The Lesson of Peter Molyneux

peter-moly

If you pay any attention to the gaming world, it’s hard not to notice the unfortunate flameout of Peter Molyneux. Once a respected figure, now synonymous with fanciful promises and untruths, his current plight is awful to behold. And yet at the same time Molyneux has an important lesson to teach, about the value of creativity and ambition in gaming that we all too easily forget. Read More

Is Premium Mobile Gaming Viable?

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We can look at success stories and naysayers, but the question of whether a real push into premium on mobile is utterly open. In this post/thought-experiment I’m asking some of the key questions and wondering if there are any answers. Read More

The Reason To Be Cheerful About HoloLens

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With the release of the HoloLens, Microsoft put something out there that has a chance of being transformative. Not in the high concept way, but in a general way especially for gaming. But is Microsoft able to bring it home, or will it get lost in its own ambitions as it has so often before. Read More

The Message Is The Product: Solving Mobile Gaming’s Price Problem

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The medium is the message, says Marshall McLuhan. If so the message is the product too. In considering the problem of paid games on mobile (conventional wisdom says people won’t pay for them) it seems more than ever that that reasoning applies. Mobile game makers don’t market premium, so they can’t charge premium. Time to take a leaf from Hollywood’s book. Read More

The Perfect Gaming Phone

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As a recent acquirer of an iPhone 6 Plus I had thought that a bigger phone would have better battery and be easier on my eyes. However what I hadn’t expected was the degree to which playing games on it would be much more fun than on my previous iPhone. Read More

Investing In Games: Broad Or Deep?

Graphic title of the Endemic game show 1 vs 100

Suppose two studios approach you. Studio A has a strategy centered around making a big play on one game. It plans to take your investment and use it to make that game as best it can and find success. Studio B has a different idea. It plans to make many small games, build a platform and ecosystem between them and see which works. Then to accelerates what works to success. Which should you choose? Read More

The fundamental delusion at the heart of Ireland’s startup efforts.

There is a fundamental delusion in Ireland’s past and current efforts towards understanding how we can achieve global startup success.

At the basest level it has been understood that success in business can be achieved by training and fostering successful business people and expertise in sales, marketing and the core “serious” business disciplines etc. Technology has also recently been added to that list so if you can program your on the list.

The thinking is simple and goes like this. If we can train people to be great at business and the “serious” job of business great businesses will result.

This well trodden pathway to sure success in the market has always been the core underlying argument. Well once you get passed all the noise, egos, agendas and currently love affair with “Startups”, Web Summits and accelerators. These are all awesome and indeed welcome additions to the process but don’t change our thinking so are moot in this argument.

Not only is this “serious business by serious business people” thinking far too naive and unidimensional a basis to underpin a fundamental argument of such importance on. Our evidence shows it is a ‪#‎epicfailed‬ hypothesis. We have been trying to do this same thing for an always. It hasn’t worked and is looking increasingly like a fool’s errand.

We simply cannot build a global facing startup ecosystem or startup success orders of magnitude higher and more scalable and more well adopted by global audiences (which we need) than our current moderate levels of success by following the well trodden “serious business people build serious business success” of thinking.

I would argue that without artististic/design based startups/founders in equal measure to business based startups/founders we are always doomed to fail to build companies and products with global merit, appeal and scalability.

The current status quo of our digital, support and commercial support agencies, VCs and ecosystemic actors are undeniably and horrendously biased in their opinion that serious credibility on the global stage looks like their “pattern matched” desired outcomes and some retarded school yard like reflection of their own professional, environmental and educational makeup and journey.

They look around to their colleagues and ask we are the elite? So the people we need to support are people like us? right? Whats going wrong?

They maintain that success can only be achieved by creating “serious business” based businesses. It’s an nieve illusion and a very very dangerous fallacy of thought that will leave Ireland’s future well behind its necessary trajectory and not in front of it.

For once I would like to live in an Ireland where we lead fields and not simply copy someones elses idea 3 years after someone else has already done it?

No current administration or support agency has equality of business disciplines versus artistic or design disciplines therefore all they end up doing is trying to solve problems such as how should we succeed globally or what startups should we fund with the age old symmetrically biased “it looks like a nail and we are all hammers” lets hit it, followed usually by some reductive sports term like “out of the park” to signify they know how to “Speak Serious Business”

It would be nice to find other designers, artists and dare I say even scientists and entrepreneurs on the other side of the tables I am increasingly getting bored at.

I challenge every major government department, Venture Capital firm and startup ecosystem support agency to hire equally through the design and creative disciplines before it simply becomes too late to compete in the global arena with countries, startups and industries that fully and wholeheartedly recognise innovation, creativity and design are as much competitive advantages than sales, marketing and operations.

I am a “serious business person” but I am also a designer and consider myself an artist it would be nice to meet other grown ups with the privilege of being in jobs and positions to make a difference to consider that without the art of business we are doomed to keep failing to make Ireland a global powerhouse of new startup thinking.

Crowdfunding Aint The Bank

From the movie

We in the games trade like the crowdfunding avenue in so far as the money that it brings, but we still struggle to not hold our communities at one remove as we might investors. As a result we are often mistreating fans even when we don’t mean to. We need to get better at the skill of community. Read More