David Cage’s Heavy Rain won accolades in 2010 and sold 2 million copies, but he wants more change in the industry.
From the beginning, when Cage made Nomad Soul in 1999 and 2005’s Fahrenheit, he’s wanted to take videogames in a different direction. Now that he’s got some credibility with three BAFTA awards, monetary and spiritual support from Sony, and decent sales, Cage makes it clear that he wants videogames to be about more than just shooting people.
“Look at Call Of Duty. How many copies does it sell every year? I’m fine with that. It’s cool,” Cage said. “I’m just saying that I’m not happy with an industry that is entirely limited to experiences where all you are doing is shooting. That’s my problem. There is much more we can do with interactivity than just killing people.”
Such subject matter is more suited to children than adults, Cage asserts. “That appeals very much to my son, who is 10 years old. He wants to explore the [real] world, but also fears it. Being in a video game where he can jump very far, have cool guns and shoot at people without getting hurt is something he feels very good about. It gives him exaggerated confidence, control.
“But as an adult, it doesn’t work. When you think of non-gamers, very few people have an interest in that,” he added.
Cage says that he’s not alone and he feels there’s a sea change about to happen in the videogame industry. “I think there is a slight disconnection between how the industry’s most talented people see the future and maybe what some ‘pure, hardcore’ gamers think,” he said. “Perhaps I say it loudest, but many big developers want this industry to change, to be more diverse – and there are more and more of them speaking out. That’s a good thing.”
I really enjoyed Heavy Rain for the most part and I thought that it pushed the boundaries of what I was comfortable playing farther than any other game. What I don’t understand why Cage is so combative when it comes to other games that seem to be similarly pushing, like his comments on L.A. Noire.
If you were Cage, wouldn’t you want to encourage games to be more about investigating and asking questions than just plugging bad guys? Why dismiss the technology publicly like that?