Deus Ex creator Warren Spector says working at Disney is a great experience because he’s tired of making games about guys who wear black leather and carry guns.
Spector, who previously worked for storied developers including Origin Systems, Looking Glass Studios and Ion Storm, formed Junction Point Studios in 2005. He became part of the Disney conglomerate when the company acquired Junction Point in 2007, a move he described in last week’s Game Education Summit keynote as very positive, according to a Gamasutra report.
“I love working with Disney because I’m so tired of making games about guys in black leather carrying guns,” he said. “I don’t want to make those anymore.”
He added that the days of overly long games are over, largely because the increasing cost of development is a great incentive to ensure players can enjoy the entire experience. “Game costs are going to be $35-$40 million, even $100 million, and the expectations are huge,” he said. “You have to differentiate yourselves. One-hundred hour games are on the way out… How many of you have finished GTA? Two percent, probably. If we’re spending $100 million on a game, we want you to see the last level!”
The predicted cut in length will necessitate an increased focus on the quality of gameplay, Spector added, saying that dazzling technology was no longer enough to make a game successful. “Building a game is as complex as making a Hollywood movie. Do we have the right people and how do we harness creativity without crushing it? We are in a business that is both software engineer and entertainment, and we have to balance it,” he said. “It used to be that you could trade off gameplay for graphics, but you can’t do that anymore.”
One of the industry’s most widely-respected developers, Spector has worked on games including Wing Commander, Ultima Underworld, System Shock, Crusader: No Remorse, Thief and many others. He is currently at work on an unannounced project for Disney based on the Source engine.