From Bedrooms to Billions Review
Directors: Anthony Caulfield & Nicola Caulfield
This documentary fascinated me from the get-go with it's in-depth history provided all by the amazingly candid interviews of some of the pioneers in the 80's UK (mostly) gaming industry, interspersed by pictures from the era.
Most of the main computers of the time like the ZX Spectrum, Commodore 64, Acorn, and Vic-20 were discussed.
And It did a great explanation of how game development changed, from a one-man bedroom coder to teams of 100's of people comprising of publishers, programmers, graphic artists, sound artists, and marketing.
Perhaps it was this switch from the games being written by the designers themselves, to the marketing departments which was the beginning of the end for the UK industry as many publishers were put out of business overnight, and then out came the consoles to put the final nail in the coffin. Followed by a mass exodus of the UK's best programmers to the US and it left the UK computer entertainment industry reeling.
Once the industry was run by marketing, games were seen as a money making machine, and that killed off the creativity of the designers, as new developments were seen as too risky, and it was seen as better to stick with what you know, and publishers began to mostly stay within a certain genre i.e. Activision for FPS, EA for sports, Codemasters for racing games etc... Call Of Battlefield 22 anyone?
Perhaps not all is lost though, as indie games are on the up, with platforms like Steam and Kickstarter, it has become full circle almost, and brought development back into the hands of that one guy/girl in their bedroom.
The film is great and I highly recommend you check it out.
Monkspeed Rating: 95%