Richard Garriot, the games design legend behind the Ultima series, has admitted to seeing a bleak future for games consoles. With his own professional pursuits shifting to mobile and social gaming with new company Portalarium, Garriot believes the end is nigh for the home games console.
“I think we might get one more generation, might, but I think fundamentally they’re doomed” said Garriot.
“I think fundamentally the power that you can carry with you in a portable is really swamping what we’ve thought of as a console.”
Garriot also noted how he believed the games industry, like grand historical civilizations of old, was entering into its third major era.
“The first grand era was solo player games, which I’ll call all of the ’80s and ’90s, generally; then there’s the grand era of massively multiplayer games, that I’ll call in the 2000s; and now I believe in the ’10s we are now into the casual and social game era,” continued Garriot.
“And each of those eras are not only hallmarked by being (a) solo player, (b) multiplayer, and (c) browser and asynchronous types of play, but each time the market has grown tenfold, in very important and powerful ways.”
It’s not all doom and gloom though. Despite sharing his frustration at development teams focussed on graphical leaps rather than gameplay improvements, Garriot believes the industry is in the best shape its been in years, particularly with the rise in mobile gaming.
Before we start ringing the console death-knell, it’s worth remembering Garriot doesn’t always have his finger on the pulse. His last major release, Tabula Rasa in 2007, was meant to revolutionise the MMO market. Instead, it sold just 61,000 copies and was shut down in 2009.
Via: Industry Gamers