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The Consoles Are Dying, Says Developer

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the they-hide-it-well dept.

PlayStation (Games) 309

hypnosec writes "While you might have often heard that PC gaming is dying — detractors have been claiming this for over a decade — one developer has a different take: that consoles are the ones on the way out. In a 26-minute presentation at GDC — available now as a slideshow with a voice-over — Ben Cousins, who heads mobile/tablet game maker ngmoco, uses statistics of electronic and gaming purchases, along with market shares of developers and publishers from just a few years ago, to come to some surprising conclusions. The old guard, including the three big console manufacturers — Sony, Nintendo and Microsoft — are losing out when compared with the new generation of gaming platform developers: Facebook, Apple and Google. With the new companies, the size of the audience is vastly increased because of their focus on tablets, mobile and browser-based gaming."

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What does netcraft have to say about this? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39349723)

It's not true until netcraft confirms it.

Re:What does netcraft have to say about this? (4, Funny)

ozmanjusri (601766) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350173)

Minecraft would be more credible.

Re:What does netcraft have to say about this? (3, Informative)

headLITE (171240) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350473)

In that case... there's a Minecraft Pocket Edition that runs on Android and iOS phones. :)

Re:What does netcraft have to say about this? (5, Insightful)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350777)

Well if you are gonna go by just raw usage data then i'm sure they would tell you that office and accounting programs are being replaced by this incredible new technology called "the fart app' since its number of users i'm sure makes Quicken, Quickbooks, and all the office suites look like penny ante apps.

But of course that just highlights what's wrong with using this kind of data, the "games' they describe are simply what is called 'time wasters" that someone can use at the average office without installing anything and thus getting fired. The boss at the last shop i worked at loved to fire up freecell on any machine brought in and see how many hours had been spent in it, some machines had literally thousands of hours in it. did that mean these people were prepping for some freecell tournament? that they just REALLY loved that card game? nope it meant the IT dept had blocked the web based time wasters but the MSFT standard games were accessible so that is what they used to waste time.

In the end these "games" are having little to no money spent on them by the users, who rarely have any loyalty to the games at all and will walk away at the drop of a hat for the next time waster that catches their eye. Just because a shitload of people run something doesn't mean they WANT to run that thing, it may simply mean that is all they can get past the IT dept at work. My GF has hundreds of hours in those FB games but that doesn't mean she gives a crap about them or would spend a single cent for the whole lot, it just means she has a lot of down time in between busy periods at work so she uses them to kill time, that's all. In the end they are for her no more worth caring about than solitaire, its just something to do that's all. if youtube wasn't blocked at her work she'd probably be watching videos instead.

Slashdot... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39350779)

Where Australian football players talk crap about Video Game Consoles.

hardware limits (2, Informative)

From A Far Away Land (930780) | more than 2 years ago | (#39349735)

Makes sense to me. I see many more people playing Facebook games than they play with their Wii. XBox players are about as frequently seen as Facebook gamers, in my experience.

The technology is where consoles have often been ahead of PCs, but with tablet computers becoming almost as slick as Star Trek Pads, it's harder to imagine a console being able to process a lot more than a PC or be as portable as an iPad or Android phone.

Re:hardware limits (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39349779)

Until I see Crytek running Crysis as a third-party facebook gaming application, I won't believe it.

Re:hardware limits (2, Insightful)

wvmarle (1070040) | more than 2 years ago | (#39349793)

Facebook: wins thanks to the social aspect. It's always more fun to win a game from real-life friend, than from a computer. Even playing against strangers is more interesting - that's why I enjoy playing card games on Yahoo, you know there are real humans on the other side of the "table". That alone makes the game much more interesting, even though there are no fancy graphics etc. involved.

Google/Apple's mobile offerings: this are both networked (social) games a-la Facebook, and simple games to kill time while waiting for a bus or on the train heading back home. Games that you can pick up and put down any second, that don't have a huge learning curve, and that don't require much if any investment in time/money.

Wii/Xbox/etc: need you to consciously dedicate time to. Can't be picked up and put down so easily as mobile games. Miss the social aspect in many games. Newer consoles can connect to the network for multi-player, or have a few controls on a single machine - solving that somewhat, but they still have a lack of critical mass. Not just everyone has a Wii like almost everyone has Facebook. And a games console may be good at games, but that's also pretty much all it's good at.

PC games: PC's more common than consoles like a Wii, and are all networked these days. Can do quite well in the networked/social spheres, think Second Life and related games. Yet require the time dedication due to fixed location, time to boot up (not in seconds), etc.

The hardware doesn't matter, the hardware itself is just a tool, and most people couldn't care less about the actual hardware as long as it runs the games they want it to run.

Re:hardware limits (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39350423)

These arguments can be summed up as:

"Books are dying, magazines are more convenient and require less mental effort therefore magazines will replace books"

Re:hardware limits (0)

headLITE (171240) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350589)

No, that's exactly not what he's saying. "Games people want to run" being available on a different platform is not the same thing as "content that requires less mental effort" available through a only slightly different channel.

In reality of course both books and magazines as media (not the content) are dying for the entirely same reasons why consoles are dying.

Re:hardware limits (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39350597)

Mod parent up.
This is EXACTLY what is happening, its like going back to SNES style gaming but on mobiles and portables, I'd rather buy a $60 game and enjoy the awesome 3D graphics and in-depth storyline and campaign, and besides, Xbox LIVE is a better social experience than anything Farcebook could deliver on.

Re:hardware limits (5, Funny)

HaZardman27 (1521119) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350791)

Xbox LIVE is a better social experience than anything Farcebook could deliver on

If by social experience you mean 12-year-olds and 20-somethings that act like 12-year-olds screaming in your ear and hurling obscenities as though it makes them more mature, then yes, Xbox Live is a wonderful social experience.

Re:hardware limits (5, Insightful)

msobkow (48369) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350647)

I agree with most of your points, except for the presumption that you're playing a "real-life friend". Other than a dozen people, I've never met any of my Facebook friends in real life.

Furthermore, none of the "social games" I tried on Facebook during my first year were "social" at all. There was absolutely NO interaction with other players, team tactics, or any of the other aspects of a good round of an FPS with a headset.

When I see my friends playing against their buddies on their XBox or PS3, they're using headphones. They're coaching each other. They're cursing each other. They're talking to each other. It's a FAR more "social" game environment than Facebook has ever been or could ever dream to be.

Re:hardware limits (3, Interesting)

BasilBrush (643681) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350813)

I agree with most of your points, except for the presumption that you're playing a "real-life friend". Other than a dozen people, I've never met any of my Facebook friends in real life.

I think you're unusual. Most people use facebook to keep up with real life friends and family, old friends from school who now live far away, people they met on holidays or courses. People that you want to keep in touch with, sometimes daily, sometime just from time to time.

When I see my friends playing against their buddies on their XBox or PS3, they're using headphones. They're coaching each other. They're cursing each other. They're talking to each other. It's a FAR more "social" game environment than Facebook has ever been or could ever dream to be.

Casual gamers don't really want that. If they wanted a pre-longed real-time conversation with a friend they'd pick the phone up or skype or chat. Short, non-real time contacts fit the bill better for casual social gaming.

Re:hardware limits (3, Interesting)

Darfeld (1147131) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350675)

Facebook games are getting better at the "game" things I guess, but their is still work to do on that. The social aspect is more than often a lure. It has worked pretty well, but it really gets old after a bit. They are good browser based games with good social aspect though, but none that have to thank fb for that.

For Google/Apple's games, they work because they open "video games" to a broader audience. but games you can pick up and put down in a minute aren't what a gamer will look for. Gamers won't disappear just because of casual game on phone. It's just not the same usage.

Wii/Xbox/PS3 have specificities, and it's up to the game designers to figure what support is suited for what kind of game. I really don't enjoy action games on a phone, the command are crappy and most of the time they hide the screen (you know, because of the tactile thing) and I sure won't buy scrabble for my Xbox. As for the networking aspect, things are going in the right direction I think.

PC has the most wide panel of possibilities from controllers to social things and Internet connection, so it gives it an edge. But my guess is no platform is going to disappear, they'll just radicalize.

Re:hardware limits (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39349921)

This article is biased because of the type of work that Ben does: "Ben Cousins, who heads mobile/tablet game maker ngmoco"

Game makers like ngmoco need to realize that they are not competing with consoles or PC's because they are designing for mobile devices. They compete with other mobile device game makers and that's that.

Sure Facebook/Zynga make truckloads of cash, think about their business model: Play x game, limit the amount of time player can play, offer method to BUY more time for a couple of dollars... Player gets sucked in and spends the money to get 10 minutes of extra play time.. Hundreds of people pay a couple of dollars to get that extra 10 minutes, and guess what? You have an extremely profitable business. Add to that the money they make off advertising to over 100mil people that play their games, and factor in the fact that the staff comprises less than 300 people, most of whom are phone jockeys or developers. You get the idea. The company has low operating overhead and high cash inflow. A recipe for a ridiculously huge cash cow which is exactly what is shown in these reports Ben used to exemplify and emphasize his story.

Fact of the matter is that PC's and consoles make huge profits too. Maybe not as much as Zynga or others, maybe not even as much as mobile developers. But, they have their fans. People don't just *switch* from being one type of gamer, to another. They usually are a combination. Me personally? I'm mainly a PC gamer, but I have an Xbox that I play on occasion, and I also do the facebook games sometimes, and also have some mobile games. Some people strictly play mobile games because of their affordability compared to console and PC games. Just depends on the level of immersion someone wants.

Re:hardware limits (2)

headLITE (171240) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350335)

He's not arguing that ngmoco competes with consoles or PCs. He's arguing that the relative market share of console games will go down as the mobile games industry boom continues. He clearly states that he believes that mobile games haven't disrupted the AAA console game industry yet, but are on par with handheld consoles - which as far as I can see from the handheld devices that I own and from published sales data is an accurate assessment of the situation.

Re:hardware limits (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39349937)

Why does this make sense to you? If tablet computers increase the size of the gaming ecosystem, that doesn't mean that consoles are going to go away. There is still enormous demand for fancy 3D games like first person shooters and sports games.

I think this article goes too far. I think it only shows that tablets will pick up the less hardware intensive games, for the cases of where HD graphics or ergonomic controllers aren't important. When they do, PCs and consoles will have that market.

Can you imagine someone playing Gears of War 3 on a tablet? No? There is probably a reason for that.

Re:hardware limits (3, Insightful)

Chase Husky (1131573) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350159)

Yes, I could imagine playing Gears of War 3, or any other similar, graphically-intensive game, on a tablet. However, I wouldn't expect to physically interact the tablet whilst doing so.

To elaborate on the first part, as smart phones and tablets become more complex and powerful, they will begin to encroach and eventually overlap with the processing and graphical capabilities of consoles. (The PowerVR G6200/G6400, let alone NVIDIA's Tegra offerings and the state-of-the-art devices in the research literature, are a testament to this, from a GPU standpoint. From a CPU one, the quad-core ARMv7 Cortex-A15 handily beats out the triple-core IBM Xenon in the Xbox 360 and the Cell processor in the PS3, in terms of MIPS.) As this happens, there will only be a handful of relatively minor reasons, most of which concern how to handle older, potentially out-dated devices, as to why we could not expect to see quality games ported over to these mobile platforms, let alone have studios change focus and solely push their titles for them.

Now, as for actually playing the games, it's easy to imagine a few scenarios for how this could be done for a variety of titles. One that would work well, in general, would be to interface the tablet or phone with a TV, either through an HDMI connection or perhaps wirelessly through something like the Apple TV, and rely on one or more Bluetooth controllers for input. In this instance, the device is functioning like a console; however, once you're done playing, you can just grab it, take it with you, and revert back to using it for a multitude of other purposes.

Re:hardware limits (2)

headLITE (171240) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350339)

It doesn't mean consoles will go away. He's comparing to mainframes and personal computers, among other things. Mainframes continued to sell after the PC boom started but suddenly there was much more money in the PC business. Now today we have big companies using PCs for tasks that mainframes were used, but this is decades after they were introduced. He's also comparing consoles to arcades, which still exist and aren't really doing *that* much worse than they used to (just worse than they did in their prime), but they also never got anywhere near the amount of money you can make with consoles.

Re:hardware limits (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39349955)

The technology is where consoles have often been ahead of PCs

What are you on about? The outdated tech in your console comes nowhere near the level of technology in my PC.

Re:hardware limits (1)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 2 years ago | (#39349957)

Ultimately the issue is really basic.

Console lockdown has created a giant opening for cross-platform gaming. The platform is not "the device" but simply "the genre of the game" Something that runs on the tablet/smartphone will almost guaranteed be able to run on any computing device, basically. Which is something consoles don't really lean towards (see: "Exclusive" titles, PC only, etc).

so the question of "what will it play on?" is basically gone. Which is why companies like gameloft are going to be out of business - they rip off games and market them to specific devices and try to create this exclusivity, and then blame the market for their own failures in 2009. [imore.com] Yet a year later? "we're moving in on android!" [techerator.com] etc etc.This is a company trying to become another console manufacturer equivalent (failure) for smartphones, and thus has huge money being poured in from console manufacturers. Why? Because they are one. Owned by lovely Ubisoft. [chacha.com] . Half of their games are exclusive to specific iphone models or specific android phones. Yet, long term? colossal failure.

Re:hardware limits (2, Insightful)

rtb61 (674572) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350501)

The real issue, M$, Sony and Nintendo, spent millions on public relations campaigns to promote the idea PC games were dying and web games were boring, they lied, they didn't care, they just wanted to sell more consoles and licence more games and accessories.

They did this via typical methods, using junk journalists to write fluff pieces, PR trolls flooding forums and other subtle things like buying up prime shop floor space to display their games and ensure PC games were hidden at the back.

Corporations they lie, not sometimes but nearly all the time about everything they can get away with up to and including when the penalty for lying is less than the profits generated. Modern corporations are so full of B$, that well, there are no true words to describe but they spend a load with PR firms and mass media to promote lying as acceptable and normal business practice.

Re:hardware limits (2)

Gideon Wells (1412675) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350567)

It is a bit to blame just those three. Look at the publishers.

Take the company who made Unreal Tournament: http://www.tomshardware.com/news/Consoles-PC-Games-Unreal-Gears,10437.html [tomshardware.com]
PC gaming is dead and we left the sinking ship, they said. PC gaming, if it lives will be, lol, Farmevilles on Facebook.

Of course a year later they are back to targeting the PC as the primary market: http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2011-08-16-epic-games-working-on-five-new-titles [eurogamer.net] talking about being wary of "betting their company" on every game produced in a market that is Halo, COD and Gears.

Re:hardware limits (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39349979)

The advantage of consoles has never been processing power. The advantage is developing for a single platform with a known configuration. PC game developers (like myself) have to worry about a wide range of video hardware. Console game developers can fine tune for their platform.

Re:hardware limits (0)

BasilBrush (643681) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350895)

And now iPad pretty much offers that. OK, there's one upgrade a year, but it's almost completely backward compatible. But there's certainly not the infinite variety of permutations of a PC.

Re:hardware limits (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39350029)

Consoles have never been ahead of PCs in technology. They're nothing but gaming appliances with enough performance to run games decently. How are they technologically ahead of PCs??

The only thing consoles have going for them is convenience. Convenience for both gamers and devs. The hardware of a console never changes through it's life, so devs have a stable hardware platform to target and console gamers know the games will run on their consoles.

Consoles are technologically behind PCs, their popularity is due to their price and convenience.

Re:hardware limits (1, Informative)

headLITE (171240) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350513)

Consoles have never been ahead of PCs in technology. They're nothing but gaming appliances with enough performance to run games decently. How are they technologically ahead of PCs??

The current generation of consoles is six years old. Still, PCs are only just reaching them in terms of e.g. parallelization (what consumer PC had a six core CPU in 2006 when the PS3 came out?) or the insane bandwidth between CPU and GPU (Xbox 360: 10.8 GB/s each direction, PCIe 3.0 x16: 16 GB/s, but that only became available in the last two years).

Re:hardware limits (1, Redundant)

Mista2 (1093071) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350081)

I play zuma blitz way more often than I do Bioshock, but I still enjoy Bioshock, I just dont have the time to play it as often as I'd like. A PC to play a game like Bioshock is way more expensive than the console. I also like Flight Sims, and there is not a single consle or tablet offering a sim that is any good. That takes a propper desktop/laptop, and it wont be done over flash on the internet.

Re:hardware limits (1)

headLITE (171240) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350517)

There is an X-Plane version for iPad. Sure it doesn't have the same texture resolution as on the desktop, but if that's all...

Re:hardware limits (0)

Ihmhi (1206036) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350533)

I see many more people playing Facebook games than they play with their Wii.

What the hell kind of fantastic Facebook game is actually stopping people from mastu-

Oh, the console.

Re:hardware limits (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39350541)

What mystical realm do you live in? PC's have pretty much always been ahead of consoles with regard to technology. And the only time PC's might have been behind was times like the SNES had mode7 or FX chips in a game cartridge.

Re:hardware limits (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39350819)

Having wi-fi / GPRS connectivity with ones of those touch-screen phones still amazes me. There might not be the standard button controllers like a traditional hand-held, but being able to download a new application or game straight off the marketplace website is one of the greatest advantages that they have.

In the past, to get a new game for a handheld or home console, you would have to rearrange your calendar to make time to visit the local game-store. Even then, they might have sold out, might not have decided it was worth stocking or still waiting to get enough pre-orders.If you went abroad on holiday and wanted to buy a title for the kids, you'd have to find a store first, then figure out how to get there and back again. (same with internet cafe's). Now, you just go online and make the download.

Not surprisingly, retailers are going bankrupt.
GAME preparing to go bankrupt [destructoid.com]

Misleading headline (5, Insightful)

iampiti (1059688) | more than 2 years ago | (#39349771)

Quoting the summary: "The old guard ...are losing out when compared with the new generation of gaming platform developers".
This clearly doesn't mean that the consoles are dying, it simply means that the smarthphones and tables have a installed base much greater than the traditional consoles and they managed to get a bigger audience. Mobile games are also simpler and cheaper than traditional "hardcore" console/PC games.
At the end it's a similar story to that of the Wii: Someone found a way to reach a much bigger audience than that of traditional games and they made a ton of money in the process.

Re:Misleading headline (4, Insightful)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#39349819)

Exactly. The developer in the article is a moron; there's simply a larger audience for games now, with people playing them on their phones who otherwise would play a sudoku game, or no game at all. You can't play an Xbox/PS3 game when you're riding in a car or waiting in line or whatever, at least not without going to some extreme measures, well above and beyond simply carrying a handheld device with you in your pocket and taking it out when you feel like a diversion. But your phone you always have with you, so it's convenient to play a simple game on when you're out and about. And, these are different markets. There's lots of non-"gamer" people playing Angry Birds now on their phones who have zero interest in the latest FPS or whatever game that's available on consoles. This doesn't mean the console (or PC) gamer market is shrinking. It may or may not be, but the rising popularity of Angry Birds and other simple mobile phone/tablet games is irrelevant to that issue. No one's abandoning Crysis so they can go play Angry Birds instead.

Re:Misleading headline (2)

headLITE (171240) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350347)

How is he a moron when he's saying what you're saying? His argument is that there is a larger audience for games, which makes the relative market share of console games smaller, and means there's more money to be made in the mobile market.

The console market doesn't have to shrink - it is, of course, but that's not his main point. His point as a game developer is that he can make more money in the mobile market, and that he predicts this trend will continue.

Re:Misleading headline (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39350503)

OK. enough silliness.

First, you didn't read the title of his presentation.

"When the Consoles die..."

He is using the word "DIE", not gradually shift or decrease. This is a hint that he is going the Tabloid route with
sensationalistic (no credibility) headlines just to grab your attention.

Second, he never shows that he can make more money in the mobile market. He does show statistics
which indicate that the number of games being downloaded or sold for mobile devices is increasing. However,
he could not link that to increases in money. The problem is that many mobile games are FREE or a dollar.
It does not show anyone making profit. He has one graph showing the console industry at about 20 billion dollars.
He does not have a graph showing the profit for tablet and phone games.

In particular, he notes that there were 500 million downloads of Angry Birds. However, on ITunes, Angry Birds
is a free game! This is not making massive profit.

In summary, he is saying this:

"Massive Downloads means Massive Profit"

I am saying: "No, it doesn't"

Re:Misleading headline (2)

headLITE (171240) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350575)

OK. enough silliness.

First, you didn't read the title of his presentation.

"When the Consoles die..."

He is using the word "DIE", not gradually shift or decrease. This is a hint that he is going the Tabloid route with
sensationalistic (no credibility) headlines just to grab your attention.

I don't really believe in only reading titles. He explains what he means by "die", including that it can mean that the "dying" platform doesn't even lose sales, but just becomes less and less relevant compared to an overpowering newcomer.

He does not have a graph showing the profit for tablet and phone games.

In particular, he notes that there were 500 million downloads of Angry Birds. However, on ITunes, Angry Birds
is a free game! This is not making massive profit.

This is incorrect. On iTunes, Angry Birds is a $0.99 game. The Android version is free, and according to wikipedia (I'm not going to call Rovio and ask), Rovio is making about $1 million per month from ad revenues from the Android version alone.

I'm not sure the argument stands and falls with Angry Birds, though. It's just one of his examples.

Re:Misleading headline (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39350697)

No, you're a moron for commenting on something you obviously didn't watch. Watch it you fucktard. Then tell us what you think.

None of them are dying (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39349787)

PC isnt dying (hell, becoming more niche would be a good thing to this PC gamer), neither are the consoles.

Ridiculous headline (5, Insightful)

stringman5 (2029304) | more than 2 years ago | (#39349803)

If your share is the market is decreasing but the overall market size is increasing at a rate faster than your share decreases, then you're not dying, you're flourishing.

Re:Ridiculous headline (mod parent up!) (2)

Bigfield (742477) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350003)

You are quite right. Statistics need to be interpreted correctly. There is still good growth for consoles also. It is just not as great as the growth of the other platforms and the gaming market is just expanding.

Re:Ridiculous headline (3, Informative)

headLITE (171240) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350359)

In the slide show he's, however, showing absolute figures that are shrinking.

He does also argue the shrinking relative market share point because that's, frankly, what you're interested in as a game developer: Where can you make the most money with games? When you can make 10% more year-over-year in one market but 200% more in another then you'll go for the 200% growth market.

Entertainment Center = Fewer Games (3, Interesting)

Fulminata (999320) | more than 2 years ago | (#39349809)

I used to play a lot of games on my Xbox 360, but when we got Netflix a few years ago it moved from my study to the living room and now my wife monopolizes it to watch Netflix, and I'm playing my games on the PC. A console can only be used for one thing at a time, and when you keep adding more things it can do, it ends up spending less time being used to play games.

Re:Entertainment Center = Fewer Games (1)

Custard Horse (1527495) | more than 2 years ago | (#39349869)

It's such a pity that ownership of consoles is limited to one per household...

Re:Entertainment Center = Fewer Games (2, Insightful)

Mista2 (1093071) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350093)

But they are so cheap, you could buy another one easily. Whats a 360 cost now? NZ$300 for an arcade console?

Re:Entertainment Center = Fewer Games (2)

qxcv (2422318) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350417)

You can get the Red Ring Edition for under $20 second-hand, I'm told.

I refuse to play GTA on a tablet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39349811)

The only game my iPad does well is solitaire

Re:I refuse to play GTA on a tablet (2)

bfandreas (603438) | more than 2 years ago | (#39349949)

You can hook up a game controller to a tablet and some interesting games even support them. I can totally see quite a lot of indies who as of late have been developing AMAZING games(Bastion, Trine...) move to tablets which you can hook up to a TV via HDMI.
Just go to nVidia's Tegra Zone to see how far the bleeding edge tablets have moved on. There are videos of stuff that is easily on par with the current gen of game consoles. I'm truly amazed. It really feels like science fiction.
Also it seems like fondleslab producers are moving away from integrating 3g/4g into their tablets since everybody has a cell phone anyway which is easily tethered to a tablet. 3G/4G simply doesn't justify the extra cost anymore.

Now all I need is a good enough reason to get rid of my current XOOM which is perfectly fine. I want a Transformer Prime more than I want my next breath.

Re:I refuse to play GTA on a tablet (2)

Gaygirlie (1657131) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350853)

You can hook up a game controller to a tablet and some interesting games even support them. I can totally see quite a lot of indies who as of late have been developing AMAZING games(Bastion, Trine...) move to tablets which you can hook up to a TV via HDMI.

Often not all the buttons work, or the analog controls either. And well, it's a mess to hook those things up just to play something, especially if you're going to have a several-hour gaming session because then you have to add a charger into the mix, too. And what if you get a phonecall in the middle of gaming? You have to tear everything off only to have to plug it all back in afterwards.

Re:I refuse to play GTA on a tablet (1)

Ihmhi (1206036) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350551)

Definitely a troll, but I'll bite.

If it requires any kind of intricate or fast movement a tablet is generallybad. But there's loads of games that could still run just fine. RTSes might work decently. Board and puzzle games are a definite. Old school adventure games like Myst would be awesome if someone would make an iPod/Android version.

There's more to games than headshots and rocket jumps.

(Oh man, I feel really dirty saying that.)

Re:I refuse to play GTA on a tablet (1)

headLITE (171240) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350619)

First off, Cyan did actually port Myst and Riven to iOS and are working on a port of realMyst.

As for the fast movement, you can hook up an iPad to a TV via HDMI just like any other console, and you can use an iPod Touch as a touch controller like Nintendo thinks is a good idea to do with the Wii-U. There aren't that many games that are made with this in mind right now, presumably because customers aren't really interested in doing it, but it's what I think will happen. Consoles will disappear and people will instead hook up their current mobile phone to a TV set and a controller.

Re:I refuse to play GTA on a tablet (1)

CharlyFoxtrot (1607527) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350793)

Adventure games rock on an iPad. I really enjoyed playing through Monkey Island 1 and 2 again on mine. I really want to try Sam & Max for iPad too but I haven't found the time yet.

Facebook Games... PC? (1)

Kylon99 (2430624) | more than 2 years ago | (#39349855)

You know, if you think about it, Facebook games are technically PC games, if only that most people would be playing in front of a desktop or a laptop. I can't think of anywhere else you would play Facebook games, although there's no saying they can't come up with some kind of mobile port framework for their developers in the future.

Of course it's not really PC games in the sense that we think of it, but I think it would be good to be reminded that gaming on the PC covers a wide range of different types of games still. This may not be true for the other platforms though.

Re:Facebook Games... PC? (1)

headLITE (171240) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350377)

I wouldn't equate Facebook games with PC games. They're either HTML or Flash. Mobile devices these days can all handle HTML. Some of them can handle Flash. Some Facebook gaming companies like Zynga make their games available on devices that can't handle Flash on web pages, e.g. there's a Farmville app for iOS. So the ability to play Facebook games is not something that sets the PC apart as a product that you need to buy if you're interested in playing Facebook games. Actually I'd see Facebook games as a prime example of something that PCs are losing as mobile devices are becoming more powerful.

Okay. (0)

Robert Zenz (1680268) | more than 2 years ago | (#39349861)

"Console Games Suck, Says Player." - Me

Re:Okay. (0)

Custard Horse (1527495) | more than 2 years ago | (#39349893)

I used to think the same - playing PC games is great as you have a keyboard and mouse. However, now that I have less time to devote to gaming, I find being able to acquire a game and play it on the console - knowing that the hardware will be sufficient - is a much better fit for my lifestyle. As a bonus I don't have to upgrade my PC every quarter to meet the requirements of new software.

Re:Okay. (3, Insightful)

zAPPzAPP (1207370) | more than 2 years ago | (#39349983)

Nowadays you have to upgrade a PC every 4 years or so.

Most PC titles are being made for consoles and PC at the same time and consoles are the lowest common denominator. So titles don't really get any more demanding in terms of hardware until the next generation of consoles come out.

Re:Okay. (4, Interesting)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350211)

Nowadays you have to upgrade a PC every 4 years or so.

Quite. I still find my Q6600 (stock clock), 4GB DDRII, and 8800GTX (before it died) ran almost any game I could think of at my monitor's native res of 1920x1200 with reasonable graphics detail. In fact, my upgrade was going to be a second 8800GTX from fleabay (I got burned by the seller; Sold me a known faulty card he claimed to have repaired, I found out afterwards. Fuck eBay for not understanding that). Ended up with a HD6950; Good card.

I wouldn't be surprised if I run this rig until the hardware dies.

Re:Okay. (1)

Lonewolf666 (259450) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350323)

That's mostly true. But there are exceptions, especially in the genres I like. That is, simulations and FPS games with really large maps.

As an example, take All Points Bulletin:
It is a sort of multiplayer GTA, with maps that are several 100 meters across, plenty of detail and no real limitations on going to any part of the map at any time.
Up to late 2011, I had a dual core PC with Windows XP and 2 GByte RAM. After a few minutes, APB would run out of memory. I don''t think that either the XBox 360 or the PS3 could handle the memory requirements of that game.
My new PC with 4 GByte RAM can handle it though.

Re:Okay. (1)

Beelzebud (1361137) | more than 2 years ago | (#39349997)

TBH the 'upgrade your PC every 6 months" thing is about 5 years out of date. I'm on a PC I built in 2007, and the only thing I've upgraded is to put a little more RAM in it, and get a new video card after 3 years with the same one. The popularity of the consoles among developers means the games really haven't gone outside of those specs in most cases.

Re:Okay. (1)

second_coming (2014346) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350151)

The upgrade cycle to keep up with PC gaming is not what it once was. I am still playing on a PC which is 3-4 years old with new releases and having no issues at all. Obviously I can't run them maxxed out, but they still look good and run smoothly.

Re:Okay. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39350509)

About that keyboard and mouse thing-- Yes, the technology and the interface is superior, but a lot of PC games coming out today are shitty console ports that don't make proper use of them. Cases in point: Skyrim and more recently Mass Effect 3. I pirated them first to try them out before I bought them, and I ended up uninstalling both. I'm glad I didn't spend any money on them. So there, game designers. There's your self-fulfilling prophecy.

Agreed. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39349883)

I have a PS2. I was looking at buying a PS3, but they got rid of backwards compatibility, and the only game I actually want is Gran Turismo 5. I'm not paying that much to play one game. Then there's the wii, which is mostly sports games. And the X-box which seems to be a console with PC-games. I already have a PC, I don't need a console running PC games.

Though I hate sports, and anything to do with sports, the Wii is currently looking like the only candidate.

Wrong, Wrong, Wrong!!!! (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39349903)

This is just like saying movies are going out because tons of people are watching YouTube videos. Just. Plain. Wrong.

Sure, there is money to be made in those new markets. The very best iOS/Android/Facebook games make dozens of millions in profit. Great. But the best console games will make that in a single day. Yes, they have the numbers: there are hundreds of thousands of apps in the iTunes Store. Awesome. But 98% sell 0 copies (I'm not talking a few thousands, I'm talking about zero, nil, nada). What about ROI? A competitive mobile game can be done for $100.000 (yes, and that is the absolute minimum to be competitive, this is not 2009 anymore) and would need about $250.000 in marketing expenses (it is that, or hitting a jackpot). One such game can expect to get 20.000 downloads a day (it MUST be free, of course) and a conversion rate of about 0.5% to 2% if it is good. Good luck getting that money back, not to mention making any profit.

The new markets are bad business. They are headline material if you are one of the few lucky ones who hit a jackpot, but remember: the jackpots are jackpots. Those lone developers or startups are the lucky ones, and while there is always someone who will get the lottery price for sure, if you get all your money and invest in lottery, you're an idiot. There is only one good thing about them: no entry barrier. The console videogame market stagnates because it is controlled by a few players who are adverse to innovation and mostly rehash the same product over and over. Facebook or mobile allow anyone to enter and go wild. Just like the computer game market of the 80's, that means loads of crap and some rare gems that couldn't be possible otherwise.

There is something very wrong with the console market. Publishers with absolute power cater only to the mass public and ignore niche or progressive sales, while developers get zero money from the jackpots and can't raise or grow if it is not dancing to the whim of the same publishers. But don't forget it, the new masters are much worse. The App Store is not some place you go to get rich, it is the place you go to die.

Re:Wrong, Wrong, Wrong!!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39349925)

This is just like saying movies are going out because tons of people are watching YouTube videos. Just. Plain. Wrong.

That was the exact same parallel I was making when I read the article.

Re:Wrong, Wrong, Wrong!!!! (1)

headLITE (171240) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350385)

Did you watch the slide show? He argues how movies did not die when the cinema died because movie producers adapted to the new formats, specifically VHS and so on. So of course movies don't need to die because of YouTube - producers and distributors alike are adapting to the new channels, there are countless ways to watch streamed movies online today.

That's half of his argument really. He's saying that game developers may want to adapt to the changing environment and focus more on mobile. The console as a platform paradigm may die but his entire point is that the game developers don't have to die with it, just like movies are still around.

Re:Wrong, Wrong, Wrong!!!! (1)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350291)

well.. it's a little tiny bit biased report.

the guy saying that they're dying doesn't take into account that consoles are more popular than ever. more consoles sold, more households have consoles, more games sold, games grossing fucking half a billion in a week after release... but this dev is a tablet games developer, "freemium focussed".

and there is a slide there that says that "tv didn't kill movies", and shows a stats that movie theaters were in fact killed. you see, grossing billions and billions per year is still 'dead' to him(funnily enough, you can't make out the year numbers on his stats for this and the stat he shows is percentage of people who visited cinema on weekly basis. well doh, if you had to go to the cinema to see newsclips before tv's rolled out, or to just see any crap.. no wonder you went there every week - but even that stat has been relatively stable for decades now).

it's also how he describes modern warfare as less of a biz than angry birds(because a particular mw game only sold 25 million copies and angry birds had 500 million downloads, since 770mil in gross revenue in 5 days is apparently zilch, that is what he should have been counting against). yep, so mw is a dead franchise.

Consoles are becoming more like PCs (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39349911)

I find the OT spot on - consoles are becoming more like PCs, than PCs becoming more like consoles.

This, to me, speaks volumes - the today's gamer wants networking - the biggest games (and that means money here) are social type games like WoW and the various MP shooters. This means networking and connection to the internet.

PCs are just better in this area than consoles are - and it is only recently that consoles even could connect to the internet. The main problem here with consoles is the cold, hard fact that they are not upgradable, at least not for joe user. This means that whatever network type hardware is in use in the console is just that, and cannot be upgraded (along with graphics, CPU, etc).

For example, I have a PS3. I play Tekken 6 online, among other games. The online part of the game is frustrating and very primitive, especially compared to PC games with MP support. It has nothing on my PC - especially for such MP games like Neverwinter Nights (MP play), and other games.

To that, comes the modability of PC games, verses the "locked down" version on a console. For me, this is a pretty important factor.

All-in-all, I think that the console is a dying piece of hardware. I think that the future belongs to the PC, in some form or another. Home Networks is the future, IMHO.

The market is changing (4, Insightful)

Leo Sasquatch (977162) | more than 2 years ago | (#39349933)

just like when it became cheap to do printing. Now the market for print covers everything from comics, to lifestyle magazines, to Booker Prize winners. Sometimes I want to sit down with a novel, sometimes I want to see what Batman's up to this month, sometimes I'll flick through an issue of Motor Boats and Yachting because that's the only mag in the dentist's waiting room.

The concept of a single, clearly- and rigidly-defined platform will always be attractive to developers. Raw horsepower will always make a difference to any game more complex than Tetris. Control systems will always be a beast to implement on something that has a touchscreen and a single button, unless the control system is implemented first, then the game built around that. It is not possible to replicate the 11 buttons, twin joysticks and a d-pad of an X-box controller on an iPhone.

I think it's good that the market is fragmenting. It won't stop the big studios making AAA-titles. It will help the indie developer with the next great idea get her game made in Flash, or on Android, or running directly in the browser. It might help stem the unearthly tide of shovelware that infests the pre-owned racks at GAME. And although, to an extent, I decry the loss of geek cred that comes with the fact that now everybody and their dog plays some sort of video games, the fact that every woman I've met lately plays Farmville does make it a useful ice-breaker...

Re:The market is changing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39350735)

...And although, to an extent, I decry the loss of geek cred that comes with the fact that now everybody and their dog plays some sort of video games...

Not as big a deal as you might think. For example, Farmville players are to MMORPGs as tic tac toe is to chess.

The market is expanding to include options for those of any level of dedication, and that can only mean more business opportunities for those of us that have dreamed of making a living from our favorite hobby.

Power consumption (5, Interesting)

FranTaylor (164577) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350005)

XBox 360 and Playstation 3 use absolutely horrifying amounts of electricity compared to devices like AppleTV

XBox 360: 121 watts to watch a DVD, up to 170 watts while gaming

New PS3: 70 watts to watch a DVD, up to 80 watts while gaming

Apple TV: maximum rated 6 watts

And then throw in the added energy required by an air conditioner to remove all that heat from your house.

Granted AppleTV has less horsepower than either game system, but their power consumption is WAY out of line, given what can be done with modern hardware.

Re:Power consumption (1)

dZap (698758) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350253)

So what is the energy consumption at the source of the stream when using Apple TV?

Even if the stream is from the cloud, Greenpeace is not so happy with Apple and their dirty cloud data [pcworld.com] .

Re:Power consumption (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39350259)

XBox 360 and PS3 are 5 years old. They are not modern hardware.

Re:Power consumption (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39350309)

My base rate is 7 cents per kW.h , second stage is 10 cents.

Air-con? House? Latest Gadgets? ... if you really mean to talk about saving money or energy, you've started at the wrong end entirely.

Re:Power consumption (1)

jadrian (1150317) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350351)

And then throw in the added energy required by an air conditioner to remove all that heat from your house.

To be fair, if you really think this actually makes a difference, you also should factor out decreased costs in heating for those in cold places.

Re:Power consumption (1)

thegarbz (1787294) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350749)

I'm sorry but it's delusional to think that this has any baring on how people play games. The power consumption of a console will typically dwarf the consumption of the TV it's played on. A TV which is freed up to be used anyway while someone else is playing Angry Birds on their iPhone.

These aren't energy saving lightbulbs. People go and replace the essential devices that run all the time in the background with more energy efficient versions, but there's very little consideration given to devices we use for enjoyment or entertainment.

The air-conditioning is an equally preposterous complaint. The heat dissipated in a room by running a 200watt gaming console would again be insignificant in a giant room which in a typical house is poorly insulated and radiates an order of magnitude more heat through the wall in the mornings and evenings.

Re:Power consumption (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39350843)

'Granted AppleTV has less horsepower than either game system, but their power consumption is WAY out of line, given what can be done with modern hardware.'

That and no one owns one, so...

Not a direct threat to consoles (4, Interesting)

second_coming (2014346) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350023)

I'd say tablets and smartphones will make dedicated mobile gaming platforms (Nintendo DS, PS Vita etc) obsolete but will have very little impact on console and PC sales where gaming is concerned. What he is talking about is casual gaming which although making shitloads of cash is not what the average console and PC gamer would class as gaming. What smartphone/tablet game companies are doing is tapping into a userbase of people who wouldn't normally play games as they wouldn't buy a device just to play games, but as they have the devicealready they then start to look at what can be done with it.

This is why most of the type of games you find on the iPhone/iPad/Android devices are aimed at killing a few minutes while standing waiting for a bus not taking up hours and hours which is what most traditional gamers want/expect from their games.

My wife is a prime example of the new breed of smartphone/tablet/browser 'gamer'. I have had a PC and various gaming consoles for the last 20 years and she has never shown the slightest bit of interest in gaming as it took up too much time and had to be done at home. Now she plays games like Angry Birds on her smartphone and Facebook.

Re:Not a direct threat to consoles (1)

headLITE (171240) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350459)

Most of the games you find on mobile phones *right now* are still only good for a few minutes.

But when you compare on a technical level then the devices are already pretty much equal in capabilities. Not even the PS Vita is much more powerful than an iPhone. You also have ports of handheld console games appearing on smartphones, e.g. there are several iOS ports of DS and PSP games like GTA CTW, Final Fantasy 1-3, Chrono Trigger, etc. There are also ports of older PC games starting to appear - I can play GTA 3 on my phone. A few years ago I played silly J2ME text adventures on it. There's definitely a trend toward parity, and from past experience with the computing market I'm fairly convinced that mobile integrated devices will take over the console market in the near future. PCs are different - but the target audience of consoles is pretty much "people who want to play the latest games on a system where they don't have to bother with technical details". I'm certain that iOS or Android integrated devices can appeal to that market, they are not quite there yet, but I don't really see a reason why their dramatic rise in processing power can't continue.

My wife btw. is also an example, but slightly different from yours. My wife owns a DSi, and she used to play the occasional game on a desktop computer. She even had a C64 when she was a kid. She's not a gamer, but she's definitely grown up with games and various gaming systems, but I only find her playing a game regularly since she got an iPad. And she doesn't play Angry Birds, she basically plays the same games she's always played, which in her case (point and click adventures) happen to work very well on mobile touch devices. The type of game I like to play isn't quite there yet - I like RPGs including modern 3rd person 3D RPGs - but they're already starting to appear. So I'm expecting I'll stop buying consoles right about now (I have a PS3, a Wii, a DSi and a 3DS) and instead wait for more powerful mobile phones.

Re:Not a direct threat to consoles (1)

second_coming (2014346) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350821)

I also bought GTA3 on the iPhone and the control system is hideous, I think I played it for about 5 minutes before giving up :).

The only games which play well so far are the ones which have been developed with the touch screens in mind from the ground up or like you say point and click games.

Re:Not a direct threat to consoles (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39350635)

At the moment while the industry is making alot of scratch I see bad times ahead. Console games in general are pretty low quality atm as far as entertainment/immerson:cost goes, alot of new PC games are probably worse often buggy as all hell or incomplete like SWTOR was or the story is just so retarded that its difficult to not just turn off in disgust.

That being said mobile/facebook games are worse on most if not all counts, with the devs being able to block the game remotely and make you repay for it at the worst, and a fair number of the games [espeically the f2p/mall model ones] are highly exploitative of their players with them specifically designed to get you addicted and constantly spending money like some kind of junkie. Not even going into that apps on your phone [games] can be used to funnel your information to third parties from a device [in the case of the phone] that probably has a higher quality of private information about the player than their pc or console making it a more worthwhile target for attack.

Frankly if there is not some form of consumer backlash from gamers I would be incredibly shocked and somewhat disapointed. That being said companies like sony are moving pretty heavily into the phone/tablet market, I cant see nintendo not doing the same thing soon also [or partnering with sony again] considering their extensive back catalogue of games.

Great presentation (1)

slasho81 (455509) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350059)

I must be new here, but I click through. Excellent presentation, great data, and a powerful argument. Worth 25 minutes of your time.

Not Really Gamers (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39350073)

Well the problem here is the distinction between what REAL gamers would consider a game, and what could otherwise be considered social gaming or casual gaming.

To say that games on a PS3, XBOX or PC arent social gaming is simply retarded, and will only expose the fact that you sir/madam are not a gamer. Gaming on a PC has been social as long as I can remember. Whether its people coming over to play a game with you sitting side by side as kids back in the early 80s, or when we would dial eatch others houses and Yell obsenities at our family members to stop them picking up the phone and ruining our point to point Rise of the triad or Quake I session.
I used to go round peoples houses with my full desktop and 19" CRT playing over coax networks (cant tell you how amazing the introduction of the LCD monitor was for transport, even though the colour depths and response rate initially sucked), then later into Warehouse LANs. Eventually into competitions.
The fact is that die hard gamers have always been a niche clique. The nerds, the geeks, the tech junkies. But its always been sociable and no one plays against Bots if they can compete against a real player! There are clans and groups of people who socialise around every competative game.
Admittedly I am heavily biassed towards FPS. But as every warcraft fan will tell you gaming is a social medium.

Sure things like angry birds and puzzle games are more popular nowdays that everyone has a tablet or phone. But these are casual games. They arent exciting, they are just targeting non-gamers which make up the majority of people.

Pity so few understand statistics (4, Interesting)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350197)

Can you go from 100% of the pie to 10% and STILL end up with more pie? Yes, you can! Simply increase the size of the pie. Granted, for that scenario, you need to increase the pie a lot but that is what has been happening in computer gaming.

The earliest computer games were the domain of people who had access to mainframes, this was only a small subsection of the population. Arcade games made them more available but the nature of arcade games restricted it to children. Home computers (Atari, Commodore, Sinclair) changed this again but the machines were very expensive and frankly the games just weren't that accessible. You might have fond memories of text adventures, but you are a freak.

Home arcade machines where cheaper and easier but playing pong can only attract so many people for so long. The early machines showed a promising future but the present was graphics where you needed a manual to tell you what you were looking at.

But slowly, this changed, computers became smaller and cheaper while the games got better and better. And so, more and more people buy gaming hardware and play games.

Flash games haven't replaced traditional PC games, they added to the number of people playing games on a PC. Tablets haven't taken away from other platforms, they added gamers. IF there is a slowdown in either the PC or big console market then it has far more to do with those markets on their own. Gosh, do we REALLY need another 12yr old FPS with angry rapper soundtrack?

Women gamers might not be that intrested in games so obviously aimed at 12 year olds. Are there many female gamers? Google for The Sims 3 MODS... this is females not just PLAYING a game, but MODDING it with no official support, just command line tools. FEMALES! Modding!?! But where are these females catered for on the consoles? Barbie playhouse? Where is the mature rated female game? (As in subjects that attract adult females, not 12 yr old boys, as amazing as it seems, for some weird reason most women are not terribly excited by seeing polygon boobies with full jiggle animation. Probably because the spoiled women can play with a real set whenever they want. INEQUALIY! Demand fair distrubution of boobie playtime NOW!) Anyway... I didn't believe that women really played PC games until I found myself in a lotro raid of my guild and I was the only male. And that was a 12 man... 11 woman, 1 man raid.

But you shouldn't take this the wrong way, just because a lot of women game as well, does NOT mean ALL games have to be women friendly. Different games, for different markets. It ain't so hard to understand. Just because hamburger restaurants sell a lot of hamburgers doesn't mean every single restaurant in the world has to be a hamburger joint. In fact, you might find that if you did this, the revenue for restaurants would fall. Angry birds is a top selling game but if that was the only thing on offer, the market would quickly collapse. Yet, that is exactly what has been happening in the big console market. The market is completely dominated with Call of Honor Gears Halo 56. MS knew this and desperately tried to attract japanese developers so they would at least get some JRPG action on the original xbox. It failed and the original xbox was a dismal failure in Japan. It was a far bigger success in the west... with in the segment of the population the games catered for.

I don't even think tablets will kill the Vita and DS. Those handholds are doing their own killing. Look at the line-up for the Vita? What is there? The majority of games are extremely expensive versions of games you can buy for a buck on a tablet or even try for free. Yes yes, wipeout might be some kind of classic (read milked) title but its appeal is rather limited in terms of segment of the population. It also frankly ain't suited for mobile gaming where perfect control, perfect vision, long load up times etc etc are just not on.

Neither are dark games, 99% in the sun it means you don't see shit. Where are the light deep story games that don't mind if they are paused and can be easily and quickly resumed?

More and more people are gaming and more money is being spend on gaming and the constantly dropping price means the total market is increasing as people from poorer parts of the planet can afford to join in... but it also means there is increasing competition and charging 60 bucks for yet another testosterone shooter is not going to magically do well outside your core demographic.

MMO developers would do well to learn this lesson. WoW did so well NOT because it took existing players, but because it added new players to the market. Leave those players be. Don't make the next WoW killer, make the next MMO market expander. There are 6 billion people out there, you should be able to come up with a game to attract a new group of 10 million players. Lotro, in the beginning did just that, and as said, attracted an insane amount of females because of the fewer 12yr old boy fueled chat wars and slower, more story based pacing... or whatever motivated women to play it, maybe it is a hormone thing, it usually is.

DIFFERENT games for DIFFERENT segments of the market. Not one game to rule them all and in the EULA bind them.

PC gaming was dying for a long time... for certain game makers because they tried to turn the PC into a console by making games riddled with consolitus and then wondering why PC gamers weren't buying their games. OH THE PC IS DYING! No it ain't. It is perfectly fine, for those who make PC games.

You want your game to do well, AIM it at someone that everyone else isn't already aiming for. Just how many FPS can a 12yr old boy buy anyway? The silly thing is that EA has one of the biggest most succesfull titles (The Sims) that cater to a different demographic and STILL doesn't get it.

Re:Pity so few understand statistics (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39350365)

There is one problem with the simple assertion that the pie is growing. The development costs are also growing, it is possible that segments of the market become unprofitable to develop for and hence "die". This has lead to some of the problems that you mention for consoles, all becoming FPS aimed at 12 year olds. It has also lead to the only real innovation in PC gaming being the indy developers.

Re:Pity so few understand statistics (1)

Pieroxy (222434) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350861)

FEMALES! Modding!?!

Your comment is astonishingly sexist. Wow... You really went down the path of stupidity.

The rest is good though. A shame really.

Re:Pity so few understand statistics (1)

SciBoy (192068) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350873)

Just because hamburger restaurants sell a lot of hamburgers doesn't mean every single restaurant in the world has to be a hamburger joint.

This

The console market still exists. It might be true that this market shrinks a bit as some of those console gamers get older and find themselves
in a position where they can't just sit down and play their games anymore (I know I play only 5% as much as I did before I got a kid).

Console games do things that Facebook games simply do not. I'm guessing, but there really isn't a Skyrim clone on Facebook, right? Or Mass Effect? Or Deus Ex? Bioshock? I'm not saying these games are better than anything you can find on Facebook, Android or iOS. I'm saying it's different and speaks to a different market that likes that sort of thing. You can't just replace the one with the other. And a tiny iPad screen will never replace my console gaming TV.

Don't fear the reaper (1)

allcoolnameswheretak (1102727) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350397)

Nothing is dying. Just like we have novels, magazines, and comic books living side by side, consoles will always exist and PC's will always exist. Facebook and mobile games are just the latest platform. That will not stop people from wanting to play games from their couch or engage in more involved or resource hungry PC games. The different platforms provide different experiences and target different audiences.

I don't get why there is always this discussion about X dying because now there is Y.

Re:Don't fear the reaper (1)

headLITE (171240) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350527)

The discussion is there because in the past, X has died when Y appeared. Especially in the computing market but also elsewhere. You can compare current trends to trends back then and draw parallels and based on that you can argue that X may be dying.

Re:Don't fear the reaper (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39350795)

You mean like PCs died when the Playstation came out, and the Playstation died when the X-box game out, and they both died when the Wii came out?

Or like servers died when PCs came out?

Or FPS games died when The Sims came out?

Re:Don't fear the reaper (1)

headLITE (171240) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350823)

Or like servers died when PCs came out?

That's funny because mainframes indeed died eventually after the PC came out, and today, your typical server is a PC in a slightly different box, possibly with more hard drives.

So the maker of cheap crap thinks cheap crap win? (3, Insightful)

thetoadwarrior (1268702) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350523)

In my mind this is a company that has made its business out of "borrowing" ideas from the likes of Nintendo and making cheap knock-offs to sell on facebook or mobiles.

If consoles go away where is this guy going to get his inspiration for his games? If I was in the business of making cheap throw away games with minimal profits and no real appreciation from customers I'd be busy trying to convince people my way was the future too.

Not so (1)

mwvdlee (775178) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350559)

Casual games will kill console games the same way pop music killed classical music. It won't.
With an industry as large as the videogame industry, you'd think they'd be able to distinguish separate market segments like all forms of art and entertainment before it.

Damn (1)

firefrei (2569069) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350811)

PC gaming is dying. Well bugger, better switch to consoles then.

Oh wait... consoles are dying. Well shit, at least I can still amuse myself with music and 3D development software on my desktop.

Oh wait... desktops are dying. Well fuck...

Better blow my brains out and find another hobby. Probably not in that order.

Game Group going out of busisness. (1)

pfafrich (647460) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350837)

Wonder if Game Group's problems [bbc.co.uk] are related to this. As the UK's biggest high street game retailer the decline in console and PC games on disk can't be doing much for its income.

And he is a fool. (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350849)

I know a LOT of gamers, and yes while a lot more games are sold on tablets.... You don't see ANY tablet games selling for $60.00 in fact you will not sell one copy if you try that extortion level pricing that these scumbags get on consoles.

Plus, have you tried to play a FPS on a tablet? it sucks. Driving games suck on a tablet. Even games like geometry wars suck on a tablet. Tablets are great for slow interaction games, Adventure games rock on a tablet.

Twitch games and rapid interaction games will never sell on a tablet unless we get some decent controls. and even then I doubt it. The best handheld for FPS was the Sony PSP and on that platform it sucked to play.

FPS are a big chunk of the market, Battlefield 3 and MW3 sell far more copies of their old games than this developer has ever sold in his lifetime, and will ever sell.

EVERYTHING is dying (1)

masteva (996554) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350863)

This is REALLY getting old. Seems like everyday I'm seeing an article or some video claiming that "THIS OLD TECH / THING IS DYING!!! FEAR ME AND GIVE ME MONEY!!!" This is being blown WAY out of proportion! Yes, demographics are changing but I don't see the death of consoles anytime soon. What I'm seeing is people who normally would never look at an xbox as it is to them a "kids toy" is people playing games on social networks because "Hey, if my 30 year old friend plays this and lets the world know then it's ok for me to play this too!". It's simply a shift in social norms to me. While I fully admit to being a PC gamer for the most part (a good console RPG will still pull me away), I do not think the console is simply going to disappear. As long as it's a solid device that can deliver solid graphics and gameplay and NOT need to be upgraded (like a PC), there will always be a spot for a gaming console.

meh, gaming 'statistics' suck (1)

argStyopa (232550) | more than 2 years ago | (#39350897)

Generally, I find 'statistics' on the gaming industry too liable to ... er, "gaming" to be useful. Generally it has to do with the breadth of how they define 'computer game'.

As the op referenced, there were dire warnings that 'pc gaming was dying'. Then it was apparent that the huge bulk of units/sales - the majority of the discussion, in fact - was considering products that many "gamers" wouldn't even be likely to include in the "gaming ouevre", ie Barbie Fashion Designer, or Exxtreme Deer Hunter 3D.*

*granted, they are played on a computer, and they are games, so perhaps it was just a sort of cliquish snobbiness that excluded them. But on the other hand by that same definition I'm pretty sure the dominant 'computer game' ever would be Minesweeper or Freecell.

This is further setting aside that it's still common that to broader audiences, 'computer games' can interchangeably refer to consoles or computers.

Finally now we're once again subjected to PCs vs consoles, which starts to sort of sound like a debate between "Surrey or Fiacre" when compared to the explosive growth of mobile/phone games. But does the growth of these mobile platforms have anything to do with consoles or PCs? I'd contend its completely independent - thus really irrelevant; if I have a gaming inclination that wants to be satisfied by something engaging and complex for hours, I'm probably not going to play Tetris. But if I have 15 mins until the bus I doubt I'm going to turn on my computer or even Xbox.

FWIW I personally believe that consoles are most likely the genre that has a finite product lifespan. As mobile platforms are now truly handheld computers, and computers meanwhile get amazingly cheap, it seems that consoles are getting squeezed out. Ultimately, I suspect anything that can access the web's infinite flashgames is going to kill the game market for anything casual.

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