noindie.jpg Well, the title of this GSW post is the title of a new Slate article by Luke O'Brien, subtitled "And why that's bad for gamers", and dealing with the state of indie in gaming.

O'Brien has some fair points, such as :"In today's movie business, it's possible for an indie film like Napoleon Dynamite to become a sensation. Saw, which cost a mere $1.2 million, grossed 100 times that amount. That just doesn't happen in video games." Basically true - the barriers to producing and the variable sale prices for smaller budget games seem to have precluded such a major phenomenon as yet.

But other parts of the piece are rather meanspirited - claiming that classic creators are burnt out and solely working for the big boys, for example, with Sid Meier having "spent most of the last decade updating his previous hits at a company owned by Grand Theft Auto publisher Take-Two Interactive" - the acquisition was only recent, and saying Garriott "never produced another breakthrough like Ultima" rather underplays the importance of Ultima Online as a pioneering MMO, if that's not included in the statement.

And so, we reach the same old 'cultural crossroads' conclusion, which is as untrue as it ever was: "If the big studios stay in charge, it may return to its former status: the pastime of teenage boys and middle-aged nerds at gaming conventions." How about Nintendo's Brain Training, the casual game explosion, EA's moves toward developing original IP, the strides with games like Guitar Hero? I'm bored of this article, so why do people keep writing it?