of designers I know play (or have played) it too, probably for a reason: Its design is really fucking good. Granted, not perfect, but 11 million consumers paying on a monthly basis can't be wrong.
I was recently given the tip (thanks, Ricard) about some interviews and keynotes available in the internet from Rob Pardo, Blizzard's Design Vice president and Starcraft lead designer. You can click here for a summary of one of his lectures from Raph Koster's website.
I think their approach in many aspects is really useful. Even though you'll understand it better if you've ever played WoW, I still recommend to read it if you're related with design. Enjoy!