The ability to release games digitally has allowed indie developers to thrive and made possible less mainstream projects like Oddworld: New 'n' Tasty, a remake of Oddworld: Abe’s Oddysee. But Oddworld creator Lorne Lanning thinks that losing net neutrality could prevent future development of such games.
"My biggest concern is what's happening in the White House with what's happening with the FCC and what's happening with the telecom companies trying to basically get more of all of our pie," Lanning told GameIndustry International in an interview. “These are multinational, enormous corporations and if they get their way, they could stifle this indie community in the media. They could start really clamping the dial and taking away the revenue that we've finally been able to find that we can get, that allows us to keep going... Today on a $10 product, we get $7. Well what if $2 of that has to start going to AT&T or Comcast? That could very easily happen.”
Lanning said that gamers should be voting with this issue in mind, and that they should support the Entertainment Consumers Association and other lobby groups (like the Electronic Frontier Foundation, for example) that are fighting for net neutrality. However, he doesn’t think they will until they feel the negative effects of losing net neutrality directly.
“Sadly I think that's how the general public tends to operate,” Lanning said. “There are more people in this country that are struggling financially than probably in the history of the country, and as a result they're just not really paying attention to things that aren't affecting their bottom line, their purse. But if they start getting charged $10 a night for that overnight session that they like playing, I think they're going to vote."
Back in March, Lanning said development on a brand new Oddworld title can begin if Oddworld: New 'n' Tasty sells 500,000 copies.
Do you agree with Lanning on net neutrality? Tell us in the comments below.
|Emanuel Maiberg is a freelance writer. You can follow him on Twitter @emanuelmaiberg and Google+.|
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