tempest in a teacup

the pointless musings of a strange recluse

Doug Lombardi thinks Crytek are a bunch of idiots

Well, no, he doesn’t. But at least this snippet from this interview with him from Shacknews suggests that he thinks that sane system requirements are entirely a developers’ responsibility:

Shack: Does the responsibility lie somewhat with the hardware manufacturers to market their products in a reasonable way, or is it up to the developers to set sane requirements?

Doug Lombardi: Oh I think it’s totally the fault of the developers. Totally the fault of the developers. I mean the graphics guys, their job to keep pushing the envelope, and as they push the envelope, move the lower-end cards down to a nice price point, so that there’s always this evolution that’s happening. If you’re a hot rod type of guy, and you want to spend $400 on the latest thing, you want to have a smoking machine, and when Left 4 Dead comes out you want to run it at its highest resolution with killer framerates, and call your buddies over for a beer and make them all drool over your system, awesome. But if you’re just a guy who wants a decent PC for less than a thousand bucks, and wants to be able to run games on it, there should be a card out there that runs games at a decent famerate and decent fluidity. Then it’s on us to write for both of those guys.

It’s a business decision, really. Too often I think the development side of things runs the house. People say, “Oh, we’ve got to target those high-end core gamers. We have the best graphics, sweetest screenshots, and we’ll get more press, and we’ll win.” Okay, well, you’ll win in the pre-launch phase. Then when the game comes out, and 60-70% of the people who don’t have that sweet machine–maybe even higher numbers, maybe 80% don’t have that sweet machine–well you just cut off your ability to sell to all of those guys.

You know, it’s hard to be able to have games that scale, and to write performance on the high end, and write performance on the bottom end, but you know, winning in any industry means some hard work, and there’s a certain level of hard work that developers have to take responsibility for. And when you see games that do that, where they have solid gameplay, and they scale well across machines, usually those games do well.

Nothing much I can disagree with there, really. Writing an engine that doesn’t scale to lesser systems and then whining that no-one is buying your game is kind of asking to be laughed at.

On a side note, I downloaded the Painkiller demo yesterday (after watching Yahtzee’s review, obviously) and gave it a whirl. It definitely reminds me of Serious Sam a whole lot; it features a ridiculous number of enemies with rather stupid AI who try to basically gangbang you, while you run backwards firing your weapon furiously. The graphics are definitely very nice for 2004 (although I think Half-Life 2 and Far Cry probably outdo it considerably). If anything in the level moves, you pretty much need to shoot it.

Oh, and the gun that shoots shurikens and lightning? It’s awesome.

3 comments

3 Responses to “Doug Lombardi thinks Crytek are a bunch of idiots”

  1. Oro says:

    Wait, were there tits on the gun? o_O

  2. PenPen says:

    I dunno what I should be saying…maybe Cry Moar for Crytek.

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