There was a time in gaming when anything other than a singleplayer experience meant going to an arcade to find something. Then, as console grew, multiplayer grew with it. From two players, to four players, to online play, and now cross-play, the way gamers can connect with one another to do battle or team up is immense. Yet, there is a cost to this, as some developers believe that singleplayer games aren’t worth making anymore. Remedy Entertainment seems to understand why this is though.
The statement came from an interview with Games Industry International, where the communications head of Remedy Entertainment, Thomas Puha noted the following:
“The reality is the traditional AAA single player experience is just really expensive to make. The expectation level from gamers is really high in terms of how long the game is, what sort of features it has, how good the production values are. All those things are very expensive to do.”
He’s not wrong on that front, over the last couple generations of consoles, making AAA titles has become very expensive. There are at times hundreds of people working on a single game, which is costly in and of itself, and that’s before factoring in other things like marketing and equipment. Furthermore, Remedy Entertainment knows what they’re talking about, they’ve been known for their singleplayer experiences through games like Quantum Break, Alan Wake, and Max Payne.
Now, on one hand, you understand where he’s coming from, because if it costs more money to make singleplayer games and not multiplayer ones, shouldn’t you go for the lesser cost option? On the other hand, multiplayer games can only go so many ways, while singleplayer games can push story and characters in a way multiplayer can’t.
What’s the right answer? There honestly isn’t one, it’s about what players buy, and that influences what gets made.