Edge Xmas 2021

The authority on videogame art, design and play, Edge is the must-have companion for game industry professionals, aspiring game-makers and super-committed hobbyists. Its mission is to celebrate the best in interactive entertainment today and identify the most important developments of tomorrow, providing the most trusted, in-depth editorial in the business via unparalleled access to the developers and technologies that make videogames the world’s most dynamic form of entertainment.

United Kingdom
Future Publishing Ltd
€ 3,73(Incl. btw)
€ 37,37(Incl. btw)
13 Edities

in deze editie

10 min
chain reaction

For a good while, ‘NFT’ has been just another entry in a long list of threeletter initialisms that was easy to ignore. Like so many technological fads before it, the thinking went, it would surely simply fizzle out. But with millions of dollars of investment in the space, an explosion of players in blockchainpowered games, and now the highprofile involvement of Will Wright, it’s clear that it’s not going away. And that’s despite Valve going so far as to amend Steam’s publishing rules to outright ban any applications that trade in cryptocurrencies or NFTs. The question today is becoming inevitable: what legitimacy, if any, do these technologies have within videogames? For the uninitiated, NFT stands for non-fungible token – meaning one that is unique and not interchangeable with a similar equivalent,…

1 min
raised stake

Miners hoard processing power because of the ‘proof of work’ model, which – because only the first to solve a problem gets the reward – incentivises them to compete with other miners for each transaction. It’s an incredibly inefficient process, by design, but there are other options, most notably ‘proof of stake’, which randomly offers validation opportunities to a limited number of validators at once, reducing some of the need for competition and thus the amount of processing power being expended on each transaction. Ethereum, one of the biggest blockchains (with, according to Digiconomist’s energy consumption index, an annual power consumption equivalent to the entire nation of Chile), was founded on proof of work, but is in the process of transitioning to proof of stake.…

1 min
resale value

Looking outside of the actual in-game experience, another potential use case for NFTs could be creating a resale market for digital editions. At a time when digital-only consoles are becoming increasingly common, it is at least an interesting notion. And at the forefront of this, unexpectedly, is Intellivision Amico. Though the console itself is still to be released, ‘boxed editions’ of its games have recently gone on sale for $/€80 per set of four. The boxes don’t actually contain any physical media but do come complete with an NFT, allowing buyers to transfer ownership of each downloadable game through the blockchain.…

1 min
heavily invested

Garavaryan doesn’t want to talk too much about Kepler’s funding – he knows eight-figure sums have a tendency to pull focus, in this case away from the studios themselves and Kepler’s structure. But we have to ask: it’s obvious what the benefit is for studios here, but what’s the pitch to investors? “If you look at the biggest successes of the past few years, whether it’s Among Us or Valheim or anything that’s really hit, they came from independent teams who were able to remain independent and keep control of creation.” Which is the aim here, naturally: giving the studios “the time, the space, the support” they need to make great games. “If we do that really well, and keep selecting great teams that complement the group well, then financial…

4 min
rebel alliance

Kepler Interactive is making some big promises. Coming from the people who brought us the Kowloon Nights fund, and backed to the tune of $120m by Chinese tech firm NetEase, it’s claiming to have constructed a new model for independent game development: a major publisher co-owned and run by (currently) seven developers – A44, Alpha Channel, Awaceb, Ebb Software, Shapefarm, Sloclap and Timberline Studio. At a time when self-publishing is on the rise, alongside a surge in indie developerpublishers, it feels that the model’s benefits need some unpicking. It turns out that we needn’t have looked any further than Kepler’s reveal trailer. Not so much its contents – though it’s a stylish intro to its studios’ games – but rather how it was made. “It was really like a symphony of…

1 min
global reach

Kepler’s founding studios cover a wide range of countries – but neither, notably, of those where the group is headquartered. “We felt like London was a good hub to build a team. There’s a lot of local expertise, there’s a really vibrant dev industry and we could easily find talent to join the group,” Garavaryan says. And it’s close to Europe – if only, these days, in the geographical sense. Singapore, meanwhile, gives Kepler a presence in Asia. “It’s just the easiest place to do business overall in the region. There’s also a burgeoning gaming industry here that has quite a few studios now.”…