Former Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aimé has commented on the latest M&A activity in the games industry. He thinks that the acquisition sprees we see from giants like Microsoft and Sony will lead to prominent devs leaving these corporations.

Fils-Aimé shared his thoughts in a recent interview with Fanbyte. Speaking of the reasons for the increased M&A activity, he said that Sony and Microsoft “needed to buttress their first-party development.”

The former Nintendo of America president noted that it was “critically important” for Microsoft to strengthen its position in the market and increase the number of first-party games.

At the same time, Fils-Aimé thinks that the growing number of mergers and acquisitions might lead to a mass attrition of famous game creators. “I do believe [that in the next few years] we’re going to see a number of senior accomplished developers leave these mega corporations and go on their own because these are the people who want to create something new, something exciting,” he said.

They’ve got a game idea in the back of their head that they want to bring to fruition and the fact of the matter is in the big mega studios, they’re working on the next sequel. They’re working on the next Halo, they’re working on the next fill-in-the-blank that was a part of that prior studio. You’re typically not seeing a lot of innovation coming from those mega development combinations.

Reggie Fils-Aimé

former president of Nintendo of America

Fils-Aimé added that this trend, if it occurs, might be positive for the industry in general because it will bring more innovative and creative games to the market in the long run.

The games industry has been moving towards consolidation in the last couple of years. Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard, Sony’s purchase of Bungie, and Take-Two’s acquisition of Zynga are just the most vivid examples of this trend, with dozens of smaller M&A deals closing on the regular basis.

A lot of prominent developers have also been leaving large companies to form their own studios. Rebel Wolves, started by CD Projekt RED veteran Konrad Tomaszkiewicz, Sprocket Games, founded by former Riot Games devs, and Moon Beast Productions, formed by lead developers of Diablo II, are one of many examples of this trend.

However, dozens of these veteran-led studios are yet to launch their debut games.

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