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E3 2017: Cliff Bleszinski Wants to Make a VR Game About Seasonal Affective Disorder

VR has potential, but the companies acting as gatekeepers need to adjust their strategies for the medium to broaden its appeal.


Cliff Bleszinski, a designer renowned for his work at Epic Games and co-founder of LawBreakers studio Boss Key Productions, stopped by the Shacknews booth at E3 to talk about how the competitive FPS is coming along. Bleszinski also shared his thoughts on the state of VR, a medium he believes has enormous potential except for one major obstacle: its platform holders.

“VR, it’s not perfect yet,” Bleszinski admitted, “but it’s come a long way, and the biggest problem with VR right now is the platform holders. I have a VR pitch that I want to do, but the problem is the budget [to develop a VR game], like, three to five million dollars. Which sounds like a ton of money, but if you spread that out among salaries, burn rate, studio, healthcare, insurance, et cetera, it’s not a ton for making a game, right? You look at some of these triple-A games, they cost $100 to $200 million to make.”

Bleszinski’s pitch is for a VR game that addresses seasonal affective disorder, depression that sets in when seasons change, most notably when the winter settles in and brings with it months of cold and longer periods of darkness. “It’s further proof: I’m fairly successful, but even I get bummed out. People say that even Bill Gates has at least three things that keep him up at night, right?”

Our full interview with Cliff Bleszinski explores more of his thoughts on the games industry as well as his belief that LawBreakers will be “the Dark Souls of competitive first-person shooters.” Stay tuned in to the Shacknews front page all during E3 for more interviews broadcast live from the show floor.

Long Reads Editor

David L. Craddock writes fiction, nonfiction, and grocery lists. He is the author of the Stay Awhile and Listen series, and the Gairden Chronicles series of fantasy novels for young adults. Outside of writing, he enjoys playing Mario, Zelda, and Dark Souls games, and will be happy to discuss at length the myriad reasons why Dark Souls 2 is the best in the series. Follow him online at and @davidlcraddock.

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