Beginning of the end for big studios?

Beginning of the end for big studios?

By Rob Crossley

February 17th 2010 at 10:20AM

Is the iPhone sparking a small studio revolution?

This week’s Develop Jury turns its attention to the rising number of microstudios, and today's the last day you can offer your view.

The news that Activision is making deep cuts to its workforce typifies the hyper-caution publishers are exhibiting in a post-recession economy. Even longstanding studios such as Neversoft seem to be facing cuts.

At the same time, a perhaps bigger trend is occurring. There is a growing mass of developers unhooking themselves from the publishers’ strings to jump into the high-stakes world of solo iPhone development. Most recently, two key Rockstar Leeds developers have formed their own outfit.

Our question for you this week’s Develop Jury is all about where these two trends are going. We ask:

Have we passed the peak of large-studio, large-scale game development?


There are a number of questions you can consider in your response:

Have we hit a peak capacity of studios and investment, as the industry shifts more and more to smaller teams for more agile platforms?

Is this just an iPhone trend? Surely we’ll see more platforms that seek to democratise game development?

And what about the expanding number of game engines? Are they not becoming more and more accessible – and affordable – for the bedroom coder, the soloist and the microstudios to thrive in?

Developers and industry members can send their answers to rob.crossley@intentmedia.co.uk, while the comments section below is open to all.