Shahid Ahmad: “No Divide” Between PS4 Indie and Blockbuster Titles
The SCEE indie man talks about there being no distinction between the two categories.
Sony announced that it would be focusing a lot more on indie releases with the PlayStation 4, even going so far as to state that the games will hold over interest in between AAA releases. You might think that creates a sort of divide between the big releases and the indie titles, but Senior Business Development Manager at Sony Computer Entertainment Europe Shahid Ahmad, who is also leading indie dealings for Sony, doesn’t feel that way at all.
When asked by Games Industry International if, with the number of indie studios now working on PS4 titles, if there would be a disappearance in the divide between indie and blockbuster titles, Ahmad stated, “I don’t see a divide. I see a continuum of one person creating a game and an enormous corporation creating a game. They’re just games.
“The tag is useful because I think it kind of bundles up a revolution that’s happened over the last few years, and the revolution has, I guess, three main legs. You’ve got digital distribution, you’ve got games everywhere and you’ve got better tools, and all of that has facilitated this explosion in the number of developers. I think it’s allowed more people to make games than ever before, and some of them are going to move on and do bigger things. They’re going to work with larger teams to do bigger things, and of course some of those teams will get bigger and bigger.
“So right now I think what we’re seeing is the birth of a new wave of next generation developers. Some of them will stay small, and I’m really pleased that we’re helping evolve PlayStation to a point where we’re as accommodating to the smallest developers as we are the largest. And the thing is we’ve done this in the past, so for example Minis was really, really good for smaller developers.
“PlayStation Mobile has also helped in some respects as well. And going back into the distant mists of time you’ve got Parappa The Rapper, Ico, Super Stardust HD. We’ve always dealt with this level of developer, it just wasn’t always as easy as we’ve made it [now], and we’re going to make it easier and easier. So yes, hopefully in a few years time no one will be talking about indie in relation to games. They’ll just be talking about games, and it will be just as valid to have made something coming from a small developer as from a large.”
The PlayStation 4 will be launching on November 15th in North America and November 29th in Europe.