The last year has seen the rise of the independent developer as hero. Does this growing consideration of the developer challenge an eight-year-running trend in game journalism?
The explosion of commercially accessible independent games on platforms like Steam or XBLA have introduced us to a new successful and far more accessible generation of game developers. These new indie game dev stars have induced a change in the approach of some game reviewers. A change brought to the forefront in Walter Garrett Mitchell’s piece on The Escapist, “Alfred Hitchcock Would Make Good Games.”
Mitchell’s focus on the developer is entirely unlike the experience-focused New Games Journalism style proposed in 2004 by Kieron Gillen. That experiential style has more recently been popularized by Zero Punctuation, the rest of The Escapist, @Play, and a variety of other reviews that approached games based on how they played, instead of how people created them.