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WoW Lead Designer: Single-Player Gaming is Dead

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#1 Perfect72

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 04:49

Rob Pardo, executive vice president of game design and lead designer on World of Warcraft believe that single player gaming is dying gradually as it is becoming harder to sustain as a business model.

"I don't see there being a great business model for it these days. It's really sad; there are just a lot of elements out there that conspire to make those games difficult to make now," he explained. "Between pirating or the ability for people to rent games, it's hard for publishers to pour millions and millions of dollars into a game and not necessarily see the return they need to make those budgets realistic."

It is no secret that publishers are increasingly pushing developers into tacking in multiplayer modes to games that are traditionally single player only. But does that mean that multiplayer will take over entirely? Then what about blockbuster single player titles such as Skyrim?

Source

Full Interview Source

I strongly disagree with this, and considering where this news is coming from, it isn't a surprise. I think it is due more to the fact, that people are kind of getting tired of paying $60+ on video games, and being burned by an overhyped bad game in the long run. Some people don't have the money, I guess, and are very weary of spending their hard earned money on a potentially bad, or underwhelming game. I am not condoning pirating, but, I can see why people might do it.

I almost exclusively only purchase games that I can find a deal on nowadays, and my console is sitting and collecting dust because you simply cannot find those deals as often for them, as you can with PC games. I cannot justify spending $60 on some games that are only worth $30 to me, which in turn makes my Xbox useless. Example, I just bought FIFA 13 and NBA 2K13 for $30, and $26 dollars, for PC. instead of $60 for the console, where you cannot find those deals. Torchlight II was a great buy at $20, and I pre-ordered Worms Revolution for $15. Counter-Strike:GO for $15. I mean, I have no problem impulse buying games, at these prices, cause I feel these are fair prices. I still don't think I can justify the $60 I spent on Borderlands 2. The only game that I can justify at $60 was Guild Wars 2, because I got around 120 hours out of it, and I still go back and play it every now and again, and that is because it is a giant MMO with no subscription.

A game does not need multi-player to survive. It just needs sustenance. Though, as said, this is coming from the company that now refuses to release a game that doesn't have an offline mode, so I am talking it with a grain of salt.


#2 Shiranui

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 04:51

He is talking out of his cloaca.

#3 HawkMan

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 05:03

I don't tink money factors in. Not in that way, it's more about perception and the spoiled youth of today who are used to getting everything they want and to always be entertained and not entertain themselves.

Go back to the NES and SNES era. And income was a lot lower than today, and games cost a lot more, both in pure dollars, but add in inflation(though I already covered that with lower income) and they where really expensive. And only the most dedicated could afford as much as one game a month. Today, kids get one a week and that is not enough because they consume them right away and lose interest for something new.

So money is a bad excuse, after all back then you had to rely on the box and reputation to guess if it was a good game. At best you could read someone else's review in an expensive gaming magazine.

But no,I don't think single player is dying, there are many like me who still prefer single player.

#4 JaredFrost

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 05:04

I disagree with him completely, myself and lots of people I know prefer single player games to multiplayer, Fallout, Oblivion, Halo campaign, Gears campaign, BioShock, etc.

These are all games I paid full price for, and stand out as some of the best games this generation, how many MMOs can you say that about?

Now I have Halo 4/BioShock on pre-order, granted the pre-orders are $20 off, but I probably would have paid full price anyway
One of the problems is the amount of games coming out at $50-$60 in short timeframes, people that have the money to pay for these all, don't
have the time to play them, and people who have the time, don't have the money.

I really want Borderlands 2 and Guild Wars 2, but I simply don't have the time and already have a large backlog of games I haven't played.

#5 ArialBlue

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 05:06

Lead designer of a game who's cinematic videos looks nothing like the itself talks about how he doesn't know that Skyrim exists.

#6 Nashy

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 05:18

No it's not ********, now go make other games that douchebags get consumed by so I don't have to talk to the losers.

#7 Joshie

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 05:21

While I can still get in early on this thread, relevant link:

http://www.gamesindu...gends-rob-pardo

The WHOLE interview. Because context matters, and sources that take only a fraction of a person's opinion for the sake of a headline should not be shaping your opinions.

This was important to me, since it's clear gamers are some of the brashest punks ever to self-righteously proclaim opinions, and it was clear this thread is at risk of rapidly devolving into angry Pardo-hating sludge. His words might still be stupid, but for Christ's sake, read all of them before coming to the conclusion.

Single most holy-crap important detail from the original interview: the question that was actually asked... "Do you think that the big-budget single-player game is an endangered species at this point?"

BIG BUDGET, guys. So whoever wrote this as "single-player gaming is dead" is a no-good troll.

#8 Blackhearted

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 05:23

So after 20+ years devs are going to now start crying about game rentals too?

#9 greenwizard88

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 05:28

It's a good think Skyrim was multiplayer, otherwise it may not have sold....

At least he has solid data from Diablo 3 to back up...

wait, nevermind. I think he might be wrong.

#10 remixedcat

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 05:29

I've very unbaised when it comes to any company..... and I think people are jumping the gun on the developer.... I just think gamers expect more these days... rightfully so, with more advanced engine tech, better internet connections, cheaper dev tools, easier to use modellers, etc.... that there is no excuse for crappy games that do not get continually supported and improved upon by the developers... Single player gaming as in once they make the game it's done.... no DLC, no mods, no community, nothing... those are done....

#11 FightAndLive

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 05:30

"I don't see there being a great business model for it these days. It's really sad; there are just a lot of elements out there that conspire to make those games difficult to make now," he explained. "Between pirating or the ability for people to rent games, it's hard for publishers to pour millions and millions of dollars into a game and not necessarily see the return they need to make those budgets realistic."


Right now games like farmville bring in more income than singleplayer games, so studios that can afford to make AAA games 100% online will do it. Indie games for a long time will still be singleplayer, just because singleplayer games are cheap(er) to make, and maintain.

So after 20+ years devs are going to now start crying about game rentals too?


Making games is a business, studios will try and squeeze as much out of a product as much as possible. The sad reality is most AAA games are going to be online only in one form or another, and as server and bandwidth costs decrease we will see this more and more.

Eventually you won't even run a game locally on your computer, you will just connect to the cloud and play WoW in a browser. GameStop and GameFly are going to become obsolete within in the next 10 - 15 years.

Single player gaming as in once they make the game it's done.... no DLC, no mods, no community, nothing... those are done....


Modding is something more game developers need to embrace more. Trust me I can understand wanting to protect your investment, and your ability to create DLC's, expansion packs, whatever but the fact is customs can turn out quicker content and lots more of it. Sadly with the industry moving to online DRM I don't how much longer modding will still be around, but I can tell you its not the developers who don't want their stuff modded, its the publishers and upper end management in most cases.

Number crunches don't understand modding for the most part, and how a lot of the industry growth is because of modding.

#12 OP Perfect72

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 05:31

While I can still get in early on this thread, relevant link:

http://www.gamesindu...gends-rob-pardo

The WHOLE interview. Because context matters, and sources that take only a fraction of a person's opinion for the sake of a headline should not be shaping your opinions.

This was important to me, since it's clear gamers are some of the brashest punks ever to self-righteously proclaim opinions, and it was clear this thread is at risk of rapidly devolving into angry Pardo-hating sludge. His words might still be stupid, but for Christ's sake, read all of them before coming to the conclusion.


Sorry, but my source, as you can see, didn't have the full interview. Just what I came across browsing the web. =/

#13 Joshie

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 05:34

Sorry, but my source, as you can see, didn't have the full interview. Just what I came across browsing the web. =/

I'm not dumping it all on you, but I get worked up whenever I see people quoted horrendously out of context. I get worked up because other people are getting worked up and letting their emotions take over based on these misrepresentations (just read all the immediately angry responses to your post as if this Quote Fail was gospel). I'm hating on the site you linked to most of all, because that site clearly has an agenda. The original interview is lengthy and very thoughtful, and ALL of that was completely lost for the sake of letting a bunch of angry gamers post opinions that are now ultimately a waste of everyone's time.

#14 OP Perfect72

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 05:43

Well the reason I was speaking, in terms of money, was that the reason multi-player games tend to last longer, is because of the replay value. Single player games don't generally have that value, but to me don't need it if the game is good enough. Take Assassin's Creed for example. It is one of the very, very few games I don't mind spending a $60 price tag on, because of how it draws me in and the story, gameplay, writing, all of it, are amazing. There aren't many single player games, that can stand on their own, and not have replay value (to some), and still succeed greatly. Everyone has a different opinion, though. But these games seem so few and far between, that I will buy a predominant single-player game, and it will go unfinished because it was a lackluster product. So many of these are being churned out, that companies do seem to force them to develop a multi-player along with it as a fail-safe or something to keep the longevity going, which can take away from the single-player.

I don't think I am making any sense right now, I took some NyQuil and am tired. My thoughts aren't conveying well.

I'm not dumping it all on you, but I get worked up whenever I see people quoted horrendously out of context. I get worked up because other people are getting worked up and letting their emotions take over based on these misrepresentations (just read all the immediately angry responses to your post as if this Quote Fail was gospel). I'm hating on the site you linked to most of all, because that site clearly has an agenda. The original interview is lengthy and very thoughtful, and ALL of that was completely lost for the sake of letting a bunch of angry gamers post opinions that are now ultimately a waste of everyone's time.


I will put your source in the OP then.

#15 remixedcat

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 05:53

what i worry about is the new SimCity... if that game won't allow modding the series, is again, d.e.a.d. SimCity allready tried to return with Societies, and it flopped worse then Vista....

now they try to bring it back again once more and they need to go mod or go home.... sites like simtropolis are gonna tear SC2013 up if it won't have modding and that genre of game has very vocal, very demanding, but very passionate fans.... we are very dissapointed in the sim genre scene like how some people are dissapointed in the EDM scene or those in the hip-hop scene... we are often the ones that have got left behind while the FPS scene is the most catered too... the shock jocks that only have twitch and not finesse and patience... those numbers are increasing while the sim crowd is getting dumbed down in favor of facebook crap while us intelligent sim gamer crowd gets neglected and bored and we wear out simcity 4 or 2K....

angst... angst.... angst.... this is the lament of an old school hardcore gamer.... becoming less and less of one due to the lack of quality these days.... minecraft kinda fills it so far as creativity for me, however there's the emotional void....


skyrim and minecraft are the last two games I've gotten anything out of.... 2 games in 2 years.... pathetic.... back in the day I would find 5 or 6 at least...

oh well... more space on my HDD for cat videos!!!!