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Warren Spector: 'I'm not ready to retire yet'

Michael McWhertor is a journalist with more than 17 years of experience covering video games, technology, movies, TV, and entertainment.

Game designer Warren Spector spoke at the DICE Summit today, one week after the closure of his Disney-owned studio, Junction Point, telling attendees that he's "not ready to retire yet" and still has games he wants to make.

Spector opened his speech by clarifying that he wouldn't be talking about "the elephant in the room," the closure of Junction Point, Disney Interactive or the last eight years, "other than to say I worked with an amazing team on some amazing projects."

"It's all good," he said, before launching into his talk, "The Graying of Gaming," in which Spector spoke about the aging gaming population, of which he is a part.

"I had a little wake-up moment last week in the wake of events," the 57-year-old game designer said, following the shuttering of the studio he co-founded. "One of my programmers said, 'Why don't you just retire?' The answer was easy: I still have things I want to make. I'm not ready to go live on a farm."

Spector said that he doesn't know how many game projects he has left in him, but that his tastes have "changed dramatically" since he started making games. He has no interest in making games that star space marines preventing alien invasions or men in armor swinging huge swords.

"I want content that is relevant to my life, set in the real world," Spector said, adding, "If we're going to reach a new audience, we have to stop making games for teenage boys, or even teenage girls."

Spector then said, "There are some games that should just not be made," as an image of Grasshopper Manufacture's Lollipop Chainsaw appeared on a screen behind him. Instead, Spector argued that developers should celebrate diversity and "the ordinary," pointing to Heavy Rain and The Walking Dead as games that exemplified that design approach.

"Put aside geekish things," Spector said in his closing remarks, "and be guided by passion."