GDC 2012: Xbox Live and PSN Not the Best Bet For Aspiring Devs, Says Bleszinski
Written Friday, March 09, 2012 By Lee BradleyView author's profile
Epic Games' Cliff “CliffyB” Bleszinski has advised aspiring developers to avoid starting out on XBLA and PSN.
Bleszinski was speaking at this year's GDC Microtalks session - subtitled 'One Hour, Ten Voices, Countless Ideas'. Microtalks are quick, punchy speeches around a theme, lasting no longer than 5 minutes and 20 seconds each.
The Gears of War Designer's talk was about the advice he would give himself if he was starting out in games all over again. One of those pieces of advice was to avoid console-based digital distribution early in their careers, thanks to the platforms' uncertain visibility.
When you target a platform for your game, he said, you should “skip” PSN and Xbox Live, as “Sony and Microsoft control what's on the dashboard,” the suggestion being that games that are not promoted by Microsoft or Sony simply do not sell.
Xbox Live and PSN were not the only digital distribution platforms to get the CliffyB nod of disapproval, however. He also advised against iOS, Android (“too much piracy”) and Windows Phone (“no-one has one”). Instead, he chose PC as the ideal platform to release your first games.
It's worth noting that Bleszinski did advise developing a partnership with Sony or Microsoft later down the line, but for first-timers and those still learning the ropes, he believes PC is your best bet.