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      Peter Molyneux on talent, creativity, and the European industry - Full Round Table at Gamelab Tenerife 2022

      He wasn't officially announced nor scheduled, but he was very glad to talk to the journalists present in the island during a break because "I haven't talked to any of you for so long!", so here we have the different answers and the insight Peter Molyneux shared with the gathered press from different outlets on several interesting topics.

      Audio transcription

      "I mean, I think that the first thing is we're talking about the problems and there's lots of problems with funding of development studios, with talent, with how do you bring in talented people, how do you get kids to want to work in the games industry, how do you get kids to realize that it's not just playing games the whole time, it's you know there's a range of works, there's a lot of talk about discoverability, you know, how you get your game discovered, so we're talking about those problems at the moment and for me I think the biggest problem is Europe should be the home of games and I worry that maybe it's not so much the home of games, it's more in America, more in China, more in Japan and we're really in today's world we need to come together and make it the home of games. You know, I think Europe, especially the UK, but Europe as a whole, they tend to be much more able to take on risk when it comes to games design, you know, I think America and China are brilliant at exploiting an idea, we are brilliant at coming up with ideas and the real tragedy for me is a lot of European ideas that started out here get exploited by elsewhere in the world, so what we need is some way of coming up with those ideas, I think we're good at doing that, but then growing that idea, exploiting that idea and making sure that idea can still be held by Europe. Yeah, I think there are many destructive things about Brexit, I personally hated the idea and the games industry is certainly is going to be one of those, one of those casualties, you know, already, you know, it's harder to bring people into the UK, already, you know, we feel the UK feels a little bit estranged from Europe when we should be coming together and conquering some of these big problems, so there's no positive, I'm just praying for an anti-Brexit pill that just makes it all go away. Yeah, I mean, I think Spain has embraced maybe games, you know, when you said, oh, the UK was an important part, historically it was a huge important part, in the early parts of the 90s, I think that the UK, you know, a third of all games were made by the UK, but I'm not so sure that's true now and what Spain is doing and some other European countries is embracing what the games industry is and embracing how making games, your culture can affect those games of making, so it's an impressive, impressive, there's lots of interesting universities in Spain, there's lots of, you know, here we are in Tenerife, which is part of Spain, you know, embracing and encouraging the games industry. Do you have in mind one title in particular, one favorite Spanish game?
      Do you know, I was, I was terrified you were going to ask me that because I, because I'm frightened that I'm gonna pick something that's not Spanish, so it's probably best me not say anything. Oh, there is one point though, I think we should celebrate more the origin, origin country of a game, you know, when you say, well, tell me a Spanish game, I, you know, there's nothing in a game that says it's it's Spanish or Portuguese or English or whatever, wouldn't it be great to celebrate, you know, this was made in Spain, this was made in the UK. What we do is in the, in Guildford, where my studio is based and has always been spaced, we've got this little logo which just says made in Guildford and anyone making a game in Guildford puts this logo on, why don't we have the same for Spain or the same for Tenerife, I think it would be a great idea. I mean, it's lovely to look back, it's lovely to have, you know, to have modern-day classics brought to life, but I think it's also lovely to innovate and to create, so what I would love to see is some of those old titles to take what the core of what it is and expand it and make it unique and original and fresh and up-to-date, whereas I think a lot of the times, you know, doing, we're doing a modern-day version of a classic, you just try and recreate what it is and the world is a very different place, so I think it's great to have, you know, the old games come back to life, but it's also great to innovate and push them forward."

      "I didn't have any part and I think, I think that's quite healthy in a way, I mean, part of me feels sad because I love the Fable world, I love the world of Albion that we created and I, you know, I, you know, there's so many ideas that you have about how to evolve that world and take it forward, part of me thinks that, but the other part of me thinks, you know, you know, that this, this developer, then they should make it themselves, it should be their, their passion, their love and, and, you know, their sense of wonder that they're going to introduce to the community. For me, I hope that Fable 4, or whatever they call it when it comes out, retains that sense of freedom, not only in the world, but what your character is, allowing you, the player, to be whoever they want and keeps that sense of humour, which is, which I think, which I enjoyed, you know, working on so much."

      "I would love to see the god game genre continue and blossom and grow. For me, it's all about you as a player influencing a system. Now, you know, the way I explored is you're influencing a little world with little people in, in Populous and, you know, that evolved into Black and White, you're influencing a creature and growing a creature and that is the heart of what I think god games are, is that rather than controlling something absolutely, you're growing, you allow the player to grow and build something and to see the consequences of their action and I, you know, I'd love to explore that more and I'd love other people to explore that more, but not just to think there, it's a game about little people running about a planet, it can be a game, you know, it can be influencing, you know, a group of people, it could be an influencing in the modern-day world, it would be fascinating to see what people do. What is great is the games industry experiments with things and, you know, crypto gaming and NFTs and all of that stuff are things that we should embrace and experiment with and, and evolve and, you know, I hope that, you know, it continues to evolve. I think the, my problem with NFT gaming as such is it can be, it can be a little bit toxic, it need, it needs some, it needs some regulation and it needs some fine-tuning, but I do love this idea that why shouldn't people earn something from when they're playing a game? I mean, that's an, that's a quite an interesting concept, quite an interesting concept, you know, if you're doing well, why can't you?
      And they do in eSports, obviously, but that's focused on, you know, a very small number of people, why can't we spread that out? So, I think there is future in it, I don't think that our first attempt is the perfect attempt, I think future attempts, you know, may, may, may pull something up, yeah. You know, the funny thing is, one of the things that we were talking about in the room was, today was, oh, there's no innovation. And I can remember that conversation, hearing that conversation in the games industry back in the late 1980s, when the whole of the games industry could have probably fitted into this entire hotel. Everyone was saying, oh, all the games are shoot-'em-ups and they, you know, where's the innovation? And I think the games industry, like any other industry, like any other creative industry, goes in these cycles. And, you know, sometimes we have a cycle where you get loads of new games, you get, you know, you get PUG-G and Fortnite and Minecraft and, you know, the whole world, we're almost sick of having new games. And other times, there's just no innovation at all. And my hope is that we're coming out of that no innovation cycle. And that's when we need creativity. We need people, whether they be students or whether they be existing people in the industry, to think diversively, to think in a diverse way, not to think, well, okay, you know, if I'm doing a mobile game, it's free-to-play, it's got to be done by this. I think that's wrong. I, you know, I'm doing a shoot-'em-up or I'm doing a battle royale game, it's got to be like this. I think that's wrong. I think we've got to, you know, as an industry and as people, and press as well, has got to think, right, how can we take a creative idea and explore it? You know, I think creating a game is like exploring. You know, if you go out and explore, you don't know where you're going, you're just exploring. And that's true of a game idea. You start out, I personally start out with a feeling, the game I'm working on at the moment, you know, the feeling I wanted to get from people is, how can I make people feel creative? That wonderful moment when you create something and you know it's unique and original to you, how can I make a game centred around that? You know, and that diversive thinking, I think, is so powerful and allows us to create the things that we can't even imagine today."

      "But it's always been the same, you know, we've gone through these cycles so many times. You have to be aware that Ian can, unfortunately, stab you in the back at any moment in time. We're gonna tell him that, you know. Despite looking in his puppy-dog eyes and him swearing, no, no, I'm gonna support you. We have this thing when we play games, is that we, to make a pact with someone, you touch the end of their finger. And, you know, when I'm ever gonna touch Ian's finger, you know, I think I shouldn't do this, I shouldn't do this. So, just be, just be aware the whole time is the best way. But he's pretty good. No taking, thank you so much."





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