The statistics are telling. In 2008, Electronic Arts published 60 games. In 2016, EA published just eight games. And that means that a lot fewer of those games are original titles.
Justin Bailey, the chief executive officer of equity crowfunding company Fig, pointed to this statistic as an example of “sequelitis,” or the risk aversion that is resulting in big bets on established intellectual properties. And he wasn’t just picking on EA. Square Enix, another huge company, is making games like Final Fantasy XV. They’re making big bets on sequels that players come back to over and over.
Players get what they want this way, with gameplay that they’ve enjoyed before. But at some point, they get tired of it. And then the market for games shrinks. Mobile gaming has the same problem.
But there’s a cure. Game developers can turn to game communities to greenlight projects that stem from an original idea. Then financing companies like Fig can fund the titles that have the community support.
Bailey was inspired to create equity crowdfunding as an alternative source of funding for the game industry based on how other industries evolved. He pointed to Easy Riders, Raging Bulls, a book about how the music industry was saved.
But sequelitis has a cure, Bailey said. Check out his video talk.