Chris Roberts: Mobile is going to be a bloodbath

Chris Roberts: Mobile is going to be a bloodbath
Aaron Lee

By Aaron Lee

October 12th 2012 at 1:15PM

Wing Commander and Star Citizen creator is disappointed by the lack of attention PC is getting

The creator of Wing Commander and upcoming space RPG Star Citizen says the mobile market is going to be a cut-throat development environment.

Chris Roberts, who is also responsible for the spacefaring adventure Freelancer and is making his return to games after a long time away from the scene, told Develop the mobile market is going to be “a complete bloodbath”.

“I don’t see how you make money in an industry where everyone is conditioned to get it for free or 99 cents. You have to sell so many units,” he said.

Speaking at length to Develop in an interview about his return to games development and his new PC RPG, Star Citizen, Roberts expressed disappointment that large communities of gamers are being neglected, particular PC players.

“I definitely think that there are large communities that aren’t getting attention and one of the biggest communities is PC gaming. On the PC side, there is hardly anyone that’s doing specific games for the for the platform or pushing the hardware, so, yes, you get a fair number of PC games, but they’re all ports of consoles games.

“That means you’re getting a game that’s built for seven-year-old technology. The PS3 and Xbox 360 are locked in 2005, and the modern day gaming PC is ten times more powerful than what you can do on console, there is a lot more memory and a lot more power.”

Roberts went on to name check Crytek and Blizzard who have been strong advocates of the PC, but said even those developers have are no longer pushing the PC to its limits and giving PC gamers the attention they deserve.

Roberts’s own game, Star Citizen, which is being crowdfunded, is his way of answering the dearth of dedicated titles built to push gaming’s oldest platform to its limits.

In Star Citizen, players will be able to choose their own adventures in a vast open world universe. They can pick up jobs as a smuggler, pirate, merchant, bounty hunter or enlist as a pilot and protect the borders from outside threats. It’s also promised to be a visual treat, with Roberts and his team targeting high-end machines for the best experience.

Players can reserve access a beta version of the game, but the full game is still two years out by Roberts’s reckoning.