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AAA Game development has ballooned out of control. Scope should be reduced.


Aug 29, 2010
Nope, what counts as a AAA game differs from one region to another.

For example The Witcher 3's budget was 81 million INCLUDING the marketing, compared to an average CoD or Rockstar game which costs over 250M without it! You can't think for a second The Witcher isn't a AAA game!

Same thing with Nintendo's IPs and Yakuza etc, they're considerd "prestige" games, FFS Tales Of, Musou and SMT/Persona are considered AAA by their publishes!

Japanese AA games are something like NiS games (Disgaea) Gust games (Ar Tonelico, Atelier series) Nihon Falcom (Ys, Trails) Compile Heart/Idea Factory games (Neptunia/Death end Re;Quest) etc.
And yet Japan makes AAA games like Final Fantasy and Nioh so I'm not sure your point holds.

I agree with NIS, Nihon Falcom, etc being AA studios, though some of their games in the past - like Gurumin or htoL#NiQ, are a stretch for AA status IMO.

And to cite the Pokemon example, Trails of Cold Steel 4 (I've purposely avoided looking at the latest Trails games to avoid spoilers) clearly is a different level of budget from Pokemon in terms of the game itself, though, again, Pokemon is a "prestige" title. It's silly to say Pokemon has AAA production values though - and some would argue it's not even AA, when you compare it to something like Cold Steel 4.

(I will submit that Pokemon is fully AAA if you consider advertising and merchandising)

And then there's attempts at AAAA games - stuff like Anthem and Destiny, though I'm not sure that designation held.
Mar 16, 2014
I miss the 10-12 hour single player games that came out every couple of years. Open world games with a million things to do sounds nice on theory, but I just get overwhelmed and don’t wanna do any of it
Feb 15, 2021
Yes, he contradicted his own argument there. But, I agree that publishers should establish new studios that make smaller scope AAA games similar to PS3 era. Many people here loved RE8 village and RE2 remake, both AAA but smaller scope and likely much smaller budget than AssCreed.
They are still fairly big games though with 3 to 4 years dev time.

But they are a good example. Nice thing about resident evil is they are usually highly repayable.
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