Cliff Bleszinski: "I'll Never Make Another Disc-Based Game"

Andy Chalk

One Flag, One Fleet, One Cat
Nov 12, 2002
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Cliff Bleszinski: "I'll Never Make Another Disc-Based Game"


Former Gears of War mastermind Cliff Bleszinski says his future lies with the PC, but not with games in boxes.

Nobody is quite sure what Cliff Bleszinski has been up to since he split with Epic Games in 2012, but whatever he has planned for the future, maintaining a close connection with the community is at the top of his priority list. That, to him, means making games for the PC.

"PC is where I'm going to wind up. That's where the community is," he told Gamasutra. "The trend will always be the core. If I start a studio, I want a community manager there day one. I want weekly video or podcasts; I want task lists available on the subreddit."

And what he doesn't want are games on discs inside boxes sitting on shelves. "The whole 'old guard,' where you get a Game Informer cover and an E3 reveal, is dead," he continued. "I'll never make another disc-based game for the rest of my career, and [at E3] they're trying to woo buyers from Target and Walmart?"

Bleszinski's comments have a certain timeliness to them, coming as they do on the heels of Ken Levine's announcement earlier today that he's pulling the plug on Irrational Games [http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/132317-Irrational-Games-to-Close-After-BioShock-Infinite-DLC-Update] in order to launch a new venture that will "focus exclusively on content delivered digitally." But is conventional triple-A development really dead (or even dying), or is it just something you can afford to abandon once you've made your name (and your fortune) at the top of major hit-making studio? I imagine it's a lot more fun to be a starving artist when you're not actually starving.

Source: Gamasutra [http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/210733/With_new_perspective_on_life_and_games_Cliff_Bleszinski_plots_next_move.php]


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Dec 16, 2009
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The guy is good at sensing which way the wind is blowing.
His sincerity, I'm not sure about.

Off topic; wasn't he part of the "used games are killing the industry" crowd
 

Tanis

The Last Albino
Aug 30, 2010
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I'm glad he thinks everyone lives in a place without download caps and horrible speeds.

I'm lucky, I've got moderate high speed internet.
-Averages around 500-900kb/s.

Some of my friends don't even get 100kb/s.
There's NO WAY they're going to be able to deal with a 15GB download or whatever.

C.B. is nuts.
 

Adam Jensen_v1legacy

I never asked for this
Sep 8, 2011
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Mr Ink 5000 said:
wasn't he part of the "used games are killing the industry" crowd
That's probably one of the reasons why he's going to develop for PC. He sees the increasing popularity of PC gaming. And PC gaming only has to deal with some piracy problems. And even that's not a problem according to scientific research on the subject. Everything is simpler and more rewarding on the PC. Steam is dominating with more than 75 million users and it's friendly to both consumers and developers. There's less corporate bullshit to deal with.
 

CriticalMiss

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Jan 18, 2013
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"I'll never make another disc-based game for the rest of my career, and [at E3] they're trying to woo buyers from Target and Walmart?"
He's worded that one carefully. If his PC ventures fail then at least he can fall back on making games for the 3DS! Gears of Mario 3D here we come.
 

mjc0961

YOU'RE a pie chart.
Nov 30, 2009
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Is he going to make ANY games again? Honestly I wish he'd shut up and make a game. What does it matter to me if he's not going to make a disc based game if he isn't making any games anyway?
 

Weaver

Overcaffeinated
Apr 28, 2008
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Didn't he only a few years ago say all PC gamers were pirates, and that everyone was a crybaby when bulletstorm had no PC demo?

I think he also said he didn't want to develop on PC cause consoles sold more (in relation to gears), which is why 2 and 3 weren't on PC?

What a ****.

edit: yeah, I wasn't dreaming it
http://www.bit-tech.net/news/gaming/2008/09/30/epic-no-gears-of-war-2-pc/1
 

Crimsonmonkeywar

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Oct 27, 2013
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Tanis said:
I'm glad he thinks everyone lives in a place without download caps and horrible speeds.

I'm lucky, I've got moderate high speed internet.
-Averages around 500-900kb/s.

Some of my friends don't even get 100kb/s.
There's NO WAY they're going to be able to deal with a 15GB download or whatever.

C.B. is nuts.
with 1.2m units of Rust sold, 15m units of Minecraft sold, 13m of Diaablo, 7m of Battlefield,80m World of Tanks players, 60m lol players, and 75m Steam accounts......I think CB has more than enough of a market to.....market toward.
 

Hairless Mammoth

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Jan 23, 2013
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Why can't I go a month without reading about this hotshot's overblown statements? Yes, despite foolish claims of it dying, the PC game market is thriving, especially thanks to downloadable games and sales. But, there's still boxed copies of PC games being sold, even if it requires Steam or Origin the full data(minus updates) is on the disc. It helps someone with a shitternet connection, since they can buy a game in a meatspace store or order it online and save their precious little bandwidth.

This guy isn't necessarily stupid, but the caustic way he states his opinions just pisses me off.
"The whole 'old guard,' where you get a Game Informer cover and an E3 reveal, is dead," he continued. "I'll never make another disc-based game for the rest of my career, and [at E3] they're trying to woo buyers from Target and Walmart?
Uh, E3 is closed to the public and meant for the press to evaluate new games and tech. The average Joe and Jane aren't reading game journalism to decide what they want. They look at the prettiest boxes and follow word of mouth from friends. I can see he hates E3 'cause in the last few years they've been hyping up everything more and more while not showing too much that we having seen in other trade shows. His reasons are just off.
 

Crimsonmonkeywar

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Oct 27, 2013
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Weaver said:
Didn't he only a few years ago say all PC gamers were pirates, and that everyone was a crybaby when bulletstorm had no PC demo?

I think he also said he didn't want to develop on PC cause consoles sold more (in relation to gears), which is why 2 and 3 weren't on PC?

What a ****.

edit: yeah, I wasn't dreaming it
http://www.bit-tech.net/news/gaming/2008/09/30/epic-no-gears-of-war-2-pc/1
The PC space was terrible then, and if it continued downward we would not have CB, let alone any developer releasing titles on PC. Every tom dick and harry was getting out of that space, it was not a fun time as a gamer. Luckily Steam continued to grow, GoG emerged, and studios like Sega, Blizzard, CDPR, and Capcom continued to release titles. Not to mention Youtube personalities LP'ing and reviewing PC titles as well as Minecraft taking off and turning many a young gamers into PC gamers.
 

Smooth Operator

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Oct 5, 2010
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Sounds more like he is starting a reality show with all the latest trendiest tag lines, I'm guessing his next move will be to finance everything via Dogecoin, or Obamacoin or whatever meme bullshit someone made this week.

I get the facebooks generation is all hyped about nonsense like this but I remember all this happening before, and it never ends with good results.
 

Trivun

Stabat mater dolorosa
Dec 13, 2008
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Weaver said:
Didn't he only a few years ago say all PC gamers were pirates, and that everyone was a crybaby when bulletstorm had no PC demo?

I think he also said he didn't want to develop on PC cause consoles sold more (in relation to gears), which is why 2 and 3 weren't on PC?

What a ****.

edit: yeah, I wasn't dreaming it
http://www.bit-tech.net/news/gaming/2008/09/30/epic-no-gears-of-war-2-pc/1
Yeah, no need to be so harsh, and that's hardly appropriate language in this case (or at all, an I'm normally fine with swearing). Are people not allowed to change their minds? I actually agree with him in part on the Bulletstorm demo issue, if only because compared to the games of yesteryear we rarely see demos now anyway except via XBL/PSN. I wish that wasn't the case, I do wish we had regular demos like we used to, but there's no ned for everyone to criticise one man when he doesn't do one demo in this modern game industry (although maybe 'crybaby' was a bit harsh of him). As for the other factors, even though I disagreed with him, everyone has the right to change their minds. You can either hate the guy or not, but hating him no matter what he does is just unfair. And definitely not worthy of the C word.

At any rate, I'll personally be looking at this with trepidation. I don't like the idea of disc based games going the way of the dodo, but that's because I've always been a traditionlist with media. I use Steam and GOG but otherwise I want my games in a box, my movies in a box on DVD or Blu-Ray, my books in paper, and my music on a hard CD. That being said, much as I may dislike it, I can't deny that we are inching ever closer to the day when they stop making CDs/DVDs/etc. altogether. All Cliffy B is doing is making a perfectly valid prediction of this and then gettin in on the curve before the majority decide to do so. It doesn't help the situation, but he's unerstandable and smart in his thinking. I don't always agree with what Cliffy B says (I actually disagree a lot of the time), but I do listen because he is often correct, even if he's not (in the) right...
 

Weaver

Overcaffeinated
Apr 28, 2008
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Trivun said:
Weaver said:
Didn't he only a few years ago say all PC gamers were pirates, and that everyone was a crybaby when bulletstorm had no PC demo?

I think he also said he didn't want to develop on PC cause consoles sold more (in relation to gears), which is why 2 and 3 weren't on PC?

What a ****.

edit: yeah, I wasn't dreaming it
http://www.bit-tech.net/news/gaming/2008/09/30/epic-no-gears-of-war-2-pc/1
Yeah, no need to be so harsh, and that's hardly appropriate language in this case (or at all, an I'm normally fine with swearing). Are people not allowed to change their minds? I actually agree with him in part on the Bulletstorm demo issue, if only because compared to the games of yesteryear we rarely see demos now anyway except via XBL/PSN. I wish that wasn't the case, I do wish we had regular demos like we used to, but there's no ned for everyone to criticise one man when he doesn't do one demo in this modern game industry (although maybe 'crybaby' was a bit harsh of him). As for the other factors, even though I disagreed with him, everyone has the right to change their minds. You can either hate the guy or not, but hating him no matter what he does is just unfair. And definitely not worthy of the C word.

At any rate, I'll personally be looking at this with trepidation. I don't like the idea of disc based games going the way of the dodo, but that's because I've always been a traditionlist with media. I use Steam and GOG but otherwise I want my games in a box, my movies in a box on DVD or Blu-Ray, my books in paper, and my music on a hard CD. That being said, much as I may dislike it, I can't deny that we are inching ever closer to the day when they stop making CDs/DVDs/etc. altogether. All Cliffy B is doing is making a perfectly valid prediction of this and then gettin in on the curve before the majority decide to do so. It doesn't help the situation, but he's unerstandable and smart in his thinking. I don't always agree with what Cliffy B says (I actually disagree a lot of the time), but I do listen because he is often correct, even if he's not (in the) right...
Sorry about swearing, I often forget how offensive that word is in the UK (not really so much here, in fact you'll find it's not even common in usage).
I make no excuse, I don't like Cliffy B.

The issue with the Bulletstorm demo was that the 360 and PS3 both had demos, the PC didn't. When people pointed this out Cliffy B. flew off the handle and called all those filthy pirates a bunch of whiners.

My other issue is the whole "PC gamers are pirates" thing was one issue in a several year "campaign" from him treating the PC, and the people who like to game on it, like total shit. To the point of mudslinging PC gamers weekly on Twitter.
I'd largely wager his attitude and decisions were responsible for much of the PC gaming community pretty much just abandoning any hope for Epic.

Yes, he can change his mind, but from someone who was so adamantly against an entire gaming platform he sure changed tunes quickly when it would suddenly benefit him.
 

kanetsb

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Sep 13, 2007
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I always loved the idea of digital distribution. Mainly because it exposes one interesting thing... Distribution using a P2P system like the one Blizzard uses, does not require server maintenance cost (well, some, but a very small one), hence the "unit price" for a game, essentially, does not exist.

With that in mind... What is the financial difference to the game's publisher, between selling 1.000.000 copies for 50EUR a piece and selling 5.000.000 copies for 10EUR? Won't both prices eventually make 50.000.000EUR?
 

ZZoMBiE13

Ate My Neighbors
Oct 10, 2007
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Dear Cliffy B,

In the eyes of gamers, and the hardcore crowd specifically, you're only as good as your last game. Now I don't agree with everything you've said over the past 18 months, but I've enjoyed the products you've made in the past. I'd like to enjoy the products you will make in the future. But it's time to put up or shut up.

I'm not interested in another bit of Twitterverse theorizing from you Cliff. It's been fun and all, don't get me wrong. I even respected you're quitting EPIC to devote attention to your new lovely wife. You are a blessed man and I'm happy for you. But at this point in time, it's starting to feel like you're building hype for something that is currently in a vapor state of "one day, possibly, maybe".

Every time you break wind at an audible decibel level, it makes gaming news. But either show me a site, some concept art, a demo reel, or keep your blowhole shut. Seriously. I love ya buddy, GEARS was a great time. Unreal even more so. But c'mon buddy. C'mon. Zip it or ship it.

Warm regards,
-Paul
 

Weaver

Overcaffeinated
Apr 28, 2008
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Zachary Amaranth said:
Wonder if Brosinski actually holds up to this one.

Mr Ink 5000 said:
The guy is good at sensing which way the wind is blowing.
After the wind has already blown.
Exactly, Michael Pachter has "predicts" things in the same way as well. Valve has had incredible growth over the last 8 years in the order of tens of billions of dollars, and Pachter predicted that the PC market will be strong in the next few years.

Totally blew the lid off that one.