There's a flip side to every coin. And sometimes, there are lots of coins involved.
On the one hand, remaining exclusive to one console allows you to really focus on that machine and push it to the limits, thereby creating something that is often very special. On the other hand, you sacrifice sales by eliminating other platforms. Then, there's the plus side of that aforementioned focus; allowing your team to push themselves in different directions without the concern of encompassing another system. But the downside to that is the pressure one feels for accessing the power of that system in a way multiplatform projects don't, so says Ninja Theory co-founder Tameem Antoniades in an interview with Eurogamer :
"When you are exclusive, sometimes the pressure to demonstrate technology can override other aspects of game development. Being involved in one side of a format war as if it's the machines that make great games can also be draining. You get a lot of attention as an exclusive developer which is great, but on the flip side there was a lot of anti-Sony feeling going on which I felt was unfairly being directed at our team.
Our focus is now on building as compelling a game as we can and I am more comfortable with that."
You may remember that Ninja Theory delivered the extraordinarily accomplished Heavenly Sword (which continued to have the best acting and cinema synching – words to lips – we've ever seen until Uncharted 2 ). This was exclusive to the PlayStation 3 but now, the team is working on Enslaved , an action game we know little about, but we do know it's headed to both the PS3 and Xbox 360. It's interesting to hear them talk about this pressure, but we should've realized it would be there, especially early on in the PS3's career.
The interesting thing will be to see if Enslaved generates the same positive feeling amongst gamers and critics as Heavenly Sword …