Trip Hawkins: We Don't Own the Land We are Tilling

July 14, 2011 -

Electronic Arts founder and Digital Chocolate CEO Trip Hawkins has accused Nintendo of presiding over what he calls a "feudal dark age" in the industry in which developers "don't own the land that they are tilling." He has a point, but Nintendo certainly isn't the only platform holder guilty of that.. At GamesBeat in San Francisco today, Hawkins talked at length about the power of platform holders and how they often limit creativity in comparison to open platforms.

"Look at the world wide web and how many great companies have been built on that open platform," he said. "Nintendo is a great, amazing company, but how many companies have been built on the back of Nintendo's platform in the past 25 years?"

He added that the industry was born in a "golden age" of open platforms, and that EA had prospered in its early years because it ignored Nintendo and focused on the Sega Genesis, which he says his company reverse engineered.

"We fought for our freedom. We didn't accept the feudal system. There is no question that there is a war going to win the hearts and minds of the developers. They will decide which feudal lord wins or loses. The days of floating your boat on one platform are over. The question is, do you as a developer, own the dirt?"

He said that platform holders like to "lure [developers] in with false promises of freedom" but said that developers should focus on open platforms like the browser.

Hawkins has said in the past that the web browser will ultimately prove to be the ultimate platform for games.

Source: Gamasutra


Comments

Re: Trip Hawkins: We Don't Own the Land We are Tilling

Yeah, I'm sure bandwidth caps or varied net speeds won't prevent freedom in the slightest.

Moron.

Re: Trip Hawkins: We Don't Own the Land We are Tilling

In the short term, sure, but in the long term as more and more people use these services and the demand grows, along with contining technology advancements and new providers we will eventually see the end of caps, throttling, and other protectionist behavior. Its happened with every other telecommunications device and it will happen with the Internet.

Re: Trip Hawkins: We Don't Own the Land We are Tilling

Comapnies are still expanding thanks to Nintendo. Level 5 went from Sony developer to publisher thanks to Nintendo's and Sony's support.

Re: Trip Hawkins: We Don't Own the Land We are Tilling

Whether it was acceptable in the late '80s or not, that is definitely not the thing to do now. Quite intelligent arguments can be made for why it wasn't the thing to do then either.

Re: Trip Hawkins: We Don't Own the Land We are Tilling

It was Nintendo's control of the market that helped promote a stable market for video games in the late 80s.  That may not be the thing to do now but if Trip Hawkins doesn't realize the importance of Nintendo's business model versus the one that Atari had, he's an idiot. 

Re: Trip Hawkins: We Don't Own the Land We are Tilling

The landscape is a lot different today then it was back then. Gamers are WAAAY more savy about gaming and rely much more on word of mouth, recommendations, and independant reviews. Look at all the success that indie devs are having right now. Lower price points and new pricing models like free to play have also made it easier to take a risk on a new title.

Basically closed systems just don't make much sense anymore. Content just does not to be that tightly regulated to protect the market. As very fast and capable smart phones and tablets become more ubiquitus and wireless internet becomes more accessible we'll see more and more games published on independent platforms. Eventually we won't have tyrants like Microsoft or Sony managing that experience.

 
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Matthew Wilsonhttp://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2015/03/13-year-old-minecraft-player-confesses-to-swatting-police-say/ not surprised.03/27/2015 - 3:51pm
Matthew WilsonI know most of my friends first saw robotech when it was on Toonami in the mid 90s, but it is possible that a fan who watched it in the 80s are in a position to do it.03/27/2015 - 1:04pm
Andrew EisenRobotech was mid 80s. Fans of the show (who were kids when it aired) are my age and older.03/27/2015 - 1:01pm
Matthew Wilsontiming. anime only really became widely known in the US in the mid 90s. if we assume it was mostly kids watching it, they still wouldnt be high enough in managment to be given full creative control yet. it would still be another 5 to 10 years for that.03/27/2015 - 12:59pm
Andrew EisenI agree. Now what makes you think that there is no one in power who cares about (or has the ability to) make a good adaptation?03/27/2015 - 12:47pm
Matthew Wilsonits not about pratice, it is about people who understand it getting in to positions of power.03/27/2015 - 12:34pm
Matthew Wilsonallot of the comic book characters that have been turned in to good movies started in the 70s or earlier.03/27/2015 - 12:32pm
Andrew EisenWell, if it really does take two generations of practice to get it right, we'll never get good live action adaptations of anime if no one starts making them.03/27/2015 - 12:31pm
Andrew EisenWhat have you seen that would make you say that?03/27/2015 - 12:30pm
Matthew WilsonIt took 2 genarations of comic book reader before we got good comic book movies. I imagine that will be the case for anime as well.03/27/2015 - 12:28pm
Matthew Wilson@AE yes if they have people that understand the content give it a shot, but as far as I can tell that does not look like it is happening in this case.03/27/2015 - 12:26pm
Andrew EisenI understand the skepticism but I don't think "this will never work" and "no one should even bother" are very healthy attitudes.03/27/2015 - 12:11pm
Andrew EisenWhy would you doubt that? A lot of writers are my age and older, the perfect age to be fans of the content. All I'm saying is it's not impossible to get a good Robotech movie. In fact, it's more likely today than any other time.03/27/2015 - 12:11pm
Matthew Wilson@AE the difference is in the case of marvel the writers and directors clearly understand the source content. I doubt many of any of them are that way with robotech, or any anime for that matter.03/27/2015 - 11:10am
MaskedPixelantehttp://www.playstationtrophies.org/news/news-15838-Sony-Cuts-the-Price-of-PlayStation-TV-Today.html Sony cuts the price of the Vita TV in the UK, still wont force developers to make their stuff compatible with it.03/27/2015 - 10:49am
Andrew EisenMechaCrash - It's true, there are a lot of examples of crap adaptations. But there are increasing numbers of great adaptations such as the Marvel movies. That said, it's certainly going to be an uphill battle at Sony, especially with Tom Rothman around.03/27/2015 - 10:45am
ZippyDSMleeOh live action crap...I dunno with hollywood being stuck in the 90s grimdarkblack mode I can not see how anything would work well other than SNK or Akira.. then again Akira is a bit of head trip...03/27/2015 - 10:11am
MechaCrashI meant Hollywood in general. If they did a Robotech movie, it'd just be a slightly tweaked Macross, because usually when people talk about Robotech, they just mean the first third. Nobody cares about the Masters/Southern Cross or Invid/MOSPAEDA stuff.03/27/2015 - 9:36am
ZippyDSMleeYes Macross is good..... robotech....not so much..... Now Pizza Cats that's the definitive TV dub, if not best dub ever I'd put it up there with COwboy Bebop just becuse the Pizza Cats dub is fun as heck and crazy,Medabots and Fighting Foodons are decent.03/27/2015 - 9:20am
InfophileAged well plot-wise, I mean. The animation is showing its age, but if you don't mind that, the plot holds up quite well03/27/2015 - 6:52am
 

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