The golden age of indie games won’t last, Fable and Godus creator Peter Molyneux has said in a new interview. Speaking with CVG at the Game Developers Conference, Molyneux–who now runs indie studio 22Cans–said the prosperity and proliferation of indie games is only a cycle, one that will end in due course.
“What I’d say is, enjoy this time, because it won’t last,” he said. “Don’t think we’re going to be all indies for the next five years–these things go in cycles, just like in the music business. You have a time where punk is big, and then you have times like now where everything is manufactured.”
“Enjoy this time, because inevitably it will only last a short period,” he added.
Molyneux went on to say that some indie developers should be wary of venture capital firms seeking to invest in their game studios. Accepting VC funding could lead to hampered creativity, he argued.
“Here’s the thing: walk through any hotel lobby at GDC and look at people’s name badges. This morning at breakfast I saw three angel investors talking to indies,” he said. “They’re saying, ‘take my money! I want to invest in your company!’
“But what those indie companies don’t realize is that they’ll then have to have board meetings, and in those meetings they’ll be told, ‘no, you shouldn’t do that–look at this game that’s making money,'” he added.
Molyneux said he has nothing but love for indie developers, praising their drive and the fact that many have “no sense of fear.” He said this reminds him of back in the ’80s when he was starting out.
“It’s very much like the 80s,” Molyneux said. “Back then anybody could create a game that could be hugely successful. There were no formulas or anything cast in stone.”
The indie scene has blossomed to a point where developers have stepped outside of traditional boundaries in an effort to create new and exciting experiences, he said.
“We used to have these very defined ways to create a game, which resulted in Halo, Call of Duty, and all of that stuff, but now we’ve thrown all of that away,” Molyneux said. “The games that we’re celebrating now are stuff like Papers, Please–which is brilliant.”
Molyneux and 22Cans are currently working on Godus. Molyneux told GameSpot last week that he believes the fate of the God game genre itself depends on the success of Godus.