In the past, I’ve discussed microtransactions and my feelings on them. Well, you may have noticed that I was only targeting the big publishers. This was for a reason. Only big publishers wanna make a fast and easy buck.
Let’s just get some terminology straight, at least from my point of view. An “A” development studio is not quite ready for prime time. I’m speaking about DontNod, Volition, Spiders, & HareBrained. I realize that some of you are thinking of independent studios, but that’s not really the case. The truly independent studios are one man studios, like ConcernedApe (Stardew Valley) or Tynan Sylvester(RimWorld).
A AAA development studio is one where you have hundreds of people working together on one game. These include such studios as Bethesda, BioWare, UbiSoft, WB Games.
AAA games are extremely polished. In fact, they’re so well polished, that it wipes away any sense of the heart and soul that were ever put into the game. There’s no blood, sweat, or tears coming off of the game. It begins to wear on you. Or at least it did me.
Single A studios have that in spades though. Life Is Strange, Saints Row 3 (and Four), The Technomancer, BattleTech. All of them are dripping with blood, sweat, and tears. And I love it. I love playing each one of these. (Except for The Technomancer. Get on a linux port!) Each of them for very different reasons.
I’d compare it to chocolate, or take whatever sweets you can imagine. The AAA games are the sweets. They lack any real substance, or calories. The A games are the real meat and potatoes.
Now, I’m not telling you that I will not be buying any AAA games in the future. But the money has stopped flowing out of my hands to these big studios for these games, simply because they lack the grittiness of working on games. They are, simply put, too polished.
They are the New York shyster who will take your money and run.