Frontier Developments founder David Braben has expressed his frustration with a publishing community he says is increasingly scared to back games that don't fit the Call of Duty mould.
"I think there's a problem at the moment as big publishers are running scared," the Elite creator told Edge. "What really upsets me is that we have this Call Of Duty-shaped jelly mould, and it's being used to create games that are all competing for a very narrow niche. That's very disappointing as a gamer.
"We do see the occasional game come out that looks at thing from a very different perspective - LA Noire, Red Dead Redemption - and that's great," he added. "But something inside me dies when I see another game that looks exactly the same as all the others."
Frontier's ambitious conspiracy thriller The Outsider is seemingly a casualty of this risk-averse approach to publishing.
"We got it to a reasonable stage, but it's currently on hold," said Braben. "We're looking at how we revisit it and when. Certainly we'll go public on showing the game at some point. I would like it to see the light of day properly as a released game, but we're going to have to try and work out how best to do that."
Frontier's currently at work on Kinect Disneyland Adventures, which is set for release later this year on Xbox 360.