Dyack: Gamers Don't Want Long Games

While discussing the upcoming Xbox 360 action RPG Too Human and its two planned sequels, Silicon Knights president Denis Dyack explained that gamers do not want long games. Thus, the decision to produce three separate Too Human releases was not made from a strict business perspective, but one with gamers in mind.

"Legacy of Kain [PlayStation, 1996] had about sixty hours of play, but games have changed," said Dyack in an interview with GamesIndustry.biz. "People don't want that any more. I don't care how good the game is I don't want to play something that's one hundred hours long. As much as I love World of Warcraft I pulled myself out of it."

"I don't really see it [planning Too Human as a trilogy] as bold. I see that as a promise to the consumer that there's more here than just one game," he stated. "If we're going to craft an epic story we decided we had to divide it into manageable chunks for the consumer."

While some may oppose Dyack's stance, others studios such as Valve echo a similar sentiment. "There's a lot of depressing evidence out there indicating that not very many players are finishing out games," Valve's Robin Walker told Shacknews after the release of Half-Life 2: Episode One, which signified the company's shift from longer experiences to bite-sized episodes. Currently, Valve's statistics page shows that only 38% of Half-Life 2: Episode One players have completed the game, despite an average completion time of only 5 hours and 40 minutes. Furthermore, Valve has indicated to Shacknews that discussions with other developers suggest Valve's numbers are above industry averages for completion rate.

Dyack also noted that the trilogy-based approach benefits developers in that studios don't have to "start from scratch again" when producing sequels. Presumably, Dyack was speaking of reusing assets and technology developed for the first game, which would lower the cost of additional entries relative to the initial title.

Though no release date has been provided for the first game in Silicon Knight's Too Human trilogy, past comments by Dyack suggest the title will see release this year. Back in April, the Silicon Knights president made headlines after expressing his desire for one standardized gaming platform.