What Will Become of the Next Generation of Gamers?
Posted on Monday, February 10 @ 16:38:00 Eastern by Paul_Tamburro
When I first took up video games as a hobby, there were very few platforms for the Next Big Thing to release onto, and when it did release you wouldn’t know of its popularity unless it managed to worm its way into the public consciousness or it found itself becoming a topic of heavy debate in your school playground. However, nowadays said Next Big Thing can be much more than just a grey cartridge slotted into a SNES: It can be a mobile game a la Flappy Bird, a PC-turned-multiformat game such as Minecraft or a mega-budget console game like Call of Duty.
Just wait for it...
While those of us who grew up with the aforementioned grey cartridges notice these changes and will criticize decisions made by corporations that infringe upon our rights as consumers, the next generation of gamer will come to eventually regard the contemptuous business practices that are often employed in this industry as the norm. Consider EA’s recent desecration of the PC classic Dungeon Keeper, a series which they “revived” on iOS and Android by shamelessly filling it with hugely overpriced in-app purchases that are sold to players as a means of “speeding up” its gameplay.
These gamers have been brought up in an era of digital purchasing, where a game may not offer its user the full experience straight out of the box in order for its publisher to make more money via DLC, where free-to-play games might as well be titled “pay-to-enjoy” games and where seemingly everything on PC is Early Access, a business model which sees an unfinished version of a game retailing at full price so that the money earned can then go into funding development costs.
EA claiming that Dungeon Keeper reflects the play patterns of mobile gamers is certainly a way for it to write off the many negative criticisms of the game, but it’s also indicative of how much shit mobile gamers have grown to expect will be released onto the platform. We now routinely anticipate the worst from publishers and developers, but whereas the majority of us will question this, the younger crowd are simply accepting that this is the way things are now. Through no fault of their own, young gamers are helping the industry to continue to indulge in bad habits by unwittingly accepting its actions, ushering in a new era of gaming where the increasing majority accept less quality content for money and where many, alarmingly, even go so far as to defend the publishers/developers for doing so.
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