Jason Lee is the Chief Creative at PIXELMATIC. He provides high-level direction for an upcoming blockbuster title called Infinite Fleet.
Lee joins us for Blockchain Gamer LIVE! Digital #1 where he will be speaking on designing games around blockchain.
We caught up with Lee before our online-only conference in September to see how the games industry has changed since he joined, and what are his predictions for the games industry over the next 12 months.
PocketGamer.biz: Tell us a bit about PIXELMATIC.
Jason Lee: Pixelmatic is an independent developer headquartered in Shanghai, with developers from around the world. We have assembled an all-star team from Ubisoft, Relic, Sega, Nintendo, and more, with a track record of making successful products – top 25 ranking Facebook games like The Smurfs & Co and acclaimed AAA RTS titles like Dawn of War, Company of Heroes, StarCraft, and Warcraft III. We are setting the standard for video gaming by evolving gameplay, metagame, and economics.
What does your role entail?
I work with all the leads and directors to make sure the creative vision is understood and each department is executing to complement the other. Investor relations is also a part of the role.
Why did you want to work in the games industry?
For the same reason why someone that loves art becomes an artist, I loved creating puzzles and games and seeing my friends struggle through it. Working in the games industry was the ultimate expression of that art form.
As a designer I would say start building something. Go download a map editor from your favorite game and start creating game modes.
What advice would you give to anyone looking to get into it?
It depends on what profession in the industry you are looking for but as a designer I would say start building something. Go download a map editor from your favorite game and start creating game modes. If you make something really, really cool and show it off in an interview that may be enough to impress a designer in your interview.
What are your thoughts on the industry in the last 12 months?
As interesting as it is academically, I feel the industry as a whole is experiencing the same issue as the movie industry with all the superhero movies dominating the top charts. Investors want to make money while taking as little risk as possible. Same as the game industry with the constant sequels of titles that are well known and not very many attempts at new IP. I think this is why many developers are looking to blockchain to develop games; it helps them stand out among the sea of start-up/indie developers.
What major trends do you predict in the next 12 months?
I feel the industry as a whole is experiencing the same issue as the movie industry with all the superhero movies dominating the top charts.
I think more games will incorporate learning AI systems into their games providing a more organic challenge to the players and their skill level.
How has the games industry changed since you first started?
I feel it has become a lot more competitive because developers are a lot smarter now on how to create a fun and entertaining experience. It's actually a super exciting time to be a game designer academically because of the wealth of knowledge out there. But it's also very hard to create an indie game and get any traction because of the vast number of games that come out daily.
Which part of the Connects event are you most looking forward to and why?
I'm looking forward to speaking with other blockchain devs and learning about challenges they have experienced and their learning.