Game developers should focus on enabling user-generated content, both as a "smarter way to have your community engaged" and to cut down on development costs, said Ubisoft's Jade Raymond in an interview with Gamasutra.
Raymond is currently serving as the managing director of Splinter Cell: Blacklist developer Ubisoft Toronto, and she previously worked as a producer on the Assassin's Creed franchise. According to Raymond, the cost of making AAA games is increasing too rapidly, and one "overly simplified answer" to that problem is for developers to allow players to create more content.
"I think that's what's going to drive hits, but also at the extreme end, it's going to enable us to continue to create interesting content without always having such huge costs associated with it," said Raymond.
Raymond clarified that user-generated content doesn't necessarily have to be confined to level editors; she gave the example of the way players can influence other users' experiences in Dark Souls by leaving in-game messages for them. According to Raymond, some of those ideas are being integrated into Splinter Cell: Blacklist, which launches Aug. 20 on Windows PC, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.
"It's nice to hear a game developer's idea of a grand vision, but I honestly don't think it's about our creative vision so much," Raymond added. "It's about the gamer's vision. It has to be more about how I'm allowing this to become the player's brand."