Triple-A game development is in a “really, really weird spot”, says Cliff Bleszinski | PCGamesN

Triple-A game development is in a “really, really weird spot”, says Cliff Bleszinski

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In a talk at Reboot Develop on Friday, Boss Key Productions founder Cliff Bleszinski gave his thoughts on the current state of triple-A game development. Likening these blockbuster franchises to “the American restaurant scene” where the same chains continue to pop up to meet demand, most consumers are “too scared to take the risk on new IP”, so studios keeping to making the same games in order to justify the cost of development.

Check what PC games - whether they are triple-A, double-A or indie - are on the horizon.

Reported by, Bleszinski states that the current market is not sustainable for the majority of studios “unless you're an Activision, 2K or a Sony,” as one of these triple-A titles will cost somewhere in the hundreds of millions to make and market. It is not helped by the current $60 price point for the majority of triple-A games, which causes consumers to be picky about the games they buy. “$60 is still a lot of money to ask people for”, says Bleszinski and thus consumers will naturally gravitate to the next installment of a long-running franchise they know is good, to avoid disappointment.

Much like Ninja Theory’s Tameem Antoniades, Bleszinski advocates that more studios make “double-A” games, ones which “look and play great but pick their battles in terms of budget and marketing”. Games like Rocket League and Warframe fall under this banner, with many of the studios developing double-A games choosing digital distribution and moving away from the $60 price tag. By having a lower price point but the production values of one of the “eight games that are getting repeated over and over again”, players are more likely to take a risk and hopefully, find a new IP that they like.

The whole talk summary is worth a read, with Bleszinski discussing his thoughts on virtual reality and the “collaborative model” used to make blockbuster games like Call of Duty or Assassin’s Creed. If you’re into the business of game development, check it out.

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Super Dr. Samyewl Ultra PhD avatarProfessorNumbNuts avatar
Super Dr. Samyewl Ultra PhD Avatar
10 Months ago

Couldn't agree more with this. Sick article.

ProfessorNumbNuts Avatar
10 Months ago

Well AAA title I suppose requires about the same amount of cash for marketing (both campaigns and people behind the marketing efforts) as it does for the production itself. So the big ones play it safe making the same kind of games as is expected but pushing the smaller dev teams to step a bit back in the process. Really is a bad time for the teams that are somewhat in the middle, big ones push hard and indie teams have lesser production costs.