Rockstar gets lots of things — like how to make and launch hugely successful games. But what's one thing Rockstar does not get? Like at all? Company co-founder Sam Houser explains:
The division doesn't make sense to us; good games will usually sell and be popular, bad games will struggle - of any type or genre or style. But we still believe big, high impact games will help the industry evolve and further surpass the movie industry as the next mass-market story telling medium.
...We always tried to make games that anyone could pick up and play. They may, over time, reveal a lot of structural and mechanical complexity, but the first mission of more or less any Rockstar game is very easy and engaging for a reason - because new people playing the game have to be gently led into the world of 3D action games, or open world racing games or whatever. This is the way we try to cater for a mass market - but we are focused on making digital worlds that are fun to explore and interlaced with rich narratives, that even the most casual player can become a part of, if they want to. The challenge is to make a game in which 'depth' does not result in complexity the first minutes you play. This is a challenge we've always tried to embrace, and I hope we are getting better at it, just as I hope we are getting better at everything.
Also, in the interview, Houser says Rockstar doesn't believe in focus testing, saying "it's like asking an audience what album they want to hear - they don't know until they hear it!" Yep, that sums it up perfectly. We've always wondered why there is a separation between "casual" and "core" players. Should all games support both? Otherwise, game companies are being elitist or just pandering.
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