Crowd Source? Let the creators create.

The internet is generally a wonderful thing.  It allows creators to meet, it allows communities to form, and it allows businesses to get feedback directly from consumers about their business.  It’s all good, solid stuff.  Thanks internet for making all of our lives easier.

But with easy access to everyone, all the time, about seemingly anything comes, the reality is that when people don’t like things they will tell you.  Loudly.  And many, many times over.  Feedback is great, but it often comes from uninformed or selfish places.

This dark side of the internet has been around with regards to video games since the dawn of time.  But it is getting worse and worse, with consumers thinking they have agency in the process a game’s development or a system’s design (I wrote something on how much the furore around the XBOX ONE drove me bananas).  The simple fact is the consumer is given too high of a place in the development of a modern video game.  Did van Gogh crowdsource for ‘the Starry Night?’.  Do you think Woody Allen tweets to his fans asking whether Hannah and Mickey should marry?  Probably not.  And both were masterpieces

My point is there is enough expertise, enough creative energy and objective critiquing power within development teams themselves, that games aren’t released without heavy assessment as to whether they meet the designer’s intent.  Rest assured the games that are released to be utter garbage wouldn’t have been helped by your two cents worth.  There are stories behind every failure, and no amount of armchair game development in most cases couldn’t have turned crap into gold.

At the end of the day I don’t want to play something designed by committee.  I like video games but sure as hell wouldn’t have a clue how to make them.  I leave that to the people whose day jobs it is to do just that.

If you want to make a game, by all means, go for it.  But don’t profess to know how to make someone else’s better.  Keep of of their lawn.