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Opinion Why do we need so many devs? Valheim Was Made By 5 People And Sold Nearly 7 Million Copies

ACESHIGH

Member
May 16, 2020
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Because if you understand and have insight into the industry, you can understand what are you asking for.

There are plenty of majorr games that have the OP approach. Re-use assets with a skeleton crew. It’s called Madden, NBA2K, NHL2K, etc etc

if you want a AAA production game, you can’t do that approach.

AAA is a moving target. What if I want more sixth gen console AAA just at high resolution and 16:9? We had one per year of any big franchise back then and multiple franchises from different studios on any given genre.

My problem with modern gaming is that AAA budgets are out of controls and Indies that try to fit the space that AAA studios left are not up to snuff because they lack budget or experience (games like daymare 1998 or Dangerous driving) sadly they don't hold a candle vs the games they try to emulate.
 
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Tygeezy

Member
Sep 28, 2018
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I think there's some truth in what you say, as far as those huge AAA teams having some inefficiencies. That is what is required to produce a AAA game, but it's not very efficient.

I think you just don't like AAA games focus on polish instead of substance or new ideas and I agree.

All these types of games and different sized development teams have a place in the market, but yeah the indie side is where the really scrappy creative stuff is going to happen, that's just the tradeoff between the two.
The elephant in the room is you don't need to produce a AAA game to make a lot of money. The games that see the most player retention and tend to keep making money are games that don't even really have large budgets. Survival games and multiplayer shooters can be made with a very reasonable budget and the numbers say these games is what people keep coming back to. I like a good AAA game as much as anybody here, but lower budget games have been kicking AAA games butts lately.
 
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element

Member
Jun 6, 2004
11,681
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Unity = Check
Asset Store Assets = Check
Established game design mechanics = Check
4 years of development to Early Access Release = Check
Living in country with universal health care = Check

Valheim is a cool game, but it is just a twist on other games before it like RUST, The Forest, Don't Starve, Ark, Conan Exiles and many others. They didn't reinvent the wheel. They copied it and gave it a new color.
 
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AmuroChan

Member
Nov 23, 2013
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Publishers don't like spending more money than they have to. If a Rockstar can make GTAVI with 5 people instead of the 1000+ people that worked on GTAV, I'm sure they would be happy to do just that.
 

oagboghi2

Member
Apr 15, 2018
12,525
21,199
755
AAA is a moving target. What if I want more sixth gen console AAA just at high resolution and 16:9? We had one per year of any big franchise back then and multiple franchises from different studios on any given genre.

My problem with modern gaming is that AAA budgets are out of controls and Indies that try to fit the space that AAA studios left are not up to snuff because they lack budget or experience (games like daymare 1998 or Dangerous driving) sadly they don't hold a candle vs the games they try to emulate.
You would still need to hire a ton of people because you have to make new assets. Even at a lesser resolution and lower quality, nothing changes here.

the truth is budgets aren’t really out of control. The scale of games have grown, and thus the resources needed to make them have grown.
 
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megreotsugua

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Dec 3, 2019
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The elephant in the room is you don't need to produce a AAA game to make a lot of money. The games that see the most player retention and tend to keep making money are games that don't even really have large budgets. Survival games and multiplayer shooters can be made with a very reasonable budget and the numbers say these games is what people keep coming back to. I like a good AAA game as much as anybody here, but lower budget games have been kicking AAA games butts lately.

Mobile free-to-play games are making even more. PC and console games revenues are a drop in a bucket with one exception that is GTA V.

Should I make a thread why we keep making PC and console games?

Sony's mobile game Fate Grand Order has probably made 10X more money than Valheim.
 
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Majukun

Member
Jun 19, 2009
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Because it's easier to sell a game on its production values by just throwing workforce at it until it's done than a actually find creative talent able to design interesting gameplay loops and new and fresh mechanics.

And since people would often just buy a game because it looks good, make sense to inflate the dev teams so that you can offer insane production values
 
Feb 11, 2015
1,048
1,305
610
Osaka Japan
Shhhhhhh…. Wanna get me fired?

Last game I release was around 80-100 people (4-5 year dev).
only engineer team was 20 people.

btw… mobile game 🤣
(Revenue still lot bigger than console)
 
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RoadHazard

Member
Dec 9, 2008
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Gothenburg, Sweden
Because we want different kinds of experiences? Quality indie games made by small teams are great, but I also want games like God of War, Spider-Man and The Last of Us. Ain't gonna make that with 5 people.
 
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yurinka

Member
Jan 19, 2007
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Barcelona, Spain
www.capcom-town.es
99.999% of the games made by small teams don't sell a shit. Most good looking AAA games made by big teams traditionally sell millions, or at least hundreds of thousands of copies. This is why big companies and investors traditionally bet on big games instead of in small games.