"obliged" to have big success. That's a problem for innovation, explains Francois Potentier from Obscure's Mighty Rocket Studio.
Being a small and nimble studio without huge demands placed upon them by fans, they can create things that are wackier and a lot more experimental. Success carries a high creative price.
“I’m a fan of Dead Space and Resident Evil so I won’t say that these games are crap, they are really good," he said. “We have more freedom to innovate and try something new."
Obscure was a PlayStation 2 co-op survival horror series, but now it's coming to Xbox Live Arcade and PlayStation Network as a 2.5D co-op side-scroller. The premise is simple, the player takes on the role of one of the four cliche horror characters; the jock, the nerd, the charmer or the cheerleader. They arm themselves and bash in monsters.
"When you have a lot of money, millions of dollars, your game has to be a success. Our games cost a lot less so we can try to do new gameplays and test gameplay and if it doesn’t work, we have ten people so we can do something else. It’s a lot easier for small studios to innovate,” he continued.
The digital storefronts on Xbox 360 and PS3 have led much of the innovation.
"When you have games like Uncharted or something, you are obliged to have big success, so maybe you prefer to stick to what you know will work and appeal to a broad range of people,” he added.
"Are they less innovative? I think so, this is my opinion. I like Uncharted, I’m a big fan of this kind of game, but I think you find more innovation on XBLA/PSN than a game in a box.”
Tons of cash from a blockbuster IP shouldn't be a motivation: “As long as I develop fun games and have enough money to do the next game, I don’t need a Porsche or anything like that. I want to live for my passion, not being Bill Gates.” Obscure releases on Xbox 360 and PS3 this spring.