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"Why should we ask how long a game is?"

"Who cares about value for money? You never question how long a movie is." Brothers' Josef Fares rallies against bloated games.

Josef Fares, the Swedish filmmaker who's teamed up with Starbreeze to make forthcoming downloadable adventure Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons, has rallied against the bloated running times of many games.

"I feel many games have come to a certain point where you feel that you could have taken away three to four hours easily," Fares told Eurogamer. "If you play Max Payne 3, after one hour you've played the whole game. They just only change the setting. I love Rockstar, but what?"

Brothers, a fairytale themed game where you control two characters as they search for a cure to their father's illness, is looking to last between three to four hours, a run-time that by many modern standards may be considered short.

"Brothers is the opposite to those games - everything you see, it happens only once. It is a three or four hour game. We could have made it ten hours if we wanted, but it's important to keep the player curious, and on a journey.

"Why should we ask how long a game is? The question should be is it a good game or a bad game, not how long it is. This game is as long as it has to be. If it's 20 or one, it doesn't matter.

"Who cares about value for money? You never question how long a movie was - people say they put this money down and they want value for their time. But value for your time is if I get three really good hours, that's value for my time. Then I can do something else. It's not that I replay ten hours of shit."

Starbreeze's Brothers has already drawn comparisons with Journey, another downloadable game that met with success, and another game that dared to be brief. "People talk about Journey being short," said Fares. "It's not a bad thing to be short if it's strong. In many ways, Journey is longer than all the games out there because it's with you - maybe not when you're with the controller, but it stays with you."

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About the Author
Martin Robinson avatar

Martin Robinson


Martin worked at Eurogamer from 2011 to 2023. He has a Gradius 2 arcade board and likes to play racing games with special boots and gloves on.

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