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Video Games Conquer The Elderly

Zonk posted about 7 years ago | from the by-the-sword! dept.

Games 48

bedake writes "The New York Times has up an article discussing the increase in retired people getting interested in online computer games. 'PopCap Games in Seattle, the maker of the diversions so popular at St. Mary, says its games have been downloaded more than 200 million times since the company was founded in 2000. A spokesman said that the company was stunned by results of a customer survey last year: 71 percent of its players were older than 40, 47 percent were older than 50, and 76 percent of PopCap players were women.' The piece goes on to discuss the popularity of the Wii console, as well, a subject discussed on Slashdot before."

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48 comments

Western civilization has jumped the shark... (1)

Spudtrooper (1073512) | about 7 years ago | (#18547157)

Great. We're beating cancer, eradicating diseases, living for decades longer than our ancestors - and spending those bonus years playing Insaniquarium.

Korea? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18547295)

"Video Games Conquer The Elderly"

Are any of them in Korea?

Soviet Russia (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18547737)

In Soviet Russia, games conquer YOU.

Only old North Koreans need video games.

Take your pick.

Re:Soviet Russia (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18548221)

Imagine a beowulf cluster of old people!

I, for one, welcome our aged-yet-able-to-remember-things overlords.

Quote in summary is bad. (4, Insightful)

Southpaw018 (793465) | about 7 years ago | (#18547321)

Since when is 40 "elderly?" There are lots of people of retirement age who play games like those made by PopCap and who play on pogo.com and like sites. In fact, the article focuses mainly on people who are over 60.

Yet the quote for the article summary is a survey done on age brackets at 40 and 50 - hardly people who could be called "elderly".

Re:Quote in summary is bad. (1)

Richard Steiner (1585) | about 7 years ago | (#18548317)

Really. Folks in their 40's are the video game generation and the first microcomputer game generation, so of COURSE we're going to buy games. I'm 44, and I grew up on TRS-80's, Apple II's, and Space Invaders. :-)

Oldsters (1)

davidwr (791652) | about 7 years ago | (#18548679)

Was it Lost In Space or Star Trek that used that '60s reference to refer to anyone over 30?

Re:Oldsters (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18548843)

Sure you're not thinking of Logan's Run?

I'm thinking of a TV series (1)

davidwr (791652) | about 7 years ago | (#18550849)

The series I'm thinking of has the heroes showing up on a planet where everyone over 30 is kicked out of town or killed, I'm not sure which.

I'm thinking it's Lost In Space because I remember at least one teen- or 20-something lady regular character. I think she had a thing going for one of the natives.

Re:Oldsters (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18551049)

Surely not... everyone renews at 30.

Survey Respondents (2, Insightful)

EveryNickIsTaken (1054794) | about 7 years ago | (#18547355)

Youth and young adults don't take surveys. Old people with too much free time do. Read into this as you will.

Re:Survey Respondents (1)

kinglink (195330) | about 7 years ago | (#18547933)

I have to agree with that. My mother who's age is numberless (no seriously we haven't created a number that high) is sorta addicted to quizzes and surveys and such. I get tons of free stuff in the mail because she filled out "X offer" or did "X quiz" for me. She's one of those mystery shoppers, she's one of those that people call to ask their opinions on and so on.

I'm almost 40 years younger, and I don't even have 5 minutes that I'd be willing to give to a quiz, I like single question polls where I don't have to do anything, but if there's more than one page expect me to make up random answers after the third question.

Hell assume I'm making up answers on the second question unless I REALLY REALLY like your product.

Hah! (4, Interesting)

7Prime (871679) | about 7 years ago | (#18547361)

Hopefully, we'll stop having to hear these assholes talk about how the Wii is "kiddy". People will come to their senses and realize that by "kiddy" they simply mean, "not between the ages of 12 and 18", which makes the other consoles look a mite immature by comparison.

Re:Hah! (1)

Some_Llama (763766) | about 7 years ago | (#18549317)

"Hopefully, we'll stop having to hear these assholes talk about how the Wii is "kiddy". "

I actually prefer to hear them refer to myself (34) and my wife (also 34) as "kiddies" who don't value their $600+ consoles, it helps to clarify that these console makers are out of touch with what consumers want, and therefore helps me to avoid their products.

Any company that is that out of touch with gamers and their desires in gaming (who think derogatory comments will shame people into purchasing) obviously won't be putting our desires first but instead relying on hype and marketing to promote their products and the software written for those products.

FYI, I bought a Wii because of the word of mouth promotion (friends, co-workers, etc..) which I trust many times more than any viral adverts (e.g. alliwantisapsp), guerilla marketing (corp sponsored graffitti) or TV adverts.

Same way I decide what video games to buy (other than downloading them first to try).

Everyone Gets Involved (2, Interesting)

Dark Kenshin (764678) | about 7 years ago | (#18547365)

It's not really surprising that the older generations are getting into online games. With the trend of computers and technology being an integral part of almost all aspects of society, it's only natural that everyone eventually gets involved. The stereotype of old people viewing modern technology as "evil" or "weird" is left to the fading past.

It's also interesting to see the outlet for older people to conversers and interact with a larger, and broader group of people. Not saying that the elderly don't get out, but games and online experience do allow them to "get out" on a larger scale.

What is best in life? (3, Funny)

Captain Splendid (673276) | about 7 years ago | (#18547381)

To conquer the elderly, drive them before you, and hear the lamentations of their pacemakers!

Re:What is best in life? (1)

Seumas (6865) | about 7 years ago | (#18547495)

I don't see how this is a big deal to begin with. Elderly people today are not the same elderly people as a decade or two ago. Today's elderly people grew up listening to rock and roll and dancing naked in the mud at Woodstock. It's not like today's elderly people were doing the waltz in those old dresses with the enormous wire ass attached to them that the dress poofs out over and lamenting the loss of the horse and buggy. It's not the same jump as taking someone who was born before talkies and held jobs during the great drop of 1929 and getting them into Wii bowling.

Re:What is best in life? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18549163)

Elderly people today are not the same elderly people as a decade or two ago. Today's elderly people grew up listening to rock and roll and dancing naked in the mud at Woodstock. It's not like today's elderly people were doing the waltz in those old dresses with the enormous wire ass attached to them that the dress poofs out over and lamenting the loss of the horse and buggy.


Indeed. My grandfather was born around 1915, and when he retired in the late 70's he was broken by today's standards.. both physically and in attitude. Due to working as a carpenter for 40 years he sustained quite a few injuries, but he also had the "bah.. I'm too old for that" attitude about nearly everything.

Fast forward to today. A few years ago I worked for University of Arizona, and there you have 70 year olds riding their recumbents down the road to the office, going hiking, and in general living life in better health and with a better attitude. Even where I'm living now in Ohio the attitude has changed and people over sixty are more active and open-minded about things.

Re:What is best in life? (1)

AdamThor (995520) | about 7 years ago | (#18549933)

Even where I'm living now in Ohio the attitude has changed and people over sixty are more active and open-minded about things.

So what you are saying is that they are ripe for a good conquering... Excellent...

70 is the new 13 (4, Funny)

illegalcortex (1007791) | about 7 years ago | (#18547393)

I can't wait until I'm elderly and in a nursing home with a computer and internet connection. It will be nothing but gaming all day and all night ("all night" being 4pm-8pm). And I'll have someone to bring me food and clean up after me. It will be just like NES years. Only with more organ failure.

Re:70 is the new 13 (1)

HungWeiLo (250320) | about 7 years ago | (#18549489)

On a somewhat related topic, I remember a story last year about a nursing home in Florida where there was an epidemic of STDs in the community. Apparently, many there thought they were immune to such things after a certain age. Couple that fact with lots of free time...well...

Hmm.... (0, Troll)

LordPhantom (763327) | about 7 years ago | (#18547479)

Having not read the article, I'd like to know...... ... do they call these Video Games "Acute Heart Disease" and "Alzheimers"?

it's time (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18547497)

now that the elderly are vanquished...

Brain age (2, Interesting)

QueePWNzor (1044224) | about 7 years ago | (#18547511)

Nintendo has been bragging like hell about their "touch generations" stuff like Brain Age. The Wii, too. It does have some success, but real games for granddad are yet to come. Besides, Brain Age and Wii Sports compliment old people by giving them a lower age!

Not your father's game console (2, Funny)

ewg (158266) | about 7 years ago | (#18547609)

The Nintendo Wii: it's not your father's game console--it's your grandfather's game console.

Note to young whippersnappers: this joke references an advertising slogan for a defunct brand of automobile.

Further note to young whippersnappers: get off my lawn.

Re:Not your father's game console (1)

aardwolf64 (160070) | about 7 years ago | (#18548861)

I probably wouldn't have gotten that, had my Grandfather not owned an Oldsmobile dealership... I guess I'm a whippersnapper...

When Generation X Ages... (2, Funny)

Notquitecajun (1073646) | about 7 years ago | (#18548039)

We won't have alzheimer's - continuing to play video games may help prevent or hold off its onset - but we'll all have surgery for our carpal tunnel every few years when we hit our 70s because we WON'T stop playing video games. I may as well buy those wrist braces now...

Re:When Generation X Ages... (1)

dadioflex (854298) | about 7 years ago | (#18551755)

"I may as well buy those wrist braces now..."

I've no idea whether to mod you funny or insightful so I'll comment instead. I picked up a copy of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome a couple of years ago and I'm still getting the hang of the controls.

Old news (2, Insightful)

vandelais (164490) | about 7 years ago | (#18548111)

Elderly people have been playing networked games for several years now.
They even travel great distances to play.
The places that host these games are called casinos. They have addictive gameplay, and are networked together to the extent of determining the maximum jackpot awarded.

Elderly Gamers (1)

rlp (11898) | about 7 years ago | (#18548145)

What do you mean 40 or 50 is elderly?! ... excuse me ... HEY GET OFF MY LAWN!! Dang kids, now where'd I put that rocket launcher.

In other news... (1)

Endo13 (1000782) | about 7 years ago | (#18551703)

...92% of people under age 40 are too busy to bother with filling out inane surveys about crappy little online PC games.

Freecell (1)

N3Bruce (154308) | about 7 years ago | (#18559171)

As one in the "Elderly" generation (I'm 47), I can say that I have had my periods of video game addiction. My parents, who are in their 70s, spend hours at a time playing Freecell on their his and her's laptops, even when I visit. They've always liked card games and table games like Dominoes and Scrabble, the games they like on the computer are an extension of this genre.

Watch out! (1)

‹berhund (27591) | about 7 years ago | (#18568573)

Video Games Conquer The Elderly
The robot revolution is starting!

OR:

They'll be the first against the wall when Dance Dance Revolution comes.

ROFLMFAO OMGWTFBBQ PLZ WTH LOL (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18572231)

PopCap is not "online gaming". Lol. Oh Jesus. It's funny when the casual market think they are gamers.
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