Being a big name like Bethesda in this industry means you're going to come under fire, whether that's for what you're making or what you're not making, and Bethesda's marketing and PR man Pete Hines recently gave an interview to Games Radar in which he stated that the company is aware of their critical fan base, but also said that fan criticism will not define what Bethesda works on, or how it will release their own games.
"We're aware of it, but we're not going to let it define what we do," he explained. "Ultimately, we're going to try and do the things that we think are the best for the games that we're making, because that's, honestly, all I can really control."
Hines uses Killzone developer Guerrilla Games' Horizon Zero Dawn as an example of developers doing against their core fan base's wishes and expectations.
"If we didn't have folks break from it then you don't get Horizon: Zero Dawn. Like, how unbelievable is that game? And if [Guerrilla] just stayed on that path for what they were known for, you'd never get that game. Why would you ever think that [the creators of Killzone] would do crazy post-retro; futuristic but retro dinosaur. It might be my favorite game this year, and if they didn't break from what they had been doing and try something different, you'd never get that."
To what degree should developers listen to their fans, and to what extent should they just do their own thing despite what fans are saying?