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Warren Spector Plans Retirement

| 20 Dec 2007 15:44
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Thief and Deus Ex mastermind Warren Spector may only have three games in his development tank.

Industry veteran Warren Spector is just months off his studio's acquisition by Disney Interactive and is already planning his leave from the industry he helped pioneer. The issue arose during an interview with Eurogamer where Spector explained his relationship with Disney despite developing titles with more mature themes.

The bottom line is I've made something like eighteen games now, in some capacity. I've been producer, designer, director in eighteen big games, forgetting about mission packs. And I have no problems in saying I'm 52 years old. I'm one of the oldest people still actively engaged in game development in the world right now. There's probably 20 of us in my age bracket.

And I still love the medium, but there's a couple of factors. Firstly, my attitudes about life, the universe and everything have changed. And so I want to make games that more reflect my interests, and not so much the interests of an 18-year-old in a frat house who likes to frag. And there's also... well, game development requires an intense amount of energy. It requires a level of focus and dedication and belief and confidence and time. What it means, in an ideal world, I may work on five more games in my entire life. More likely probably three given how long they take.

Not only does he expect to produce only three to five more titles, but they will most likely be shorter experiences that will allow all potential players the opportunity to finish the entire game.

I don't even want to play - let alone make - a 20-hour game anymore. Heresy! I want every person who plays my game to finish them. Not twenty or forty percent. Every person. There's so much competition for attention and dollars and everything else, if you make a great 6-12 hour game, you've provided great value for money. And you can really focus on making that experience spectacular. Now, we're still, as an industry - especially thanks to price points - we're at a point where you better be at the top end of that range. I don't think you can get away with a six-hour game. Ico was a six-hour game, which didn't do so well... and was an actual genius game. But I think there's a sweet spot in there where people get value for money and actually finish it and can play a bunch of games.

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