Thursday, January 13, 2011

The problem with game credits

I have a problem with game credits, and it isn't just people not getting recognized for the work. It's that a multitude of games' credits can not be accessed without playing through the game, which itself can be a laborious and time consuming task. I would argue that a large percentage of people who have their name in the game credits wouldn't be able to access them at all. There is no requirement for a standardized "credits" at the beginning of games, but it is impressive how common it is to see this these days and I applaud it, there are still games being published today where credits are not available from the outset.

To make matters worse publishers are rarely putting credits into manuals. So if you do happen to get a copy of a game which isn't a cartridge or disc only, there is no guarantee you can show off to anyone without needing to power on the game.

My other issue comes from a spot of love. I absolutely love and visit it regularly to look things up. I often find myself lost in a twisted web of looking into people and who they have worked with in past projects, and I become fascinated with the knowledge. So it begs the question for me: Where is our gaming IMDB? There is, but for some reason I don't think of it as being on the same plane as an IMDB. Maybe that is my fault for not getting their layout or flow, but it feels like a site from 10 years ago.

As for me, I have vowed to make game credits accessible from some main menu of every game I ever work on. I feel that anyone who has worked on a game should be able to power up the game and show anyone they want without much hassle. If I had more sway, I would also print all the credits in a game manual, but I don't have publisher money so there is only so much I can do on this one. I have only directed two games, and the first one never had accessible credits built into any front-end menus, and it is one of the bigger regrets I have on the project.

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