GDC Survey: 27% of Developers Are Working on a PS4 Game

January 12, 2017 Written by Jason Dunning

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After surveying more than 4,500 developers in November and December, the Game Developers Conference’s fifth annual State of the Industry Survey reveals that 53% of game makers are currently developing a game for PC/Mac. 38% said smartphones/tablets, 27% said PlayStation 4/PS4 Pro, 24% said VR headsets, and 22% said Xbox One/Scorpio.

Some of the least popular platforms were Xbox 360 and Nintendo Switch (3% each), PS3, PS Vita, and Wii U (2% each), and Nintendo 3DS, DS, Wii,, and PSP (less than 1% each).

The survey also shows that 18% of respondents thought mid-cycle console refreshes (PlayStation 4 Pro and Project Scorpio) were good for the industry. 41% were undecided, 36% were neutral on the subject, and 5% said it was a negative development.

One developer who responded to the survey said the added performance boost in these consoles is a good thing, but they don’t want to see yearly refreshes:

The consoles did need reinvigoration due to their low performing specs compared to what PCs were capable of at launch. Although, I do not want the markets to be divided. I also do not want the eventuality of a yearly release of a new console as I believe this could damage the console market severely.

Another developer said:

Consoles have benefited from being fixed platforms, single specs to focus on. This mid-cycle ‘refresh’ breaks that benefit. Developers will now either need to build two games, release a lowest common denominator on the more powerful platform, or release a compromised version on the lower-powered platform.

Looking at virtual reality, 61% of those surveyed are not currently involved in developing VR games, while 24% are currently working on a game for HTC Vive, 23% are working on a game for Oculus Rift, and 13% are working on a game for PlayStation VR. In last year’s survey, Oculus Rift was at 19%, and HTC Vive and PSVR were tied at 6% each.

Asking those surveyed which VR/AR platform they expected their next game (the one after the one they’re currently working on right now) to ship on, 40% said HTC Vive, 37% said Oculus Rift, and 26% said PSVR.

11% of the 4,500 developers surveyed said their next game would be exclusive to one VR/AR platform. Of those 11%, 33% are working on an exclusive game for the HTC Vive, followed by Oculus Rift at 24%, and PSVR at 15%.

Finally, when asked which VR/AR platforms are most interesting to them as developers, 45% said Vive, 30% said Oculus Rift, 29% said PSVR (up from 26% last year), and 24% said Microsof’ts HoloLens.

One reason why 61% of developers aren’t working on a VR game right now could be due to discomfort or motion sickness. 9% said they always have problems with VR, while 43% said they have difficulty some of the time. Only 17% said they never have issues with VR.

What do you think of the survey results?

[Source: GDC, Games Industry]