This isn’t polite, but it’s the truth. You don’t see the issue because you’re not intelligent. Your response proves that.
You proved nothing with your statement.
Well I absolutely agree with that. I just think it’s strange to point out that no revered gaming works were created by African developers. That’s like saying, “Africa hasn’t made a significant contribution to space exploration”. No $&%@, Sherlock. Currently, Africa clearly lacks the type of economy that can support the development of a Call of Duty or Skyrim, or land on the moon. It’s just dumb to even point that out.
Why would focusing on local culture limit worldwide appeal? Ancient Greek culture is local culture, and yet Greek culture has worldwide appeal (think God of War). Japanese culture is local culture, and yet Japanese media has worldwide appeal (think Naruto). So why would African cultures not have worldwide appeal? And what the heck does your bit about “a large, untapped local market” have anything to do with the subject of the article?
With all due respect, I think you’re shooting down the idea of African games while presenting an argument that on the surface seems logical, but on closer examination has no support or substance. Stop being a naysayer.
The article is about African game developers. A picture of Igbo people dancing is at most tangential to the subject of the article. If this were an article about African culture or African dances, then the picture might be appropriate. What is appropriate is the cartoon picture with the text “Maliyo Games”. That is related to the subject of the article.
I’m glad to read that your view on game stories is similar to mine. I’ve always enjoyed playing Japanese and American games (and I still do). However, I do feel that a lot of stories that I play have the same themes and ideas. It bothers me because being from another place (Africa), I know that I could come up with stories that have fresh themes and different ideas. The themes would be based on my culture and my experiences, which are different in significant ways from those of Japanese and Americans. Giga, there’s a generation of people like myself from other parts of the world that will start creating games based on their cultures and experiences. It’ll happen slowly over the next 20 years. Games will have more and more diverse themes and ideas. But it’ll take time because people like myself need to learn how to make games and develop a track record of releasing great games.
On a side note, African culture is not forgotten. Africans know their own cultures :). The rest of the world just knows very little about us.
I am African, and I grew up in Africa. I’m planning to develop games myself.
Console development is expensive. But it can be done with funding from a publisher or bank and good game developers. I’m not at all into mobile games, or even handheld games. I’d prefer if small African game development companies made games for PC first. When I’m not playing console games, I play on PC.
On an unrelated note, in my opinion, the term “Sub-Saharan Africa” should not be used. When the term is used, it is meant to refer to African countries whose populations are predominantly black, as opposed to those whose populations are predominantly Arab (such as Morocco and Egypt). The problem with the term is that it literally refers to countries that are located below the Sahara desert, and there are countries that are located in the Sahara whose populations are predominantly black (Mali, Niger, Chad, Sudan and perhaps Mauritania and Western Sahara). Because it excludes key countries, the term Sub-Saharan Africa is inaccurate, and it should not be used.
Yeah, Western media often try to portray Africa in a negative way. Let’s face it, there’s a lot of racism in certain communities.
Africans play games on PCs and consoles too.
There are some things that I don’t like about this article.
First, the top image is completely unrelated to the article. Why would Polygon put an image of four Africans dancing in an article about African game developers?
Africa’s contribution to global video gaming has thus far been minimal. None of the form’s most revered works have originated from that great and varied continent.
Isn’t it obvious that Africa’s economy isn’t strong enough to generate the kind of game development companies that create revered works? And, aside from Japan, USA, Europe and S. Korea, what places in the world have created revered gaming works?
Diablo 3 was not an immense dud. Firstly, It sold 14 million units (according to Wikipedia). That is not a dud. Secondly, it has a metacritic score of 88 (a B+). D3 was heavily criticized because it isn’t as good as D2 and because Blizzard is held to ultra high standards due to their past successes. If any other company had made D3, critics would be singing their praises.
You may believe that Torchlight 2 is better, but D3 has far outsold Torchlight 2.
Blizzard doesn’t make poor games. I believe that the quality of their games has dipped a bit since WoW was released. I don’t expect them to be as good as pre-WoW Blizzard. They may not have the Midas touch any more, but they do have more money, more talent and more fans than Riot and Valve (in the RPG and RTS arena). I would say that they have the silver touch.
Concept art, character design, cinematics, in-game models… when coupled with strong writing and good game design, these elements capture the imagination of players. That’s important when you’re playing a game that has a strong roleplaying element to it (MOBAs, RPGs and even RTSs). It’s very important when the focus of the game is the heroes themselves. What they look like, their story and their powers… these things are strongly determined by art design (and writing). Art design and writing matter. It’s one of the main reasons why Blizzard’s franchises (Warcraft, Starcraft and Diablo) generate much more profit than do LoL and Dota 2..
You’re right. I didn’t know that WC2 had cinematics. Blizzard is probably the first then.
Peddie, LoL is a free-to-play game, whereas to play WoW you must pay for each game and expansion and pay a subscription fee. Comparing LoL’s userbase to WoW’s is not a meaningful comparison. If you want to argue that LoL is more successful than WoW, you should compare profits generated by each game. Official figures aren’t available, but I highly doubt that LoL generates more profits than WoW, since only a small minority of players pay for LoL characters and skins.
Secondly, what makes you think the competition in the MOBA genre now is fiercer than the competition in the MMORPG, action RPG and RTS genres in the past? Competition in the MMORPG genre was just as fierce in 2004 when Blizzard released WoW as the MOBA genre is right now. Think of all the MMORPGs that were out there: Everquest, Guild Wars, Final Fantasy XI, Lineage and so on.
Blizzard has a better than “highly unlikely” chance to beat Riot Games and Valve. In fact, they have a few advantages over Riot Games and Valve: (1) HotS will have heroes from immensely popular franchises such as Warcraft, Starcraft and Diablo. (2) Blizzard has a larger and stronger fanbase than Riot Games and Valve when it comes to RPGs and RTSs, the two genres that were combined to form the MOBA. Remember, the first MOBA, Dota, was created by Blizzard’s own fans using the Warcraft 3 map editor. (3) Blizzard has far more RTS and RPG game-making experience than Riot or Valve. (4) Blizzard has better writers and better artists than Riot or Valve. Don’t believe me? Compare LoL’s writing to that of any Blizzard game. Compare Valve or Riot’s artwork to that of Blizzard games.
Blizzard is not an innovator. They didn’t create the RTS, the RPG or the MMORPG. Warcraft and Starcraft followed Warhammer, WoW followed Everquest and Diablo was created by outside developers that were acquired by Blizzard. However, what Blizzard does best is that they beat the innovators by delivering higher quality products. They’ve done it with Warcraft, Starcraft, Diablo and WoW. And they can do it again. I have my criticisms of Blizzard. But I believe that HotS is a major threat to LoL’s popularity.
Lol. You’re right, man.
Peddie, you’re wrong. Blizzard did not try to stop Dota 2 in its tracks. They tried to stop Valve from using the name “Dota” because the original Dota was a mod for one of Blizzard’s games (Warcraft III).
Secondly, if you think that Blizzard’s HotS will never be quite as big as League of Legends and Dota 2, you should consider Blizzard’s track record. Starcraft and Warcraft are most likely the highest selling and most popular RTS franchises ever. Diablo is the highest selling action RPG franchise on PC. And then there’s World of Warcraft.
Every franchise that Blizzard has created has far surpassed its competitors in terms of sales and popularity. You’re seriously underestimating Blizzard.
Squaresoft (now Square Enix) is probably the first developer to do CG in-house. Squaresoft released Final Fantasy VII (which had CG) in 1997. Blizzard released Diablo II in 2000.
Square Enix and Blizzard are the best at making CG. If you’re curious, I believe that Square Enix created the fantastic opening CG clip for Tomb Raider.
Lol. I wasn’t expecting that.
I’m posting this comment before LulzJager posts that cute animation of Noel jumping up and down.