Thursday, December 15, 2011
How many you say? Go figure!
During one of my presentations recently in the United Kingdom some one asked me how many game developers there are in the world. In my book I made an estimate that there would be at least 60.000 different kinds of boxed games available in the world since the beginning of the games industry in 1974. I wrote that in the beginning of 2009. Soon I learned that there were about 200.000 apps available for iPhone and that 70% of all downloaded apps are games (this was end 2010). The past year Android and Windows 7 phones have proven to become new 'handheld' gaming devices as well and with 500 million downloads for Angry Birds and a few million on WordFeud one can conclude gaming is mass-market. But still ... how many game developers are there globally woud you think? I said that I know there were about 20 big publishers in the world amongst them of course the 'console-owners' Microsoft, Nintendo and PlayStation, EA, Ubisoft, Activision and many others. But then - what is Steam? Is it a distributor, retailer or publisher? What is iTunes? Retail or publisher? What is Facebook, what is Google+ ... a gaming platform or a game publisher? It directly connects content with consumers so in that case it seems to be a publisher... ?
I just read a report on gamastura that there are over 750.000 registered game developers using Unity. 750.000 !!! Of which 200.000 are monthly active and releasing new games on a regular basis. These games are mostly web-based (or iOs / Android).
Read the article about Unity here: www.gamasutra.com
So how many game developers are out there...? I honestly don't know! And should we care? There are a lot, good ones, bad ones, mediocre ones, small and big. The only thing I hope is that game developers still start their companies with a burning desire to make great games instead of 'just' making money.
I recently held a presentation for students in Amersfoort and I really hope that they remember my first rule of entering this industry: do so because it is your passion, you love playing games and love making them! Don't enter this business to make money, because you will be disappointed and will never make it through your first three years. If you do everything you do with passion and dedication there is no doubt you will be successful, depending on how you define success of course ;-)
I guess life is not about quantity (how many) but always about quality (how well).
So be well - Be passionate!
If you would like to be game developer one-hunder-and-twentythree-thousand, check this blog first: http://www.gamedev.net/