It’s a simple reality that in order to create a game, it game must eventually generate a profit, and in the gaming industry, like many other creative spaces, the balance between business and creativity is a never ending battle. As words on the outside would have you believe, Sony does a good job of allowing the latter to act as the driving factor for a new project versus the former.
The PlayStation 4 has been off to a great start so far this generation and it isn’t necessarily because of the great first-party games that have come to the system. That statement could be changing with the slew of PS4 exclusives that are cued up for release throughout the course of 2016.
From games like Horizon Zero Dawn to The Last Guardian, there is a lot for gamers to be excited about this year. Giant Sparrow Creative Director Ian Dallas talked about the relationship between his studio and Sony, as well as where the publisher’s priorities stand when it comes to cash over creativity.
“It’s a very symmetrical relationship too. I think a lot of times, the publisher and developer want very different things. The publisher wants to sell as much as possible and recoup their money, or at least that’s a very high priority. But with Sony, at least from what we’ve seen, their focus is much more on making a really great game – making something that stands out and is unusual. It’s nice that our goals as a developer are pretty closely aligned with Sony’s. There [are] definitely disagreements, but we’re definitely trying to get at the same goal,” Dallas told OnlySP.
Understanding that everyone is on the same page and that everyone wants the same thing is crucial in any team environment, no matter the business. Being able to respectfully disagree and move forward helps ensure a project doesn’t get derailed as a result of egos or emotion.
Getting face-to-face time with people is often a much more meaningful thing than only speaking over the phone or Skype. For the developers at Giant Sparrow and Creative Director Ian, it has made things seem a lot less intense and more informal.
“Because we’re located inside of the Sony Santa Monica studios building, we see our publishing friends on a day-to-day basis. With a normal publisher, you might do Skype calls, but you don’t actually see each other. For us, it’s much more low key. If I have any questions, it’s just right down the hall – a lot more casual and friendly,” Dallas said.
The PlayStation 4 has a major year ahead of itself with plenty of PS4 exclusives slated for release. Giant Sparrow will be releasing their upcoming PS4 title What Remains of Edith Finch later this year.