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I got a job as a trainee in a very small game company.
Company has few contracts with producers, and those have the biggest priority. There are also some small projects, that company makes for itself. Those are the ones with lowest priority and are almost impossible to finish, since new contracts show up to often.
I got to work as a developer. I noticed the game I was working on looked exactly like few other games I saw before. It was almost a clone, with different graphics. It was a very simple game, so I used my imagination a little bit, and made major improvements to it. Making it almost different game, but still simple, and in my opinion much better. I showed my vision to our project leader. He liked it very much. So they informed producer about changes. And I got a reply "This is not the game we told you to make, please change it back the way it was. We do not want to take any risk."
It turned out that every time a company wants a game, they do not look for new ideas. They pay people to do research on what games are popular and why, and they just clone them for profit. Innovation is basically impossible. Even the smallest changes can't be accepted, if they were not created before and worked well. And that is why new game looks like a clone of previous one. Its easier this way, the profit is not high, but guaranteed. Also people are fine with it, because seeing something familiar gets good reaction. I was pretty mad, but got over it. It's just my experience after working 3 months in there, but I think this applies to bigger companies too, only scales up.
Do you think there is a way to get out of this? What needs to happen, to make bigger companies take the risk and create something new? I can talk about my ideas all I want, but in the end they just show me numbers, and I can't deny them.