Resident Evil creator Shinji Mikami has expressed his opinion that game developers peak at 30.
Revealed through a YouTube interview for a survival horror documentary on Archipel, the Master of Horror stated that as developers grow older their games become less about personal taste and more about satisfying players.
“You change depending on the experience that you acquire,” Shinji Mikami told the channel (transcribed by VGC).
“I made Resident Evil 4 when I was 39, I believe I fit in that peak” – Shinji Mikami
“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.
“On the other hand, when you gain experience, you become more effective in satisfying players. However, your taste starts to fade away. Making a game also requires a lot of energy, you spend a lot of time, so it takes a harder toll on your stamina.”
Mikami states that the peak of his creations was the beloved Resident Evil 4, a game that is currently being remade for next-gen consoles with its creator in an advisory role.
Mikami continued: “Overall, I believe game creators peak during their thirties, if you combine all skills,” Mikami continued. “I made Resident Evil 4 when I was 39, I believe I fit in that peak.
“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.
“After 40, you realise how much energy is required when making a game, honestly it becomes tougher.”
Shinji Mikami is most recently known for The Evil Within, a spiritual return to the Resident Evil 4 style of survival horror. However, the game director is currently working as executive producer on the upcoming PlayStation 5 exclusive Ghostwire Tokyo.
Mikami’s studio, Tango Gameworks, was recently purchased by Microsoft as part of their $7.5 billion ZeniMax Media acquisition. While Ghostwire Tokyo will be released first on PlayStation, Mikami’s following games will be Xbox exclusive.