Veteran developer Shinji Mikami thinks that game developers “peak” in their 30s because once they become experienced, they have a more careful approach to development and end up losing their taste.
In an interview with YouTube channel Archipel (transcript via VGC), Mikami admitted that he peaked at 39 when he made Resident Evil 4.
“You change depending on the experience that you acquire,” he explained. “When you’re young, you have a good sense of making things. Your energy, your heart and your stamina are better when you are young. However, you lack in experience so even if you have a good sense, you’re not mature enough to compile things or show things simply to players.”
Mikami said that older developers know how to satisfy players and end up avoiding taking risks.
“From a veteran perspective, you would see risks on multiple ends, but you get short-sighted,” he continued. “So it’s usually tough to get crazy ideas and deploy them onto a project, it’s full of holes. But once you get over that, you can ship out a whole new title.”
Mikami concluded that once developers reach their 40s, game development becomes tougher for them because it requires a lot of energy.
“I made Resident Evil 4 when I was 39, I believe I fit in that peak,” he said. “I could state some examples for some other creators besides me, but generally I think that you see a lot of creators who make their best game in during their thirties.”
Do our readers agree with Mikami?