Well, the Internet has its pitchforks ready, and it really wants to give PlayStation Europe chief Jim Ryan a big fat poke in the chest – but of all the dumb things the executive’s said recently, this isn’t one of them. Asked by Games Industry.biz about the lack of indie games during Sony’s E3 2017 press conference, the executive had two honest – if a little too honest – answers.
“One of the things we have realised is that these video collages of ten indie games shown in a minute, is almost meaningless,” he said. “Nobody can really learn anything about the games in that sort of time. It is almost viewed as wasted time.” Does anyone really disagree?
Ryan added that, during the launch period of the PlayStation 4, the platform holder almost wanted to evangelise indie games so that both fans and the media took its stance seriously. It’s now dedicating that time to PlayStation VR. “Right now, we have tonnes of indie content on the platform,” he continued. “And the fact that we elected […] not to give it its own spot on the stage this week, in no way means it is not important, or it is not there, or we don't worry about it.”
Ryan concluded that indie games are “less relevant” these days, but he meant in the context of an hour-long press conference and not in regards to the category itself. Of course this is the part that’s being (unfairly) misquoted, and will ensure that his nightmarish week of interviews drags on. Personally we don’t have a problem with the comments, but he could have phrased them better.
And it may be something Sony needs to look at because, while Ryan’s generally talked sense over the past couple of weeks, he makes it very easy for his words to be twisted. And that’s not a good look for the company he’s representing as a whole. It does beg the question, though: do we want gaming executives to be honest – or do we just want them to tell us what we want to hear?