Insomniac Games CCO Brian Hastings spoke today on the social gaming sector of the video games industry, noting that while he isn't on the "doom and gloom" side of things, he believes that the industry has reached the point where only triple A titles can succeed. Hastings also talks about the new social gaming department at Insomniac Games, dubbed Insomniac Click.
"I'm not in the doom-and-gloom camp in terms of the health of the console market," says Hastings, "but I do think it's becoming increasingly challenging in that space. It's getting to the point where only the very best triple-A console games are profitable.
"And, of course, it's increasingly expensive to make the very best games. So not every developer can survive. But they're not giving away free money in the social and mobile space either. You still have to compete with the other top teams in the industry."
"The main reason I believe it's important - even necessary - to expand into the social sector is that there is simply a bigger audience there. Because triple-A games are necessarily complex they have a fairly predefined audience of core gamers."
He added: "That core audience isn't really expanding much and the total dollars each core gamer spends isn't going up, so as triple-A budgets inflate, each developer has to steal players away from other games in order to simply keep their revenues above their costs. The only long term viable solution for all parties would be to expand the audience.
"So I don't think that every console developer needs to join the social and mobile markets to survive, but as an industry we do need to broaden our audience in order to have more companies survive in general."