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 WilsonSF have to build upwards they have natural growth limits. they can not grow outwards. ps growing outwards is terable just look at Orlando or Austin for that.04/16/2014 - 4:15pm
ZippyDSMleeIf they built upward then it would becoem like every other place making it worthless, if they don't build upward they will price people out making it worthless, what they need to do is a mix of things not just one exstreme or another.04/16/2014 - 4:00pm
Matthew Wilsonyou know the problem in SF was not the free market going wrong right? it was government distortion. by not allowing tall buildings to be build they limited supply. that is not free market.04/16/2014 - 3:48pm
ZippyDSMleeOh gaaa the free market is a lie as its currently leading them to no one living there becuse they can not afford it makign it worthless.04/16/2014 - 3:24pm
Matthew WilsonIf you have not read http://arstechnica.com/gaming/2014/04/introducing-steam-gauge-ars-reveals-steams-most-popular-games/ you should. It is a bit stats heavy, but worth the read.04/16/2014 - 2:04pm
Matthew Wilsonthe issue is when is doesn't work it can screw over millions in new york city's case. more often than not it is better to let the free market run its course without market distortion.04/16/2014 - 9:36am
NeenekoTrue, and overdone stagnation is a problem. It is a tricky balance. It does not help that when it does work, no one notices. Most people here have benifited from rent controls and not even realized it.04/16/2014 - 9:23am
ZippyDSMleehttp://www.afterdawn.com/news/article.cfm/2014/04/15/riaa_files_civil_suit_against_megaupload04/16/2014 - 8:48am
ZippyDSMleeEither way you get stagnation as people can not afford the prices they set.04/16/2014 - 8:47am
Neenekowell, specifically it helps people already living there and hurts people who want to live there instead. As for 'way more hurt', majorities generally need less legal protection. yes it hurt more people then it helped, it was written for a minority04/16/2014 - 8:30am
MaskedPixelantehttp://torrentfreak.com/square-enix-drm-boosts-profits-and-its-here-to-stay-140415/ Square proves how incredibly out of touch they are by saying that DRM is the way of the future, and is here to stay.04/16/2014 - 8:29am
james_fudgeUnwinnable Weekly Telethon playing Metal Gear http://www.twitch.tv/rainydayletsplay04/16/2014 - 8:06am
ConsterTo be fair, there's so little left of the middle class that those numbers are skewing.04/16/2014 - 7:42am
Matthew Wilsonyes it help a sub section of the poor, but hurt both the middle and upper class. in the end way more people were hurt than helped. also, it hurt most poor people as well.04/16/2014 - 12:13am
SeanBJust goes to show what I have said for years. Your ability to have sex does not qualify you for parenthood.04/15/2014 - 9:21pm
NeenekoSo "worked" vs "failed" really comes down to who you think is more important and deserving04/15/2014 - 7:04pm
NeenekoThough I am also not sure we can say NYC failed. Rent control helped the people it was intended for and is considered a failure by the people it was designed to protect them from.04/15/2014 - 7:04pm
NeenekoIf they change the rules, demand will plummet. Though yeah, rent control probably would not help much in the SF case. I doubt anything will.04/15/2014 - 1:35pm
TheSmokeyOnline gamer accused of murdering son to keep playing - http://cnews.canoe.ca/CNEWS/Crime/2014/04/15/21604921.html04/15/2014 - 11:50am
Matthew Wilsonyup, but curent city rules do not allow for that.04/15/2014 - 11:00am
 

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