Should game studios learn from Hollywood TV and develop Pitch Season?

Gretchen Alice over at has made a few selections for television shows with promise from this year’s pilot season. Every year, the major networks listen to several hundred pitches for new shows and eventually trim down to a few and request scripts. The purpose of every year’s pilot season is to spark creativity and reinvigorate networks for the next year; it’s a guaranteed period of freshening and change since the product must at least be a new series if not necessarily the most original idea.

On the other side, the largest game studios continue to produce sequel after sequel to major franchises and occasionally a new IP is introduced. Just a few years ago, Assassin’s Creed, was a completely new idea and though the original was somewhat rough, it has been refined into a high quality and highly innovative franchise.

As someone who is extremely far behind on his backlog of games, I wouldn’t mind if the studios all agreed to take a year off from making games and go into an intense period of pre-production and brainstorming. And though that’s not viable for some smaller studios, the industry as a whole could benefit from the addition of a cyclic period of pitches and production that are discrete from any franchises out there. Sequels are great for refining and fleshing out ideas. Community’s first season was—this is hard for me to say, but it’s true—not very good, but from the second season forward has been incredible.

Introducing new properties happens eventually, but the beauty of pilot season is that it guarantees at least the consideration of a new series. The great ones are supported by the public and have the potential to explode. The others that don’t make it as far, may not have been quite as good, or may have been cut short but at least they showed us something different, and maybe the inspired a future show.Pushing Daisiesseemed to borrow the idea of a narrator that contradicted characters fromArrested DevelopmentandMirror’s Edgeseemed to have inspiredBrinkin some ways. Even if they don’t live take off, every new idea contributes to the exploration of the whole and that in and of itself is worth it. ThoughCall of Dutymay be getting more and more refined, it will never give me the feeling of nimbly leaping over and across buildings. They’re all for different things and the more outlets we have, the more we can explore.