Sony Wants Indie Games to Fill Content Gaps on PS4

Sony Wants Indie Games to Fill Content Gaps on PS4

PlayStation 4 and controller

Sony believes developers big and small will benefit from the PS4's focus on "ease of development."

One of the biggest features of the PS4 that Sony has been highlighting is how accessible it will be for developers. Whereas the PS3 was initially puzzling to many game makers and consistently difficult to develop for, the PS4 will supposedly be much more developer friendly. It's a facet of the hardware that the console's lead architect, Mark Cerny, recently attempted to further reinforce.

"We had two goals for PS4 development. One was performance. Boosting the performance of the CPU and GPU means prettier graphics and more interactive worlds inside the games," said Cerny. The console's second goal however was geared more toward accessibility. "We asked assorted creators what kind of functionality we should put in, and we used their responses as a base when we finalized the hardware architecture. We're aiming for not just performance, but also an environment setup that allows for smooth PS4 game development."

This focus on "ease of development" is something that should allow developers of all sizes to get working prototypes and games up and running at a faster rate on the PS4. According to Cerny "even big titles can get rolling in two or three months." That being the case, the company is aware of the fact that larger projects will still take time to make. To help save consumers from gaming droughts like those experienced during the earlier days of the PS3, the company is turning to its growing stable of indie partners to keep content coming.

"That's why we're trying to give our help out to indie titles," said SCE Worldwide president, Shuhei Yoshida. "Huge titles from large makers take time to develop; they can't just be brought out immediately. However, with the indie scene, especially in the West, we're seeing really neat games coming out from there pretty much every week." Whether or not gamers at large will see indie titles as an acceptable buffer to shore up the gaps between bigger game releases is perhaps yet to be seen. Yoshida however believes it to be a safe plan in light of recent purchasing trends. "More and more users are making digital purchases these days, so even studios making games with small teams can make it into a business."

Source: Famitsu via Polygon

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Well, that's generally how my consumption pattern works out. I haven't had a good AAA WRPG for a while now, so I'm playing Rogue Legacy, Legends of Grimrock, etc. And I assume I am very much not alone in that.

Anyway, all three consoles are pushing their newfound indie friendliness. So we'll see how it actually pans out. Can't be a bad thing.

Sounds like a solid plan to me. I can't afford as many AAA games as I could a few years ago, so cheaper games certainly are welcome.

Caiphus:

Anyway, all three consoles are pushing their newfound indie friendliness. So we'll see how it actually pans out. Can't be a bad thing.

All three may be pushing for it but I've still yet to see any other Kickstarters state they would be making a Xbone version baring Shantae (which is being developed for every platform under the sun) and the next gen Mighty No. 9 stretch goal which includes the PS4 and requires it to become the 4th most successful videogame in kickstarter history. (Behind Broken Age but ahead of Wasteland 2 by reaching 3.3 million).

Minus the ubiquitous PC game format the most common I've seen was the Vita, with the 3DS, WiiU and recently PS4 duelling for third.

Heck, I've seen the Ouya mentioned more often than the Xbone, and it being the new console on the block isn't an excuse as the PS4 is beating it.

Note: this is based on my travels on the site and these are direct references to the console by name. Games referring to PSN/Vita counted as votes for the handheld and not the PS4.

Ed130:

All three may be pushing for it but I've still yet to see any other Kickstarters state they would be making a Xbone version baring Shantae (which is being developed for every platform under the sun) and the next gen Mighty No. 9 stretch goal which includes the PS4 and requires it to become the 4th most successful videogame in kickstarter history. (Behind Broken Age but ahead of Wasteland 2 by reaching 3.3 million).

Minus the ubiquitous PC game format the most common I've seen was the Vita, with the 3DS, WiiU and recently PS4 duelling for third.

Heck, I've seen the Ouya mentioned more often than the Xbone, and it being the new console on the block isn't an excuse as the PS4 is beating it.

Note: this is based on my travels on the site and these are direct references to the console by name. Games referring to PSN/Vita counted as votes for the handheld and not the PS4.

You could be right. I generally don't pay attention to Kickstarters due to a sorry lack of funds, and a greater difficulty in getting the bonus goodies due to living in NZ.
I do know that Minecraft has been huuuuge on the 360, and isn't out yet on any Sony console, so I was partly basing my opinion on that.

But I'll take your word for it. I hope that indies don't start foregoing the PC to put their games on consoles, although I don't see that reeeeally happening. Apart from that, I'm not hugely invested in the relative success of any console. Encouraging solid indie titles just sounds good to me.

Caiphus:

Ed130:

-snip-

You could be right. I generally don't pay attention to Kickstarters due to a sorry lack of funds, and a greater difficulty in getting the bonus goodies due to living in NZ.
I do know that Minecraft has been huuuuge on the 360, and isn't out yet on any Sony console, so I was partly basing my opinion on that.

But I'll take your word for it. I hope that indies don't start foregoing the PC to put their games on consoles, although I don't see that reeeeally happening. Apart from that, I'm not hugely invested in the relative success of any console. Encouraging solid indie titles just sounds good to me.

PC only titles still take up the majority of Kickstarters due to ease of distribution and more often than not handhelds and console versions are set as stretch goals.

Many game Kickstarters also offer digital only rewards and the lower tiers can offer quite a bit in return for a few dollars..

Also: Another Kiwi? I have to agree with you about slow delivery times, its one of the downsides to living here.

Funny, I thought that indie games were content.

Caiphus:

I do know that Minecraft has been huuuuge on the 360, and isn't out yet on any Sony console, so I was partly basing my opinion on that.

Minecraft got a ton of exceptions from Microsoft to come to the system, while even Notch says he was unaware of issues because he got such a sweet deal. I don't know why Sony doesn't have Minecraft; perhaps an exclusivity deal or because Sony didn't coddle them. I know the PS3 is a beast to program for, so maybe it's technical issues. However, Sony has been doing a lot to court indie gamers while Microsoft's attitude towards most indie devs has been "piss off."

Zachary Amaranth:
Funny, I thought that indie games were content.

Caiphus:

I do know that Minecraft has been huuuuge on the 360, and isn't out yet on any Sony console, so I was partly basing my opinion on that.

Minecraft got a ton of exceptions from Microsoft to come to the system, while even Notch says he was unaware of issues because he got such a sweet deal. I don't know why Sony doesn't have Minecraft; perhaps an exclusivity deal or because Sony didn't coddle them. I know the PS3 is a beast to program for, so maybe it's technical issues. However, Sony has been doing a lot to court indie gamers while Microsoft's attitude towards most indie devs has been "piss off."

Last I heard was that they did have somewhat of an exclusivity deal. How far that went is hard to pinpoint since they also have versions for iOS and other devices. However, if that is true it has since expired because the Minecraft wiki says they're now developing for PS3/PS4.

Zachary Amaranth:

Minecraft got a ton of exceptions from Microsoft to come to the system, while even Notch says he was unaware of issues because he got such a sweet deal. I don't know why Sony doesn't have Minecraft; perhaps an exclusivity deal or because Sony didn't coddle them. I know the PS3 is a beast to program for, so maybe it's technical issues. However, Sony has been doing a lot to court indie gamers while Microsoft's attitude towards most indie devs has been "piss off."

It was and exclusivity deal with Microsoft, which is why Notch is bringing the game to the PS4 and the PS3 once the contract is up.

TiberiusEsuriens:

Last I heard was that they did have somewhat of an exclusivity deal. How far that went is hard to pinpoint since they also have versions for iOS and other devices. However, if that is true it has since expired because the Minecraft wiki says they're now developing for PS3/PS4.

You are correct that it is in development for the PS3 and PS4 since the contract is up, which is nice.
Still haven't played Minecraft myself, maybe one day I'll play it. :P

OT: Will be interesting so see if it can fill the gap, although I wouldn't be surprised if it did because Indie games seem to be one of the only places where creativity lives freely in the age of AAA (first party studios of Nintendo and some of Sony's notwithstanding).

Neronium:

You are correct that it is in development for the PS3 and PS4 since the contract is up, which is nice.
Still haven't played Minecraft myself, maybe one day I'll play it. :P

Actually it's coming to PSV too confirmed by Notch in a tweet.I'm not really sure how to properly embed a tweet, but it's easy to find, on august the 20th, don't have to scroll much.
OT:I think this is a great way to go about it, have a lot of smaller titles keep people occupied while they wait for the big AAA releases.

Ed130:

PC only titles still take up the majority of Kickstarters due to ease of distribution and more often than not handhelds and console versions are set as stretch goals.

Many game Kickstarters also offer digital only rewards and the lower tiers can offer quite a bit in return for a few dollars..

Also: Another Kiwi? I have to agree with you about slow delivery times, its one of the downsides to living here.

I assumed that was always the case. The games are developed on PC, probably easiest to get them to work on PC. And you can just bung them on Steam wait for the sales to start.

I still don't like pre-ordering. I'm a poor uni student, so funds are precious. I'm also horribly impatient, so waiting for games to release and for physical items to arrive here is both frustrating and sad for me.

And yeah, another Kiwi! We need to start throwing our weight around. Ghost chips, bru.

Zachary Amaranth:

Minecraft got a ton of exceptions from Microsoft to come to the system, while even Notch says he was unaware of issues because he got such a sweet deal. I don't know why Sony doesn't have Minecraft; perhaps an exclusivity deal or because Sony didn't coddle them. I know the PS3 is a beast to program for, so maybe it's technical issues. However, Sony has been doing a lot to court indie gamers while Microsoft's attitude towards most indie devs has been "piss off."

Ah ok. I didn't know that Microsoft gave Mojang that much help. To be honest, I probably should have suspected it.

I assume that it's just the PS3's technical issues, and the fact that it's less popular in America? Although more popular in Europe, so I dunno. There is going to be a Minecraft release for the PS4, and I assume for the PS3 yet. I don't know if there is a concrete release date though.

In any case, both you and Ed have convinced me to distrust Microsoft's pro-indie policy. Yeeeah! Fight the power.

Edit: I just read Neronium's post. Aaaaaah, an exclusivity deal. How dastardly.

It's a decent fallback plan, though it isn't really working out that well for the Wii U. Hopefully Sony doesn't rely on indie titles too much and does a good job promoting them. A recommendation system, similar to Netflix, would also be a very good idea. Personally, I have Steam. I can likely get indie games cheaper through there

Zachary Amaranth:
Funny, I thought that indie games were content.

Well, it's difficult to fill content gaps with non-content, isn't it? :P

OT: Sounds good to me. Indie games are getting more interesting and impressive by the day.

 

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