Right, I think that I should explain a little about my stubborn belief that the gaming industry’s current method of development and distribution has worked for generations and will continue to work for generations. Especially with regards to PC gaming and I personally never want it to change and when I say never, I mean it. Basically ever since I got my first computer (an Acorn Electron) I have wanted to see better graphics and more realism in games. The evolution that we have seen over the years has done just that and as a result I have been overjoyed me and it has kept me in gaming ever since.
Don’t get me wrong I do understand that graphics and realism is not the be all and end all. I get that the gameplay is the most important part of gaming. I mean look at the Nintendo Wii and DS, they prove that it doesn’t have to be the best when it comes to graphics, but their gameplay is out of this world and it shows with the popularity of both consoles that it is not just graphics that count these days.
I'm guessing by now you all know that I love Indie developments such as Faster Than Light (FTL: Game) and The Banner Saga, both are games that I have a passion for and I’m sure will get lots and lots of gameplay out of them, both do not use the latest Directx 11 graphics, but I don’t care they are both fun to play and I class them as 'proper' PC games :)
The one major thing that really narks me is social media and mobile games such as Farmville and Cityville, mostly games that involve micro transactions. Personally (well this entire blog is my personal view but humour me) I think they ruin the game as you can only get so far without them, which for me ruins the whole gaming experience.
I like games where I can pay up front and I am not forced to pay for items to get further. Don’t get me wrong I don’t mind paying for DLC which extends the life of a game. For example, I think that Gearbox software did a great job with Borderlands and Borderlands 2 their DLC I will pay for; as it is definitely worth the money, so much so that I bought the season pass for all their DLC.
I can see that these social games are popular with Farmville getting 2.7 million active users a day, which converts to around 6.7 million active users a week, that means there must be something to them, something that makes them addictive.
The reason for this I think is two fold, one is that these are more for the casual gamer, someone that is not a dedicated gamer but wants to pass some time. That coupled with the exposure that it gets from Facebook means that social games blossom into a success and can generate $1.8 billion as seen in 2011, yielding $630m in profit and that is just one game!
I worry that gamers expect too much from the BIG titled games, I can remember people criticizing Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 for being too short (such as bit-gamer). I disagree, in total I think the average length of Modern Warfare 3 was around 6 hours, compare that to say another form of entertainment, such as a feature film which at the most will be around 3 hours long and not as interactive and I do not see the issue that a lot of gamers have.
Looking back at this post I suppose I should adopt the gamer tag ‘grumpy old gamer’ but for this series I thought that it better to let you know my standing on the games industry so you can see where my bias is in future blogs in this series. Right now onto business.... in my next blog.