Playing all the AAA titles available out there will only do you good if you are working at a studio that develops AAA titles. Even so, playing Auteur Games will still be extremely vital.
Most big titles out there are innovative in scope, but not necessarily innovative when it comes to content. Most game designers are not currently working on the next GTA, therefore, learning how “big” popular games are becoming doesn’t directly help their designs.
On the other hand, Auteur Games usually bring a fresh wave of new concepts and ideas. They’re the ones taking giant leaps and taking higher risks. Of course, we can’t blame big studios for not taking such huge gamble in projects that cost millions of dollars.
Playing Auteur Games not only allows you to incorporate some of their new mechanics, but they also inevitably light a fire of inspiration by demonstrating that new concepts can still be discovered. A lot times we get caught in a spiral of making the same games and using the same tools. Breaking that barrier really helps to widen your perspective on the possibilities available.
Auteur Games also play an important role in proving a critical fact: that it can be done. Many of these games would sound crazy in a brainstorming session. “That would never work,” said every publisher ever. Auteur Games verify that crazy games can be accomplished. Furthermore, a lot of times it demonstrates that you don’t need a huge budget and team to make a great game.
Finally, Auteur Games are usually a premonition of the future of gaming. Don’t play catch up with your competition. Instead, be the first. Clones are always less successful than the original. Play Auteur Games. Be inspired. Take chances.