GAME DEVELOPERS HAVE IT ROUGH
There is not a single doubt in my mind that being a game developer is extremely difficult work, especially considering how much of an impact social media plays on the interaction with fans. Gamers are far more interactive with game developers/publishers today than they were able to be in the past. While this has some definite benefits, it also adds an intense amount of pressure on developers to consistently deliver quality titles. The fact that so many of them continue to hit the mark and create such incredible worlds and detailed games for players to enjoy for hours on end is mind-blowing.
In illustration, I refer to my newest game acquisition – Batman: Arkham Knight.
The amount of details in this game have me fangirling and sitting on the edge of my couch. I get excited when I notice Batman has become scratched up and dirtied from fighting thugs in the street. I love seeing the detail that was put into the rain, the street, and the rims of the Batmobile. (It was truly beautiful.) Oh, and that suit?? I LOVE IT.
There are hundreds of developers out there, as well as an amazing amount of companies that produce some breathtaking games. It’s difficult to not take such intricate details and talent for granted, as we’ve been pretty spoiled over the past decade as gaming has launched to new heights.
So, I thought I would share my favorite developers with you. . .
THE TOP 5:
Founded back in 2002 by Todd Howard and Ashley Cheng, Bethesda Game Studios has been the name behind some of the most critically-acclaimed titles of the past 12 years, including Morrowind, Oblivion, and Fallout 3. Those at Bethesda are so full of talent, all of whom have the ability to create these huge, dynamic worlds that leave a player breathless and craving more. The worlds they create transport us gamers to distant lands that we really don’t want to leave, as their immense beauty is just insanely gorgeous. I, for one, am STILL enamored by the night sky and the soundtracks for Skyrim.
Bethesda’s games feel as real as living, breathing organisms, and they are nearly impossible to put down.
If anyone has earned the title of Reigning Champion for creating huge, open-world experiences, it’s Rockstar. They took videogames to new levels with 2001’s GTA III, and have just kept continuing to outdo themselves. Their games always have that dark, realistic feel to the storytelling, emphasizing criminal anti-heroes who make big statements about today’s society.
Rockstar’s games are always addicting, and the talent is crystal-clear. These games are all made by obvious experts gifted with true artistic skill, all of whom operate at the top of their industry. (I feel blessed to know someone who works for Rockstar. . . No, it doesn’t get me anything cool. 😛 )
Founded in 1996 by Gabe Newell and Mike Harrington, Valve changed the video game industry forever. They cranked out the genius that was Half-Life, launching an entire franchise that has continued to have a solid fanbase and several spin-offs, including Portaland Counter-Strike. Half-Life served as a landmark title that gifted gamers with an entirely new concept of game for this industry. It changed the way people think about games, from how they could be played to how they could be made.
Valve isn’t just about MAKING games, but also about distributing them. They pioneered digital distribution with the Steam platform, which currently has millions of active users and thousands of games. It’s incredible to look at the numbers and realize that it all started with one duo of guys who used to work at Microsoft, but decided they wanted to do their own thing. Boy, did they!
They created legendary titles that changed the gaming industry, and then continued to do it again with the creation of Steam, proving themselves as a company that will continue to persevere and innovate in the exciting years that lie ahead.
Not only are their games SUPER addicting, but they truly care about their fans.
Check out this touching story, but be sure to have tissues handy!
#5 id Software:
Now, I really did have to include the game that got me into gaming in the first place.
Doom came out in 1993, when I was 3 years old. At that time, I was messing around with my gray-on-black DOS menu, playing an alphabet game called The Bear Game, and trying to figure out how Jones in the Fast Lane worked.
Once I turned five or six, I started to play games regularly. I understood that Jones game, and learned that (even as a child) I REALLY, REALLLLLY hated Jones. When I was about nine years old, my dad introduced me to Doom. . .and I was hooked. From there, I moved on to Blake Stone, Wolfenstein 3D, and other games that don’t have anything to do with science fiction, horror-themed FPS games.
Even still, I needed to include id Software on here. They came up with Doom, which is most definitely considered (and rightly so!) to be one of the most significant titles in the gaming industry. I still really want to have IDDQD tattooed…and it will happen. Soon.