Heavy Rain
Games Will Be Indistinguishable From Reality Within Ten Years, Says David Cage
Written Tuesday, March 20, 2012 By Lee Bradley
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Think the Kara footage from Quantic Dreams’ new engine was impressive? Then hold on to your virtual hats folks, studio founder David Cage reckons it’s going to get even better. Indeed, he believes that we won’t be able to tell the difference between games and reality within ten years.

Speaking during GDC 2012 in San Francisco recently, the Quantic Dreams boss outlined his vision of a spectacular digital future. Yet despite what he sees as inevitable advances, it’s the application of that tech that he finds most interesting.

“Technology is the pen to write the book, but it doesn’t write the book for you. The most important thing to me is the content, what do you do with this technology? What do you use it for and what do you have to tell?”

He continued, “I think the future, the most interesting feature in the next-gen platforms will be meaningful content. Yeah, technology is great and it’s going to get better and better until you reach the stage where you won’t be able to tell the difference between reality and games. We are what, 10 years from that now? Ok.”

“But what is interesting is what are you going to use this technology for? What do you have to say? And for me meaningful content is the most important thing.”

So there you have it. Cage’s vision of the future involves games with both emotional maturity and spectacular visuals. He’s at the very forefront of the latter, but will he be able to deliver on the former? One thing’s for sure, he’s not going to give up trying.


User Comments
Forum Posts: 8
Comment #1 by Richie [STAFF]
Tuesday, March 20, 2012 @ 03:09:10 PM
But...but... I can't tell the difference between games and reality now!

Forum Posts: 294
Comment #2 by brandaman69
Tuesday, March 20, 2012 @ 03:20:05 PM
@1 sir I think you need your eyes checked

Forum Posts: 3290
Comment #3 by dbigfeet
Tuesday, March 20, 2012 @ 03:22:39 PM
The other day i was watching the Avengers trailer. My wife looked up and ask "this a game or movie?"
I say "movie trailer"
"You know nowadays you have to ask."
All I could say was "well if you saying that now, what will it look like with the PS4?"

Forum Posts: 781
Comment #4 by kakihara301
Tuesday, March 20, 2012 @ 03:25:12 PM
Ten years is all nice and dandy, but what about now? I would loooove another QD game, preferably sooner rather than later.

How about a game centered around Norman Jayden? We could learn more of his backstory and FINALLY learn the answer to that one question that tears at every person who has played Heavy Rain - Why is your American East Coast accent soooooo god-awful? ;)

Forum Posts: 8
Comment #5 by SweGabe
Tuesday, March 20, 2012 @ 03:28:04 PM
The question is, do we really want reality graphics...?
If we reach that point, isn't it just easier to do a real movie with interractive elements than a game with movies?

Forum Posts: 1604
Comment #6 by osakamitsu
Tuesday, March 20, 2012 @ 04:09:04 PM
Thats kinda like saying the next xbox and ps4 will do this... We'll see...

Forum Posts: 7
Comment #7 by opt1mus76
Tuesday, March 20, 2012 @ 05:01:11 PM
And with those life-like graphics comes the huge development costs. For inanimate objects (Cars, buildings) its not so bad but for realistic graphics on living objects its not just a texture but also animating individual muscle groups or how one thing reacts to interaction by something else (eg - branches/leaves in the wind). The cost of developing games can make or break so many companies these days so how many will risk their budget on niche titles? And graphics don't make a game

Forum Posts: 716
Comment #8 by tobyrabbit
Tuesday, March 20, 2012 @ 05:09:25 PM
I'm not so sure, when I played heavy rain I must admit I was overwhelmed by the graphics. It was that and the story which gave me the enjoyment of playing it.

Forum Posts: 904
Comment #9 by neahcrow
Tuesday, March 20, 2012 @ 05:11:29 PM
David Cage is my favorite game designer. I like him even more than Ken Levine. It's so important to have people like those two involved with gaming- people who truly believe that games are an art.

I laughed at the comment above about Norman Jayden. The voice acting was definitely a flaw of heavy rain but jayden remains my favorite character in gaming and heavy rain is one of my favorite games.

Forum Posts: 12
Comment #10 by Mway270301
Tuesday, March 20, 2012 @ 05:12:37 PM
David Cage is an awesome man, very rare in any entertainment industry now. Someone who is driven not by money and popularity but by quality and hard work put into creating games.

Forum Posts: 3216
Comment #11 by lukey52
Tuesday, March 20, 2012 @ 06:04:44 PM
@2 I think it depends who is looking. To the eyes of a keen gamer you can instantly tell the difference between a game and reality but to someone who doesn't game, a first glance at some things can easily fool you.

Forum Posts: 294
Comment #12 by brandaman69
Tuesday, March 20, 2012 @ 07:31:24 PM
@9 and 10 japanese game designers are more crazy and badass that's why they are better

Forum Posts: 5868
Comment #13 by SoaringEagle23
Tuesday, March 20, 2012 @ 08:25:06 PM
So powerful that one can't distinguished between reality and gaming. Wow, can't wait to see where the next decade will take us. Probably should update my eyes for that time.

Forum Posts: 109
Comment #14 by Maheeto
Tuesday, March 20, 2012 @ 09:04:02 PM
Would love to see if they could make holodecks like in Star Trek, now that would be some kickass games! Wait Star Trek isn't real, where am I??

Forum Posts: 2036
Comment #15 by MTURNER1985
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 01:14:48 AM
@14.. Im all for the Holodeck! How amazing would zombie games be on that?

Forum Posts: 24255
Comment #16 by AshtimusPrime
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 03:32:32 AM
@14 Holodecks are definitely the future! But happens when we play a holodeck version of BioShock and the safety protocols malfunction? Argh!

Forum Posts: 400
Comment #17 by HuDaFuK
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 03:56:20 AM
I still think games have a fair way to go before they reach a level of visual realism that's indistinguishable from reality. Graphics can already be superb, but it's always the physics that stop games looking totally real, particularly when animating living things. L.A. Noire's facial animations were incredible, but they still didn't look real.

Still, good to know there are developers out there who still strive to push the boundaries instead of just rehashing the same old gaming engines.

Forum Posts: 2652
Comment #18 by SoPoF
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 04:34:42 AM
To be honest, I don't believe it.

What he meant was probably that if you look at the current rate technology evolves it might be that in ten years, computers would have the theoretical processing power to depict games with graphics indistinguishable from reality.

Will it happen? Or even be the norm? Unlikely. Just look at games right now. Even with powerful computers/consoles, some games have textures the PS2 would be ashamed of bringing to the screen. Number 7 was right, why the thumbs down. Game companies won't be willing to invest that much money and effort into a game, so even if they'll give us these super graphics, the games will be super short and minimalistic. And expensive.

Another thought would be that we simply cannot apply the current progress in technology to the future. Why, some are even worried we might not even have electricity in ten years, given how the economy, environment and human society is behaving.

Is reality-like even possible, even with really fast and powerful computers? For starters, what screen resolution does reality have again? Something like the number of photosensors (uvulas?) in the human eye? So if anything, what could be achieved would be games not distinguishable from movies, not reality.

Also, others mentioned it, realism is not only graphics.

Forum Posts: 235
Comment #19 by EmptyFibers
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 07:42:25 AM
Unless it is virtual reality..., pointless.

@18 - So true, so very true.

Forum Posts: 10
Comment #20 by GR4V1G0R3
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 08:16:33 AM
am i the only one that thinks things like this are the reason the games industry is losing money hand over fist

most dev companies can't afford the tools and time required to make "AAA" games these days, and we get games like Battlefield 3, which although one of the best looking games ever, was also pretty shit (SP, not a console MP guy)

i think we need to take a break in the quest for realistic graphics, and start to remember this thing called gameplay, and more than 5 hours of it for a start

personally i don't care if something looks bad (doom is still one of my favourite games, so F.O.) it's all about how it plays, now if those corporate tards can get their heads out of CoD's arse, maybe they would realise it...

don't get me wrong, some games both look and play very well (uncharted) but it appears that titles like that are a rarity - and even mmore rare is a company with a good NEW IP

and don't get me started on games like skyrim, they look good initially, but..... you will soon find that they have tried to save space everywhere, by using tiny shadow maps, they look fine when close but = 8bit shadows on distant fact it's not just skyrim, CoD shadows are pitiful, why can't people do shadows these days....don't go OTT with the newest lighting techniques if you can't make a shadow texture, simple.

now i've forgotten what my rant was about, stupid flu type bug.....

Forum Posts: 1897
Comment #21 by weephilymcvey
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 09:03:43 AM
wont b able to tell th difference between games and reality in 10years - i doubt it, will b closer and closer but no cigar

Forum Posts: 220
Comment #22 by DanDx
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 07:30:46 PM
... Didn't we all know this already?

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Game Info
Quantic Dream


US February 23, 2010
Europe February 24, 2010

Resolution: 480p, 720p
Sound: Dolby 5.1
Players: 1
ESRB: Mature
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