Over the past few years, single-players were on a decline – and any single-player game that did release was almost always packaged with a multiplayer component. This lead many people to wonder if people still play single-player games, and if so, should studios be focusing resources on creating these experiences?
Then 2017 came along and blew these misconceptions to shreds, games like The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Horizon: Zero Dawn, NieR Automata, Persona 5, Wolfenstein 2 proved to both the studios, publishers and community single-player games still do well.
“Single-player games are the phoenix at this point,” Barlog said. “We go through the ebb and flow. Games change by the different creatives that get involved and say, ‘I have this crazy idea.’”
Regardless of multiplayer titles like Fortnite gaining massive success. “It doesn’t necessarily mean that anything else goes away, it simply says that’s the thing we’re paying attention to,” he said.
“I don’t want to work on any games that don’t have some kind of story component because that is the draw for me,” he said. “Competition doesn’t drive me. It’s not to say that competition is bad, it’s not to say that competitive games are bad because I love that those that exist, but it’s not my thing.”
“It’s not about a competition between multiplayer and single-player,” he said. “It’s not about any of them being alive or dead, right? It is Schrödinger’s cat. We are alive and we are dead at the same time, right? And we will always be that way. And it will be an ebb and flow throughout time.”
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